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Free Agriculture Pesticide Pickup

Small Farms Events - Sat, 05/09/2015 - 2:35pm
Saturday, May 9, 2015 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM

This one-time event offers agricultural, commercial, and industrial operators in Coos, Curry, and Douglas Counties the opportunity to clean out their pesticide storage sheds and dispose of old or unwanted pesticides. 

Participants must pre-register with Clean Harbors by April 25.  Information collected during registration will be used for planning and scheduling pickup times; it will not be used for regulatory reporting.  Empty, triple-rinsed pesticide containers will also be accepted (no registration necessary for clean containers). 

Registration information can be found at http://extension.oregonstate.edu/coos/sites/default/files/agriculture/documents/may_9_pesticide_collection_flyer.pdf.  For technical questions, contact Graham Gadzia of Clean Harbors at (253) 639-4240 ext 2813 or Gadzia.graham@cleanharbors.com

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs


Evaluation is an Everyday Activity - Fri, 05/08/2015 - 2:52pm

Like many people, I find change hard. In fact, I really don’t like change. I think this is the result of a high school experience; one-third of my classmates left each year. (I was a military off-spring; we changed assignments every three years.)

Yet, in today’s world change is probably the only constant. Does that make it fun? Not necessarily. Does that make it easy? Nope. Does that make it necessary? Yep.

Evaluators deal with change regularly. New programs are required; those must be evaluated. Old programs are revised; those must be evaluated. New approaches are developed and presented to the field. (When I first became an evaluator, there wasn’t a systems approach to evaluation; there wasn’t developmental evaluation; I could continue.) New technologies are available and must be used even if the old one wasn’t broken (even for those of us who are techno-peasants).

I just finished a major qualitative evaluation that involved real-time virtual focus groups. When I researched this topic (virtual focus groups), I found a lot of information about non-synchronous focus groups, focus groups using a conferencing software, even synchronous focus groups without pictures. I didn’t find anything about using real-time synchronous virtual focus groups. Unfortunately, we didn’t have much money even though there are services available.

We had technical problems. We had people who declined (and then complained that they were not included). We had groups that consisted of two people. (Is that really a group?) Every thing I knew about focus groups said 10 -12 participants. We (as it was a group effort) figured that some of the invited members would not participate. We were looking for 6 – 8 participating members. We did a lot of adjusting to accommodate the numbers. There was a lot of change. I got frustrated. I wanted to quit. I didn’t. And consequently, neither did the team. Change happened.We persevered and conducted 12 virtual focus groups with a total of 65 participating members. I did two individual interviews as well. They were considered external stakeholders and although we would have loved to have focus groups consisting of external stakeholders, that didn’t happen. I am grateful that they were willing to participate.

Now I’m analyzing the data; a challenging task to be sure. I’m not expecting any surprises; I hope there are not any–that would mean more change. Something I don’t like. Change is hard.

The post Change appeared first on Evaluation is an Everyday Activity.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Leading Towards Health & Hope

Health & Wellness Events - Fri, 05/08/2015 - 2:37pm
Friday, May 8, 2015 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Dr. Larry Roper from the School of Language, Culture & Society will speak about health and hope in one's leadership.

Requests for accommodations related to ability may contact Michele Ribeiro at 541-737-2131 or michele.ribeiro@oregonstate.edu.

Sponsored by the OSU Mental Health Initiative, Counseling and Psychological Services, Healthy Campus Initiatives, Student Health Services, Recreational Sports, the Division of Student Affairs, and the Department Athletics Student Development.

CPHHS Research Seminar

Health & Wellness Events - Fri, 05/08/2015 - 2:37pm
Friday, May 8, 2015 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

"Breast Cancer Screening: The Benefits, the Risks, the Controversies" Veronica L. Irvin, PhD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Health Promotion & Health Behavior, College of Public Health and Human Sciences.

Dr. Irvin has broad experience in NIH-funded research in tobacco control and comparative effectiveness research, and she has a strong interest in community-based research, particularly in Asian American communities.

Before joining the OSU College of Public Health and Human Sciences, she completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) in the Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD. She received her doctoral degree in a joint PhD in Public Health with an emphasis in health behavior at the University of California San Diego and San Diego State University and her MPH in epidemiology from San Diego State University, Graduate School of Public Health.

Faculty Profile

Blount Factory Tour

Forestry Events - Thu, 05/07/2015 - 2:39pm
Thursday, May 7, 2015 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Have you ever wondered what goes into the making of your saw chain or other tools? The process of design, development, and manufacturing is high-tech, precise, and fascinating.

