Extension News from the West

Explore Idaho’s Link to Oreos, Agricultural Science at UI Aberdeen Twilight Tour July 29

University of Idaho Extension News - Fri, 07/24/2015 - 10:10am
ABERDEEN, Idaho – The University of Idaho Aberdeen Research and Extension Center will hold the Twilight Tour from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 29.   The event welcomes families and farmers with fun ways to learn more about efforts by the university to improve lives and benefit agriculture from home landscaping to major crops.   Topics include Idaho wheat’s role in Oreo cookies...

Travel journal: Willamette Valley winery & vineyard tour

Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 5:04pm

Since 2009, the Washington State University Viticulture and Enology Program has been touring Washington’s American Viticulture Areas to introduce our graduates to the unique characteristics, growers and winemakers of these areas. In May, the tour series jumped the state line for the second time, taking participants to Oregon’s Willamette Valley, through a backdrop of lush green fields and clear blue skies to visit with winemakers and taste some of the best Pinot Noir that Oregon has to offer.

With Portland as a base, our group of 25 WSU alumni and other wine lovers spent three very full days visiting a wide array of wineries, from the legendary Adelsheim Vineyard, to the newest on the block, Bells Up Winery (Dave Specter, Enology Certificate ’12, is the winemaker). Wherever we went, we were always greeted with warm welcomes and in-depth tours with winemakers and vineyard managers who willingly shared technical information and industry experiences.

“I have lived here for almost 40 years and been a winemaker for almost 15 of those,” noted attendee Paul Kaplan, winemaker at Camp Creek Cellars in Eugene, Oregon, “but I have never had the access that [WSU] arranged with some of our best Oregon producers.”

We covered 12 wineries in two and a half days, each offering its own unique setting and generous hospitality. The winemakers freely discussed their techniques, philosophies, equipment choices and more.

David Adelsheim, owner, shared stories and experiences that carried him through his many years of success at Adelsheim Vineyard. Rollin Soles, winemaker and owner of ROCO Winery, related history about the early days of the Oregon wine industry. And Patty of Patricia Green Cellars talked about her experience as one of the first women winemakers in Oregon. At Archery Summit, we enjoyed another warm welcome, wonderful wine and strolling through their cool barrel caves.

Each of the winemakers we visited exuded passion for making wine, and many of the tastes they poured for us showed it. In addition to the Pinot Noir that Oregon is so well known for, we also tasted Chardonnay, Riesling, Viognier, Syrah, Merlot, Pinot Gris and Rosé.

The pure joy of winemaking could not have been made more evident than in the leaping enthusiasm exhibited by Athena Pappas, co-owner of Boedecker Cellars, an urban winery in downtown Portland. While downtown, we also visited Kate Monroe at the Southeast Wine Collective. Located off Division Street, it had the cozy feel of a neighborhood gathering place.

Our group was also impressed and delighted by the delicious food provided by our various hosts. Bill and Donna Sweat at Winderlea Vineyard and Winery and Dave and Sara Specter at Bells Up Winery converted their tasting rooms into elegant lunch settings that provided spectacular views and gourmet meals paired with incredible wines.

All in all, our Willamette Valley tour proved to be another great experience for participants. (See reviews below). Not only pairing fun with new friendships and great wine with food, WSU’s vineyard and winery tours provide valuable, direct education by combining learning with unforgettable personal connections.

- Theresa Beaver, certificate program coordinator

>>Learn more about WSU winery & vineyard tours and sign up for email notifications about future trips.

>>View the Willamette Valley tour photo album on Facebook.

Participant reviews

“My husband and I travel to wine-producing regions to visit wineries frequently, and the level and detail of information that we received during this trip was so far above what is typically discussed during winery visits. As a winemaking/viticulture student hoping to start a winery someday, this was an invaluable experience!”

“The mix of smaller and larger wineries gave insight into making a product either consistent for consumers or reflecting terroir and embracing variables. The vineyard tour at Beaux Frere was especially enlightening.”

“These tours are a great supplement to the V&E program. [It is] very inspiring to see the different scales of economies in various wineries.”

“I learned an incredible amount in just three days – from differences in the soil types and corresponding viticultural practices found in Oregon, to details regarding the use of biodynamic farming practices, to the pros/cons of ‘organic’ and ‘biodynamic’ certification in the context of the wine industry, to common pruning and spraying techniques, and so much more. Plus the personal connections made with people in the industry were incredible. This was an extremely valuable learning experience for me – I really look forward to taking another WSU trip.”

WSU shares expertise, wine, cheese during FABREO’s first expo in Tri-Cities

Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 4:49pm
Thomas Henick-Kling, viticulture and enology program director, shares grape and wine research by students and faculty with FABREO attendees.

Several Washington State University faculty members were featured as guest speakers during the Tri-Cities’ first Food and Beverage Retention and Expansion Opportunities (FABREO) expo last month.

Speakers from WSU included Thomas Henick-Kling, director of the viticulture and enology program; Robert Harrington, new WSU Tri-Cities’ professor of hospitality business management who will lead the recently added wine business management degree option; Akram Hossain, interim vice chancellor for research, graduate studies and external programs at WSU Tri-Cities; and Scott Koopman, manager of WSU TRi-Cities’ career development.

Following the seminars, expo attendees made their way around to mingle with regional food and wine vendors, while getting the chance to sample food and beverage products made by companies around the region, including WSU student-made premium Blended Learning wines and Cougar Gold, Crimson Fire and Smoky Cheddar cheeses!

>>View more photos on the WSU Tri-Cities Flickr site.

Erika Holmes, viticulture and enology communications, helps an attendee select a Blended Learning wine to taste. Angela Lenssen, food science communications, serves up tasty Cougar Gold samples.

Registration open for Viticulture Field Day

Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 4:46pm
At the 2014 Viticulture Field Day, WSU’s Gwen Hoheisel discussed air direction using an Airblast sprayer as an example. Is the spray actually going where you want it?

Join Washington State University and the Washington State Grape Society for the 2015 Washington State Viticulture Field Day on Friday, August 14, at the Roza Farm in Prosser. Commercial grape growers and anyone interested in learning about different aspects of grape production are welcome to come and hear about recent advances in juice- and wine-grape science and vineyard technology.

Educational sessions
  • Soil moisture sensors
  • Drip irrigation systems
  • Weed identification and management
  • Weed sprayer calibration
  • Table grape tasting of varieties grown in eastern Washington and available through the Clean Plant Center Northwest

Attendees have the option to earn two Washington State Department of Agriculture pesticide license recertification credits.

>>Register and learn more.

- Erika Holmes, Michelle Moyer

Help optimize ag productivity, prevent heat-related illness and injury

Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 4:45pm
Photo by Sylvia Kantor, WSU.

AgWeatherNet and the University of Washington are partnering to develop a new heat awareness and alert system to help agricultural workplaces prepare for heat waves like we’ve seen recently. The system will take into account temperature, humidity and other environmental factors to determine when conditions are not favorable or unhealthy for workers. Advance notice of extremely hot days will help prioritize work activities so workers stay healthy and productive and crop loss is avoided.

Incorporating feedback from orchard owners, managers and others who work in the agricultural industry is important for creating a heat awareness system that can serve the needs of the agricultural community. Our goals are to minimize injury risk and maximize worker productivity, which is ultimately the most profitable combination.

We would like to invite you to participate in a 30-minute interview, so we can learn more about your specific needs for developing the heat awareness system. After a prototype system is created by incorporating the feedback we receive, we will ask you to access the prototype system through the AgWeatherNet website and complete a 15-minute evaluation of the system, either over the phone or in person.

Participation is confidential, so the names of participating companies or individuals will not be published, presented, or otherwise disclosed.

>>If you would like to participate or have questions, please contact Jen Krenz at jkrenz@uw.edu or 206-616-4213.


Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 4:42pm
Toasting WSU Viticulture & Enology achievements, July 2015 WSU Plant Pathologist Dean Glawe retires

Happy Trails to Dean Glawe, Ph.D. Plant Pathology ’82, who retired in June from his faculty position in Pullman. Glawe served as a WSU professor since 1996 (19 years!) and was also the assistant dean and director of the four WSU Research and Extension Centers from 1996 to 2002. During his career, he also held professorships at the University of Illinois (1982-1993) and the University of Washington (2006-2013).

Glawe’s research focused on the biology and systematics of powdery mildew fungi and other plant pathogens, as well as yeasts and other fungi associated with wine grapes. He maintained the Erysiphales Database, which includes tools for identifying all the world’s known species of powdery mildews, and the Pacific Northwest Fungi Database, a compilation of host and geographical ranges for 5,000 species of fungi in the Pacific Northwest. He also was co-founder of the online scientific journal North American Fungithe world’s first online mycology journal that is currently publishing its tenth volume of papers dealing with all aspects of fungal biology.

It’s worth noting that his career ended somewhat as it began–his last graduate student, Leslie Holland, did her master’s research on grapevine trunk diseases while his own master’s thesis research characterized a grapevine disease: Eutypa canker and its causal agent nearly forty years ago. (See “Identifying grapevine fungi may help fight trunk diseases” in this issue.) He intends to continue his mycological research in retirement.

Welcome Chemist Tom Collins

Tom Collins began as assistant professor at the new Ste. Michelle Wine Estates WSU Wine Science Center in June. Collins comes to WSU from University of California, Davis, where he served as director of research at the Food Safety and Measurement Facility.

Collins uses advanced analytical instrumentation and multivariate statistical tools to study the composition of grapes, wines and distilled spirits. He evaluates composition changes while fruit ripens, throughout the winemaking and distilling processes, and as these products age. The goal is to better understand how vineyard, winery and distillery practices affect the composition of grapes, wines and spirits and to correlate chemical composition with sensory perception of these products.

Congrats, scholarship recipients!

The Washington Wine Industry Foundation awarded $31,000 in scholarships for students studying grapes and wine in Washington during the 2015-2016 school year. Seven of the eight scholarship recipients are WSU students: Jati Adiputra, Jesse Aplin, Kaelin Campbell, Zachary Cartwright, Devon Griffith, Eric Gale and Carina Ocampo.

We shared the news of Caroline Merrell’s American Wine Society Educational Foundation scholarship last month, but it turns out Zachary Cartwright was awarded one too! Learn more about his research goals for the next year in this short video:

WSU alumni continue managing Sagemoor Vineyards Derek Way (left), outgoing vineyard manager at Sagemoor, with general manager Kent Waliser (center), and vineyard-manager-in-training Lacey Lybeck (right).

Derek Way, B.S. Horticulture ’99, is showing Lacey Lybeck, B.S. Agriculture Food Systems ’10, the ropes of managing the grapevines at Sagemoor Vineyards in Pasco. Way will be leaving for China later this summer to work in wine grape consulting and leadership training. We wish both Way and Lybeck the best in their new positions!

Read more on the Great Northwest Wine website.

Seats going fast: Winemaker Dinner, Aug. 14, 6:30 p.m.

Washington State University Extension News - Thu, 07/23/2015 - 4:35pm

Fight, Fight, Fight for fabulous wines! WSU alumnus Greg Rankich and his wife, Heidi, invite you to a Palouse-enhanced dinner overlooking Lake Washington at their Juanita Bay home. Here you will enjoy amazing wines from EFESTĒ, Hamilton Cellars and Sparkman Cellars paired with an unforgettable dining experience by Chef Aaron Leopold of Crush.

This evening will celebrate the opening of the new world-class Ste. Michelle Wine Estates WSU Wine Science Center, where practical research and education will grow the Washington wine industry’s skilled work force and premium products in the years to come. Go Cougs!

This dinner is limited to 40 guests with more than half those tickets already sold.

 >>Reserve your seat today!

Volunteers maintain healing garden at Hospice

Master Gardener Joy Mandekic tends the Nathan Adelson Hospice Healing Gardens.

University trained Master Gardeners assist and educate the community

Community volunteerism is the foundation for University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Master Gardener program. Individuals participate in a lengthy training process to become certified Master Gardeners. After training they are required to volunteer a minimum of 50 hours each year on community projects.

Three hundred fifty active Master Gardeners assist and educate the community via community projects throughout the valley. One such volunteer, Joy Mandekic, and project, the Nathan Adelson Hospice Healing Gardens, is a hidden gem.

Built in 2002, Master Gardener Mandekic was involved in the design and planning stages of the Hospice garden area. Water features, designed with water conservation in mind, were included as calming features. Each hospice room opens to a healing garden area.

“You can find family members, patients, staff and volunteers enjoying the space,” said Karen Rubel, vice president for development for Nathan Adelson Hospice. Surrounded by the beauty of the garden, they can peacefully rest, talk and share stories.

“We could never have built this amazing garden without Joy and her team of volunteers,” explained Rubel. “It is priceless!”

Before joining the program as a community volunteer, Mandekic was the Master Gardener Coordinator when the program began at Cooperative Extension over 20 years ago. Since her retirement, she became the Hospice project coordinator.

“The other Master Gardener volunteers and I tend to gardens on the second Tuesday of the month,” explained Mandekic. “During the summer, one of us visits at least once a week.”

Due to lack of irrigation, and intense, direct sun on most beds, care was given to choosing hardy, desert appropriate plants. Many herbs were selected, and some of them are considered to have healing properties.

“For instance,” stated Mandekic, “we planted mint, lavender, oregano and thyme, rosemary, and rose and pomegranate.” The focus has been on the visual, aromatic, calming characteristics of the plants, not medicinal. Intermingled throughout the garden are turf lily, asparagus fern and lantana; hardy in the toughest garden environments.

“The Hospice employees have thanked us a hundred times over and have mentioned enjoying the strawberries on their breaks,” said Mandekic. We love this feedback and will be planting strawberries again next spring.

The Healing Garden provides the four basic habitat elements needed for wildlife to thrive: food, water, cover, and places to raise young. Meeting these criteria is how this healing garden became a National Wildlife Federation Certified Wildlife Habitat in 2013.

“This was proven in 2014 as a wildlife habitat when the mallards nested in the garden,” added Mandekic, “it was high drama!”

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension is the outreach college of the University of Nevada, Reno. Cooperative Extension designs and delivers community programs to residents of Nevada with other agencies and volunteers. Cooperative Extension learns about the needs of the community and develops programs to meet them. Cooperative Extension teaches classes, holds workshops, sponsors seminars related to those needs and provides online information. Areas of education, training and instruction include Health and Nutrition; Children, Youth and Families; and Water, Horticulture, Economics and Environment.

Nathan Adelson Hospice, the trusted partner in providing hospice care and palliative medicine for more than 35 years, is the largest non-profit hospice in Southern Nevada, caring for an average of 400 hospice and palliative patients daily. In 1978, Nathan Adelson Hospice began providing home care hospice service in Southern Nevada with the mission to offer patients and their loved ones with comprehensive end-of-life care and influence better care for all in the community. In 1983, Nathan Adelson Hospice opened an in-patient hospice in Las Vegas, and today the hospice is recognized as a national model for superior hospice care.

Eureka Farmers Market opens August 13

EUREKA, Nev. — University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Eureka office, in partnership with Eureka County, will sponsor the Eureka Farmers Market 4 — 6 p.m. every Thursday from Aug. 13 to Oct. 1 in front of the Senior Center on Gold Street just off Main Street.

At the kick-off event on Aug. 13, there will be complimentary homemade ice cream; kids’ face painting, music provided by a local DJ and a free raffle with prizes supplied by market vendors and sponsors. Raffle winners will be announced at the market. An ethnic cooking demonstration is planned from 4:00 —4:45 p.m.

The Eureka Farmers Market provides consumers an opportunity to purchase quality produce from local gardeners and area farmers.

Along with fresh produce, locally produced homemade jams and jellies, home-baked sweets and treats, handmade arts and crafts and other miscellaneous merchandise will also be available. New vendors, returning vendors and buyers are welcome to participate.

The Senior Farmers Market Program also offers coupon booklets valued at $30 to qualified seniors 60 years or older. Seniors can only use the coupons to purchase fresh, nutritious and unprepared fruits, vegetables and herbs.

In addition to providing a place to buy and sell fresh, healthy, local produce, the farmers market is a place to meet and interact with friends and neighbors in the community.

Space will be provided free of charge to vendors on a first-come, first-served basis. If vendors have access to their own tables it is highly recommended they bring them. The Eureka Farmers Market Rules and Vendor Applications may be obtained from the Eureka Cooperative Extension Office, 701 S. Main St., Eureka. For more information or vendor applications, contact Link at 775-237-5326 or linkm@unce.unr.edu.

Green industry professionals certified through Cooperative Extension training

Washoe County green industry professionals learn sustainable horticulture for Nevada environment

Landscaping and gardening in Nevada’s climate is difficult. Many solutions that make for beautiful and sustainable gardens elsewhere don’t work here, especially during the drought. As a result, people involved in the green industry, including landscapers, landscape contractors, nursery workers, arborists and golf course maintenance staff, need special training about growing and landscaping in Nevada’s high-desert conditions. Unfortunately, green industry businesses often don’t have the time or budget for training new employees.

To help provide green industry businesses with well-trained employees for a reasonable cost, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and the Nevada Department of Agriculture recently provided green industry training, resulting in 30 newly certified professionals.

Jeff Twedt, grounds supervisor II for the University, attended the training this year, and he had attended a previous training when he was owner of a landscape maintenance company.

"The training helped me financially in private industry because I didn’t have to be in the field explaining what it is that we accomplish, how and why," he said. "I got so much out of my first training that I was able to recommend and get approval to send our University employees to this recent one."

"It’s nice for the businesses to have a place to send people to get good training," said Heidi Kratsch, training coordinator and Cooperative Extension horticulture specialist. "Participants learned science-based, sustainable horticulture practices to manage plants and landscapes efficiently and safely, which will help green industry professionals to work with our environment and climate, not against it."

The newly certified professionals attended eight classes where they learned about plant disease basics, pesticide safety, soil, insects, plant identification and more.

"This was a fantastic opportunity to get everyone thinking on the same page," Twedt said. "It created positive, good discussions outside of the classroom."

To be certified, the participants had to score 70 percent or higher on an exam with questions taken directly from the classes. Certified workers must also continue their education to maintain their certification.

"Cost-effective opportunities to earn arborist, pesticide applicator and other continuing education units can be hard to find," Kratsch said. "This program provides high-quality information and continuing education units at a low cost. It also provides education and a certification that employers value."

Kratsch said that the training also ultimately benefits customers and homeowners.

"When green industry professionals are trained, the customers are happy, the businesses are happy, and Nevada neighborhoods gain pretty, long-lasting landscapes," she said. "Everybody wins."

Looking for eduational gardening activities?

Attend one or both of the Junior Master Gardeners Open Houses

Searching for fun, educational activities for your children this fall? Check out University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Junior Master Gardener Open House. View projects and collect programmatic information on the upcoming fall sessions which begin in September. Between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., speak with Junior Master Gardener Ambassadors and experience a make-and-take project and tours of the children’s demonstration gardens. Registration for the fall sessions will be available at the Open House. The Junior Master Gardener program offers your child leadership skills, service, safety with tools, community service and more.

The first Open House will be held in the north part of the valley on August 22 at the Research Center and Demonstration Orchard located at 4600 Horse Road, North Las Vegas, Nev. The second Open House will be held in the south part of the valley on August 29 at the Lifelong Learning Center located at 8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev Refreshments will be available.

The Junior Master Gardener program is open to all children ages 7-12. The 8-session per semester class fee is $52. Classes are held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. every other Saturday. If you live in the north part of the valley, there are Saturday Junior Master Gardener classes at the Research Center and Demonstration Orchard (4600 Horse Road, North Las Vegas, Nev.) beginning Sept. 5, 2015. If you live in the south part of the valley, the Saturday Junior Master Gardener classes will be held at the Lifelong Learning Center’s Outdoor Education Center (8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev.) beginning Sept. 12, 2015.

For more information and to register, please email or call Karyn Johnson at 702-257-5523. Students must register to participate.

Montana’s manufacturing employment grows faster than national manufacturing employment

Montana State University Extension News - Mon, 07/20/2015 - 12:00am
<p>Employment in Montana’s manufacturing sector has grown at a faster rate than national manufacturing employment during a five year period...

Gardening in Small Places: landscape design

Join University of Nevada Cooperative Extension on Saturday, August 22 for a workshop on Gardening in Small Places: landscape design from 8 a.m. to noon. Participants will leave this workshop with the basics to create their own practical landscape design to turn that small space into a dream space. Let Master Gardener and 2010 SNWA Water Smart Landscape Award winner Denise McConnell teach you the tips for organizing your space and choosing size-appropriate plants to give the feeling of intimacy or create the illusion of more space. Homeowners and other interested parties are welcome to attend.

Class space is limited and pre-registration is required. There is a $25 fee which includes class materials.

To register for the workshop held at the Lifelong Learning Center (8050 Paradise Road, Las Vegas, Nev., I-215 and Windmill Lane), email Elaine Fagin or call 702-257-5573.

The next Gardening in Small Places workshop dates are September 20, Using native plants in the landscape; October 4, Tree selection and care; and November 15, Growing fruit at home.

MSU Extension guide helps distinguish native thistles from exotics

Montana State University Extension News - Fri, 07/17/2015 - 12:00am
<p>BOZEMAN – A new publication from Montana State University Extension is designed to help identify invasive exotic thistles and verify...

Mulch and organic compost available at Research Center

Organic compost pile at the Research Center and Demonstration Orchard.

Mulch is free; organic compost is $3 per 5 gallon bucket

Back by popular demand is the community mulch pile. This is coarse, organic wood mulch chipped from trees removed in the Las Vegas community. Rather than send this valuable resource to the landfill, the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension Research Center and Demonstration Orchard is making it available to the community, free of charge.

This coarse mulch will not blow under high winds and allows good water and air penetration to the roots. It will decompose in a couple of years, adding organic matter to your soil, lowering the soil pH and encouraging soil microorganisms and worms. The Center uses four to six inches around the fruit trees.

Along with the mulch, organic compost is available $3 per 5 gallon bucket and $15 per tractor scoop.

The mulch and the compost are available for pick-up from the Research Center on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon. The mulch is free if loaded by the individual and only $2 per tractor scoop loaded. The Center is located at 4600 Horse Drive, North Las Vegas, Nev. For more information, contact the Research Center at 702-786-4361 or the Master Gardener Help Desk at 702-257-5555.

Wildfire Awareness Run raises $15,000 for Wildland Firefighter Foundation

A Nevada Division of Forestry helicopter drops water to signal the start of Washoe County’s Wildfire Awareness Run in May. Participants ran races in both Washoe and Clark counties to bring awareness to fire danger and to raise funds for the Wildland Firefighter Foundation.

Funds to help provide assistance to fallen firefighters’ families and to firefighters injured in the line of duty

Participants in the annual Wildfire Awareness Half Marathon and 5K Runs in Washoe and Clark counties raised more than $15,000 for the Wildland Firefighter Foundation. The races, hosted by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Living With Fire Program, in partnership with the Bureau of Land Management, Nevada State Parks and Desert Sky Adventures, were part of Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month in May.

"When I went to the Reno run and saw the number of people who came out to support the firefighters, I was overwhelmed with gratitude," said Vicki Minor, executive director for the foundation. "We deal with such sorrow, with firefighters burned and disfigured, and some who don’t come home to their families. This event was such a happy time. It was really a community, heart-warming event."

The Wildland Firefighter Foundation is a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to fallen firefighters’ families and to firefighters injured in the line of duty. The proceeds of the race will help families travel to see firefighters who were injured while aiding another state; help the families of firefighters unable to work because they’re still healing; and help the families of firefighters killed while working.

Participants ran through some of Nevada’s most infamous wildfire fuels, such as big sagebrush, bitterbrush, cheatgrass and rabbitbrush. There were also displays of educational information, fire engines and a visit from Smokey Bear.

"Teaching people how to prepare their homes and prevent firefighters from risking their lives is important," Minor said.

The northern race was held in Washoe Lake State Park, and the southern race was held in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

"Both locations took runners past scars left by previous fires, including ones from 2006 and 2014," said Cooperative Extension Marketing Specialist Sonya Sistare, who co-manages the Living With Fire Program with Natural Resources Specialist Ed Smith.

Wildfire Awareness Month is a collaborative effort by local, state and federal firefighting agencies, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and many others. The event promoted this year’s wildfire awareness message, "Improve Your Odds — Prepare for Wildfire," encouraging residents to take action now to prepare their homes and properties to increase their likelihood of surviving future wildfires.

Extension’s Living With Fire Program, which began in 1997, teaches homeowners how to live more safely with the wildfire threat. The program has received numerous national awards, and been credited with spurring actions that have saved many homes. For more information about Living With Fire, visit www.LivingWithFire.info, or contact Sistare at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, sistares@unce.unr.edu or 775-336-0271.

MSU Extension offers summary of Farm Bill decisions for Montana farmers

Montana State University Extension News - Mon, 07/13/2015 - 12:00am
<p>BOZEMAN – Farmers in Montana finished selecting Agriculture Act of 2014 safety net options in April. Now the Farm Service...

What to do before and during floods

University of Nevada Cooperative Extension recommends Nevadans go to www.NevadaFloods.org

With our recent heavy rains and floods, Nevadans can go to www.NevadaFloods.org to find information on what areas are most at risk, how to be prepared for floods, what to do and what not to do during a flood, and more.

"We want to make sure residents know their vulnerability to flood hazards and that they prepare for and reduce the risk associated with flooding," said John Cobourn, water resources specialist at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

The website and information is a collaborative effort of a group called the Nevada Flood Awareness Committee, led by the

  • Nevada Division of Water Resources, Floodplain Management Program,
  • Nevada Division of Emergency Management, and
  • University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

"Historically, Nevada’s northern rivers flood about every 10 to 15 years, usually in winter. Recently, we have been reminded that flash flooding can occur at any time on small streams and washes, most often in summer. Knowing what to do before, during and after a flood can save lives, protect pets and help minimize property damage," said Rob Palmer, Nevada’s floodplain manager.

Media seeking an expert to interview on floods, or on floodplain and watershed management, can contact Cobourn at 775-784-4848 or cobournj@unce.unr.edu.

MSU hosting 4-H Congress July 7-10

Montana State University Extension News - Wed, 07/08/2015 - 12:00am
<p>BOZEMAN – Montana State University is hosting youth from across the state this week for the annual Montana 4-H Congress...

100 years for Lind Dryland Research Station: A Field Day Photo Gallery

Washington State University Extension News - Mon, 07/06/2015 - 3:59pm

Lind Dryland Research Station marked its centennial with a program of tours and presentations Thursday, July 11.

Farmers, researchers and partners in agriculture came to Lind Station’s annual Field Day to learn about the latest in breeding and growing practices in Washington’s driest climate. Visitors also learned about the history of the experimental research station, created in 1915 to solve the challenges that come with less than 12 inches of annual precipitation.

Farmers take a closer look at winter wheat varieties being tested at Lind Dryland Research Station. WSU winter wheat breeder Aaron Carter discusses the importance of end use quality to a group of visiting farmers at the Lind Dryland Research Station’s annual field day. Lind Station marked its centennial with tours and a special program Thursday, June 11. John Jacobsen, technician at Lind station, and his son Jonathan taste peas planted as row markers in a wheat plot. Bob Papendick, a retired USDA soil scientist at WSU, shares the history of dryland farming with a tour group. Ron Mittelhammer, Dean of the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences, speaks to an audience of growers, researchers and allies at the Lind Dryland Research Center Field Day and centennial celebration, Thursday, June 11. Visitors tour winter wheat rows.

Read more about the centennial here.

Visitors check out a row of experimental triticale grain at Lind station. Station director Bill Schillinger says the wheat-rye hybrid will be an important future dryland crop.