By: Christine Gelley, Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator, Noble County, OSU Extension
Poison hemlock is up and actively growing right this minute. It is already prevalent on roadsides in Noble County. If you stand next to poison hemlock it will feel like you are in that scene from “Alice in Wonderland” where the flowers are giant, and she is tiny. It looks like Queen Anne’s Lace, but much larger. It blooms earlier and it is has distinct purple spots on the stem.
All parts of the poison hemlock plant are poisonous to people and livestock, wet or dry. This can be an extremely concerning weed in hay fields. You won’t have to look hard to find it. If you come across it in bloom, you can mow it down to prevent seed production, but it will come back to haunt you later. A similar look alike is wild parsnip, which is in the same family, causes additional concerns for skin rash, and has yellow flowers. We have yet to see giant hogweed in Noble County, but it is another look alike that can be found in other parts of Ohio with similar concerns. Continue reading
By: Wayne Dellinger and Dee Jepsen, OSU Extension
Spring of 2019 brought never-before seen planting conditions for our generation. With a similar weather pattern predicted for spring 2020, the window to get crops in the field may be short again this season. With shorter windows brings a sense of hurriedness, stress, and fatigue. These may all lead to an increased potential of incidents and injuries during planting.
In the ten year span from 2009 to 2018, there were 116 farm fatalities in Ohio. Sixty-nine of these were the result of tractors, equipment, or other equipment (Farm Fatality and Injury Database of Ohio, OSU Extension Ag Safety and Health Program).
What practices can be done to reduce the risk of injury this time of year? Below is a list of reminders to keep in mind during this busy season. Continue reading
Editor’s Note: I am posting this week’s column as it contains important information regarding our office in response to COVID-19.
The past several weeks has presented us with the real and difficult challenges related to the coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19). The Ohio State University has been proactively implementing protocols to ensure the safety and health of our students and clientele; that is our number one priority. After consultation with the college and university leadership, OSU Extension is cancelling, or going virtual with our educational events and meetings through at least April 20 and possibly beyond. Furthermore, our office at the direction of OSU Extension administration will be closed beginning 3-19-2020, until further notice. We understand this may cause an inconvenience to many, but please know that health of individuals and the health of our community at-large is our highest priority. We will share updates as more information becomes available. Thanks for your patience as we learn more about how this virus is affecting Ohioans. Continue reading
By: Tracy Turner, OSU Communications
Scientists with The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) and the College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) can offer insight into the new coronavirus that is being blamed for at least 26 deaths and more than 830 confirmed illnesses internationally since December 2019, with at least two cases of coronavirus reported this week in the United States—in Washington state and Chicago. And at least an additional 50 people in the United States are under observation in 22 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that include the common cold, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), all of which can infect both humans and animals, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Continue reading
By: Jason Hartschuh, OSU Extension Crawford County
Managing stored grain throughout the winter is an important part of your grain marketing plan for farm profitability. This winter we are already receiving reports of stored grain going out of condition, which can lower the value and be a hazard to those working around the grain facility. At a minimum, stored grain that has gone out of condition can cause health hazards, especially when grain dust contains mold and bacteria. Out of condition grain can also form a crust or stick to the bin walls and if someone enters the bin for any reason an entrapment could occur. For more information on safety when working around grain visit http://go.osu.edu/AFM and listen to episode 41 of the podcast on grain bin safety. Continue reading
New Year’s Checklist
Happy New Year. Much like it was a year ago, another wet start to the start of calendar. Here’s hoping that that trend will not carry into late spring this go around. The beginning of the year is always a good time to check up and a take care of a couple things around the home. By doing a couple of simple checks an some annual maintenance one can reduce the risk for accidents and injury. Continue reading
What a great event that the Farmer Appreciation Dinner turned out to be this past Tuesday evening at Hamler. A huge thanks to Dan Brubaker and crew for organizing the program and rounding up sponsors. Just another example of how the agricultural community can come together to support it’s members during times of adversity. As mentioned during the program it was also great to see future leaders from all three county FFA chapters participating in serving the meal. Henry County Agriculture looks to be in good hands for years to come. Continue reading
By: Chris Zoller, Extension Educator, ANR in Tuscarawas County
Students will be wrapping up their school year soon and you may have a young person contact you about a summer job. Young people often have an interest to work on a farm and many are excellent employees. However, as an employer, there are rules and regulations you must understand before hiring minors to do work on your farm.
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has established certain provisions to protect the safety of minors. In 1967, the U.S. Secretary of Labor determined certain agricultural jobs as hazardous to youth less than 16 years of age. There are two exemptions to these regulations: Continue reading
Brrr! That’s the best way I know how to describe this blast of Polar air that had us hunkered up in the warmth of our homes, (especially since the office was closed). The drop in temperatures aided by the ever blowing wind was about as cold as I can remember. I’ve heard stories about the blizzard of 1978, and am glad we did not get that kind of snowfall prior to this cold snap, as I for one, am not a fan of blowing and drifting snow. Looking at all-time record lows, most of those across Ohio were set in January of 1994. It doesn’t look like it we quite got there this past week. Continue reading
Happy New Year. I had the opportunity to spend some quality time with friends and family in Morgan County before gearing up for our busy Extension meeting season. While I was in southern Ohio it was tough to do much farm work with all of the mud. On New Year’s Eve, 2018 became the wettest year on record according to the Columbus news stations. One thing we were able to accomplish, was cutting and splitting a couple of cords of firewood for my brother. It was splitting wood that reminded me this is a good time to check a couple of things around the house, now that the calendar has turned.
This is the time of the year when fuel-burning devices are at peak utilization, along with that come the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless and tasteless gas that can cause sudden illness and death. The Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of State Fire Marshal, warns of following devices that may produce dangerous levels of CO gas: fuel fired furnaces (non-electric); gas water heaters; generators; fireplaces and wood stoves; gas stoves; non-electric space heaters; gas dryers; charcoal grills; and motorized automobiles and equipment. Continue reading