Extension News from the West

Team wins national award for early childhood child care training program

Teresa Byington and YaeBin Kim of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension received a national award for their work to enhance literacy in Clark County preschoolers. Photo courtesy of Cooperative Extension.

Two University of Nevada Cooperative Extension associate professors walked away with a national award last week for their work in Clark County to strengthen child care teachers’ language and literacy teaching practices aimed at improving preschool children’s learning of language and literacy skills.

Teresa Byington, early childhood development specialist, and YaeBin Kim, parenting education and family literacy specialist, received the first place National (and first place Western Region) Early Childhood Child Care Training Award at the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences Annual Session held October 16-19 in Omaha, Nebraska. More than 500 professionals from across the country attended. The Early Childhood Child Care Training Award recognizes outstanding child care professional training that addresses the needs of young children birth to 8 years of age.

Byington and Kim were recognized for their Literacy in the Early Childhood Classroom Training Program. The two developed the 12-hour training program for early childhood teachers participating in the Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Program. Since 2013, 357 early childhood teachers in Clark County have participated in the training, and these teachers have taught approximately 3,000 young children.

Byington and Kim’s assessments of the program have shown that teachers in preschool classrooms who have participated in the training have demonstrated significant improvements in language and literacy practices and environmental supports. Preschoolers in their classrooms showed positive gains in alphabet knowledge, listening comprehension, phonological awareness and vocabulary. Partners in the program included the Clark County School District, Head Start, Early Head Start and community child care centers. The program has also been taught in Michigan, Kansas, Georgia and Iowa.

“Teresa and YaeBin’s commitment to enhancing literacy in children and families in Clark County is exemplary,” Mark Walker, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Director, said. “Their outstanding work being recognized at this National Session will no doubt result in the program being replicated and used by many others throughout the country. These are the types of programs that will help our young children be prepared for success in school and life.”

Byington and Kim also received the second place National Human Development/Family Relationships Award for their early literacy programming. The Human Development/Family Relationships Award recognizes innovative human development/family relationships educational efforts.

For more information on the award-winning program, contact Byington or Kim at 702-222-3130.

Pesticide Safety Education Workshop offered statewide November 13

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension will host a training on how to properly use pesticides 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 13.

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, in partnership with the Nevada Department of Agriculture, is offering a workshop Nov. 13 to train people throughout the state how to properly use pesticides. The workshop is meant for certified applicators and those wanting to become certified, including people who regularly handle pesticides as part of their jobs, such as farmers, ranchers, park employees and groundskeepers. Attendees will receive continuing education units.

The training will be held in Cooperative Extension offices at 4955 Energy Way in Reno and 8050 Paradise Road, Suite 100 in Las Vegas. It will also be available via interactive video to Cooperative Extension offices in Battle Mountain, Caliente, Carson City, Elko, Ely, Eureka, Fallon, Gardnerville, Lovelock and Yerington. The training runs from 8 a.m. to 4:40 p.m., with a 20 minute exam review from 4:40 p.m. to 5 p.m. The cost for the workshop is $40.

Cooperative Extension, in partnership with the Nevada Department of Agriculture, has offered pesticide application workshops for the last 20 years, training thousands of Nevadans in safe pesticide use.

"The program on Nov. 13 will offer presentations on both general topics and a few specialized topics in pest control," Cooperative Extension Urban Integrated Pest Management and Pesticide Safety Program Assistant Melody Hefner said. "Attending the course will help those who wish to become certified applicators for the first time, but passing the test will require additional studying."

The exam will be offered on Nov. 14 at 1 p.m. at the Cooperative Extension office in Battle Mountain and at the Nevada Department of Agriculture offices in Sparks and Las Vegas. The exam costs $50, cash or check only, with checks payable to the Nevada Department of Agriculture. Exams are also given weekly at the Nevada Department of Agriculture offices in Sparks and Las Vegas by appointment only.

Hard copies of the study manual for the exam are available for purchase through Cooperative Extension’s Grow Your Own, Nevada! website. Hard copies are also available for $15 at the Washoe County Extension office, 4955 Energy Way in Reno, or for $20 by mail. The manual may be downloaded online for free at the Nevada Pesticide Applicator Certification and Training website.

Limited seating is available for the Nov. 13 workshop. Preregister by Nov. 8 online at the event registration page, or by contacting Hefner at 775-336-0247 or hefnerm@unce.unr.edu. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance should call at least three days prior to the scheduled event.

Deadline approaching for Nevada Radon Poster Contest entries

Canarelli Middle School’s Joshua Fuji Fama from Las Vegas placed second in the 2017 National Radon Poster Contest with his poster, “That Monster Radon.”

Collaborative effort seeks to raise awareness of dangers of odorless gas that causes lung cancer

Nevada students are invited to showcase their artistic talents and promote radon awareness by entering the 2018 Nevada Radon Poster Contest, offered by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Radon Education Program. The Oct. 31 deadline to enter is fast approaching.

The contest is open to all children ages 9 to 14 years old enrolled in public, private, territorial, tribal, Department of Defense and home schools. Children can also enter through a sponsoring group, such as art, computer, library, reading, science, scouting, youth or 4-H clubs.

