GAPs Online Training now offered in Spanish

The OSU Extension Produce Safety Team has designed a self-paced online training for Good Agricultural Practices, which helps reduce the risk of produce contamination.

This self-paced online course provides hydroponic growers with the knowledge and tools needed to implement best management practices specific to controlled environments (greenhouses, in-door farms, high tunnels, etc.) to reduce microbial food safety hazards in hydroponic vegetable and fruit production systems.

• Participants will receive a certificate of participation after completing this course.

• The cost of the course is $150.

The quick link is:

Flyer: OnlineHYDROPONICGAPs-Spanish Flyer 020524


Este curso en línea sobre Buenas Prácticas Agrícolas, o ‘BPA’, para la producción hidropónica ayuda a reducir el riesgo de contaminación en frutas y vegetales.

Este curso en línea de autoaprendizaje proporciona a los productores de cultivos hidropónicos el conocimiento y herramientas necesarias para implementar buenas prácticas de manejo específicas de ambientes controlados (invernaderos, agricultural vertical, túneles altos, etc.) para reducir los riesgos microbianos de sistemas de producción hidropónica en frutas y vegetales frescos.
• Los estudiantes recibirán una certificación de participación después de haber completado el curso.
• El valor del curso es de $150.

Para registrarte al curso dirígete a
Para preguntas, contactar a Melanie Ivey por o Sanja Ilic por


2024 Farm Bill Summit

Ever wondered how the Farm Bill affects our food and agricultural landscape? The Farm Bill, a substantial legislative package passed by the federal government every few years, impacts how funds are allocated for various crucial aspects of agriculture, nutrition, conservation efforts, natural resource protection, and support systems across the nation. To delve deeper into this vital legislation and its implications, we invite you to join us at our 2024 CFAES Farm Bill Summit on February 23 from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Fawcett Center. Engage in discussions led by CFAES and industry experts, unravel the complexities, and understand how this bill shapes the future of farming and related industries. This summit offers a unique opportunity to gain insights, network with others in the industry, and comprehend the far-reaching impact of the Farm Bill on our agricultural ecosystem. Learn More and Register at 

Tri-State Green Industry Conference ’24

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Sharonville Convention Center
11355 Chester Rd
Cincinnati, OH  45246


Early Bird Registration: $95 (includes lunch and break snacks)

Must be received by midnight, Wednesday, January 24th

Register now:

Early Bird Registration (until Midnight, January 24th) $95.00
Late Registration (after January 24th) $150.00
Students (email Maria Gulley for the registration code) FREE
Educators $50.00
On-Site Registration (at the door, February 1stLunch not included) $150.00

For bulk registration (10+ attendees) email Maria Gulley

Don’t miss this premier Tri-State Green Industry Educational Event:

  • Cutting-edge horticultural training sessions
  • Networking opportunities
  • Vendor/Trade Show
  • Pesticide Re-certification (Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky) and professional credit opportunities
  • More details at

Ten Education Tracks:

  1. Annuals & Perennials
  2. Trees & Shrubs
  3. Turfgrass Management
  4. Greenhouse & Urban Agriculture
  5. General Pest & Disease Management
  6. Emerging Ideas & Issues: with Boxwood Symposium in the afternoon
  7. Landscape Ecosystems
  8. Worker Safety
  9. Spanish (sessions will be entirely in Spanish)
  10. Educators

Business Opportunity:  Be a Trade Show Exhibitor

Increase sales by being a Trade Show Exhibitor!

Click this hotlink to register and select “Trade Show Exhibitor”:

The Tri-State Green Industry Conference is a collaborative educational effort between the following organizations, arboreta, and botanical gardens, as well as Green Industry leaders:

  • Ohio State University Extension
  • Purdue Extension
  • University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension
  • Cincinnati State Technical and Community College
  • University of Cincinnati
  • The Boone County Arboretum
  • Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden
  • Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum

Questions? E-mail Maria Gulley at:

Soil Health Webinar Series

Please join us for the 2024 Soil Health Webinar Series. To register, visit

Topics and Speakers:

January 11: Soil Health: Who’s the J.A.M. at OSU? – Dr. Jim Ippolito, Dr. Asmita Murumkar, and Dr. Manbir Rakkar, The Ohio State University

February 8: Grower Panel – Cover Crop Info Drop

March 7: What’s the beef with Soil Health and livestock? – Dr. Anna Cates, University of Minnesota, Dr. Mary Drewnoski, University of Nebraska & Doug Jackson-Smith, The Ohio State University

