It’s time to choose the perfect fresh Christmas tree for the holidays. Penn State experts recommend checking the tree carefully before purchasing and taking good care of it after you get it home. The most popular species today are Fraser fir and Douglas fir, and with good reason. Both offer dark green color, needles soft to the touch, that classic “Christmas tree” fragrance, attractive shape, sturdy branches, and excellent needle retention. A tree that holds its needles well means less of a mess in the living room. There are also other varieties of Christmas trees offering different characteristics available at both “choose and cut” tree farms and ready-cut lots.
One of our nicest winter holiday traditions is decorating with fresh greenery. Evergreens such as cedar, ivy, pine and holly add a natural look and fresh fragrance to our homes; for many, they represent life everlasting and the coming renewal of spring. Your own landscape is a great place to look for holiday greenery. You may have a variety of materials unavailable at a store, and what you gather will be much fresher. Just remember that you are actually pruning the plants as you gather greenery, so consider carefully which branches you can trim to preserve the natural form of the tree or shrub.
Most livestock producers would prefer to spread manure on their fields in spring and summer when the crops are going to get the most use out of it. However, there are circumstances when manure has to be applied in the winter, such as wet fall weather that kept field conditions unsuitable for manure application and the lack of a large enough storage structure to hold the manure until spring.
As we head into the festive seasons and anticipate feasting on foods flavored with exotic spices, cinnamon comes to mind as a favorite.
State issues such as transportation funding, the pension shortfall and property tax reform are all linked to farmers in some way, according to a lobbyist for the industry. Joel Rotz, senior state director of government affairs for the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, told fellow farmers at a recent breakfast hosted by state Rep. Tarah Toohil, R-116, that funding transportation and pensions takes state money away from agriculture.
Old is New...Act 106 changed the rules for vendors across the commonwealth
Make the most of your county’s Penn State Extension Office, from help with soil tests to participating in on-farm research.
What soybean farmer isn't looking for tips for improving profitability? One place to look is at a course offered on December 13, at the Hampton Inn in Shrewsbury. The workshop begins at 9:00am, includes lunch and concludes by 2:00pm.
Dining with Diabetes is a program offered by Penn State Extension. It will help you to understand the important numbers for diabetes management, planning healthy meals, healthy food preparation and physical activity. This class meets for 5 weeks with a 6th class 3 months later. If you have been told you have Type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes, this class is for you!
According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, there are 2.2 million farms in the United States. Of those, 63,000 are in Pennsylvania and 1,550 are in Cumberland County.
With an average of 16 people dying each year in grain bin accidents, safety is a major concern.
Tragic Accident: 17-year-old boy died Wednesday harvesting corn in Lebanon County.
Bagworms (Thyridopteryx ephemeraeformis) seem to be making pests of themselves across the Commonwealth. Extension educators across the state have been seeing considerable damage from this native insect.
Professionals know how important it is to be careful when using pesticides. We all strive to use the least toxic, effective option, read the label and follow the directions, calibrate, measure carefully and wear the required personal protective equipment.
Washing fruits and vegetables is a must as they are grown near the ground where animals, insects and even birds may contaminate the produce. Do food safety experts recommend washing any raw meat before cooking? No, do not wash raw meat before cooking.
On Saturday, September 21, 2013, join Penn State Extension Educators and Master Gardeners for an informative morning of fall gardening topics at Fall Garden Day, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at the Cumberland County Extension office, 310 Allen Road, Carlisle. The registration fee is only $10.00 and includes handouts. Please register by September 19, as class size is limited, by calling 717-240-6500.
In light of all of the recent reports of foodborne illness, it is important to remember the fundamentals of food safety when you are preparing food in the home. Consumers can do a lot to protect themselves, their families and guests from contracting foodborne illness.
Rock Springs, PA. Teens and safety rarely go hand in hand, but the next generation of agricultural producers is proving that safety is an important part of rural work and life. Five teams of 4-H youth from throughout the commonwealth displayed a wealth of knowledge during the Pennsylvania State University Farm Safety and Health Quiz Bowl, held at the 2013 Ag Progress Days on Wednesday, August 14.
Most everyone enjoys fresh flower arrangements in the home, where their colorful beauty adds a delightful touch to any room. Purchased bouquets can add up to quite an expense, but you don’t have to spend a lot of money to enjoy flowers. If you have a garden, you can easily grow your own cutting flowers, but you can also find a plethora of plant material suitable for arrangements in perennial beds and shrub borders around your yard.
On Saturday, August 17, from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m., join Penn State Master Gardeners for a free garden program at their Trial & Idea Garden, located on the grounds of Claremont Nursing & Rehab Center at the corner of Army Heritage Drive and Claremont Road in Middlesex Township.