Friday, July 30, 2010

Cool Pics of Corn Silks

Sometimes when I come to a tough spot and can't think anymore, I go outside and look around in the garden. I did that today.

Have you ever really looked at corn silks? I mean, reeeeealy looked at them? Here's a couple of pictures of silks. Notice they have little appendages? Guess this makes them able to better grab the pollen as it's shed from the tassel.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Master Gardener Program

If you are interested in participating in the 2010 Master Gardener Program, the application and fee is due by next Friday, August 6. My horticulture page has the application available.

The program will start September 9 and end on December 16. Classes will be held on Thursdays from 9am to noon. I need 10 people to make the program happen this year.

For more information, call 606-679-6361.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Lunch from the Land (the Land of Pulaski Co, KY)

Most people would agree that a tomato you can pluck off your plant in the backyard is one of the best-tasting, most nutritious tomatoes you'll ever eat.

With this in mind, Edith Lovett, Richard Whitis, and I will be highlighting some foods from the next best place -- local farms right here in Pulaski Co.

Come eat lunch with us on Tuesday, July 27 at 11:30am when we will be using locally-produced meat, fruits, and vegetables.

We'd like you to pre-register and you'll need to bring $5 as well. Call the office at 679-6361 to sign up!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Get Outside and Get Healthy! It's a FACT!

According to some studies in Japan, getting outside around plants is good for your health. Well, duh! I figured everyone knew that. In my non-scientific way of looking at it, if you're outside you are probably doing something, something active -- which is good for you.

In Japan, they call it 'forest bathing'. Is that a cool way to put it or what?!

But the article goes on to state some more scientific facts than what I presented above. Being outside among plants and trees actually can boost your white blood cells. And it can lower your blood pressure and your pulse rate.

Another reason to help preserve our natural places and promote parks.

Guess I'll live til I'm 148.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Master Gardener Program 2010

If you are interested in becoming a Lake Cumberland Master Gardener, come to a meeting on July 15 at 1pm at the Pulaski County Extension office to learn about the program.

The Master Gardener Program in Pulaski County began in 2000. We have about 30 active Master Gardeners from 5 counties.

If you cannot make the meeting but are interested in participating in the program, PLEASE contact me. If all goes according to plan, the program will begin in mid-September, 2010.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Turf Research Field Day

Turf is a horticulture crop unto itself. And as such, UK hosts annual field days about turf and only turf. I try to go every other year or so. Here's a few tidbits of information gleaned from a hot day yesterday.
  1. There are a TON of tall fescue varieties out there and we do highly recommend tall fescue for home lawns. However, there are so many good 'turf-type' tall fescues out there that using KY 31 (the old, old forage variety) hardly makes sense anymore. Get yourself a good turf-type tall fescue variety and watch a very attractive grass grow!
  2. The most destructive grub (larvae of beetles) of turf is the grub of the masked chafer. I bet you thought I was going to say Japanese beetle, didn't you? The masked chafer is a brown, half-inch long beetle that skims over the turf surface at dusk.
  3. Dr Dan Potter, UK Entomologist, noted that Emerald Ash Borer is not spreading as fast in KY as it has in other states, like Michigan. He's not sure why, but one speculation is that we are at the southern range of this pest. Only time will tell.
  4. UK is working on some green tactics in turf. In particular, AJ Powell, our illustrious, recently retired turf specialist, spoke with us about white dutch clover in home lawns. We saw a study conducted about even a relatively high rate of 2,4-D amine on a fescue/clover lawn will get rid of many broadleaf weeds without reducing the stand of white clover. White clover can contribute up to 2# of nitrogen per 1000 sq ft -- no small amount!
So, there you have it. Some gleanings from the UK Turf Field Day held at Spindletop Farm.

Friday, July 02, 2010


Yesterday, I got two calls before 9:30 am concerning the over-abundance of grasshoppers. One was concerned about the sheer numbers of them, the other was concerned about their feeding on her vegetables and flowers.

I've noticed quite a few myself when walking outside in the grass, through the blackberries, or around the barns. I asked the entomologist at UK if there had been other calls like mine in the state and he said no.

If you believe grasshoppers are becoming a pest, especially in your garden, there are synthetic chemical sprays that will help control them in your vegetable garden and flower beds. However, for just being a nuisance, sprays will only win you a battle or 2 -- you won't win the war.

Here's another link on grasshoppers from UK.