Registration open for February hops conference

cone of hopThe 2017 Ohio State University Hops Conference and Trade Show is Feb. 24-25 at CFAES’s South Centers in Piketon. Online registration is available here. Hops are a main ingredient for making beer.

CFAES scientists, for their part, are continuing to develop ways to grow hops sustainably in Ohio.

fact sheet from CFAES’s outreach arm, OSU Extension, says, “Locally grown hops could support a diversity of producers, with significant profit to be made on small acreage.”

Sustaining sweetness: Ohio Maple Days are Jan. 19-21

This year’s Ohio Maple Days are Jan. 19 in Morrow County, Jan. 20 in Wayne County (the location is close to Holmes County, too) and Jan. 21 in Geauga County. The annual events, which are the same at all three locations, help maple syrup producers get ready for the coming season, which in Ohio usually starts sometime in February. They’re sponsored by CFAES’s Ohio Maple Syrup Program. Check out the brochure, which includes program details and a registration form, here.

Event in Mt. Hope for produce and flower growers

Image of Mid Ohio Growers brochureThe 2017 Mid-Ohio Growers Meeting, whose tagline is “Top-notch education for produce and flower growers,” will feature several CFAES experts among its speakers: Brad Bergefurd (“Pumpkins and Gourds from Seed to Harvest”), Sally Miller (“Managing Soil-Borne Diseases in Vegetables” and “Vegetable Seed Treatment”), Celeste Welty (Using Multiple Tactices to Manage Pests”) and Rory Lewandowski (“Applying the Correct Chemicals Efficiently”).

The event is Jan 12-13 in Mt. Hope in Holmes County. Admission is $20 by Dec. 31; $25 afterward, including at the door; with children 14 and under free.

Download the event brochure, which includes the complete schedule, speaker details and a registration form, here.

Jan. 11 EPN event will feature climatologist Lonnie Thompson

JImage of Lonnie Thompsonan. 11’s Environmental Professionals Network breakfast program has a big title for a big topic — in fact, for four very closely related topics.

It’s called “Global Warming. You and Me. Energy Audits. Money in Your Pocket. Cleaner Air. More Comfortable Home. Help Is Available. Don’t Procrastinate.”

And it features talks by four Ohio experts — led by Lonnie Thompson, Distinguished University Professor in Ohio State’s School of Earth Sciences and senior research scientist with the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center (pictured) — on a theme of climate and energy. Read more …

Climate change making reindeer tinier: Study

Reindeers in natural environment, Tromso region, Northern Norway.Those reindeer facts were well and good. But there’s a reindeer story, too, that’s more serious.

It seems reindeer are shrinking — getting smaller and lighter — because of climate change, according to a study announced last week by Norwegian and Scottish scientists.

Continue reading Climate change making reindeer tinier: Study

Plant people: Share smarts, grow food, fight hunger

Ohio’s nearly 3,000 Master Gardener Volunteers share their plant-related knowledge with other people, and that knowledge improves, among other things, urban farms and backyard gardens. In turn, those farms and gardens reduce hunger, improve health and create income.

Learn more about the statewide program here. It’s run by CFAES’s outreach arm, OSU Extension, and offers training and volunteering in all 88 of Ohio’s counties.

In Wayne County, for instance, CFAES’s Secrest Arboretum just announced it’s taking applications for its 2017 Master Gardener training course. The deadline to apply is Jan. 27.

But we are neighbors’ children

Young Asian boy, scared and aloneMore than 630,000 Ohio children live in food-insecure households — they aren’t sure where their next meal is coming from. That’s enough to fill Ohio State’s football field, Ohio Stadium, six times over. “One of the biggest misperceptions I’ve seen about hunger in Ohio,” CFAES’s Pat Bebo says, “is that people think it occurs only in very poor households.” Read the story.

8 tiny facts about reindeer: No. 8, a reindeer runs faster than a grandma

healthy lifestyle asian woman running outdoorA reindeer can run at speeds of up to 48 mph. A grandma walking home from someone’s house Christmas Eve, or any other day, averages about 3 mph. If both the reindeer and grandma were traveling in the same direction and along the same path, the grandma indeed and unfortunately would get run over by the reindeer.

Even Olympic gold-medal-winning sprinter Elaine Thompson, who’s capable of about 21 mph over 100 meters, would have hoof prints.

Read all 8, plus a 9th with a musical tie to Ohio …

8 tiny facts about reindeer: No. 7, there’s a reason a reindeer can have a red nose …

Man wearing a clown nose… at least on the inside. And it’s gross.

Flies called reindeer nose bot flies may deposit their larvae in a reindeer’s nostrils. The larvae then grow in the throat or sinuses. A possible result is inflammation. But you couldn’t really say the nose glows.

The reindeer sneezes them out in spring.

Inhale all 8 …

8 tiny facts about reindeer: No. 6, when a reindeer senses danger, it may …

Danger light… sniff, listen, stare, urinate, “wheeze-snort,” rear back and jump in the air like a stallion, then run away. Often in that order.

Scientists call the jumping an “excitation leap.” It’s a visual warning to other reindeer. It could mean there’s a predator coming, like a wolf, a bear or a fearsome, toothy, bounceable biped you could even describe as abominable.