Catawba County Center
February, 2016
Catawba County Center
Spring Veggies - Get Growing Before the Heat
February 11, 2016
6:00 - 7:00 PM
Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St NE, Hickory, NC 28601

Join Dr. George Place, Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director in a presentation about some of your earliest spring crops including potatoes, peas, kale, collards, beets, carrots and others. Learn about some of the recommended varieties, pest management strategies, and how to get a jump on the growing season.  This presentation will be the second presentation for the Advanced Gardener Series.  Participants that attend 9 out of the 11 presentations and conduct 20 hours of community garden service in 2016 will receive certification as Advanced Gardeners with additional gardening incentives (coupons and gift certificates) from some of our local garden supply businesses and an official library gardening program T-shirt!  Come out and be a part of this great gardening group! 

Fruit Plant Sale &
Theme Basket Raffle
4-H Fundraisers for February

Cooperative Extension in now taking orders for their annual plant sale. Blueberry and strawberry plants will be available with plant delivery scheduled for mid-March. 

Catawba County 4-H Clubs have created theme baskets. Purchase a raffle ticket and enter to win the basket of your choice. Baskets will be displayed at the Extension Office as they arrive and winners will be selected at the 4-H Achievement Night, the end of February. Some of the baskets include Family Fun Night, Chocolate Basket, Army Survival Pack, Green and Krispy Kreme, and more!  It is not necessary to be present to win. Proceeds from the Basket Raffle basket benefit the 4-H scholarship fund.
Outdoor Cooking with 4-H
Saturday, February 13
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon 
Agricultural Resources Center
1175 South Brady Ave., Newton, NC 28658

Join us for a tasty learning program that will be hosted by Snack Makers 4-H club as part of their regular monthly meeting.  

* Different 4-H grilling contests
* Grilling basics
* Make and sample a simple grilled item
* Understanding cuts of meat
* Win a table top grill to get started on your 2016 grilling presentation

The program is for youth ages 8 and older and all children must be accompanied by a parent. It is not necessary to be in 4-H to attend, but there is a $3 charge for families who are NOT currently enrolled in a 4-H club. The program will taught by Jarrett Mull, who has participated in 4-H Grilling Contests for 5 years, along with Cooperative Extension staff. Contact Donna Mull, 4-H Agent, at donna_mull@ncsu.edu to register to attend. 
Got To Be NC Newsletter

The February newsletter for the 2016 Got to Be NC Update marketing is now available.

*  Registration open for NC producer meetings with Harris Teeter
*  Grant available to help farms promote agritourism
Food Business Conference registration opens
Marketing opportunities
Member news: national honors, new products, and more

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Valentine's Day
Parents Night Out
Saturday, February 13
5:30-9:30 PM 
Catawba County Main Library
Sponsored by Catawba County Youth Council

Enjoy an evening out for Valentine's Day and let the children (ages 3-11) enjoy after hours activities at the Library with teens from the Catawba County Youth Council. There will be movies, crafts, dinner, and of course story time!  The cost is $15 per child and only $10 for the second child in the same family. For details or pre-registration to reserve your space, contact the library at 828-465-8292. 

Proceeds from the event will help the Youth Council build soccer goals for Southwest Elementary, a service project they selected to support this year. The Youth Council is a high school leadership/citizenship group offered through Cooperative Extension in partnership with Catawba County Government. 
Spring Veggies - Get Growing Before the Heat
February 16, 2016
6:30 - 7:30 PM
Newton Public Library

Join Dr. George Place, Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director in a presentation about some of your earliest spring crops including potatoes, peas, kale, collards, beets, carrots and others. Learn about some of the recommended varieties, pest management strategies, and how to get a jump on the growing season.  This presentation will be the second presentation for the Advanced Gardener Series.  Participants that attend 9 out of the 11 presentations and conduct 20 hours of community garden service in 2016 will receive certification as Advanced Gardeners with additional gardening incentives (coupons and gift certificates) from some of our local garden supply businesses and an official library gardening program T-shirt!  Come out and be a part of this great gardening group! 
Forage & Livestock Area Meetings

February 17 - NC Cattlemen's Winter Conference Series (Statesville Office) 

February 18 - NC Cattlemen's Winter Conference Series (Canton Office)

February 25-27 - NC Cattlemen's & Dairymen's Annual Conference (Hickory Metro Center)

Statesville office - 704-873-0507        Cleveland County Office - 704-482-4365
Canton Office - 828-456-3575            Catawba County Office - 828-465-8240
NC Cattlemen's Association - 919-552-9111
The North Carolina Forage and Grassland Council 2016 Winter Conference 

February 17, 2016
10:00 AM
Iredell County Cooperative Extension
44 Bristol Drive
Statesville, NC

