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Agriculture

  • WICHE: Offer long-lasting Valentine blooms

    Cut flowers are undoubtedly the most popular manifestation of showing your love for someone on Valentine’s Day, but potted flowering plants do the trick, too.

    Perhaps the potted bloom has the potential to remind your lover that the sentiment lasts all year…but what does it mean if you can’t get to bloom again?

    Is your loved doomed? Of course not, but here are some tips just in case.

  • WICHE: Considerations for new and existing orchards

    When it comes to the home orchard, some planning is a good must. Some fruit is easier then others, and it is often hard to discern in the catalogs which apple variety, blueberry or persimmon will do well in Kentuckiana.

    My No. 1 rule is the more information a catalog provides the better. Gathering as much information as possible is the key to success when it comes to fruit trees.

  • WICHE: Anniversary of the ice storm is time to reassess

    It has been one year since the devastating ice storm of 2009. I am tempted to honor the power of Mother Nature by having an evening without electricity (save the refrigerator and using electricity for the pump that delivers water from the cistern!).

    It was a humbling experience for many of us which most of us are over; but the impact on many of our trees in the landscape remains apparent. 

  • Not all those in young farmers are young

    The first thing to know about the Shelby County Young Farmer's Association is that age is not a prerequisite. Gathered in a Shelby County High School classroom to share a Christmas potluck supper, the faces of the club show years of hard work outside.

    There are a handful of young faces, too, many of them second-generation members. It's the older farmers who do much of the talking.

  • WICHE: Mail-order plants not always what they claim

    This time of the year subtle warnings come from professionals reminding the consumer to be skeptical of mail order catalogues or advertisements that claim “new horticultural breakthroughs,” otherwise outrages claims or mass quantities of things for bargain basement prices.

    There are legitimate “horticultural breakthroughs” but usually different terminology is used, and you’ll find them at your local stores.

  • WICHE: Starlings and the bird count

    The surprising thing about starlings is that they are everywhere yet not from here.

    It’s another story of one good intention going bad! Apparently back in 1890, in honor of a Shakespeare festival in New York City’s Central Park, 60 European starlings were released. The following year another 40 were released, and today the bird is one of the most numerous species in North America. 

  • Contractor turning old farm into new animal sanctuary

    Dennis Schuman pointed methodically around the gutted barn. This would be a stall for the lambs, he said, and this would be for the goats, and two would be for the chickens.

    The adjacent, dilapidated milk parlor would be a kennel for dogs. A smaller kennel would house cats. Another barn, just 30 feet away, will be remodeled for horses.

    "What we're going to do is make it into a sanctuary and rescue for pets," Schuman said.

  • WICHE: Learn to describe plant problems accurately

    We all seek advice from experts and describing what ails us or our plants it key in determining what’s really going on; and not everyone understands the nomenclature of symptoms caused by insect and disease problems.

  • WICHE: Warm fire or smoky chimney?

    I thought we would be set on the firewood front this winter because of all the downed trees and limbs from last year’s storms. We have a huge pile of wood out by the barn that we are literally chipping away at with the splitter.

    I love splitting wood; it is great exercise and manages to shed just about any frustration that may be lingering from the day.

  • Shelby farmer seeks producers for his auction

    The Shelby County Cooperative Extension Office will host an informational meeting for a new regional produce auction Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m.

    Shelby County farmer David Neville started Capstone Produce Auction this fall in response to increased demand for local produce. The business combines his agriculture and auctioneering interests.

    "The biggest part of my job is to do the marketing," Neville said. "I'll be the one talking to the restaurants in Louisville or the Humana cafeteria or Oldham County Schools."