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Agriculture

  • 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.

  • Shelby County woman recognized as Master Farm Homemaker

    For the first time in more than 20 years, a Shelby County woman has been inducted in the Kentucky Master Farm Homemakers Guild.

    “It’s a big deal. It’s very exciting,” said Shelia Fawbush from the Shelby County Cooperative Extension office and a member of the Kentucky Extension Homemakers Association.

    Hawkins, a farm homemaker, farmer’s market vendor and vice president and loan manager at Citizens Union Bank, was recognized and honored as the newest member to the guild at the state MFHG meeting last month in Bowling Green.

  • WICHE: Carpenter bee breaking down the door

    Every year about this time I write about carpenter bees. 

    We live in a wood house and they love us. And this year they have really pushed the limit of reasonable bee behavior.

    I absolutely do not approve of killing bees, but I will have to make an exception this year.  Most bees are welcome around the farm especially since the nation’s bee population is in a bit of a crisis with the suspected cause being the use of pesticides, notably neonicotinoids. 

  • WICHE: Some plants like it wet

    There are some plants that demand good drainage:  taxus, coreopsis, gaillardia and penstemon, to name a few.  I have lost them all because they were poorly sited in the garden, but now that I know where water is slow to drain I know where to plant those trees, shrubs and perennials that like wet environments. 

    There is an upside to poor drainage for some plants, just be sure that water is available when Mother Nature doesn’t deliver.

  • Ag report: May 30, 2014

    Comer cheers launch

    of UK hemp pilot program

     

    LEXINGTON, Ky. —The University of Kentucky launched its industrial hemp pilot program Tuesday when hemp seeds were planted at Spindletop Farm, marking another milestone in the drive to restore industrial hemp production to the commonwealth.

  • WICHE: Sweet potatoes yield a bumper crop

    We are still eating from a fantastic harvest of sweet potatoes last fall.  I planted out about 25 organic slips purchased from Country Corner Greenhouse in Shepherdsville in late May, and by early November we had 4 nursery crates full of one of nature’s perfect foods! 

    Seven months and counting in storage with no spoilage is impressive, but now we are down to about six sweet potatoes – just in time for a transition to other summer vegetable. 

  • Ag report: May 23, 2014

    Author, beekeeping expert

    to become state apiarist

     

    A nationally known beekeeping authority and author will join the Kentucky Department of Agriculture as Kentucky’s new state apiarist, Agriculture Commissioner James Comer announced today.

    Tammy Horn of Lexington will assume the post June 1.