Radon is a radioactive, colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that comes from the decay of uranium. It accumulates in homes and can cause lung cancer. This type of lung cancer risk is preventable, and the only way to know if a home has elevated levels is to test for it.

The poster contest is offered by the Nevada Radon Education Program and is sponsored by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health. Cash prizes for the top three entries are $75 for first place, $60 for second and $45 for third. The top three entries are also awarded cash prizes for their teachers or sponsoring organization’s representative toward classroom supplies. Each poster winner will also receive a Radon Eye+, a real-time smart indoor radon gas detector donated by Radon FT Lab, as well as other radon giveaways. The first-place entry goes on to compete in the National Radon Poster Contest.

The Nevada Radon Poster Contest is part of Cooperative Extension’s work to raise awareness of the dangers of radon in homes. Extension provides educational presentations and low-cost radon test kits year-round, and since 2008, more than 26,264 homes in Nevada have been tested. Of 21,610 valid test results collected, 5,370 homes had elevated radon concentrations. Once radon is detected, there are fairly easy, inexpensive ways to reduce the radon exposure and reduce the risk of lung cancer.

Posters in this year’s poster contest should convey one of these messages: 1) What is radon? 2) Where does radon come from? 3) How does radon get into our homes? 4) Radon can cause lung cancer, and 5) Test your home for radon. Posters will be judged on content accuracy, visual communication of the topic, reproducibility and originality. They can be created with crayon, markers, paint, collage, pencil, photographs or computer graphics.

There is no fee to enter, but each child is limited to one entry. Entries must be received at 4955 Energy Way, Reno, NV 89502 by 5 p.m., Oct. 31.

Contact Nadia Noel, radon education coordinator for Cooperative Extension, at 775-336-0252 or noeln@unce.unr.edu for more information on the contest. For more information on the dangers of radon and the Nevada Radon Education Program, visit the Nevada Radon Education website or call the Radon Hotline at 1-888-Radon10 (888-723-6610).

Tribal communities invited to Summit on sustaining water resources and agriculture

The Native Waters on Arid Lands Project helps tribal communities in the Great Basin and American Southwest adapt to climate change and build resiliency for their water resources and agriculture.

Cooperative Extension partners with tribal communities to help plan for changes in climate

On Nov. 13, in Reno, tribal high-school youth will have a unique opportunity to engage in hands-on activities, such as extracting DNA from a banana and hiking through the Truckee Meadows to see how water has shaped the area. The activities are all part of the Native Waters on Arid Lands Youth Day, 10 a.m. — 3 p.m., presented by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension to teach tribal youth in the Great Basin and American Southwest about agriculture, water resources and changes in climate.

The Youth Day is a new event that has been added to the annual Native Waters on Arid Lands Tribal Summit, now in its third year, being presented this year Nov. 15-16 in Sparks, Nevada. The Summit is part of the Native Waters on Arid Lands Project, which helps tribal communities in the Great Basin and American Southwest adapt to changes in climate, with a focus on water resources and agriculture.

“Through the Native Waters on Arid Lands Project, we’re partnering with Native American tribes in the region to identify challenges and opportunities for sustaining water resources and strengthening tribal economies in the face of climate change,” said Loretta Singletary of University of Nevada, Reno, co-project director for the Native Waters on Arid Lands Project, which is organizing the annual educational events as part of its broader integrated research and Extension outreach initiative.

The Youth Day is at the Desert Research Institute, a partner in the project, 2215 Raggio Parkway in Reno. For more information about this educational event, contact Meghan Collins, meghan.collins@dri.edu.

The Native Waters on Arid Lands Tribal Summit will be held at the Nugget Casino Resort, 1100 Nugget Ave. in Sparks. The cost is $250 before Oct. 28 and $300 beginning Oct. 29 and covers meals and refreshments.

Session topics for the Summit include:

  • Native Waters on Arid Lands research updates
  • Ground-Surface water
  • Traditional knowledge and ecology
  • Economics and water
  • Tribal ranching and conservation practices
  • Tribal Education Forum

The Native Waters on Arid Lands Youth Day and Tribal Summit are funded by a five-year, $4.5 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture — Agriculture Food Research Initiative. The Native Waters on Arid Lands Project was one of five integrated research and Extension projects nationwide selected for USDA funding.

Partners in the project include University of Nevada, Reno; The University of Arizona; First Americans Land-Grant Consortium; Utah State University; Desert Research Institute; Ohio University; United States Geological Survey; and the Federally Recognized Tribal Extension Program in Nevada and Arizona. Co-project directors include Singletary, along with Staci Emm of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension; Maureen McCarthy of University of Nevada, Reno; John Phillips of First Americans Land-Grant Consortium; Bonnie Colby, Karletta Chief and Trent Teegerstrom of The University of Arizona; Kynda Curtis and Eric Edwards of Utah State University; Mike Dettinger of United States Geological Survey; Derek Kauneckis of Ohio University; and Beverly Ramsey of Desert Research Institute.