There will be a lot of walking, but there are no steps or other obstacles. There is no fee, but space is limited and registration is required. Please provide your employer or business name when you register. Register by May 4th.

Curry County - Woodland Basics

Forestry Events - Thu, 05/07/2015 - 2:39pm
Thursday, May 7, 2015 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Are you new to woodland ownership or would you simply like to know more about what makes your trees tick? This four-session shortcourse will give you a strong foundation in general forestry topics and help you get the most out of your property. Whether you are interested in producing timber and other products from your woods or if you simply want to keep your woods healthy, this course is for you. A $20 registration fee covers course materials and light refreshments.

Please pre-register with Samantha Clayburn: 541-572-5263 x25292 or Samantha.Clayburn@oregonstate.edu

Center for Global Health guest speaker

Health & Wellness Events - Thu, 05/07/2015 - 2:39pm
Thursday, May 7, 2015 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

Competent Risk Communication is a vital skill of public health practitioners. Events surrounding the Ebola epidemic in West Africa during the autumn of 2014 were mired in punditry, fear, and miscommunication in the United States. The intent of this presentation is to discuss elements of risk communication theory and highlight positives and negatives of the early Ebola Stateside media and communication experience.

Dr. Kravitz is an Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at OHSU. His international experience includes refugee and displaced persons health care, disaster response, and epidemiological health studies in southern Africa. Dr. Kravitz is also dual-board certified in Emergency Medicine and Preventive Medicine.

Please RSVP to cfgh@oregonstate.edu


Coos County - Woodland Basics

Forestry Events - Wed, 05/06/2015 - 2:35pm
Wednesday, May 6, 2015 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Are you new to woodland ownership or would you simply like to know more about what makes your trees tick? This four-session shortcourse will give you a strong foundation in general forestry topics and help you get the most out of your property. Whether you are interested in producing timber and other products from your woods or if you simply want to keep your woods healthy, this course is for you. A $20 registration fee covers course materials and light refreshments.

Please pre-register with Samantha Clayburn: 541-572-5263 x25292 or Samantha.Clayburn@oregonstate.edu

Many Douglas-fir with dead tops and branches in the Willamette Valley this year

Amy Grotta's Tree Topics - Tue, 05/05/2015 - 5:53pm

By Brad Withrow-Robinson, Forestry & Natural Resources Extension Agent, Benton, Linn and Polk Counties

Young Douglas-fir trees with dying branches or tops turning brown, then red have become a common sight all around the Willamette Valley this spring. What is going on?

This “flare out” of branches and tops are classic drought symptoms in Douglas-fir, which we are linking to last year’s weather when we had a particularly long, dry and very hot period late in the summer. Late season drought injuries to the stem and leader do not always show up when they occur, but often express themselves the following spring as trees start to grow. We have these drought damage events from time to time here in the valley, most recently in 2013 and again before that around 2000. Older trees typically have milder symptoms, but the many older, flat-topped Douglas-fir trees you see are a reflection of past droughts and non-fatal damage.

It is important to keep in mind that the Willamette Valley can be a challenging environment for trees. Summers are significantly hotter and drier in the Valley than in the mountains, and we have many poorly drained or shallow soils that are not well-suited to many kinds of trees. So, we tend to see most drought stress damage on more marginal sites, where wet or shallow soils limit tree root growth, water availability, or both. It is also often more common in younger trees (20 years and younger) whose root system may be having trouble keeping up with rapid expansion of their crowns.

Heat and drought can kill trees outright, or often just put the trees under stress. Stress can then lead to problems with secondary pests (including insects such as the twig weevil and diseases such as stem cankers) which take advantage of a stressed tree’s weakened condition. Right now we are mostly seeing the effects of drought in Douglas-fir, but can probably expect to see problems emerge among some other conifers as the year progresses, especially if we stay as dry as we are now. Let’s hope for some more rain!

For more information:

Here are two good articles from the ODF Forest Health team. They are a few years old but very relevant, explaining Dead tops and Branches (with good pictures)  and about Drought and Mortality.

More photos below.

The post Many Douglas-fir with dead tops and branches in the Willamette Valley this year appeared first on TreeTopics.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Corvallis Science Pub: An acidic ocean?

Breaking Waves - Tue, 05/05/2015 - 11:19am

It’s been called the “evil twin” of climate change. As the oceans absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and surface waters become more acidic, changes to marine ecosystems are likely to follow. Coral reefs, shell-forming organisms and the fish and marine mammals that depend on them are at risk.

