Clemson students studying ways to improve value of cover crops

In Southeast Farm Press

by Denise Attaway

A group of Clemson students is determining how to use shredded leaves to help increase the value of roller-crimped cover crops.

Cover crops are crops planted primarily to naturally manage soil erosion, soil fertility, soil and water quality, weeds, pests, diseases, biodiversity and wildlife. Roller-crimping involves attaching roller-crimpers to tractors, rolling over cover crops to flatten and damage them, leaving behind a thick mulch. Rye grass is the cover crop used in this study. Continue reading

National Poison Prevention Week – EPA Urges Public to Keep All Pesticides in Original Containers to Prevent Accidental Poisoning

National Poison Prevention Week is March 19-25.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is highlighting the dangers of removing pesticides and other household chemicals from their original containers and storing them in bottles or cans that can be mistaken for drink. Poison Control Centers have reported cases of accidental poisonings from ingestion of chemical substances stored in soda and juice bottles and cans, coffee cups, baby bottles and various other beverage containers.

One of the simplest ways to prevent poisonings is to always keep products in their original containers. Product labels contain valuable use instructions and important precautions and first aid needed in case of an emergency. Continue reading

Variety screening identifies potatoes with resistance to zebra chip disease

by Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife

The Texas A&M AgriLife Research plant pathology team in Amarillo intentionally infected potato plants with psyllids positive with the bacterium that causes zebra chip, a deadly disease plaguing the potato industry for the past 15 years.

The outcome is some promising germplasm that will help in the battle against the costly disease, said Dr. Charlie Rush, plant pathologist. Continue reading

Making Cover Crops Work in No-Till Vegetable Production

Join Clemson University cover crop specialists for a practical look at using cover crops for no-till production. We’ll start in the classroom for an update on our USDA cover crop research project, and a discussion on nuts and bolts information like varieties, seeding methods, seeding rates, termination methods, planting vegetables into residue, and lessons learned related to all those things. Then we’ll head to the field (Student Organic Farm in Clemson and CREC Research Farm in Charleston) to look at plots, cover crop termination, and depending on timing we could observe planting vegetables into residue. We’ll finish with lunch and Q&A. We’ll also have some print resources available.  Each participant will receive a copy of the Sustainable Agriculture, Research and Education Program’s publication “Managing Cover Crops Profitably”.

Charleston, SC, April 19th

Coastal Research and Education Center

2700 Savannah Hwy

Clemson, SC, May 11th

Madren Conference Center

230 Madren Center Dr. Continue reading

Wildlife Management Workshop in South Carolina

Calhoun County Extension Office with support from South Carolina Farm Bureau is sponsoring a Wildlife Management Workshop on March 28th beginning at 8:30 AM at the Tri-County Electric Co-op, 6473 Old State Road, St. Matthews SC 29135. (Approved for 6.5 hours SAF Cat. 1 CFE hours for foresters and 1 hour pesticide applicator credit for category 5.)

Topic: Farm Pond, Feral Hog, Quail, Coyote, and Beaver Management

Date: March 28th

Time: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM Continue reading

Scientific Advisory Panel Report for Glyphosate Available

The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) met December 13-16, 2016, to consider a set of scientific issues being evaluated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding EPA’s evaluation of the carcinogenic potential of the herbicide glyphosate. The meeting minutes and final report from the meeting are now available.

The minutes and final report can be found on the FIFRA SAP web site (https://www.epa.gov/sap) and in the OPP Docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0385 (https://www.regulations.gov). EPA will review this document as well as other comments before making a final determination regarding the potential carcinogenicity of glyphosate. Continue reading

Keep pesticide drift at bay

by Clint Thompson, University of Georgia

As a result of two years of aggressive training to improve on-target agricultural pesticide applications, the number of pesticide drift complaints received by University of Georgia Cooperative Extension has gone down 65 percent, according to UGA Extension weed specialist Stanley Culpepper.

“No grower wants (their pesticides to) drift. I’ve said it a million times. The best way for Extension to help our growers eliminate drift is by providing them the latest research data on tactics and approaches they can implement to help them achieve their goal,” Culpepper said. Continue reading