"What We Know About Managing Fescue Toxicosis"
Dr. Shane Gadberry
Associate Professor 
University of Arkansas

"Legume Contribution in Fescue Systems: Plant and Animal Responses."
Dr. Miguel Castillo
Extension Forage Specialist 
North Carolina State University

"The Transition From KY 31 to Novel Endophyte Tall Fescue"
Joe Davis - J Davis Cattle
and 
Dr. Matt Burns 
Clemson University

Registration Online before February 8. 2016
Attendees includes 2016 Membership = $45
Students = $10

Registration at the door or after February 8, 2016
Attendees inlcudes 2016 Membership = $55
Students = $10 

To register online go to the following website
ASAP (Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) 
13th Annual Business of Farming Conference
Saturday, February 20
8:00 am-5:30 pm
UNC Asheville, Highsmith Student Union

Agricultural leaders and 200+ farmers from across our region will come together to learn about business planning, marketing, sales models, and community resources. ASAP's conference features over a dozen workshops (see sample topics below), opportunities to meet with local wholesale buyers in the popular Grower-Buyer Meetings, one-on-one legal consultations, and time to engage in valuable networking with other farmers.  We work hard to make this an affordable and valuable opportunity for all farms in our region, so please share this unique opportunity. Early bird registration ends January 15.
Sample Saturday workshop topics include:
  • Farm business planning and financials
  • Recordkeeping
  • CSA models 
  • Market managers roundtable
  • New market vendor orientation
  • Agritourism
  • Marketing and promoting your farm
  • GAP and food safety
  • Wholesale and direct marketing
  • And more! 
Detailed conference information can be found at http://asapconnections.org/events/business-of-farming-conference/ or you may contact us at robin@asapconnections.org or 828-236-1282 with questions. 


Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop
February 23rd, 2016
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Agricultural Resources Center
1175 South Brady Ave., Newton, NC 28658
Agricultural Resource Center, Rm B

Properly trained and pruned fruit trees are important for both commercial growers and homeowners. Join us for a fun filled day about growing fruit trees and receive hands on training on how to prune your fruit trees. Dr. Mike Parker, Extension Horticulture Specialist will be demonstrating proper pruning technique for apple and peach trees. Deadline to register is February 12th, 2016. You can download the registration form via the hyperlink. or visit our county website at catawba.ces.ncsu.edu 

The Fruit Tree Pruning workshop is the fifth session of the the six part Specialty Crop Series. For more information on the fruit tree pruning workshop or the Specialty Crop Series, please contact Der Xiong at der_xiong@ncsu.edu or 828-465-8248.  
Spring Veggies - Get Growing Before the Heat
February 23, 2016
6:30 - 7:30 PM
Maiden Public Library
11 South A Avenue
Maiden, NC 28650

Join Dr. George Place, Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director in a presentation about some of your earliest spring crops including potatoes, peas, kale, collards, beets, carrots and others. Learn about some of the recommended varieties, pest management strategies, and how to get a jump on the growing season.  This presentation will be the second presentation for the Advanced Gardener Series.  Participants that attend 9 out of the 11 presentations and conduct 20 hours of community garden service in 2016 will receive certification as Advanced Gardeners with additional gardening incentives (coupons and gift certificates) from some of our local garden supply businesses and an official library gardening program T-shirt!  Come out and be a part of this great gardening group! 
Insect and Weed Management in Row Crops
February 24th 2016
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
1175 S. Brady Ave
Newton, NC  28658
Agricultural Resource Center, Rm B

Farmers in North Carolina are facing serious challenges with herbicide resistant weeds moving into the Piedmont region west of Charlotte. New recommendations to manage and avoid herbicide resistant weed infestations can save growers tremendous costs associated with these problems. There are also new recommendations on insect management that all of our row crop producers should be aware of to avoid resistance and unnecessary pesticide expenses.

Join us at the Newton Cooperative Extension Office as NC State specialists Dr. Wesley Everman, NC State Chemical Weed Mangement specialist, and Dr. Dominic Reisig, NC State Row Crop Insect Management Specialist, present information on serious pest management challenges that face our regional producers of soybean, small grains, corn, and sorghum.  

Please call 828-465-8240 to RSVP for lunch following the two hour presentation. Participants will receive 2 CEU's for pesticide licenses in N, O, D, and X categories.
Save the Date for Tax Workshop for Diversified Farms
 
Date: Saturday, February 27th, 2016
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 3:30  p.m.
Location: Catawba County Extension office,
1175 S. Brady Ave, Newton, NC 28658
 
The workshop will be taught by North Carolina State University Extension Specialist Guido Van der Hoeven.
Guido van der Hoeven is an Extension Specialist/Senior Lecturer at NC State University since 1995 and has experience preparing tax returns for nearly 40 years. Van der Hoeven is an Enrolled Agent and his extension focus is farm management specifically in the areas of taxation, estate planning and intergenerational transfer of productive farms.
 
