Ninety-four high school juniors from 60 counties across the state have accepted invitations to attend Kentucky Farm Bureau’s 28th annual Institute for Future Agricultural Leaders held in two locations this month.
Spencer Countians Darilyn Browning and Tyler Goodlett will be two of the 48 students attending the institute at the University of Kentucky in Lexington.
Swallow Rail was the name my dad gave the farm more than 30 years ago. He wanted it to be relevant, reflecting the spatial and natural qualities of his 18 acres in Western Shelby County. His inspiration came from the swallows that swoop and swerve so adeptly in open fields, catching insects on the fly. The rail of Swallow Rail comes from the two railroad tracks that flank either end of the road.
Remember how much fun it was to chase fireflies when you were young? Once you caught a firefly, you would hold it in your hand to watch the flickering light for a few moments and then release it unharmed to fly away.
Shelbyville Farm Service Agency reminds farmers that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is conducting a four-week Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) general sign-up beginning May 20 and ending on June 14. FSA also recently announced the restart of sign-up for continuous CRP. Sign-up for continuous CRP began on May 13 and will continue through Sept. 30, 2013.
I absolutely do not approve of killing bees. In fact, we are in a bit of a crisis with a diminishing population with the suspected cause being the use of pesticides, notably neonicotinoids. I do not fear bees, I am not allergic, and I can happily co-exist — except that they are eating my house. Or, rather they are tunneling into the wood that makes up my house so they can lay eggs and have lots of babies.
Just as the summer grilling season is heating up, beef supplies across the country are down, meaning it might cost a little more to host that backyard party. In fact, the number of beef cattle in the United States is reportedly less than 30 million — the lowest number since the early 1960s. And when numbers go down and feed prices go up, consumers end up paying more at the grocery store.
A couple of weeks ago, one of the prettiest flowers in the garden started to bloom. This great cut-leaf Japanese peony, Paeonia tenuifolia, opened its simple ruby-colored petals to reveal bright yellow stamen. The finely cut foliage, reminiscent of the most finely cut foliage of a Japanese maple, allows the plant to be interesting in the mixed border the rest of the growing season, too.
Gardening season is in full force here in Spencer County with the threat of frost now behind us. It’s a good time to think about your soil. Soil compaction creates an unfriendly growing environment for plants and is a serious problem for many home gardeners. However, it is relatively easy to prevent.
Compaction transforms soil into a difficult environment for plant growth by making it harder for roots, water and soil to penetrate the ground. Major causes are working the soil when it is too wet, foot traffic and excessive rototiller use.