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Agriculture

  • WICHE:Striped cucumber beetle spreads virus

    I continue to stand by my belief that I am my best defense in the garden.

    In the morning I go out and inspect my garden and smash insects and pick off diseased foliage, careful not to spread it to other plants by my own hand. I watch for the beginning of any abnormality and nip it in the bud.

    However, sometimes things slide by undetected, plus it is hard to determine bacterial brown spot from mosaic if you are not sure what you are looking for.

  • Weather is peachy for some produce

    Better late than never: That's been the motto for vegetable farmers this year.

    The heavy spring rains left fields too muddy to plant at normal times, but crops are still pouring in.

    "The rain really postponed our early planting, but the result has been maturity dates coming later," said Mary Courtney who runs Courtney Farms in Bagdad with her husband, Shane. "For instance, we just started harvesting tomatoes this year, while last year we were harvesting them at the end of June."

  • WICHE: How to renovate a strawberry patch

    The strawberry was first cultivated in the 14th Century after a French spy collected a berry from Chile and presented it to France’s King Charles V, who than planted in the Louvre’s Royal Garden.

    By the 17th century this Chilean strawberry was crossed with some found in the Virginia colonies, which gave way to the large-fruiting varieties we enjoy today.

    But don’t be fooled large does not always mean flavorful!

  • Saddlebred group has a bumpy ride

    The American Saddlebred Horse Association on Tuesday closed its office in Lexington for unspecified period of time to organize documents its officials have been ordered by the courts to turn over to some of its members, just the latest in a 2-year battle to determine how officials are spending of the organization’s $2 million annual budget.

    One of those concerned members is Undulata owner Edward “Hoppy” Bennett, who said that an ASHA audit had disclosed serious financial deficiencies within the organization.

  • Fayette conservationist addresses farm group

    Farmer and land preservationist Frank Penn told a local farmland preservation group it needs to make allies with local citizens, business and farm groups to maintain support for farmland preservation.

    Penn spoke at a fundraiser for Shelby Area Rural Conservation (SARC), a new organization hoping to establish preservation easements on farmland in Shelby and surrounding areas.

    The group recently gained its non-profit status and is working on a donated conservation easement in Oldham County, SARC President Jim Ellis said.

  • Fayette conservationist addresses farm group

    Farmer and land preservationist Frank Penn told a local farmland preservation group it needs to make allies with local citizens, business and farm groups to maintain support for farmland preservation.

    Penn spoke at a fundraiser for Shelby Area Rural Conservation (SARC), a new organization hoping to establish preservation easements on farmland in Shelby and surrounding areas.

    The group recently gained its non-profit status and is working on a donated conservation easement in Oldham County, SARC President Jim Ellis said.

  • Kentucky Ag Report: July 22, 2011

    Celebrate Ky. farmers' market week

    Kentucky farmers' market vendors will take a well-deserved bow when Kentucky celebrates Farmers' Market Week July 24-30.

    "Kentucky's more than 150 farmers' markets offer a wonderful bounty of delicious, nutritious Kentucky Proud foods," Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer said. "They also offer something you can't get anywhere else - the chance to meet the people who produced the food you're buying.

  • Heat wave can be hard on horses

    When cutting grass, working in the yard or just milling around outside when a heat wave hits, most people can just step inside to cool off in the air conditioning. But what about Shelby's equine friends? There are not a lot of barns with AC pumping in.

    In preparation for the heat wave settling on Shelby County this week, horse trainers and owners can take certain precautions for extra care of their horses during the dog days of summer.

    Trainer and horse owner at RHC Riding Academy, Erin Reid said all of her horses have boxed stalls with their own fan.

  • Ag Report: July 15, 2011

    SCHS’s White attends

    ag leadership institute

    Shelby County High School student Rachel White recently returned home from Kentucky Farm Bureau’s Institute for Future Agricultural Leaders (IFAL).

  • WICHE: When is a geranium not a geranium?

    If someone asked me what my favorite perennial was, I could only say that it changes with each passing year. This year the answer is the Hardy Geranium, known around these parts as the Cranesbill.

    My fascination with Hardy Geraniums has grown steadily as I have discovered the countless varieties that exist. In European gardens they are as commonplace as phlox is in American perennial gardens.