At the May 11 Corvallis Science Pub, George Waldbusser will describe what scientists know about the biological effects of ocean acidification. The Science Pub presentation is free and open to the public. It begins at 6 p.m. at the Old World Deli, 341 S.W. 2nd St. in Corvallis.

On average, the oceans are about 30 percent more acidic today than they were a century ago, and impacts are already being seen along the West Coast. Waldbusser and his students have turned their attention to the region’s oyster industry, which had $73 million in sales in 2009.

Oyster larvae are sensitive to acidification and Waldbusser, an assistant professor in Oregon State’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, is working to understand why.

“With larval oysters, what we see are developmental issues,” he said. “From the time eggs are fertilized, Pacific oyster larvae will precipitate roughly 90 percent of their body weight as a calcium carbonate shell within 48 hours.”

His research has been supported by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Oregon Sea Grant and other agencies.

Learn more:


The post Corvallis Science Pub: An acidic ocean? appeared first on Breaking Waves.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Woodland owner and canine companion “dig deep” into truffle hunting

Amy Grotta's Tree Topics - Mon, 05/04/2015 - 1:31pm

By Brandy Saffell, Education Program Assistant, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension

Part I: Gucci and the Joriad

OSU Master Woodland Manager Marilyn Richen and her family own forest land in Columbia County. Her story about Gucci, her yellow lab, and the Joriad Truffle Hunting Competition is a modern day retelling of The Ugly Duckling.

Gucci was born into a training program for Guide Dogs for the Blind. Sadly, she could not stay in the program because of scavenging behaviors (i.e. seeking out and nabbing food). The upside of this otherwise disappointing situation was that Marilyn and her partner, Tammy Jackson, could officially adopt Gucci. They decided, though, that they desperately needed to find some sort of activity or training to help focus Gucci’s excessive energy.

Marilyn Richen’s dog, Gucci, on a forest truffle hunt (Photo: Jeannine May)

This is where truffles enter the tale. Truffles are fungi that develop underground in symbiotic association with the roots of trees; they are also a culinary delicacy. Marilyn has had an interest in truffles for many years and has attended several truffle classes including those offered at Tree School and through the Oregon Woodland Cooperative. She was also aware of truffle hunting with dogs but did not have a dog to train until Gucci came along. Could truffle hunting be a way to channel Gucci’s energy into something productive?

In 2013, Marilyn, Tammy, and Gucci began working with a truffle dog trainer, Jeannine May. The training regime involved weekly practice with Jeannine and then daily reinforcement of the skills that she taught.  Gucci was finding truffles in the wild regularly by the end of the truffle season (roughly December through February). This past season, Gucci went out truffle hunting once or twice per week, gradually improving her ability to identify truffles and dig them up. The time had come to put Gucci’s sniffer to the test against other dogs.

Marilyn and Tammy entered Gucci in the Joriad, a North American Truffle Dog Competition event. Gucci passed with flying colors in the qualifying rounds, which took place in an arena filled with hidden truffle-scented objects. She proceeded with five other competitors to the final field round: a foggy, dense Christmas tree farm near Eugene. Each contender embarked on their own in the woods, searching for as many wild truffles as they could find in one hour. Gucci won, and although the results were not made public, she was rumored to have found more than twice the number of truffles than the second runner-up. Our champion, Gucci, had undergone her transformation from the storybook ugly duckling into a truffle-hunting swan.

Gucci and Marilyn in a qualifying round at the Joriad Truffle Dog Competition (Photo: Jeannine May)

Part II: Opportunities for Landowners

When I consider this story about Gucci, I see an opportunity for landowners to embrace truffles as a non-timber forest product. Truffle hunting has been a tradition in southern Europe for centuries and remain a highly esteemed product up there with foie gras and caviar. Although there are thousands of truffle varieties, the most widely known and prized are French black perigords and Italian whites. The market value of European black and white truffles can be anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 per pound. In the U.S., truffles grow especially well in the mild climate of the Pacific Northwest, primarily west of the Cascades. Oregon has its own native black and white truffles and peak production is found in dense, coastal Douglas-fir stands, around 15 to 25 years old. Despite the fact that these stands are common throughout our region, only a small percentage of the potential truffle crop is harvested each year (about 13,500 pounds). Part of the reason is that most commercially productive truffle habitat is on privately owned lands, but more importantly, the truffle market in Oregon is largely undeveloped.