Topics that will be covered include:
  •  Sales Taxes
    •  Sales tax exemption for purchase of inputs plus a discussion of the new NC law changes
    •  Collection and remittance of sales taxes on sales of farm products
    •  Q&A relative to NC law changes
  •  Income Taxes
    •  Walk through the Schedule F (Profit or Loss from Farming) line by line. Guido will discuss what can or can't be included on each line. 
    •  Walk through IRS Form 4797 (Sale of Business Assets)  and discussion of why it's important to understand the context of a transaction; briefly address capital gain
  •  Question & Answer Session
    • Note:  Registered participants will be invited to submit questions in advance that Guido will try to address during the workshop.
 
                       Contact 704-922-2118 for registration
4-H Achievement Night
Saturday, February 27   -    5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Catawba County 4-H is having it's annual Achievement Night on Saturday, February 27. The event will be held at the Catawba County Extension Center. Achievement Night is a special event to recognize 4-H Members who have completed project books, won special awards, new clubs, club achievements, new members, and more!

Youth who are being recognized and/or youth who completed project books may attend as our guest (including parents) and will receive a complimentary meal at no charge. All 4-H families are welcome, but others are asked to pay $5 per person to contribute to the meal cost.

To kick off the evening, we will be giving time to check in and place purchased raffle tickets into our annual club basket raffle! This will take place from 5:00 pm until about 5:30 pm; then we will be starting dinner. This year we are fortunate enough to be able to offer a fantastic catered meal! That being said, we MUST have everyone RSVP ahead of time (see Link in blue below). Mitchem's Kitchen will be catering the dinner. 

Please stop by or contact the Extension Office to pay PRIOR to the evening. You can mail a check (payable to Catawba County) or we can also accept debit/credit card by phone. Contact KLittlefield@catawbacountync.gov, if you have special dietary needs.

Achievement Night RSVP Form
Achievement Night, 2015


Beginning Cut Flowers Workshop

Tuesday March 8th, 2016
ARC Building
Meeting Room B
9:00am-12:00pm
1175 S. Brady Ave
Newton, NC 28658

Interested in learning more about growing cut flowers? Want to know how you can incorporate cut flowers into your current farm business? Come join us in learning about varieties best suited for cut flowers and how to grow them. Other topics include harvest and post harvest handling, marketing, and a tour to a local cut flower farm. Deadline to register is March 1st, 2016. You can download the registration form via the hyperlink or visit our county website at catawba.ces.ncsu.edu 
 
The beginning cut flowers workshop is the last session of the the  Specialty Crop Series. For more information on the beginning cut flowers workshop, please contact Der Xiong at der_xiong@ncsu.edu or 828-465-8248.  
First on Scene Training

Wednesday March 16th, 2016
ARC Building--Meeting Room B
1175 S. Brady Ave
Newton, NC 28658

The North Carolina Agromedicine Institute has developed a First on Scene program to teach the importance of responding appropriately to
emergencies. Farmers, family members, and farm workers are encouraged to participate

Topics include:
  • Scene Safety
  • Response to traumatic injuries
  • Response to medical emergencies
Attendees will receive a free fire extinguisher and a free first aid kit. More than two people can attend per farm, but a maximum gift of two kits and two extinguishers per farm. Each farm is eligible for up to $250 cost share funds to defray safety and health related expenses.

Seats are limited to the first 30 individuals. Please RSVP Der Xiong via the registration form by mail, emailing at der_xiong@ncsu.edu, or calling 828-465-8248.

Advanced Gardener Program For 2016

We have heard from several residents of Catawba County that would like to participate in the Master Gardener program but don't have the schedule flexibility to attend day time classes.  We are responding to this with the Advanced Gardener Program in the evenings at three library locations. 

Participants that attend all 11 presentations and conduct 20 hours of community garden service in 2016 will receive certification as Advanced Gardeners with additional gardening incentives (coupons and gift certificates) from some of our local garden supply businesses and an official library gardening program T-shirt! More information will be provided at the first presentation in January.

