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Oak Woodlands and Private Landowners:

Forestry Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Thursday, July 31, 2014 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Oak Woodlands and oak savanna, once widely distributed across the Willamette Valley, are now the focus of important restoration and conservation efforts.  Private landowners as well as several federal and state agencies are investing substantial money and resources on conservation of these ecosystems.

Are these efforts working?  How do we know?

Northwest Natural Resources Group and Willamette Partnership are hosting a workshop focused on measurement tools developed to evaluate the ecological impact and improvement associated with the implementation of conservation actions in oak woodland ecosystems.  The training session will include background on the program developments around oak conservation, an overview of metric development, field training, and will feature case studies by landowners engaged in oak restoration and preservation work in the Willamette Valley.

To sign up or for additional registration information contact the following:

Meagan Nuss: meagan@nnrg.org - 503-545-8685
Nicole Maness - maness@willamettepartnership.org - 202-384-8992

Yamhill Small Woodlands Association Tree Farmer of the Year Tour

Forestry Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Tuesday, August 5, 2014 5:30 PM - 9:00 PM

Brian and Barbara Doyle are this year's hosts and county Tree Farmer of the Year nominees.  Yamhill Small Woodlands Association will provide hamburgers, hot dogs and beverages.  Bring a side dish if you like.

Tour will begin at 7 p.m. following dinner.

Please RSVP for food planning to Hal Hagglund - 503-843-2173 or hal.elin@gmail.com.

Twilight Tour

Forestry Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Thursday, August 14, 2014 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Are you interested in adding native plant diversity on your property?  This event will interest you.  Paul Wilson and Linda Farris have been actively restoring a range of native grasses, shrubs, and trees to what was a neglected, invasives-filled hillside on their small woodland property.  We will see how they propagate their own plant materials, are creating a small oak meadow, a native hedgerow, and addition plant diversity to a young tree plantation.

No RSVP needed.

Plan for walking up and downhill short distances on gravel.  Located 0.1 mile past Quincy Grange; for detailed directions call the Extension office.

Rural Living Field Day

Forestry Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Saturday, August 23, 2014 8:30 AM - 2:30 PM

Rural Living Field Day is a fun event for rural landowners.

The event features speakers addressing a wide variety of issues that face rural homeowners, farmers, and land managers every day.

Topics include wildlife, forests, pollinators, invasive weeds, orchards, crops and health soil, horse health and manure composting.

The event is organized by our local Soil & Water Conservation Districts. To register, just visit the West Multnomah Soil & Water Conservation District website at www.wmswcd.org and click on “Events.” The cost is only $15 per person or $20 for families.

Morning beverages and snacks will be served as well as a fully catered lunch.

Labor Day

Health & Wellness Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Monday, September 1, 2014 (all day event)
National Holiday. Campus closed. Enjoy a 3 day weekend!

OSU Forage Management Series

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

This is a multi-part series including sessions on forage assessment, harvest management, irrigation, renovation techniques, and fertility and includes indoor meetings as well as outdoor to demonstrate the principles of the series.  We will have a "project ranch" that we work on together, including site visits and an on-line document sharing blog.  The project ranch will be the Wilson Farm, the OSU sheep facility with sheep and cattle grazing the pastures.  You can also work on your own ranch as a side project if desired.  The object of the series is to improve knowledge about managing forage on properties in the Willamette Valley.

Instructors:  Shelby Filley and other OSU faculty and local experts

Fee:  $25 per evening per individual or ranch/family group and $100 for the series of five sessions.

Please pre-register by completing the registration form

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Soil Workshop for small-scale vegetable farmers

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Thursday, August 14, 2014 9:30 AM - 3:30 PM
The second day of this two day workshop includes more advanced topics including soil testing, soil moisture, nitrogen management, and identifying nutrient deficiency symptoms. Participants will learn how to the the OSU Organic Fertilizer and Cover Crop Calculator.
Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Small Farm School

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Saturday, September 6, 2014 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM

Small Farm School is a full day event with hands on and classroom workshops for beginning farmer and small acreage rural landowners. Join us the first Saturday of September at Clackamas Community College.

Field and classroom workshops include pig and poultry management, fruit and vegetable production, soil management, tractor safety and operation, on farm veterinary care and much more.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Soil Workshop for small-scale vegetable farmers

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Wednesday, August 13, 2014 9:30 AM - 3:30 PM

The first  day of this two-day soil workshop covers beginning soils topics including soil types, texture, structure, and organic matter. Participants will have a chance to look at soil horizons in a deep hole pit, and oberve a tillage demonstration.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Seeds of the Future

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Saturday, August 16, 2014 10:00 AM - 3:30 PM

POSTER Includes tour of two seed farms, lunch and a class for begining seed farmers. REGISTER ON LINE
Specialty Seed Crops are a niche market for small, sustainable Rogue Valley Farms.  Tour two family farms currently working on innovative breeding projects and cooperative seed marketing.  In the afternoon, attend an optional class for Beginning Seed Growers taught by Don Tipping, owner of Siskiyou Seed's and a long-time seed grower.

