Master Gardener Informational Meeting Friday, February 23, 2024 at the Ag Center…

Master Gardener Training Informational Meeting – Are you thinking this is your year to become a Fairfield County Master Gardener Volunteer?  If you want to learn more about the program ..what’s involved, how do I get started?  Join us on  Friday, February 23, 2024 at 1:00 p.m. at the Fairfield County Ag Center located at 831 College Avenue in Lancaster, Ohio  for an informational meeting about the Fairfield County Master Gardener program.  Cost for the 7 week daytime program is $150.00 which does include your training manual and handouts.

Please take a moment to RSVP for the Fairfield County Master Gardener Informational session here: https://go.osu.edu/ffmgv2024

 

All interested in Master Gardener Volunteer training in Fairfield County are encouraged to attend.  Questions?  Contact Connie Smith, Master Gardener Coordinator smith.3204@osu.edu or Carrie Brown, Extension Educator  brown.2766@osu.edu.

 

Don’t miss  DIG INTO GARDENING – MARCH 23, 2024

 Do you want to learn more about new plants to introduce in your gardens for pollinators in 2024?  How about finding some alternatives to those ugly boxwoods?  Or do you think it looks like those boxwoods are trying  making a comeback?  If you answered yes to any of those questions, then make plans now  to attend the  Fairfield County Master Gardeners “Dig Into Gardening”  at Christ United Methodist Church, 700 S. Main Street in Baltimore, Ohio.  Our program will be  .featuring Planting for Pollinators with Scott Beuerlein of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Conifers for Today’s Gardens with (Garden Bob)  Bob Iiames, American Conifer Society, and OSU Extension’s Carrie Brown discussing Boxwood Problems!! Cost is $40.00; $30.00 for current Master Gardener Volunteers, which includes a light breakfast and lunch!  Doors open at 9:30 am and the program begins at 9:30 a.m. and will conclude at 2:30 p.m.  All proceeds for the event benefit the Fairfield County Master Gardener Program educational efforts.  Check out the details:  https://fairfield.osu.edu/events/2024-dig-gardening-educational-day         Call OSU Extension in Fairfield County for more information at 740.653.5419.

 

Junior Fair Market Beef Tagging Announced 

Exhibitors will tag their animals before weigh-in.

It’s time once again to prepare for Jr. Market Beef tagging and weigh-in. This year it is being conducted in a fashion like recent years but in addition will include exhibitors planning to participate in the recently created ‘finished’ Dairy Beef Steer project in Fairfield County.

Market beef weigh-in for traditional beef animals as well as dairy beef steers is set for Saturday, March 9, 2024, at Fairfield Cattle Company located at 3443 Cincinnati-Zanesville Road (S.R. 22), Lancaster, from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. In advance of March 9th exhibitors will be required to tag their own market beef animals with an 840 EID tag (unless the calf already has an EID tag). Visual numbered tags are encouraged but will not be provided or required this year. As in the recent past, participants will submit a hair follicle DNA sample at the weigh-in for each calf.

Again this year families with market beef and dairy beef steer projects are also required to reserve a weigh-in time for the 9th, and only those directly involved in transporting and weighing the calves should plan to Continue reading

Master Gardener Training will begin in April 2024

Do you want to learn more about gardening? Do you have extra time to volunteer? Do you live in Fairfield County?   Would you like to be a part of a group that loves learning and teaching others?  Then it is time you considered being a part of the 2024 Fairfield County Master Gardener Training slated to begin on Friday, April 12, 2024 and run thru May 24, 2024.  All classes will be held on Fridays at the Fairfield County Ag Center, located at 831 College Avenue in Lancaster, OH.

You will have homework as we work our way thru the 270-page Master Gardener Manual, which covers everything from Soils to Woody Ornamentals, Fruit, Lawns and so much more.  Cost for the program is $150.00 which includes your online access as well as the Master Gardener binder.  Cost for the second participant from the same household is $70.00.   You will also be required to complete a background check thru the Ohio State University provider Sterling Talent Solutions approximate cost is $50.00.

What is the volunteer commitment?  50 hours of volunteer service is required at any of the active projects Fairfield County MGV’s are involved with currently and we are always open to new ideas!!!   You have 2 years to complete your volunteer hours, but we would like to have at least 25 hours completed in 2024. You will have the opportunity to learn more about all our active projects during our training.  We will ask that you give back 20 hours of your volunteer work at the Ag Center Project, which is the “home” of the OSU Extension in Fairfield County as a part of your volunteer commitment.

