Catawba County Center

Catawba County Center  Sept 2016  
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2nd Specialty Crops Series

We have some awesome workshops lined up for the 2nd specialty crop series. Remember to save these dates so that you can be first in line to learn about these crop systems. 

Secrets of High Tunnel Systems: 
Growing Ginger and Turmeric
Tuesday September 27th, 2016
Newton Library
9:00am-2:00pm (Lunch is included)
Cost: $15
Deadline to register: September 16th, 2016

Are you curious about how to grow unique crops such as ginger and turmeric? Named as one of the world's healthiest foods, ginger and turmeric can be cultivated here in Catawba County with knowledge and practice. Join us as Christina Newhouse talks about growing ginger and turmeric in a high tunnel system followed by lunch. We will be visiting some high tunnel producers in Catawba county to see what other unique crops are being grown. Please fill out the ginger & tumeric registration form  and mail to the Cooperative Extension.

Get Growing with Microgreens
Tuesday October 18th, 2016
Agricultural Resource Center

Cost: $15
Deadline to register: October 4th, 2016

Microgreens, although tiny, pack a nutritious punch. Whether you plan to grow these for your own personal consumption or for marketing, growing this superfood is simple and easy with practice. Christina Newhouse joins us again to talk about how to grow microgreens both small and large scale. Participants will be able to start their own microgreens to take home with them. Please fill out the micrgreens workshop registration form and mail to the Cooperative Extension.

Hydroponic 101
Date & Time TBD
Curious about hydroponics? Want to know what the hype around Hydroponic is all about. Join us as we learn about the basics to hydroponics. More information soon to follow. 

For more information on any of these specialty crops series or to register, please contact Der Xiong at or 828-465-8240.

Nursery Weed Management Field Day
Hawksridge Farms 
4243 S. NC 127 
Hickory, NC

September 7
8 AM - 1 PM

This event features on-site demonstrations and will focus on recent research from Dr. Joe Neal's lab exploring the economics and efficacy of weed control strategies in container nurseries. Topics include herbicide efficacy and sensitivity, using mulches for weed control, and new products. Instructors for this event will include Dr. Joe Neal,Weed Science Extension Specialist; Amanda Taylor and Stacey Jones, Area Specialized Agents for Nursery and Greenhouse Crops; and Amy Barker, Research and Extension Technician, Department of Horticultural Science, NC State University.
3 NC pesticide credits (categories L, N, D, and X) are available. Lunch is provided. Cost is $10 per person.
To register, click here . For more information, please contact Amanda Taylor at 828-475-2915. This event is sponsored by Hawksridge Farms.


Cover Crops: Grow Your Own Fertilizer

Thursday, September 8, 2016

6:00 - 7:00 PM

Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St NE, Hickory, NC 28601

Tuesday, September 20, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Newton Public Library
115 West C Street, Newton, NC 28658

Tuesday, September 27, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Maiden Branch Library
11 South A Ave., Maiden NC 28650

Use the space you have to fertilize your garden in the off-season by learning about appropriate cover crops for our area.  
Forage Demonstration Field Day (Evening)
Join us at our Summer Annual Forage Site
Tuesday, September 13
Speakers: Mr. Johnny Rogers, (NCSU Forage Grazing Leader)
 Russel Hedrick, Allan Keller, Laura Elmore, Glenn Detweiler
Topic: Summer Annual Forages in Your All-Year-Around Grazing Program

Supper 5:45 pm       Educational Program 6:45 pm
Location: Allan & Rachel Keller Farm,
3999 County Home Rd, Conover, NC
If rain, the meeting will relocate to the Newton County Extension Office.
 If not a CVCA member, call to assist our meal count.
Please call (828) 465-8240 if you have questions.
Glenn Detweiler, Livestock Extension Agent
"I Have Diabetes, What Can I Eat?" 

Presented by Ann Simmons, Extension Agent Family & Consumer Sciences and Sarah Gwyn, Dietetics Intern, Lenior Rhyne University. 

West Hickory Seniors Morning Out . 
Wednesday, September 14 at 10:00 a.m

Farm Food Workshop - Cooking With a Whole Chicken
Wed, Sept 21, 2016  6 to 8 PM
Hickory Soup Kitchen

Master the basics of trussing whole chickens, breaking down the chickens into parts, and making chicken stock.  These chickens are already slaughtered, cleaned, and dressed.  The workshop will focus on how to use a whole chicken rather than simply buying chicken breasts, legs, or thighs.  This is a hands-on class so participants will need to bring their own knives. 

This workshop will be led by two of your area farmers that sell whole chickens - RainArt Farms and Riverbend Heritage Farm.

All participants will take home a locally raised, whole chicken.

Registration for this class is required.  The cost is $20 (fee includes your whole chicken). There is a maximum of 30 people for this class so register today!  Call 828-465-8240.
Nursery Crop Field Day
Sept 23, 2016  8:00 AM to 3 PM
Hard and Flossie Clark Park
Collettsville, NC

The event features hands-on educational sessions, equipment demonstrations, and a trade show. Four NC pesticide credits (categories, L, N, D, and X) and 3.5 landscape contractor credits will be provided.

