This past week marked FFA Week, annually celebratedduring the week of George Washington’s birthday. Washington was renowned for his farm record keeping skills, which are recognized in the opening ceremonies of each FFA meeting. The beginning of each paragraph of the FFA Creed reads, “I believe in the future of agriculture”, words that bring back fond memories of my time as a member of the Morgan FFA chapter.
While I am a proud 4-H alumnus, I credit my FFA experience as being key in my development as a person and an agricultural professional. In FFA, I learned decision-making, business, and public speaking skills. In addition, we also gained practical agricultural production knowledge, often deemed as plows, cows, and sows part of the FFA experience. Looking back it is those few words, “I believe in the future of agriculture,” that continue to remind and guide me as I work to attain my goals in life both professionally and personally.
As we look past this week, we still have some exciting agriculture programming in store for this spring. On Mach 7th in the evening we will hold a fertilizer and pesticide RE-certification at the Henry County Senior Center. At 5:00 p.m., we will start the one-hour fertilizer training, followed by three hours of pesticide. We ask that those planning to attend RSVP to the office by March 4th.
For a day full of great horticulture, farm management, specialty crop, and livestock education, be sure to check out our 2019 NW Ohio Small Farms Conference. We have 24 great speakers from across the state coming to the conference on March 16th at Northwest State Community College. For more information, contact the Extension office or visit our OSU Small Farms webpage.
Speaking of horticulture, it will be time to consider some gardening activities. We can avoid many problems for the season by taking some preventative measures over the next few weeks. If you have raspberries and blackberries, a lime-sulfur spray will greatly reduce many of the disease problems that occur during the season. A copper/lime/sulfur (Bordeaux) spray on peach trees will prevent peach leaf curl. A properly timed dormant oil spray (prior to buds turning green) will reduce many soft shell insects.
It will also be time to start pruning fruit trees and many other trees around the landscape. Also, over the next month when the weather is nice, consider cleaning up as much debris from last year’s plants, and composting as many harmful insects and diseases that over wintered in last year’s plants. It is also time to remove last year’s growth from asparagus plants as this year’s growth will be ready to go and soon as it warms up. I’ll end this week with a quote from the FFA opening ceremonies: “George Washington was better able to serve his country as he was financially independent.” Have a great week.
March 7 – Pesticide and Fertilizer Recertification
March 16 – NW OH Small Farms Conference