For more information or to register for the summit, visit the Native Waters on Arid Lands Program website, or contact Extension Educator Staci Emm, emms@unce.unr.edu or 775-945-3444, ext. 10, or Summit Organizer Vicki Hebb, vicki.hebb@indianaglink.com or 605-222-2062.

After Halloween Pitch-a-Pumpkin event scheduled

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension encourages pumpkin recycling

Volunteer assists with loading and pitching pumpkins with the trebuchet at last year’s event.

The Southern Nevada Christmas Tree Recycling Committee is hosting their second annual Pitch-a-Pumpkin event. In an on-going effort to divert holiday organic waste to a beneficial use, the committee has decided to expand into pumpkin recycling. Residents are encouraged to bring their jack-o-lanterns to the free event so they can be composted into soil on Saturday, Nov. 4 between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Unsold and collected pumpkins will be launched using catapults and a trebuchet in the Silverton Hotel and Casino parking lot. The catapults were built by East Career Technical Academy students under the guidance of Fausto Vega, who teaches construction skills at the school. The trebuchet was built by Southern Nevada Recycling Coordinator, Rachel Lewison and retired U.S. Air Force Director, Bruce Romeo. The catapults are expected to launch the pumpkins about 50 feet while the trebuchet is expected to cover a 100-foot distance.

The launched pumpkins will be composted into soil at Terra Firma Organics.

“Terra Firma Organics is excited to work with facilitating agencies, the Silverton Hotel and Casino, and community partners in hosting the second annual event with Clark County citizen,.” said Randy Williams, Terra Firma Organics Sustainable Programs Manager. “At this fun event, we look forward to processing the pumpkin waste into high quality compost for gardens, landscaping, and other soil improvement uses.”

"Republic Services is proud to sponsor the second annual Pitch-a-Pumpkin where participants can learn about the importance of diverting organic holiday waste from the landfill,” said Jeremy Walters, Republic Services Recycling Coordinator.

“Participants will have the opportunity to launch a pumpkin at one of our roll-off containers,” Walters added. “As a long-standing member of the Southern Nevada Christmas Tree Recycling Program, we thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to engage with members of the community to educate them on the importance of environmental stewardship. Republic Services is always looking for ways to move the needle in Southern Nevada when it comes to sustainability; holiday waste is a perfect example of thinking outside the box.”

The Silverton Hotel and Casino is proud to encourage the public to recycle their pumpkins rather than throw them away. The Silverton Hotel and Casino is located at 3333 Blue Diamond Rd, Las Vegas, Nev. The event will take place in the south parking lot, located in front of the main entrance from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

For information, email or call Tara Pike at 702-895-3760.

Enter/visit the first annual rose show scheduled for Nov. 18

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension collaborates with Rose Society for show

Princess of Photography award presented at American Rose Society Rose Show. Photo courtesy South Valley Rose Society.

No matter what the climate — extremes of temperature, precipitation, and sunshine — people want roses blooming in their yards. There are about 100 species, and thousands of cultivars, of this flower. Even in the parched Mojave Desert, they can be desirable additions to the garden.

Now is the time for home gardeners to show-off their beautiful blooming flowers at the first annual South Valley Rose Society’s Rose Show on Saturday, Nov. 18. All Exhibitors are welcome and need not be a member of a Rose Society.

The doors will be open at 6 a.m. Entries will be accepted for cut rose stems grown in a private outdoor garden, rose arrangements, and/or rose photography between 6:30 - 9:45 a.m. Prep areas will be available for the exhibitors, and volunteers will be present to assist. Judging will begin at 10 a.m.

The public is invited to view the entries of the “We Never Promised You a Rose Garden, But We Got One” Rose Show from 1 - 4 p.m. at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Lifelong Learning Center located at 8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev.

For additional information please email or call the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555 and leave your name and phone number. A member of the rose show committee will contact you.

Gardening in Small Places: growing fruit at home

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offers workshop Nov. 18

Pear trees located at the Outdoor Education Center’s Botanical Gardens.

Join University of Nevada Cooperative Extension on Saturday, Nov. 18, for a one-day workshop on Gardening in Small Places: growing fruit at home. The class runs from 8 a.m. to noon.

Can you grow fruit trees and berries in the desert? You bet! Figs, nectarines, peaches, apricots, pears, apples, strawberries, cantaloupe, grapes and blackberries are just a few of the fruits you can grow at home. The fruit varieties may be different than what you’re used to but the results can still be spectacular. Let Angela O’Callaghan, social horticulturist, explain what plant attributes to look for when planning your home orchard. Homeowners and other interested parties are welcome to attend.

There is a $10 fee for the workshop. Class space is limited to 25 and pre-registration is required. To register for this class, held at the Lifelong Learning Center (8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev.), email Elaine Fagin or call 702-257-5573. Register online via Eventbrite.com.

Master Gardeners add second weekly Botanical Garden tours

Second day added to the weekly tour schedule

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Docents offer a highlights tour of the Botanical Gardens every Friday at 10 a.m. Starting October 17, a Tuesday at 10 tour will be added each Tuesday through December.