For more information, contact Amanda Taylor at 828-475-2915 or This event is hosted by North Carolina Extension and the Caldwell County Nurserymen's Association.
"Eat Smart, Stay Well." 

Presented by Ann Simmons, Extension Agent Family & Consumer Sciences and Sarah Gwyn, Dietetics Intern, Lenior Rhyne University.  

Maiden Seniors Morning Out
Monday, September 26, 2016 at 9:30 a.m
Pesticide Class "V" Training
All Private Applicators
2 hour "V" credit training:
10:00 am to noon on
Tuesday, September 27th.

Location: Catawba County Library, 115 West C Street
(downstairs) beside the Newton Post Office in Newton, N.C. 
Go on line to register at 
(Bring your license if available)


4-H Club Spotlight:

Homeschool Express
Club Leader: Holly Meier

Homeschool express is a club offered as a part of 4-H for children ages 5-9 that are home-schooled. It focuses on many different educational topics and utilizes many different 4-H curriculums throughout the year.

Space remains in this club for new families to join! It meets monthly on a Thursday morning at the Extension office in Newton.

September Meeting: Thursday September 1st at 10am. 

October Meeting: Thursday October 6th at 10am.

For more information or to sign up you can contact the extension office at 828-465-8240 or contact club leader Holly Meier at
ServSafe Food Safety Manager's Certification Course. 

October 4 and 11 at the Extension Center.  
Visit for details.
 Family & Consumer Sciences Advisory Committee Mtg. 
Monday, October 10, 2016 at 1:00 p.m.
Room A at the Extension Center.
The FCS Food Safety Advisory/Policy Council Mtg. 
Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at 10 a.m.
Catawba County Environmental Health

 The committee is currently working on guidelines for safe food handling during food demonstrations at farmers markets. 


Seed Saving: Techniques to Maximize Seed Quality and Germination

Thursday, October 13, 2016

6:00 - 7:00 PM

Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St NE, Hickory, NC 28601

Tuesday, October 18, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Newton Public Library
115 West C Street, Newton, NC 28658

Tuesday, October 25, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Maiden Branch Library
11 South A Ave., Maiden NC 28650

Get a jump on next year's garden by learning techniques for saving seeds and better germination practices.  
The Catawba County ECA Camisole Group would like to have some new volunteers who can sew and assist in making camisoles for breast cancer patients who are in Catawba County Hospitals.  

The group meets the first Monday of the month at 9:30 a.m. at Catawba County Cooperative Extension, 1175 S. Brady Avenue, Newton, N.C. If you are interested in volunteering, please call the Catawba County Cooperative Extension office  at 828-465-8240, leave your contact information, and someone from the group will contact you.


Volunteer Training Opportunities You Want to Know About:

Acres of Adventure Training:

Join us for a free 2 hour training about the 4-H after school curriculum Acres of Adventure. This curriculum focuses on teaching children about agriculture with a science focus. This would be a wonderful program to consider using with a club or to create a club using this program.

This training will be offered on Wednesday September 14th from 10am - 12pm at the Extension office. It is FREE to attend. Please contact Michelle Smith at 828-465-8244 or to register to attend *This training can be held another day and time as well if there is interest but the date and time does not work. Let me know!

Reading Makes Cents Training:

Join us for a free 2 hour training on the 4-H After School program Reading Makes Cents. This program is based on financial literacy for young children and is ideal for those in 3rd - 5th grade. Each lesson has a reading component where a section of a children's book is read aloud and discussed to introduce the financial concept. This program does a good job of integrating both reading and math! It would be great to use for a club or to organize a club around!

This training will be held on Thursday September 15th from 10am - 12pm at the Extension office. It is FREE to attend. To register please contact Michelle Smith at 828-465-8244 or *This training can be held on another day and time if interest is there and the current schedule does not work. Please let me know if you would like to attend!

2016 South Central District Fall Day:

What: Fall Day is a mini conference for 4-H Volunteers to "learn by doing" and to come together to discuss ideas.

When: Saturday November 5th from 9am - 2pm 

Where: Catawba County office in Newton.

Please join us for a day of learning to lead and fellowship. Breakfast and lunch are provided. 4-H Club leaders can attend for FREE. For other volunteers or parents the cost is $10 to attend and the deadline to register is October 28th at 5pm. Please contact the office with any questions or for registration paperwork!

828-465-8240 or email



This year for 4-H Summer fun we were able to offer 17 different summer fun programs!

All together this came to a total of:

-175 hours of educational contact time.
- 67 of these hours were programs conducted by volunteers!

We had a total of 17 volunteers of which several were our teen leaders!

Overall, this was a very successful summer fun season and we could not have done it without your help. To our volunteers THANK YOU!