If you want to learn more about all the details of the Master Gardener Training and more about the Fairfield County Master Gardener program, please plan to attend a Master Gardener Informational session on Friday, February 23 at the Fairfield County Ag Center located at 831 College Avenue, Lancaster Ohio beginning at 1:00 p.m.  At that meeting we will have the Master Gardener application packet and discuss the expectations and requirements for the 2024 Master Gardener Training.

If you are interested and want more information, please reach out to Master Gardener Coordinator Connie Smith at smith.3204@osu.edu or Extension Educator Carrie Brown at  brown.2766@osu.edu.

Winter House Plant Care Tips!!!

Winter weather adversely affects growing conditions for houseplants. Proper care during the winter months can help insure the health of houseplants.

Most houseplants grow well with daytime temperatures of 65 to 75 degrees F and night temperatures of 60 to 65 degrees F. Temperatures below 50 degrees F or rapid temperature fluctuations may damage some plants. Keep houseplants away from cold drafts, radiators, and hot air vents. Also make sure houseplant foliage doesn’t touch cold windows.

Many houseplants prefer a humidity level of 40 to 50 percent. Unfortunately, the relative humidity found in many homes during the winter months may be only 10 to 20 percent — a level too low for many houseplants. Humidifiers are an excellent way to increase the relative humidity in a single room or throughout the entire home. Simple cultural procedures can also increase the relative humidity around houseplants. Group plants together. The water evaporating from the potting soil, plus water lost through the plant foliage (transpiration), will increase the relative humidity in the immediate vicinity of the houseplants. Another method is to place the houseplants on trays (saucers) filled with pebbles or gravel and water. The bottoms of the pots should be above the water level.

In general, houseplants require less frequent watering during the winter months than in spring and summer. Actively growing plants need more water than those at rest during the winter months.

Plant species also affects watering frequency. Ferns prefer an evenly moist soil and should be watered relatively frequently. Cacti and succulents, on the other hand, should not be watered until the potting soil is completely dry. The majority of houseplants fall between these two groups. Most houseplants should be watered when the soil is barely moist or almost dry to the touch.

When watering houseplants, water them thoroughly. Water should freely drain out of the bottoms of the pots. If the excess water drains into a saucer, discard the water and replace the saucer beneath the pot.

Houseplants need to be fertilized periodically when actively growing in the spring and summer. Fertilization is generally not necessary during the winter months because most plants are growing very little or resting. Indoor gardeners can begin to fertilize houseplants in March or April as growing conditions improve and the plants resume growth. Fertilizers are available in numerous forms: liquids, water soluble powders, tablets, spikes, etc. Regardless of the fertilizer type, carefully read and follow label directions.

Dust and grease often accumulate on the leaves of houseplants. The dust and grease not only makes them unattractive, it may slow plant growth. Cleaning houseplants improves their appearance, stimulates growth, and may help control insects and mites.

Large, firm-leafed plants may be cleaned with a soft sponge or cloth. Wash the foliage using a very mild solution of dishwashing soap and tepid water. Another method is to place the plants in the shower and give them a good “bath”. Be sure to adjust the water temperature before placing the plants under the shower head.

SOURCE: University of Nebraska Extension

NEW 4-H Club Advisors Needed in Fairfield County

The Fairfield County 4-H Program continues to see the interest in community club participation grow and we need volunteers to make that  happen. If you have been thinking of getting more involved with 4-H, now is the time to apply to be a club volunteer. Current clubs need help which means you don’t have to start a new club!! Have questions? Contact our office at 740-653-5419!  Application deadline is February 1, 2024.

 

Private Pesticide and Fertilizer recertification meeting opportunities offered in Fairfield County for 2024.

Your first opportunity for Pesticide Recertification is Tuesday, February 6, 2024 beginning at 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 noon.     The cost for this class is $25.00.  Please note Fertilization Recertification class will be held immediately following Pesticide Recertification.  Cost for Fertilizer recertification is $10.00.  The Fertilizer Recertification session is 1 hour.

Your Second Opportunity for Private Fertilizer Recertification is Thursday, February 29, 2024, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Cost for this class is $10.00.  Immediately following this class will be the opportunity for Private Pesticide recertification beginning at 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m.

Cost of the Pesticide Recertification class is $25.00

Please bring your ODA Fertilizer or Pesticide card with you to the training.  All classes will be held at the Fairfield County Agriculture Center, 831 College Ave., Lancaster, OH

For more information or to register online go to: http://go.osu.edu/PestFert

Questions? Call OSU Extension at 740.653.5419