Bats are in trouble. White-nose syndrome is killing them. A million-plus bats in the eastern U.S. and Canada have died from it. And now it’s in Ohio. What will it do? Why should we care? How can we help? OSU Extension’s Marne Titchenell will speak at Farm Science Review (pdf; sixth under “Wildlife Presentations”). Batfact: A single bat in Ohio may gobble some 1,000 bugs a night, including such pests as mosquitoes. Which makes bats a friend to green farms, yards, and gardens.
Archive for August, 2011
There’s a new pest of trees in Ohio. It came from Asia and is deadly, like the infamous emerald ash borer. But it may be easier (though not easy) to control. Which is good. But it kills a lot more than just ashes. Which is bad. (Though losing one’s ashes is bad enough.) Here’s a good chance to learn more.
OSU Extension’s Denise Ellsworth, a Summit County-based educator, will speak on phenology (scroll down to 3:30 p.m.) — the study of the timing of life cycle events of plants and animals — at an upcoming symposium on climate change at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Together with Dan Herms, Entomology, she coordinates Ohio State’s Phenology Garden Network, the largest network like it in North America. Read a May 26 Cleveland Plain Dealer story about it. What’s going on at your house?
Build your own rain barrel and you’ll get free water for your plants. And you’ll cut down on stormwater runoff, too much of which causes flooding, erosion, and water pollution. Learn more — how to set one up, blend it in, and use it — in this talk by experts at Farm Science Review (pdf; go under “Water Presentations”). Fun fact from the city of Bremerton, Wash., which gets its fair share of the wet stuff: A rainfall of only about a third of an inch, on a typical house, will fill up a typical rain barrel.
Ohio State’s nationally known organic farming research program will be featured Sept. 1 as part of the Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series. Scientists with the Organic Food and Farming Education and Research program will speak on their work, with a special focus on grains, livestock, and water quality. OFFER is a part of OARDC. Six organizations, including Ohio State’s Sustainable Agriculture Team, are behind the series, which continues through November.
Better fishing in your farm pond. Better success when you plant new trees. Fewer nuisance wildlife problems. More singing bobwhite quail, or even just any for starters. Natural resource experts from Ohio State, Purdue, and several agencies will give 30 presentations at Farm Science Review next month, all in the Gwynne Conservation Area, and all on a single theme: ways to manage your land even better — your woods, waters, and wildlife. They’ve posted the topics and schedule (pdf).
Jeff Rasawehr, a family farmer in western Ohio, has had growing success with cover crops. They’ve enriched his farm’s soils. Improved their tilth. Cut pests and weeds. And revived yields. You can learn more next week (and visit his farm) as part of the Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series (pdf). Six groups, including Ohio State’s Sustainable Agriculture Team, are the sponsors.
A free tour today at OARDC in Wooster features new, non-chemical, sustainable ways to fight a melon grower’s biggest nightmare. “Both organic and conventional muskmelon growers rank the cucumber beetle/bacterial wilt complex as their No. 1 problem,” says Celeste Welty, an OARDC and OSU Extension entomologist and one of the speakers. New research on trap crops and row covers is the focus. “On many sustainable farms, and particularly on organic farms, there’s interest in using any possible tactics other than pesticides,” Welty says, partly because of the chemicals’ threat to honey bees. It’s part of the 2011 Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series (pdf).