The 1-hour walk will feature a variety of plant collections. Stops include the dry wash, dessert succulents, butterfly habitat, palms, pomegranates, cactus, aloes, herbs, rose, vegetable, orchard and native plants. The Botanical Gardens, located at 8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev., feature 1300 species of desert-adapted plants identified by botanical and common names.

To join a Tuesday or Friday tour, meet in the Front Reception area at 10 a.m. Walking shoes, sun protection and water are suggested. In addition to scheduled tours, the grounds are open for self-guided tours weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tours can be scheduled on other days for groups of 5 or more.

For more information email or call the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555.

In 2016, Master Gardeners answered questions from 1,648 individuals from 91 out of 114 zip codes, 246 emails and assisted 268 walk-in people at the Help Desk. Master Gardeners taught 1,709 classes or spoke to over 31,097 people at community events. Two-hundred, twenty-nine active Master Gardeners working on 35 community projects logged over 35,268 hours. Based on the $23.56 national average, the value of Master Gardener volunteer service to Clark County was $830,916.90.

Nevada youth build wearable fitness trackers as part of National 4-H Week

4-Hers shoot off rockets they built in a past 4-H National Youth Science Day activity held on the University of Nevada, Reno campus. Photo by Theresa Danna-Douglas.

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension 4-H program offers hands-on learning to local youth

Youth in Nevada are getting a unique opportunity to build their own low-cost wearable fitness trackers, then use the trackers to collect data on their own movement.

The activity is part of the 10th annual 4-H National Youth Science Day challenge, as part of National 4-H Week in the beginning of October. This year’s challenge, called Incredible Wearables, introduces youth to the field of wearable technology in a hands-on interactive design challenge. More than 100,000 4-H youth across the world will be leading other youth in the activity, making it the world’s largest youth-led STEM challenge. Here in Nevada, 4-H is a program of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, which is hosting the challenge at several locations across the state.

The exercise teaches youth about engineering design, wearable technologies and health monitoring. Designed by the University of Nebraska - Lincoln, the hands-on engineering design challenge will allow youth to experiment with circuits and wireless interfaces to create functional, wearable devices that can record several biological signals, which can then be used to make informed health decisions. The activity follows the “experiential” learning model, or hands-on learning method, that is the backbone of the 4-H Youth Development Program.

“This challenge is an opportunity to show our communities the types of learn-by-doing activities that our 4-H programs provide for youth,” said Carrie Stark, Nevada 4-H Program Director with University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. “There are so many different 4-H programs, including 4-H Clubs and activities that are tailored to youth’s various interests, and now is a great time to get involved.”

Stark said that a study conducted by Tufts University shows that 4-H youth are at least five times more likely to graduate from college, two times more likely to participate in science activities outside of school, and three times more likely to be physically activity.

Youth in Nevada are invited to participate in the Incredible Wearables challenge at the following locations:

In Elko:

  • 5:30 p.m., Oct. 4 at Great Basin College, 1500 College Parkway, Health and Science Building room 108.

In Carson City:

  • 10 a.m., Oct. 7 at the Carson City Extension office, 2621 Northgate Lane, Suite 15.

In Las Vegas:

  • 3 p.m., Oct. 3 at the East Las Vegas Community Center, 250 N. Eastern Ave.
  • 3 p.m., Oct. 5 at the Doolittle Community Center, 1950 N. J St.

In Pahrump:

  • 4 p.m., Oct. 4 at the Southern Nye County Extension office, 1651 E. Calvada Blvd.

The events are free, and those not wishing to participate are welcome to observe. National 4-H Council will host the flagship national 4-H National Youth Science Day event, with hundreds of youth participating in the challenge on Oct. 5 in Washington, D.C. The 2017 national partners are HughesNet®, Lockheed Martin and U.S. Cellular. DuPont, a leader in the development of materials for printed electronics applications, including wearable electronics and smart fabrics, is the national sponsor.

To find out more about 4-H or how your county is celebrating National 4-H Week and 4-H National Youth Science Day, contact your county’s University of Nevada Cooperative Extension office. For office locations and phone numbers, visit the Cooperative Extension website or call 775-784-7070.

Chefs Clint Jolly and Mark Estee to give food demos at Nevada Field Day

Plants grown in the University’s greenhouses will be for sale at Nevada Field Day, Sept. 30, to support future research and graduate student work. Photo courtesy of Robert Moore.

Free University event features hands-on activities, local food, demonstrations and education Sept. 30

At Nevada Field Day on Sept. 30, visitors will be treated to a variety of free activities and giveaways, and even some tasty food samples.

As part of this year’s activities, nationally acclaimed local food advocates and Chefs Clint Jolly and Mark Estee will be performing cooking demonstrations. Jolly, who recently won Food Network’s Chopped: Impossible Restaurant Challenge, will demonstrate how to make homemade sausage at 11 a.m. Estee, who has been featured on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives and in Esquire Magazine, will demonstrate how to make a traditional French dish, Cassoulet a la chez, at 1 p.m.

