Agriculture Notes


January 14, 2007

Conference focuses on fighting grass, alfalfa problems

New disease, insect and weed problems in hay and pasture production, and management practices to deal with them, will be featured topics at the Southern and Central Maryland Hay and Pasture Conference Jan. 24 at the Izaak Walton Center near Waldorf.

Featured speakers will be Erik L. Stromberg, Extension plant pathologist at Virginia Tech, and Galen P. Dively, Extension entomologist at the University of Maryland.

They will address timothy grass and orchard grass issues and other disease and insect problems affecting alfalfa, clover and other grasses.

Certified crop adviser, certified grassland professional and pesticide and nutrient management certification credits will be offered.

Registration by tomorrow is $5 less. Information: 410-386-2760.

Grain profit is focus of workshop

Maryland Cooperative Extension will hold a "Winning the Game" pre-harvest seminar series that simulates real-life marketing decisions.

The workshops help farmers learn how to make grain marketing decisions without losing actual money.

"Launch Your Pre-Harvest Marketing Plan" allows farmers to view a real marketing plan and explore target dates and prices to help producers more consistently earn a good average price for their crop. Workshops are held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and cost $10. Registration is required at least five days before the program.

Future workshops will be held Jan. 25 in Mount Airy, information, 301-590-2809; and Jan. 31 at Friendly Farms in Upperco, information, 410-666-1022.

Safety program targets youths

Carroll County Extension's 4-H Youth Development Program, Maryland Cooperative Extension, will hold a seven-week tractor safety and certification program for ages 8 through 16 starting at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 29 at the Extension Office on Smith Avenue in Westminster.

All sessions will begin at 7:30 p.m. but will rotate to various local businesses. Participants will learn tractor safety, small engine safety and maintenance, parts identification and tractor troubleshooting.

Advance registration is not required, but for a complete schedule, call the Extension Office at 410-386-2760.

Federal law requires children to complete a 10-hour course on tractor operation if they use farm machinery. This includes completion of seven units in a safety manual and passing a written exam.

Teens also must safely complete a tractor operation course verifying their ability to operate a two-wheeled trailed implement on a course similar to a tractor operator's safety course.

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