Soil Health Webinar Series 2024 Flyer

Farmer/Farmland Owner Tax Webinar

Are you a farmer or farmland owner wanting to learn more about the recent tax law issues? If so, join us for this webinar on Friday, December 15th, 2023, from 10 am to noon. This webinar is a part of our Farm Office Live Series and serves as our Farm Office Live! Webinar for December. To register for this webinar, go to

This webinar will focus on issues related to farmer and farmland owner income tax returns, the latest news on CAUV and property taxes in Ohio, and the big changes to the Ohio Commercial Activity Tax (CAT). This two-hour program will be presented in a live webinar format via Zoom by OSU Extension Educators Barry Ward, David Marrison, Jeff Lewis, and Purdue faculty member Dr. Michael Langemeier. Individuals who operate farms, own property, or are involved with renting farmland should participate.

Topics to be discussed during this webinar include (subject to change based on tax law change):

  • Economic Outlook
  • Depreciation Update
  • Employee vs. Independent Contractor
  • Corporate Transparency Act/Beneficial Owners Information Reporting
  • 1099-K Changes
  • Charitable Remainder Trusts
  • Basis Allocation Land Acquisition – Allocating Basis to Residual Fertility for Future Deductions
  • Defining Farm Income to Avoid Paying Estimated Tax
  • Keeping an Eye Forward on Estate/Gift Tax Limitation
  • Reminder – Keeping an Eye on Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Provisions Sunsetting After 2025 Tax Year
  • Ohio Tax Update (CAUV/Property Tax Update, CAT Changes, Beginning Farmer Tax Credit, Ohio Tax Law Interpretation – Ohio Supreme Court Issues New Ruling)
  • Indiana Tax Update

To register:

For more information, contact Barry Ward at or Jeff Lewis at

Planning for the Future of Your Farm Workshops

Zoom Webinar Workshop (6:30 – 8:00 p.m.)

  • February 5, 12, 19, and 26, 2024

 In-Person Workshop Locations (9:00 to 4:00 p.m.)

  • Southern State Community College – Mt. Orab Campus: November 29, 2023 (Brown County)
  • Celina, Ohio: December 7, 2023 (Mercer County)
  • Lisbon, Ohio:  January 19, 2024 (Columbiana County)
  • Urbana, Ohio: January 26, 2024 (Champaign County)
  • Tiffin, Ohio: February 2, 2024 (Seneca County)

Instructors: David Marrison, OSU Extension Farm Management Field Specialist and Robert Moore, Attorney with the OSU Agricultural & Resource Law Program

We encourage to help promote the on-line workshop as well as any of the regional workshops which are near your producers.

Attached is the promo card which we will be distributing at FSR next week.

Later this year, we will start taking requests for workshops for the fall of 2024 and winter of 2025.

Thanks to the counties who stepped forward to host a workshop this year

More Information at:

Ohio Regional Tick Symposium: Tackling Tick Range Expansion

You’re Invited

… … …

– WHEN –
Thursday, October 12, 2023
8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Ohio State University
Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center

2201 Fred Taylor Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43210

We are delighted to announce that registration is NOW OPEN for the Ohio Regional Tick Symposium on Thursday, October 12th. Click here for registration details >>

This one-day symposium will bring researchers, public health officials, health practitioners, and pest management specialists together to facilitate conversations and share ongoing research on ticks and tick-related diseases in our region. For more information about the symposium, including the program, venue, and list of speakers, please see our website >>

Reserve your spot soon – registration is limited!

If you have any questions or would like additional information about the conference, please contact We look forward to seeing you in October!



This symposium is made possible by our generous sponsors:

Internal Sponsors (Ohio State)
Infectious Diseases Institute- Ecology, Epidemiology, and Population Health
Infectious Diseases Institute
College of Veterinary Medicine
College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences
College of Nursing
Department of Microbiology
College of Public Health

External Sponsors



Characteristics of Beginning Farmers in Ohio and Potential Impact of the Ohio Beginning Farmer Tax Credit Program

By: PhD students Xiaoyi Fang and Zhining Sun and Professor Ani Katchova, Farm Income Enhancement Chair, in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics Read more about Characteristics of Beginning Farmers in Ohio and Potential Impact of the Ohio Beginning Farmer Tax Credit Program

OSU Extension Bi-Weekly Fruit & Vegetable Report – August 17th, 2023

The OSU Extension Fruit & Vegetable Report is written/published collectively by OSU Extension staff across the state.

