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Agriculture

  • Harsh winter didn’t stop pests

    Dinners on the patio, gardening, swimming in the pool and taking a quiet walk are all wonderful ways to enjoy summertime in Shelbyville; they are also excellent ways to get mosquito bites.

    While you may think the mosquitoes are worse than ever, University of Kentucky extension entomologist Lee Townsend explained that at the beginning of each mosquito season people often tend to think that way.

    “They shock us every summer,” he said, explaining that the number of mosquitoes has not increased from previous years.

  • WICHE: Toads a good sign of a healthy environment

    Lately it seems that everywhere I step in the yard, vegetable garden and perennial beds there is a toad under foot.  They manage to jump out of harm’s way from a rapidly approaching foot or spade just in the nick of time. 

  • WICHE: Organic fertilizer recipe

    If you are a regular reader of my column you likely know that I much prefer an organic approach to farm and gardening and that I believe that building healthy soil produces healthy food.  As I continue to learn more about pest control and fertility the more I have come to understand why healthy plants and animals have an edge over their synthetically doped counterparts.

  • Ag report: June 27, 2014

    State offering

    spay/neuter grants

     

    The Kentucky Department of Agriculture is offering grants totaling $150,000 to help Kentuckians spay and neuter their pets.

    Grants are limited to a maximum of $5,000 and the application must be submitted by July 15. The program is funded by sales of Kentucky’s spay/neuter license plate. The Kentucky Animal Control Advisory Board also accepts donations to the program.

  • A Kentucky Proud yard

    The temperatures may be rising into the nineties this week but Joan Brown, known to many locals as the Road Kill Chef, isn’t slowing down in her garden.

    “Sometimes I have to tell myself, Joan slow down you can’t work like you used to,” she said with a smile.

    But those years of hard work are being recognized.

  • WICHE: Avoiding, fighting powdery mildew

    Powdery mildew is probably the most common garden fungus around.  It is not too terribly picky about where it spreads, it likes humid weather, thrives in the heat of the summer and is hard to control once it has started. 

    The trick here is to prevent it from happening by proper plant selection, spacing, pruning and treatment before it spreads.

    Several different fungi cause powdery mildew. I won’t bore you with their names because they all act the same way. 

  • Universities begin hemp research

    With hemp seeds just getting into the ground, farmers around the state, including in Shelby, still have a lot of questions about the possibility of growing industrial hemp.

    Sen. Paul Hornback (R-Shelbyville), chair of the Agriculture Committee, said he’s had some feedback from farmers who say they aren’t quite sure what would be involved.

    “We will have some meetings about it later on,” he said.

    Shelby County Farmer Ray Tucker said he had done some research online about growing industrial hemp and he has some concerns.

  • WICHE: Tough winter knocks some hardy plants down, not out

    It seems that we have been spoiled: a decade of mostly mild winters has led us to believe that all those border line hardy plants would never get knocked back by a cold winter. 

    Well, I have seen quite a few crape myrtles, figs and French hydrangeas that are struggling to come back on old wood.  Fear not, however, because these plants are root hardy and will sprout new growth from the roots. 

  • SHELBYVILLE CITY COUNCIL: Distilleries will need a minimum of 25 acres

    The Shelbyville City Council approved on first reading Thursday a text amendment to the zoning ordinance to allow distilleries on property zoned Agriculture but not without a lengthy discussion.

    The second reading of the ordinance will be at the council’s next meeting on June 26. The June 19 meeting has been cancelled due to scheduling conflicts.

    The proposed changes were originally set to allow distilleries in areas zoned Limited Interchange (X-1), Commercial (C-4), and Agricultural (A) as long as the property had a minimum of five acres.

  • 152nd Shelby County Fair: The bigger the animal, the more preparation

    While the youth rabbit show kicked of the Shelby County Fair on Monday, the bulk of the 4-H, youth and open animal shows begin today.

    Many of the animal shows will require a good deal of preparation, but Walt Reichert, the horticulture technician at the Shelby County Cooperative Extension Office and avid chicken and rabbit shower, says there isn’t as much preparation required in the small stock shows as there might be with the larger animals.