The University of Nevada, Reno event features hands-on activities and information focusing on the latest advancements in agriculture, horticulture, nutrition, natural resources and the environment. The event will be held 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the University’s Main Station Field Lab, 5895 Clean Water Way in Reno, near the intersection of McCarran Boulevard and Mill Street. It is a collaborative project of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources; Nevada Agricultural Experiment Station; and University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

“September is great time of year for people to visit the University’s Main Station Field Lab,” said Bill Payne, dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources. “There will be a lot to see and do, and it really helps people understand how we blend the missions of the University in terms of teaching, research and engaging with our communities to serve Nevadans in their everyday lives.”

Cooperative Extension’s Master Gardener volunteers will be on hand to provide information on fall planting and pruning, as well vegetable gardening and other topics for home gardeners. The Desert Farming Initiation will be holding a Farmers Market, selling local produce. Plants grown in the University’s greenhouses will also be for sale to support future research and graduate student work.

For those interested in growing food and plants, there will be demonstrations and information on:

  • constructing hydroponic systems for growing fruits and vegetables at home,
  • implementing conservation measures in an urban agricultural setting,
  • attracting beneficial pollinator insects, and safely managing insect pests, and
  • salt-tolerant and low-water-use crops and plants.

There will be many hands-on activities for youth, including:

  • a 4-H Drone Discovery activity, where youth will experiment with flying foam planes with mounted cameras,
  • 4-H clubs providing information and demonstrations on raising animals, such as goats and horses,
  • the “Ember House” bean-bag toss, where children learn about embers and the wildfire threat,
  • a Lilliputian Garden Necklace craft using live plants that the kids can take home, and
  • activities involving Nevada’s plants and animals from the Museum of Natural History.

Adults can learn more about making healthy life choices and protecting their homes and families from wildfire, floods and disease-carrying pests, such as mosquitos. They can also learn from faculty and students about the latest research on many other issues, such as managing Nevada’s water resources, wetlands and rangelands.

Others will also be on hand providing information, including University student clubs; the Nevada Department of Agriculture; the Nevada Department of Wildlife; the Academy of Arts, Careers & Technology; the Natural Resources Conversation Service; and many others.

For over 60 years, University students and faculty have used the 800-acre ranch at the University’s Main Station Field Lab to provide education and research, not only on raising and processing healthy cattle, but also on a variety of other important issues, including controlling noxious weeds, developing alternative low-water-use crops, and preserving air and water quality.

“This year’s Field Day has a lot fun hands-on activities and takes place where some of our research happens — at the Main Station Farm. It is a great way to get to know the University and see what we are doing on campus, at our research stations and in Nevada’s communities,” said Mark Walker, director of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

The Battle Born and All Wrapped Up food trucks will be open for business at the event, selling lunches. Admission to the event is free and open to the public, thanks to event support from the Nevada Agricultural Foundation and Truckee Meadows Water Authority. For more information, visit the Nevada Field Day website or call 775-784-1660. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance are asked to call at least three days prior to the event.

Agriculture producers have opportunity to learn business strategies

Cooperative Extension offers “Business Strategies for Nevada Agriculture Producers” Sept. 10. The workshop will cover how to identify risks, ways to reduce risk, and ways to improve agricultural businesses.

Cooperative Extension offers Business Strategies for Nevada Agriculture Producers workshop Sept. 20

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension is offering a workshop on “Business Strategies for Nevada Agriculture Producers” Sept. 20, 10 a.m. — 4 p.m. It will be held in Reno, but will also be available via interactive video at Cooperative Extension offices in Elko, Fallon and Logandale. Presenters will discuss how to identify risks, ways to reduce risk, and ways to improve agricultural businesses.

“For new and beginning farmers, or producers who wish to diversity, the way their business is structured has ramifications for day-to-day operations and financial outcomes,” said Extension Educator Carol Bishop, one of the workshop’s presenters. “This class is to inform people of their options, and how those different options can impact both their routines and their bottom line.”

Other presenters include Extension Educator Holly Gatzke, a local producer and a representative from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s assistance programs, including the USDA’s Risk Management Agency.

Topics include:

  • What is Risk, Risk Tolerance, Types of Risk, Mitigating Risk with Insurance Options
  • Concepts in Credit
  • Maximizing Profit
  • IRS Schedule F and Potential Agriculture Law Changes
  • Marketing Concepts and Consumer Buying Behavior
  • USDA Assistance Programs

The workshop is $15 and will be held at the Washoe County Cooperative Extension Office, 4955 Energy Way in Reno, where lunch will be provided. It will also be available via interactive video at the following Cooperative Extension office locations:

  • 111 Sheckler Road in Fallon,
  • 701 Walnut St. in Elko, and
  • 1897 N. Moapa Valley Blvd. in Logandale.

(Lunch will not be available at the Fallon, Elko and Logandale offices.)

For more information or to register, visit the event’s registration page or contact Registration Coordinator Catrinna Berginnis, berginnisc@unce.unr.edu or 775-945-3444, ext. 1033. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance should contact Bishop, bishopc@unce.unr.edu or 702-397-2604, at least three days prior to the workshop.