Tillage Options for Annual Vegetables

Different kinds of tillage equipment vary widely in their level of soil disturbance. Some tools work the ground to a fine tilth for planting, while others cause minimal disturbance or target only the area where the crop will be planted. Certain vegetable crops succeed better with certain tillage types than others. The following will provide a brief rundown on several common tillage systems and their respective benefits and drawbacks. 

Conventional tillage consists of a primary tillage event to turn over the soil and provide a basis for further secondary tillage that is used to further chop and bury vegetation/residues and prepare the seed bed. A moldboard plow is one of the most common types of primary tillage, inverting the topsoil and fully burying surface vegetation. A chisel plow can also be used for primary (as well as secondary) tillage and involves fracturing the subsoil using shanks tipped with chisel points in a way that does not turn over the topsoil. Secondary tillage implements include a disc harrow, which uses steel discs to slice up soil clumps, weeds, and residue. Newer high-speed discs perform better at faster operating speeds compared to traditional types. 

Tillage equipment uses a variety of tools to fracture and mix the soil as well as chop and bury residues. Top to bottom – chisel plow, vertical tillage implement, high speed disc, and strip till unit. Photos by Chris Galbraith, OSU Extension. 


Conservation tillage refers to tillage systems that create considerably less disturbance, leaving > 30% of the soil surface covered with residues. The advantage is reduced erosion, increased organic matter, and improved soil structure and quality. Various conservation tillage practices include:

  • No-Till is a very common production system where the soil is not disturbed at all by tillage operations and crops are planted into the previous year’s residues. The advantages of eliminating tillage are well-established – no-till maintains soil structure, conserves organic matter, retains moisture, and prevents runoff. The potential downsides are also well known and include greater difficulties in accessing the field for planting during wet springs, delayed soil warming early in the season, and greater reliance on chemical weed control. Large-seeded vegetables like sweet corn or pumpkins are more typically grown in no-till production.
  • Vertical Tillage is a shallow form of tillage designed to work the soil minimally while leaving residues on the surface for ground cover benefits. This tool helps incorporate soil amendments or chop up residues to more manageable sizes while side-stepping the more disruptive effects of conventional tillage. Vertical tillage equipment consists of fluted coulters, chopper reels, rolling baskets, and other features that open up the ground for warming and speeds decomposition by chopping/sizing residues, all in a way that has less negative repercussions than the heavier forms of tillage achieved by a plow or disc harrow.
  • Strip Tillage is the method of tilling only in strips where the crop will be planted, leaving soils undisturbed in between the strips. A typical row unit will include a coulter to slice through residue, followed by a row cleaner to clear the way for shanks, wavy discs, conditioners, and other attachments that help create a finely tilled strip. This method offers the best of both worlds by preparing a worked area that warms quicker than the inter-row zones while also retaining cover on top of most of the soil. Row units can further be set up to apply fertilizer or a fumigant to the strip during the same pass. Vegetables commonly grown in strip-tillage systems include sweet corn, squash, carrots, potatoes, and more.
  • Ridge Tillage is similar to strip tillage except that strips are formed as raised ridges to promote better drainage and aeration. Ridge tillage tends to be less common than strip tillage, particularly in vegetable production. 

Crop updates



Downy mildew continues to spread throughout Ohio, with the clade that can infect squash, pumpkins, and watermelons being reported in Fulton county. You can continue to track the spread on the Cucurbit Downy Mildew Forecasting website. 

Cucurbit downy mildew symptoms on upper leaf surface (top image) and lower leaf surface (bottom image) of cucumber. Photo by Frank Becker, OSU Extension. 

Fruiting Vegetables

Harvest of tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and okra are all well underway. Verticillium wilt, Pythium fruit rot, and Phytophthora capsici have been causing problems in some fields. Preventative practices for managing these pathogens by promoting proper drainage and preventing spread from infected to non-infected fields can help in reducing disease severity.

Pythium colonizing pepper fruit. Pythium appears as white, “cottony” fungal growth on fruit while Phytophthora spores on fruit more resemble powdered sugar. Photo by Chris Galbraith, OSU Extension.

