UF Ext. Service for Okaloosa County

Reduce 100 Bags of Fall Leaves to Ten (with audio)

December 04, 2016 by Larry Williams Billions of leaves blanket the fall landscape and are bagged by hundreds of homeowners to be placed curbside for local trash pick-up. Many of these leaves could be easily turned into valuable mulch or compost. Why do all those fall leaves end up in bags to be discarded? It’s probably because the homeowner is ...

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Fertilizer Basics for Pastures and Hay Fields (with audio)

November 28, 2016 by Jennifer Bearden Soil fertility and plant nutrient management is an important part of agroecosystems. Agroecological approaches to soil fertility and nutrient management begin with soil testing. A soil test will tell you soil pH. Soil pH affects the availability of nutrients to the plant. Soil pH should be adjusted to the optimal level for each crop before ...

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Poisonous Plants (with audio)

November 20, 2016 by Jennifer Bearden There are over sixty plant species with the potential to poison livestock.  However, only a few species cause most of the problems.  Toxic plants can be both native and exotic and most are broadleaved plants.  Florida’s climate is ideal for dozens of species of poisonous plants. Livestock generally only eat poisonous plants under extreme ...

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Blackberry and Dewberry Control in Pastures (with audio)

November 14, 2016 by Jennifer Bearden Blackberry and dewberry control in pastures is difficult to achieve.  The first step is identification of the plant.  Blackberries grow upright while dewberries have a low vine-like growth habit.  Dewberries also have slender thorns and red hairs on the stem while blackberries have hard, tough thorns and no hairs.  Blackberries grow up to 3-6 ...

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Cotton Weaves Through Our Lives (with audio)

November 13, 2016 by Jennifer Bearden You probably can’t go a day without touching cotton or a cotton byproduct. In 2007, according to USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service, 7,099 bales of cotton were produced in our county. Each bale weighs about 480 pounds. That’s enough cotton to make more than 1.5 million pairs of jeans or more than two billion ...

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Time to get rid of Chinese Tallow Trees (with audio)

by Jennifer Bearden Chinese Tallow, also known as the Popcorn Tree, was introduced in the US over 200 years ago.  Ben Franklin sent seeds over in 1772.  Although Franklin was blamed for the invasion of popcorn trees in the US Gulf Coast, scientists performed genetic testing and have concluded that the blame actually lies with federal biologists who imported some ...

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Scary Things are Happening in Our Landscapes this Halloween (with audio)

October 30, 2016 The reality of what happens deep down in the darkness of a fire ant mound hidden to human eyes or in the tunnels of a mole cricket where only creepy crawly things dare to enter may be too scary to believe. University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences along with USDA introduced a tiny South ...

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Equine Nutrition Seminar at the Baker Area Recreation Association on Thursday, November 3rd

October 30, 2016 Baker, FL – The Baker Feed and Country Store and Mid-South Feeds will be hosting a Equine Nutrition Seminar this Thursday, November 3rd, at 6:30 pm at the Baker Area Recreation Association. The “Back to Basics” seminar will feature Jennifer Bearden, AG Agent for Okaloosa County Extension Agent for University of Florida and Steve Ward of Mid-South ...

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Gulf Coast Small Farms Field Day – November 17 in Jay, FL

October 30, 2016   Join us on Thursday, November 17th at the West Florida Research and Education Center (4253 Experiment Drive, Jay) for the Fall Gulf Coast Small Farms Field Day. Registration starts at 7:45, with informational sessions and tours starting at 8:00 am. The following topics will be covered include: Using Protected Agriculture and Hydroponics to Meet Demand for High Value Specialty ...

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Learn About Poultry Production at Okaloosa/UF-IFAS Extension Oct. 27

Saturday, October 15, 2016 Citizens interested in becoming poultry producers can attend an October 27 Poultry Production 101 class at the Okaloosa-University of Florida Extension. The class will be held from 6 until 8 p.m., and is $10 per person. Samples and recipes are included. Call 850-689-5850 for information or to register. Participants will learn proper egg handling, poultry processing ...

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