The workshop is part of Cooperative Extension’s Herds and Harvest Program that helps farmers and ranchers across the state develop agricultural entrepreneurship, implement sustainable agricultural marketing strategies and improve profitability. The program is in collaboration with the University’s College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources; and is supported by the USDA’s Risk Management Agency and the USDA’s Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Visit the Herds and Harvest webpage for more information.

Gardening in Small Places: roses

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offers workshop Oct. 21

Award-winning Demonstration Rose Garden at the Lifelong Learning Center.

Join University of Nevada Cooperative Extension on Saturday, Oct. 21, for a one-day workshop on Gardening in Small Places: roses. The class runs from 8 a.m. to noon.

Roses are a desirable addition to any garden, even here in the Mojave Desert. With about 100 species and thousands of cultivars to choose from selecting the right rose for the right place may seem daunting. Let Master Gardener and Rosarian Judith Kafantaris teach you about the attributes to look for in roses that will do well in our dry climate. In addition, she will teach you how to care for your roses so you can get the biggest blooms and the healthiest plants. Homeowners and other interested parties are welcome to attend.

There is a $10 fee for the workshop. Class space is limited to 25 and pre-registration is required. To register for this class, held at the Lifelong Learning Center (8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev.), call or email Elaine Fagin at 702-257-5573. Register online via Eventbrite.com.

Final gardening class of the series is scheduled for Nov. 18, growing fruit at home.

Cooperative Extension and Rose Society Oct. meeting

Learn how to frame your rose photographs

Various sizes of picture frames.

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and the South Valley Rose Society are collaborating and offering educational meetings throughout the fall. On Thursday, Oct. 26 find out how to expertly frame your rose photographs at this free, open to the public, workshop.

Rose photography entries in Rose Shows have become a very popular event in the last several years. If you every wonder how to display your pictures in Rose Shows this program will show you where to buy the picture frames and how to mount the photographs.

Christina Ropeter has been a member of the American Rose Society since 1989. She is Consulting Rosarian for 30 years and a Master Gardener for 2 years. Christina has been exhibiting her roses and photographs, winning Queens, Kings, and Princess in both categories.

All educational meetings are held at 7 p.m. at the Lifelong Learning Center located at 8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev. (I-215 and Windmill Lane). For more information, please email or call the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555.

The next Rose Society meeting is Friday, Nov. 17: preparing for the rose show. Don’t miss the South Valley Rose Society’s 1st Annual Rose show on Saturday, Nov. 18.

Cooperative Extension and Rose Society Sept. meeting

Learn how to start roses from cuttings

Beautiful rose from the Botanical Gardens.

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and the South Valley Rose Society are collaborating and offering educational meetings throughout the fall. On Thursday, Sept. 28 find out how to start roses from cuttings at this free, open to the public, workshop.

Everyone will need to have a saucer and milk container. Saucer size should fit their milk bottle (saucers and milk container can be left at home the day of the meeting). Cheryl Hume will be making up pots with soil perlite and peat moss. Bring your favorite cutting (miniature or mini-flora). Bring your roses in water. Cuttings need to have about 6 - 8 eyes.

Hume has a been a member of the American Rose Society (ARS) since 1982 and a proud holder of a Life Subscription To ARS. Hume was the President of South Valley Rose Society. She also served as President of Las Vegas Valley Rose Society twice and first Vice President for 8 years. Hume has successfully started roses from cuttings for over 10 years. Her percentage of success in cuttings survival rate is over 90 percent. Hume likes everything roses: rose people, rose exhibiting, rose books and rose clothes.

All educational meetings are held at 7 p.m. at the Lifelong Learning Center located at 8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev. (I-215 and Windmill Lane). For more information, please email or call the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555.

Upcoming Rose Society meetings are Thursday, Oct. 26: Framing rose photography and Nov. 17: Preparing for the first annual rose show.

Safety Day to help children learn ways to stay safe in different situations

The Living With Fire Program’s Ember House, a beanbag-toss activity that teaches about the ember threat during wildfire, is one of many activities available at the free Safety Day Sept. 9.

Cooperative Extension and local organizations provide hands-on activities to teach safety

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension presents a free Safety Day event for children and their families. The event, held in partnership with local businesses, organizations and agencies, is 8 a.m.-noon, Saturday, Sept. 9, at Mills Park, 111 E. William St. in Carson City.

“Families, specifically youth, will have a chance to learn how to be safer in a variety of situations,” said Carson City Extension Educator Lindsay Chichester. “It is important to minimize injury and try to prevent death.”

Participants will be divided into small groups that rotate between stations where they can learn about staying safe in different situations through educational, age-appropriate and fun hands-on activities. Stations include Extension’s Living With Fire Program’s Ember House, wildfire awareness, fire engines and rescue, gun and hunter safety, water safety, home pesticide safety and weeds, handwashing, fire extinguisher training, and digital citizenship and online safety. The first 300 children will receive a t-shirt and goodie bag.

This event is part of the national Progressive Agriculture Safety Day Program, sponsored by the Progressive Agriculture Foundation. The foundation has helped put on Safety Days in multiple states since 1995. To pre-register, visit the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day Event website or call 775-283-7594. Attendees can also register 8 — 8:30 a.m. at the event.

For more information, contact Chichester at chichesterl@unce.unr.edu or 775-887-2252.

Nevada Radon Poster Contest open to students

Canarelli Middle School’s Joshua Fuji Fama from Las Vegas placed second in the 2017 National Radon Poster Contest with his poster, “That Monster Radon.”

Collaborative effort seeks to raise awareness of dangers of odorless gas that causes lung cancer

Nevada students are invited to showcase their artistic talents and promote radon awareness by entering the 2018 Nevada Radon Poster Contest, offered by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Radon Education Program. The contest ends Oct. 31.

The contest is open to all children ages 9 to 14 years old enrolled in public, private, territorial, tribal, Department of Defense and home schools. Children can also enter through a sponsoring group, such as art, computer, library, reading, science, scouting, youth or 4-H clubs.

Radon is a radioactive, colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that comes from the decay of uranium. It accumulates in homes and can cause lung cancer. This type of lung cancer risk is preventable, and the only way to know if a home has elevated levels is to test for it.

The poster contest is offered by the Nevada Radon Education Program and is sponsored by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health. Cash prizes for the top three entries are $75 for first place, $60 for second and $45 for third. The top three entries are also awarded cash prizes for their teachers or sponsoring organization’s representative toward classroom supplies. The first-place entry also goes on to compete in the National Radon Poster Contest.

The Nevada Radon Poster Contest is part of Cooperative Extension’s work to raise awareness of the dangers of radon in homes. Extension provides educational presentations and low-cost radon test kits year-round, and since 2008, more than 26,264 homes in Nevada have been tested. Of 21,610 valid test results collected, 5,370 homes had elevated radon concentrations. Once radon is detected, there are fairly easy, inexpensive ways to reduce the radon exposure and reduce the risk of lung cancer.

Posters in this year’s poster contest should convey one of these messages: 1) What is radon? 2) Where does radon come from? 3) How does radon get into our homes? 4) Radon can cause lung cancer, and 5) Test your home for radon. Posters will be judged on content accuracy, visual communication of the topic, reproducibility and originality. They can be created with crayon, markers, paint, collage, pencil, photographs or computer graphics.

There is no fee to enter, but each child is limited to one entry. Entries must be received at 4955 Energy Way, Reno, NV 89502 by Oct. 31.

Contact Nadia Noel, radon education coordinator for Cooperative Extension, at 775-336-0252 or noeln@unce.unr.edu for more information on the contest. For more information on the dangers of radon and the Nevada Radon Education Program, visit the Nevada Radon Education website or call the Radon Hotline at 1-888-Radon10 (888-723-6610).

Cooperative Extension’s Grow Your Own, Nevada classes return in September

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension will present “Bring Beneficial Insects to the Garden,” 6 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 19 as part of Grow Your Own, Nevada!.

Eight classes offered statewide to teach high-desert gardeners about growing and preserving food

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s fall Grow Your Own, Nevada! Program presents eight classes statewide to help Nevadans get on the path to more sustainable, local, healthy living by growing and preserving more of their own food.

The series features back-to-basics information for backyard or small-acreage edible gardening.

“If you’re new to this area, this class is essential,” said Cooperative Extension Horticulture Specialist Heidi Kratsch. “But, even if you’re not new to Nevada, you will learn things you never thought you needed to know.”

The program runs 6 — 8 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays, Sept. 19 through Oct. 12. Classes will be held at the Washoe County Cooperative Extension office, 4955 Energy Way in Reno, and will be available via interactive video at several Cooperative Extension offices throughout the state.

Along with Kratsch, presenters include Cooperative Extension Horticulturist Wendy Hanson Mazet, Urban Integrated Pest Management Program Coordinator Melody Hefner and Extension Educator Joy Newton.

Workshop topics include:

  • Sept. 19: Bring Beneficial Insects to the Garden
  • Sept. 21: Strategic Garden Cleanup
  • Sept. 26: Cover Cropping for Home Gardens
  • Sept. 28: Canning Jams and Jellies
  • Oct. 3: Growing in Greenhouses and Hoop Houses
  • Oct. 5: Growing in Raised Beds
  • Oct. 10: Prune Fruit Trees to Increase Production
  • Oct. 12: Prep Your Soil for Spring Success

To register for any or all of the upcoming Grow Your Own, Nevada! classes, visit the Grow Your Own, Nevada! website. The class fee for those attending at the Washoe County office is $15 per class or $60 for all eight classes. The cost covers class supplies, materials, refreshments, the website and International Society of Arboriculture Continuing Education Units. Reno participants attending all eight classes will also receive a USB flash drive containing gardening resources. K-12 teachers and Master Gardeners in Reno receive a discount on registration cost. Class fees in other locations vary. Residents should contact their local Cooperative Extension office for information on attending the workshops in those locations. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance should call at least three days prior to the scheduled event.

For more information, watch "About the Grow Your Own, Nevada! program". Watch the "Grow Your Own, Nevada! program beginnings and benefits" video to learn about the program’s history on the benefits of a Backyard garden.

In the Garden series continues

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners answer questions, offer suggestions

Monarch’s visit the Milkweed plants in the Botanical Gardens.

During their monthly garden workdays, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners invite the community to visit the Botanical Gardens. As part of the In The Garden series, residents may bring their gardening questions on the following days during Sept.:

  • Children’s Garden — Every Tuesday in Sept., 7 — 10 a.m.
  • Butterfly Habitat — Friday Sept. 8 & 22, 8:30 — 9:30 a.m.
  • Fruit Orchard - Tuesday, Sept. 12 & 26, 8 — 9 a.m.
  • Vegetable Community Garden — Monday, Sept. 22, 9 - 10 a.m.
  • Herb Garden ~ Wednesday, Sept. 27, 9 — 10:30 a.m.

Master Gardeners will answer questions on proper seasonal plant care techniques. Visitors should be prepared to be outdoors (sun protection, closed toe shoes, drinking water). The gardens are part of the campus surrounding Cooperative Extension at 8050 Paradise Rd., Las Vegas, Nev. and feature 1300 species of desert-adapted plants identified by botanical and common names.

For meeting locations or other questions, email or call the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555. Master Gardener volunteers staff the desk Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. — 3 p.m.

In 2016, Master Gardeners answered questions from 1,648 individuals from 91 out of 114 zip codes, 246 emails and assisted 268 walk-in people at the Help Desk. Master Gardeners taught 1,709 classes or spoke to over 31,097 people at community events. Two-hundred, twenty-nine active Master Gardeners working on 35 community projects logged over 35,268 hours. Based on the $23.56 national average, the value of Master Gardener volunteer service to Clark County was $830,916.90.

Learn how to become a Nevada Naturalist

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension offers adult volunteer program

Nevada Naturalists participate in a botany hike along the Frist Creek trail at Red Rock.

Nevada Naturalist, a University of Nevada Cooperative Extension program, is looking for interested adults to participate. If you love the outdoors, this program is for you! The Nevada Naturalist Program educates and trains adults interested in learning about the natural resources in southern Nevada. Participants study natural resources, environmental education and interpretation, laws and regulations, and environmental issues.

The focus of the program is to give a broad understanding of nature to participants interested in learning, volunteering, teaching, and participating in conservation projects and issues. The program will also give participants the skills and confidence necessary to make a difference for environmental stewardship and conservation in Southern Nevada.

The program is open to individuals of all backgrounds. The fall semester begins Sept. 11, 2017 on Monday’s and Wednesday’s from 6-9 p.m. Field trips are scheduled on Saturday’s at various times and locations. The cost is $195 per which includes all program materials, refreshments and some field trips. For more information on this program, or to register, please email or call Denise Parsons at 702-948-5906. Semester two will be offered in the spring of 2018.

Topics include site stewardship, regional plants and animals, invasive species, geology and soils, environmental laws, taxonomy, biological diversity, and more. Classes are held in the spring and fall in a variety of settings including classrooms, museums and in the field. Additionally, students complete a project intended to increase their capacity and knowledge about specific issues that interest them. Participants receive a certificate following the completion of the course and their projects.

The Nevada Naturalist Program is sponsored and coordinated by Cooperative Extension. The program capitalizes on the incredible expertise of individuals and organizations in Southern Nevada who are partners and participating instructors.

Along with Cooperative Extension, participating partners include The Henderson Bird Preserve, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, Nevada State Museum, Las Vegas Museum of Natural History, Clark County Wetlands Park, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, National Park Service and Nevada Department of Wildlife.

6th Annual Healthy Kids Festival ready to roll in September

It’s time to move with ‘All 4 Kids’

Photo of kids Zumba from the 2016 Healthy Kids Festival.

To celebrate Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s All 4 Kids© Program and Clark County Parks and Recreation Department will sponsor the sixth annual Healthy Kids Festival (HKF) that will take place on Saturday, September 30, 2017.

The free festival, open to young children and their families, will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Walnut Recreation Center, 3075 N. Walnut Road, Las Vegas, Nev. Local community partners will come together to promote health, nutrition and physical activity in young children and their families. The event will include teaching children to purchase and grow fruits and vegetables, healthy food tasting, music and dance instruction, BMI and health assessments, city/county and local recreation, sports and outdoor venues.

Unlike typical health fairs, each agency will provide interactive, hands-on experiences for children who visit their activity stations where a bingo-like game card is stamped. Donated prizes are used to promote completion of game cards given to children to encourage participation in all areas. Last year’s event presented childhood obesity awareness and prevention to almost 1000 attendees.

Reaching out and empowering families of young children is the key to successful, healthy living. Parents and families are invited to learn how to support and model positive and healthy eating habits, and to adopt physical activity in their young children’s daily routines in an effort to help them make healthy choices as they approach the adolescent years.

For more information about the Healthy Kids Festival, email or call 702-940-KIDS (5437). Pre-register via Google!