Grow your own lettuce

Interested in growing your own greens? Early spring is a good time to start. Lettuce can tolerate cool soil and weather, writes Master Gardener Volunteer Faye Mahaffey in a piece published by OSU Extension’s Brown County office, “so you can plant seeds in a well-prepared seedbed as much as 4 weeks before your last frost date.”

Further, if you have limited space or mobility, you can easily grow lettuce in pots, compact salad boxes, and raised salad tables, too.

Read the full story.

Ohio’s last frost date ranges from the first week of May to the first week of June, depending on where you live. See when yours is.

Learn more about CFAES’s Master Gardener Volunteer program. (Photo: Getty Images.)

He works for the soil, farmers, the planet

Here’s another reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10-16:

CFAES’ Rattan Lal, esteemed soil scientist in the School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR), recently achieved an unusual triple crown, winning the prestigious World Soil Prize, World Agriculture Prize, and Japan Prize in the span of about four months.

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How do you spell farming success?

Here’s another reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10–16:

Every year, more than 100,000 farmers, their families, their friends, and other agricultural professionals—enough people to fill Ohio Stadium—go to CFAES’ Farm Science Review. There, they visit more than 600 exhibitors from CFAES and industry, who share their latest research findings, new tractor models and other farm equipment, harvesting demonstrations, and more.

It’s a celebration of agriculture in Ohio, a way to keep improving the industry, and also includes activities geared to small farms and conservation.

Read a wrapup of last year here. See a photo feature on last year’s Review-goers here (anyone you know?). Visit the Review’s website here.

Pictured is the world’s largest Script Ohio, done in soybeans, created last year near the site of the Review using GPS-guided “smart planting.”

Is more, heavier rain the new norm?

Weather extremes like those seen last year in Ohio, including more rainfall, heavier downpours, and warmer temperatures, will likely become the norm rather than the exception, says CFAES climate specialist Aaron Wilson. He says farmers in the state may need to make adjustments to deal with the extra water. Read the story.

On March 26, Wilson speaks on the topic in Shelby.

18,000 ways Ohio farmers are helping water

Here’s another reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10–16:

At last count, nearly 18,000 farmers and others have successfully completed Ohio’s Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training. Provided by CFAES’ OSU Extension outreach arm, the state-required training shares science-based ways to keep nutrients in a field, where they work to feed cropsand out of water, such as Lake Erie and the Gulf of Mexico. Phosphorus and nitrogen are two of those nutrients.

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Celebrate: Partners for water, food

Here’s a reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10–16:

In the Maumee River watershed in northwest Ohio, farmers are partnering with scientists to study fields with elevated phosphorus levels. Are the fields contributing disproportionately to Lake Erie’s harmful algal bloom problem? Phosphorus runoff is a driver of the blooms.

The study hopes to find answers, and then it plans to evaluate farming practices that could help—practices that reduce the runoff of phosphorus from the fields and also maintain the fields’ yields. Water quality and food production both stand to come out ahead.

A CFAES scientist is leading the work, but bottom line, farmers and nutrient service providers are helping make it all possible. Read how. (Photo: Getty Images.)

‘We grow food for the neighborhood’

“Urban agriculture and local food production are a growing phenomenon for several reasons, including to address food insecurity, as a means for an economic enterprise, for community building, and as job training for young people and others.”

That’s Mike Hogan, educator in the Franklin County office of OSU Extension, CFAES’ statewide outreach arm, quoted in a recent article by Tracy Turner, a writer with CFAES, on our CFAES Stories website. (Hogan recently received the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association’s 2019 Service Award.)

Called “Urban Agriculture in Ohio,” the article looks at how OSU Extension is helping farmers in Cleveland and Columbus.

“Our mission is simple,” one of the growers said in the article. “We grow food for the neighborhood.”

Check it out. (Photo: Getty Images.)