In recent years, Oregon black and white truffles have been valued at around $320 and $220 per pound, respectively; much lower than their European relatives. Poor quality control has been suggested as one factor in the lower value of Oregon truffles. A large proportion of our truffles are harvested by raking the surface of the forest floor to uncover the hidden crop. Raking typically unearths immature truffles, which lack the savory taste that develops with ripeness. In turn, Oregon truffles have earned a bad name as less potent than European varieties.

Oregon white truffles (Photo: Francis Storr)

Marilyn has found both black and white truffles on her 450 acres, but only a few ounces here and there. “For now, it’s a hobby,” she says. But she and Tammy see the potential for profit from truffling in Oregon, which is still a very young science. They excitedly share with me that they have found truffles far outside peak season and sometimes even in atypical forest habitat. “This is where training dogs can be useful,” says Tammy. They only find mature truffles (so there is inherent quality control) and will tell you what is out there on your property throughout the year.

So what are some options for landowners to explore? You can look into training your own dog and explore the potential of your property. You could also lease your property to truffle hunters and take a share of the profits or agree upon a flat fee. Consider using a harvest permit and products sale document with your hunters. Another interesting possibility is hosting truffle forays, which are high-end events where a small group will pay to be led on a truffle hunt with dogs on the property followed by a chef curated, truffle-themed dinner. You can also look into cultivating truffles, a process that requires heavy investment but can potentially yield large quantities. For more information about Oregon truffles and other non-timber forest products: http://ntfpinfo.us/publications/index.html.

Editor’s note: since this article was written, the South County Spotlight also wrote an article about Marilyn and Gucci. 

The post Woodland owner and canine companion “dig deep” into truffle hunting appeared first on TreeTopics.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Food Science Camp 2013 and Erik Fooladi

Bringing Food Chemistry to Life - Fri, 07/19/2013 - 1:44pm

We participate in the Oregon State U Food Science Camp for middle school students.

Part of the STEM [science technology engineering math] Academies@OSU Camps.

We teach about bread fermentations, yeast converting sugars to CO2 and ethanol, lactobacillus converting sugar to lactic and acetic acids, how the gluten in wheat can form films to trap the gas and  allow the dough to rise. On the way we teach about flour composition, bread ingredients and their chemical functionalities, hydration, the relationships between enzymes and substrates [amylases on starch to produce maltose for the fermentation organisms]; gluten development, the gas laws and CO2′s declining solubility in the aqueous phase during baking which expands the gas bubbles and leads to the oven spring at the beginning of baking; and the effect of pH on Maillard browning using soft pretzels that they get to shape themselves..

All this is illustrated by hands on [in] activities: they experience the hydration and the increasing cohesiveness of the dough as they mix it with their own hands, they see their own hand mixed dough taken through to well-risen bread. They get to experience dough/gluten development in a different context with the pasta extruder, and more and more.

A great way to introduce kids to the relevance of science to their day to day lives: in our case chemistry physics biochemistry and biology in cereal food processing.

We were also fortunate to have Erik Fooladi from Volda University College in Norway to observe the fun: http://www.fooducation.org/

If you have not read his blog and you like what we do here: you should!


endless pasta


Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Good Cheese, Bad Cheese

Bringing Food Chemistry to Life - Wed, 07/10/2013 - 1:25pm

pH, colloidal calcium phosphate, aging, proteolysis, emulsification or its loss and their interactions lead to optimum melting qualities for cheeses. A module in this year’s food systems chemistry class.

This module was informed by this beautiful article “The beauty of milk at high magnification“ by Miloslav Kalab, which is available on the Royal Microscopical Society website.


Of course accompanied by real sourdough wholegrain bread baked in out own research bakery.

Inspired by…

“The Science of a Grilled Cheese Sandwich.”

by: Jennifer Kimmel

in: The Kitchen as Laboratory: Reflections on the Science of Food and Cooking

Edited by Cesar Vega, Job Ubbink, and Erik van der Linden


Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

February 2011- Nutrition Education Volunteers taking “vacation”

Family Food Educators of Central Oregon - Tue, 02/01/2011 - 9:24am

I’m back from maternity leave and getting resettled into some new responsibilities.  We had a staff member leave us, so Glenda and I are having to pick up the work load until we find someone new, or our responsibilites change.  Being a new mom is lots of work too, so I’ve gone part time (24 hours aweek) but am still trying to get everything done… that being said, we’ve decided to put our nutrition education volunteering on hold, until I have a managable workload.

We look forward to being able to start things back up in the summer or fall of 2011.  Thanks so much and since a few of you have been asking, here’s a photo of our boy.  He is 5 months old today!

Bundled out in the cold!

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs