Governor Tom Corbett recently signed two pieces of legislation regarding the taxation of High Tunnels in Pennsylvania. While this simplified the property tax issue, there remains substantial confusion among growers as to what is required in order to legally construct high tunnels in their local municipality. In addition, what constitutes a high tunnel, greenhouse and sales facility as they relate to other agricultural production facilities varies from township to township and borough to borough.
Did you purchase health insurance through The Marketplace (healthcare.gov) and received the premium tax credit (PTC) to help pay your monthly premium? If you have any of the changes listed below, you should report them to healthcare.gov now.
Contrary to recent well-publicized research, habitat loss, not insecticide use, continues to be the best explanation for the declines in grassland bird populations in the U.S. since the 1980s, according to a new study by ecologists.
Agricultural producers are busy people who often find it hard to get away to shop for equipment or learn the latest production practices. But Penn State's Ag Progress Days exposition, which takes place Aug. 12-14, offers farm operators the chance to compare goods and services, see the latest machinery in action, and find out about new methods and technologies that can help them maximize productivity -- all in a single trip.
Do you have an idea for business? Have you tried to develop that idea? Many more businesses fail than succeed. In fact, the statistics show that about 75% of first time business start-ups don’t succeed.
USDA has recently noticed that some growers are using bleach (Clorox TM) as a disinfectant in post-harvest washing systems. Disinfectants are regulated the same way as pesticides and unless the label on the bottle indicates EPA approval for washing fruits and vegetables, it is against federal law to use it for that purpose.
July and August often bring numerous calls and emails to Penn State Extension from pond owners about nuisance growth of algae. While long strands of filamentous algae are unappealing and have little value to the pond ecosystem, some other types of pond algae can actually provide important benefits to a pond.
The Marcellus shale has been quoted as the largest unconventional natural gas reservoir in the nation. New stories about the Utica, the Bakken, and the Eagle Ford soon joined the ranks . The Tuscaloosa Marine Shale play is a rising star in the list of unconventional plays in the US
Verbal communication skills are very much like penmanship. If people do not use them, they will lose them.
Four of 7 spotted wing drosophila found this week were in black raspberries which are finishing up in Pennsylvania and shouldn’t be an issue at this point. First captures occurred in blueberry, grape and blackberry.
According to moth captures in sex pheromone traps located in various orchards in South-central Pennsylvania the third generation of Oriental fruit moth (OFM) and the second generation of codling moth (CM) just started. The first summer Brown Marmorated Stink Bug adult generation is imminent. While in the majority of orchards the numbers are still very low, at some locations we observed the first fruit injuries caused by this pest.
More and more news stories highlight recent evidence supporting increased protein intake to preserve muscle mass from mid-adulthood onward. Though cereal with dairy and fruit is a common and healthy breakfast, there are ways to increase the protein content of that menu, as well as other interesting and "protein-ful" combinations!
At this time of year, many calls are received at the Extension office from individuals who are interested in finding out how to eliminate aquatic plants that have suddenly taken over their ponds and have become a problem either aesthetically or for the pond’s recreational use.
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today unveiled a new graphic that will be available to appear on insect repellent product labels. The graphic will show consumers how many hours a product will repel mosquitoes and/or ticks when used as directed. “We are working to create a system that does for bug repellents what SPF labeling did for sunscreens,” said Jim Jones, Assistant Administrator of the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.
Although cucurbit downy mildew has not been confirmed in PA, it is still important to be scouting your fields!
The weather has been ideal for late blight resulting in an increased number of confirmed reports across Pennsylvania.
Can our local farms meet the growing demand for local food? In the Lehigh Valley, institutional sales to five hospitals and colleges surveyed alone could result in more than three million dollars of additional revenue for local farmers. Join us for a discussion of how farmers can meet the additional production, food safety and post-harvest handling demands of scaling up to add wholesale and institutional sales to their market mix.
Flowering Callery Pear (Pyrus calleryana) known to most by the name Bradford Pear, which was one of the first introduced cultivars of this Asian pear is probably the most over planted landscape tree.
It’s that time of year when we get reports about the various species of beetles responsible for grub damaged turf. It could be a banner year for white grubs. The adult beetles are active and you may have one or more species in your area.
Spotted wing drosophila was found in very low numbers in traps in southeastern PA (3 males out of 40 traps using a new commercially-available SWD Lure – Trece, Inc). Two of the SWD were in an unharvested cherry block, and one was in a trap in black raspberries. No female SWD were found at these sites yet, but judging from our brief experience with this pest in PA, it won't be long. Growers of raspberries (both red and black), blackberries, and blueberries in particular should be monitoring for SWD (check traps daily if possible), and should be prepared with effective materials for control.