Addresses and directions to the farms will be provided to participants.  Class size is Iimited to 30.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Seeds of the Future

Small Farms Events - 6 hours 19 min ago
Saturday, August 16, 2014 10:00 AM - 3:30 PM

Seed Breeding and Production in the Rogue Valley: 
A farm tour and Primer for Beginning Seed Farmers

Specialty Seed Crops represent a great niche market to small, sustainable farms in the Rogue Valley. Tour of two family farms currently working on innovative breeding projects and cooperative seed marketing. For people interested in growing specialty seed crops, attend an optional class for Beginning Seed Growers with Siskiyou Seed's owner and long-time seed grower Don Tipping in the afternoon. 

REGISTER ON LINE: http://extension.oregonstate.edu/sorec/farms  

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Soil Health Workshop

Gardening Events - 16 hours 22 min ago
Wednesday, July 9, 2014 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Workshop sponsored by Yamhill, Polk and Marion County Soil & Water Conservation workshops.

 $10 at the door.  Space is limited. Please RSVP to Marc Bell, Polk SWCD at 503-623-9680

Mini-College

Gardening Events - 16 hours 22 min ago
Saturday, July 12, 2014 - Sunday, July 13, 2014 (all day event)

2 day gardening seminar offering classes for MG recertification

 

Plant Diagnostics

Gardening Events - 16 hours 22 min ago
Tuesday, July 15, 2014 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Learn how to diagnose plant problems in home gardens with Master Gardener Jeff Choate.

The Basics of Beekeeping

Gardening Events - 16 hours 22 min ago
Thursday, July 17, 2014 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Have you always wanted to know what it takes to raise honey bees?  Learn the basics of beekeeping like biology of the honey bee, what equipment is needed, breakdown of costs for getting started and managing bees throughout the year.

Efficient Watering

Gardening Events - 16 hours 22 min ago
Thursday, July 31, 2014 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Learn efficient watering techniques to create a more sustainable environment in your own yard.  The pros and cons of drip irrigation, in-ground sprinklers and basic hose irrigation will be taught.  Back to the Roots Landscape owner will teach water conservation while maintaining healthy plants and lawns.

Summer Woodland Tour and Lunch

Forestry Events - Sat, 07/26/2014 - 4:25pm
Saturday, July 26, 2014 8:30 AM - 2:30 PM

Our hosts for this year's tour are Randy and Bonnie Holce, CCSWA members and OSU Master Woodland Managers.

8:30 Hot Coffee and Pastries
9:00 Walking Tour Begins

Randy is the second generation in his family to own this property.  Originally managed as pasture and other farm uses, the farm was converted to timber over the years and now consists of various stands from recently planted to mature.  We will see many highlights of the Holce's current activities on the tour.

Rob Hahmeyer, pole buyer with McCormick Pole Yard, will be on hand to do a pole marking demonstration so we can learn to distinguish trees that might have potential for the lucrative market.  We will also look at a commercial thinning in progress and see how a less productive area has been enhanced as a wildlife set-aside.

Remember, family is invited.  Please include the number in your party when you RSVP to Debra Boot at 503-568-4929 or globe.trotters.email@gmail.com by July 18th.  RSVP is needed for accurate food preparation, please!

Environmental Drivers May be Adding to Loss of Sea Stars

Breaking Waves - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 9:26am

NEWPORT – The rapid loss of sea stars along the US west coast may be caused in part by environmental changes, and not solely by a specific pathogen as many had previously thought.

This new hypothesis emerged from a recent symposium on sea star wasting syndrome (SSWS) hosted at Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center. Oregon Sea Grant enlisted the Center’s support to bring together 40 top researchers from as far north as Alaska and as far south as Santa Barbara, California. The goal was to clarify the science and develop recommendations for further research, monitoring and possible responses to SSWS.

“I think we can all agree that this is one of the biggest epidemics ever in the ocean in terms of range and the number of species,” said Drew Harvell, a researcher from Cornell who is on sabbatical at Friday Harbor Labs in Washington.

SSWS is the name for a series of symptoms exhibited as a sea star “wastes” away and ultimately dies. Other outbreaks have been observed in the 1970s and 1990s, but despite similar symptoms there are some key differences. The current outbreak—which began in 2013—continued throughout the winter, which has never before been observed, in addition to occurring on a much larger geographic scale.

Through the symposium, researchers from different fields—ecologists, pathologists, veterinarians, and more—joined forces to piece together what is known about the disappearing stars. New evidence has failed to show consistent signs of either bacterial or viral infections, leading scientists to question whether a single pathogen is the culprit. In addition, they noticed correlations between warmer average water temperatures and the syndrome’s appearance.

“Increases in temperature lead to a cascade of oceanographic changes, ultimately leading to lower pH,” said Bruce Menge, an OSU researcher who studies the intertidal zone.

Under this hypothesis, the lower pH would deteriorate the protective outer layers of the sea star. The stars would then struggle to balance their internal concentration of salt and water and would slowly waste away. The increased acidity could also cause calcified bone-like support structures—called ossicles—to erode once exposed.

A similar idea is that the warming temperatures and lower pH could stress the animal and weaken its immune system. After that, any number of pathogens could be responsible for causing the animals to waste and die.

“It’s possible that sea stars only have a limited suite of ways to show they are stressed,” said Mike Murray, a veterinarian from the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

A number of ocean conditions – upwelling, for instance – can cause pockets of warmer or cooler water. This variation could explain why a few areas of the west coast have thus far escaped the outbreaks for the most part.

Symposium participants agreed that the exact cause of the outbreak remains a mystery. While environmental drivers are getting new attention, the idea of an infectious disease is still prominent. Harvell and her colleagues are working to identify exactly which pathogen could cause SSWS. All of these potential hypotheses provide testable research questions for future studies.

Going forward, attendees are writing group documents to summarize both what is known and what further actions need to be taken to investigate these and other hypotheses. The papers are expected to be completed in August, and to include suggestions for how to best locate and compare existing environmental data, in addition to encouraging more directed monitoring.

Learn more

To find out more about SSWS, or to get involved in the monitoring, visit these sites with information on citizen science programs near you:

__________________________________

Sea Star Wasting Syndrome Timeline:
  • 1976-79: A devastating SSWS event took out large numbers of sea stars along the west coast. It was believed to be a bacterial event due to the effectiveness of antibiotic treatment.
  • 1983-84: SSWS was found in areas with warmer waters as a result of an intense El Nino event. The outbreak spread to other echinoderms  such as sea urchins. Cold winter temperatures halted the spread.
  • 1997-98: Another round of SSWS hit, also spurred by an intense El Nino, but subsided in the winter like previous events.
  • June 2013: The current bout of SSWS was discovered in Olympic National Park in Washington.
  • October/November 2013: Sea stars began dying in large numbers in Monterey, CA.
  • December 2013: SSWS was detected at sites ranging from Alaska to San Diego. Oregon seemed immune at this point for unknown reasons.
  • January 2014: Despite the fact that previous SSWS events subsided during the winter,  the current outbreak continued to spread, especially in southern California.
  • April 2014: While SSWS spread widely along the California and Washington coasts, less than 1% of Oregon stars exhibited signs of the disease.
  • May 2014: About halfway through the month, the percentage of stars exhibiting SSWS skyrocketed in Oregon to between 40 and 60 percent of the populations surveyed.
  • June 2014: Researchers convened at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, OR, to discuss what is known and what should be done about SSWS.
Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Master Naturalist blogs about coast, nature and the environment

Sea Grant - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 1:58pm

Jane Wilson is a licensed K-8 teacher, an outdoor enthusiast, and a graduate of Oregon State University’s Oregon Master Naturalist certification program who blogs her thoughts and photographs – about coastal Oregon and the North Coast in particular.

In the introduction to her blog, Wilson writes:

“My commitment to learning how to better observe, interpret, and share information about the natural sciences associated with dynamic earth is heart-felt. Inspiration comes from eagerness to nurture a sense of wonder about the natural world. I’d like to be an advocate who supports others in defining their own connections with nature, understanding why those connections are important, and … in the process, becoming nature literate.”

Check out her observations, adventures and photographs about nature and our place in it at Just Another Nature Enthusiast.

Learn more:
  • OSU’s Oregon Master Naturalist program, a collaborative training program presented by OSU Extension with funding from Oregon Sea Grant Extension, Forestry & Natural Resources Extension and Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources Extension, and by participants’ enrollment fees.
Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Master Naturalist blogs about coast, nature and the environment

Breaking Waves - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 1:58pm

Jane Wilson is a licensed K-8 teacher, an outdoor enthusiast, and a graduate of Oregon State University’s Oregon Master Naturalist certification program who blogs her thoughts and photographs – about coastal Oregon and the North Coast in particular.

In the introduction to her blog, Wilson writes:

“My commitment to learning how to better observe, interpret, and share information about the natural sciences associated with dynamic earth is heart-felt. Inspiration comes from eagerness to nurture a sense of wonder about the natural world. I’d like to be an advocate who supports others in defining their own connections with nature, understanding why those connections are important, and … in the process, becoming nature literate.”

Check out her observations, adventures and photographs about nature and our place in it at Just Another Nature Enthusiast.

Learn more:
  • OSU’s Oregon Master Naturalist program, a collaborative training program presented by OSU Extension with funding from Oregon Sea Grant Extension, Forestry & Natural Resources Extension and Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources Extension, and by participants’ enrollment fees.
Categories: OSU Extension Blogs