Sweet Corn

Western bean cutworm catches in NW Ohio have decreased as of late, with high numbers still being reported in NE Ohio. Corn earworm and European corn borer catches remain low. Check out the most recent OSU C.O.R.N newsletter for most recent trap counts. Japanese beetles remain a pest on sweet corn, as well as other crops. Insecticide options include Assail (acetamiprid), Baythroid (beta-cyfluthrin), Warrior II (lambda-cyhalothrin) and other products. See this article from Iowa State University on the biology of this pest and spray thresholds.

Japanese beetles feeding on corn silks. Photo by Frank Becker, OSU Extension. 


Elderberry Fruits “Disappearing” from the Cluster (Cymes).

Dr. Gary Gao, Professor and Small Fruit Specialist, OSU South Centers

Ed Brown, the Agricultural and Natural Resources Educator with OSU Extension in Athens County, reached out to Gary Gao for answers on a question from a grower about fruits “disappearing” from the clusters or cymes of elderberries. There are several possible reasons for this phenomenon. The most common reason is bird feeding. As elderberry fruits turn color, birds typically start eating them. These little fruits are the perfect size for a lot of birds. Netting is the most effective way to keep birds out of the planting. It is important to put the netting on before fruits turn color. 

Elderberry bushes with ripening fruits under bird netting. Photo by Gary Gao, The Ohio State University.

There are other possible reasons. Japanese beetles can feed on florets causing the elderberry plants to set fewer fruits. Herbicide damage from 2,4-D or Dicamba is getting more and more common. These chemicals could cause fruits to abort. More studies need to be done to verify this hypothesis.

Mineral nutrient deficiency can be a possible cause too. Boron is one element that is important for fruit set. Tissue testing will help determine if boron levels are too low. If they are, a foliar application of boron will help increase fruit set in the future.

Ripe elderberry fruit cymes. Photo by Gary Gao, The Ohio State University.

Cross pollination can increase fruit set. Elderberries can set fruit when only one cultivar is planted. However, planting two different cultivars that bloom at the same time will significantly increase fruit set cyme size.

Follow this link for more information on elderberry production in Ohio and possibly beyond.

Net Grapes for Preventing Bird Depredation

Dr. Gary Gao, Professor and Small Fruit Specialist, OSU South Centers

Some of the cold hardy grape cultivars, such as Frontenac, Frontenac Blanc, and Frontenac Gris, have reached veraison at OSU South Centers in Piketon, Ohio. Veraison is the onset of fruit ripening and change of fruit color of grape berries. This is the time when birds started poking fruits for sugar and moisture. All of the punctures are the perfect sites for attracting bees and wasps. These wounds also cause fruits to rot and make grapes less marketable. Birds can peck the fruits off. All of these activities can cause severe yield loss. In the case of wine grapes, fruit and wine quality will also suffer.

Frontenac grapes at veraison. Photo by Gary Gao, The Ohio State University.

Veraison is the time to net the grapes to prevent bird depredation. Many grape growers use this method. There are many different nets out there. Since we grow mostly hybrid grapes on high wire cordon, we put the netting over the row. Our netting material is a black plastic netting that comes in a large roll. We bought a Netter-Getter a few years ago. This tractor mounted net applicator is typically operated by three people. One person drives the tractor and two other people follow behind to drape the net over the entire vine. 

Bird netting being applied to grapes. Photo by Gary Gao, The Ohio State University.

If you grower Vinifera grapes, side netting is the preferred method. We do grow several short rows of Cabernet Franc and Regent. They are trained on the Vertical Shoot Positioning system, or VSP.

Typically, the size of the openings is typically half an inch or smaller. Netting is quite an effective method in preventing bird damage. It is by no means perfect since birds can still peck the fruits through the openings. Raccoons and other animals can manage to get the netting to eat the fruits.

Frontenac grapes with bird netting applied. Photo by Gary Gao, The Ohio State University.

Other methods of bird damage prevention are bird distress calls, noise makers like propane cannons, and scarecrows. There is not one method that is 100% effective. 

It is important to get the net on the grapes as soon as they turn color. As a matter of fact, it is better to do this sooner than later. Sometimes, birds may just peck the green grapes off just for the fun of it!


Upcoming Events: 

August 23, 8:00 am – 4:00 pm, Agriculture Technology Field Day

August 24, 5:30 – 8:00 pm, OSU Extension Pumpkin Field Day

September 19 – 21, Farm Science Review

September 27, Wooster, OH, Midwest Mechanical Weed Control Field Day

December 5th – 7th, Grand Rapids, MI, Great Lakes Fruit, Vegetable, & Farm Market Expo 

January 4th – 5th, Ohio Organic Grain Conference