The 2016 curriculum includes:
 
January -Soil Management - Feed the Soil For a Productive Garden
Februrary - Spring Veggies - Get Growing Before the Heat
March - Summer Veggies - Fresh Tomatoes, Cucumbers, and More
April - Garden Insects - Identify and Manage Pests and Beneficials
May - Weed Management - You Can Win the Weed War
June - Garden Diseases - Identify and Manage Diseases and Disorders
July - Fall Veggies - Harvest From Your Garden Before and After the Frost
Aug - Food Preservation for the Garden - Eat Your Harvest All Year
Sept - Cover Crops - Grow Your Own Fertilizer
Oct - Seed Saving - Techniques to Maximize Seed Quality and Germination
Nov - Garden Berries - Grow and Pick Your Own
 
The schedule for these presentations will be as follows:
Patrick Beaver Memorial Library - 6-7 PM on the 2nd Thursday of each month
Newton Public Library - 6:30-7:30 PM on the 3rd Tuesday of each month
Maiden Public Library - 6:30-7:30 PM on the 4th Tuesday of each month

Beginning Beekeeping Course 
Feb 1 to March 14, 2016
Monday evenings at 7 PM
Cost: $40
Agricultural Resource Center

The Catawba Valley Beekeeping Association will begin registration for the 2016 Beginning Beekeeping class. Mark your calendars for every Monday evening at 7 PM beginning Feb 1.  The course will run for 6 weeks with the option to test to become a certified beekeeper at the conclusion of the course. 

Online Registration form
Demo Garden Fund Raiser
Garden Kneelers For Sale
Only $25

We are selling garden kneelers for $25 to help raise funds for the expansion of our teaching/demo garden outside of our office. Use it as a sitting bench or flip it over to comfortably kneel in the garden. Contact Beth if you would like to get yours before we run out 828-465-8240.
Caldwell County Cooperative Extension Activities

Our neighboring Cooperative Extension Office in Lenoir has a lot of great activities, workshops, and general gardening recommendations listed for this month.  Be sure to take a look at their February Updates.
Enter now to WIN!!!!
Monthly Constant Contact Contest

Did you know that the Mayo Clinic recommends a daily water intake of 8 glasses (8 oz each)? Want to reach that goal? How about drinking it in this fashionable Cooperative Extension Tumbler. . .for free? This month, we will be giving away a Cooperative Extension Tumbler--dishwasher safe, BPA free-- for our monthly constant contact contest.

All you have to do to be entered to win is look through our monthly update
 and email us the correct answer. The question for the monthly constant contact contest is:

What are the dates and times for the last two Specialty Crop Series workshops?  Please email Der Xiong your answer. 

Congrats to Mary Morgan for winning January's Constant Contact Contest. 

You can be a winner today!!
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Highlights of Extension
More articles from the Catawba County Center

Excerpt from "How to Accomplish Several New Year's Resolution at Once"
 by Dr. George Place

"It is the season for resolutions and you've probably noticed that they are always the same - get fit, exercise more, spend more time with family, manage stress, eat better, learn a new skill, get more fresh air, and lose a few pounds.  If you have tried these things in the past and had difficulty with the follow-through I propose taking a different path."  

You can continue to read this article  How to Accomplish Several New Year's Resolution at Once via the hyperlink. 

One of Catawba County Cooperative Extension Center's goals is to provide readers with up-to-date research information about problems or situations that individuals may be facing through our weekly articles. You can find these in the Observer News Enterprise and Hickory Daily Record.
 
If you missed out on our articles in the local papers, you can still read these articles on our website at catawba.ces.ncsu.edu.
Spotlight on AMAZING
Web Resources!!!


The Catawba County GIS Real Estate Search is this month's spotlight web resource.  This amazing website will allow you to obtain information regarding property in Catawba County.

The Catawba County GIS resource will allow you to search on any property in the county. Take a look at the 'Map Layers' option on the right.  If you click on 'Aerial 2014' you will see the satellite imagery for the property of interest. Explore the 'Parcel Report' or the 'Deed History Report' in the upper right corner to see public information about the property including: tax and value history, building permits, school information, zoning, and more. My favorite option is the 'Measure By' tab on the far right of the tab options above the map.  Click on this and you can draw lines around property features to measure perimeter length and area.  I use this site often for estimating fence lengths, pond areas, distance to roads, garden areas, farming area, etc.  The Catawba County GIS team is one of the best in the state - we are extremely lucky to have this amazing web resource for Catawba County.
 
Catawba County 
Farmer Spotlight
"Why do farmers farm? Love. They must do it for love. They love to live where they work and to work where they live"--Wendell Berry

Catawba County is made of up of so many unique individuals including farmers. As Catawba County grows economically, we are reminded of our agricultural roots. The Catawba County Cooperative Extension is dedicated to connecting our local consumers with our local farmers. 

This month's feature farmer spotlight is Za Xiong and La Yang from Summer Fresh Flowers Farm. You might have seen them every Saturday at the farmers market but do you know their story? These happy and optimistic young farmers are turning their childhood experience into their dream and having fun at it too. You can read more about these growers here.

If there is a farmer that you think would be a great feature, please contact Der Xiong.

 
Small Farm Grant and Loan Assistance

We will post various grant and loan opportunities that arise in this space of our monthly updates.  Simply click on the opportunity of interest for more information.


Contact:
Dr. George Place
Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director
Agricultural Resources Center, Newton, NC 28658
828-465-8240