Upcoming Training for Catawba County 
Early Childhood Educators

Food Safety in the Child Care Setting 
Presented by Ann Simmons, FCS Agent

Thursday, October 13 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm. 
Children's Resource Center in Hickory

For more information or to register contact Ashley Benfield at 828-695-6565.

NCDA&CS offers organic certification cost-share assistance

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (NCDA & CS) is offering organic growers the opportunity to recoup up to $750 of their certification cost. Growers must have been certified between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016 and complete an application available at

Visit the NCDA website to see more information about this cost share opportunity.

USDA Low Interest Loans For Storage Facilities

The Farm Storage Facility Loan Program provides low-interest financing so producers can build or upgrade permanent facilities to store commodities. Eligible commodities include grains, oilseeds, peanuts, pulse crops, hay, honey, renewable biomass commodities, fruits and vegetables. Eligible facility types include grain bins, hay barns and facilities for cold storage.

31st Annual Sustainable Agriculture Conference
Nov 4-6, 2016
Sheraton Imperial Hotel and Convention Center 

Durham, NC

The Sustainable Agriculture Conference is an unparalleled opportunity for beginning farmers to learn how to be successful in their sustainable farming enterprises.  Special programming for beginning farmers includes: land access, farm business finances, tool maintenance, carpentry skills, general farming practices for new growers, and an in depth panel conversation with CFSA's Lomax Incubator Farmers in Training. Other conference workshops cover a range of topics essential for new farms to thrive, including organic weed control, four season farming, soil fertility, pasture-based livestock, pollinator preservation, food safety and processing, agritourism, and direct marketing.

For more information contact:

Leah Joyner - Education Coordinator
PO Box 448 Pittsboro, NC 27312
Back to School : Back to 4-H

It is that exciting time of year again where the kids are back to school and our schedules are slowing down from the summer time rush just to kick into gear with the school year rush!

Don't forget about 4-H during this time. 4-H offers educational and fun activities outside of school for free or low cost and we are always looking for new members!

Currently all of our clubs are accepting new member and we are also seeking new club ideas and new adult volunteers to be club leaders!

An idea for a new club would be a 4-H Spin club that begins and runs just a short time (6-10 months) with the idea that a new more long term club would spin off of it. Remember that clubs are interest based and can be on any topic that interests the children and volunteers! We will help you get started and can even lead you through your first few meetings!

If you or your family is interested in 4-H there is no better time than now because all of our clubs are getting started up again for the year! For a club list or information about how to start your own club contact the office at 828-465-8240 or email or!


Garden Berries: Grow and Pick Your Own

Thursday, November 10, 2016

6:00 - 7:00 PM

Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St NE, Hickory, NC 28601

Tuesday, November 15, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Newton Public Library
115 West C Street, Newton, NC 28658

Tuesday, November 22, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Maiden Branch Library
11 South A Ave., Maiden NC 28650

Expand your gardening horizons into berry growing in this last lecture of the 2016 curriculum. 


Farmers Markets
Open For Business

Visit the Farmer Market Websites for activities, vendors, products, and more information.
Come out for some good fun and great food.  Meet your local farmers and connect with the community that is building a local food network in Catawba County. 

Check out this map of all the great farmers markets in Catawba County (schedule included) - courtesy of our AWESOME Catawba County GIS team
Local Food List Serv

The Local Foods Action Plan Listserv is a statewide listserv to facilitate a local food economy moderated by the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS).  The listserv is open to the public and members are encouraged to post on any topic dealing with the cultivation of local food, farms and communities by emailing Posters are responsible for the content they submit.   To receive the digest version or for questions about the listserv, please e-mail  Please visit our website

NC State Gardening, Agriculture, and Pest Updates

You can sign up for the latest news on gardening, pest advisories, livestock, energy, and many others.  Check out the complete list of NC State News that you can subscribe to and get the latest research based info.  Be the first to know! 
Plant Management Network Newsletter

Check out the latest issue of this incredible agriculture resource.  Take a look at the massive list of information links for all things related to agriculture.
Got To Be NC Newsletter

Visit the NC Growing Together website to see the latest newsletter, recent resources, and schedule of upcoming workshops, webinars, and meetings.

August's newsletter is available with info related to:


*   Women Working in Meat Business Conference
*   Cost Share Programs
*   Sweet Potato Truck
*   Upcoming Events


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.

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination statement

2.1.  North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equaopportunity regardless of racecolor, religion, creed, national origin, sexage, disability, or veteran'status. In additionthe two Universities welcome all person without regard to sexual orientation.  North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating.
2.2.  Persons with disabilities and persons with limited English proficiency may request accommodations   to participate by contacting Catawba County Extension Director, George Place, at (828)465-8240 or or in person at the County Extension Office at least 14 days prior to the event.


Dr. George Place
Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director

Agricultural Resources Center, Newton, NC 28658


Catawba County Center | Agricultural Resources Center | 1175 S Brady Ave | Newton | NC | 28658