A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Mid-South Stocker Conference goes virtual to reach cattle producers; offers practical information

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky The 2021 Mid-South Stocker Conference will challenge producers to take a broad view of their operations from the comfort of their homes. Due to COVID-19, the conference is taking place online with the theme, “Looking at the Big Picture — How the Parts Fit Together in Your System.” The Mid-South Stocker Conference is an annual event, a partnership of the...

UK offers numerous online beef education opportunities for Kentucky cattle producers

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky The University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment has been offering online education for many years, but even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic. Faculty in the UK Department of Animal and Food Sciences are using a variety of methods to teach beef producers. “We’ve had to get really creative to reach producers in the past year,”...

Registration open for 44th annual Kentucky Turf and Landscape Management Virtual Short Course

Registration is open for the 44th annual Kentucky Turf and Landscape Management Short Course. The University of Kentucky Turfgrass Program in cooperation with the Kentucky Horticulture Council will present the annual educational event for Kentucky turfgrass professionals virtually this year over four Thursdays in February. Registration is open for the 44th Annual Kentucky Turf and Landscape Management...

UK soil physicist begins on-farm variable rate irrigation research at site in Western Kentucky

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky A University of Kentucky research project that could have significant impacts for Kentucky grain producers with irrigated acres is beginning on a Western Kentucky farm. Ole Wendroth, soil physicist in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, is leading a study examining the effects of a variable rate irrigation system that, to his knowledge, is the...

UK Fall Crop Protection webinar series begins in November; weekly series occurs on Tuesdays

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment specialists have organized a webinar series aimed at helping producers provide better protection for their grain crops. The 2020 Fall Crop Protection webinars begin Nov. 10 on the video conferencing app Zoom and will focus on new and common threats to Kentucky corn, soybeans and wheat. The weekly...

MARS Equestrian Fellow at UK’s Gluck Equine Research Center continues to help older horses

By Holly Wiemers University of Kentucky Horses aged 15 and over make up between 20 percent to 30 percent of the U.S. equine population. An important milestone will be reached this year in the quest to learn more about this population. October marks the one-year anniversary of Amanda Adams, associate professor at the University of Kentucky Gluck Equine Research Center specializing in aged horse research,...

UK celebrates land-grant heritage and mission; recognizes outstanding researchers in ceremony

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky The University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment celebrated its land-grant heritage and mission and recognized some of its outstanding researchers during a recent ceremony. Dr. Scott Hutchins, deputy under secretary for research, education and economics with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, was the event’s keynote speaker. An entomologist,...

UK graduate student Cristina Castellano aspires to be ‘forensic scientist of the plant world,’ solve mysteries

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Growing up, University of Kentucky graduate student Cristina Castellano thought she might like to be a forensic scientist, but her interest in agriculture steered her toward plant pathology, which she terms as “the forensic scientist of the plant world.” “Plant pathologists and forensic scientists use a lot of same technologies to find solutions to problems,”...

UK agricultural engineer says field drying could be advantageous for corn producers in short run

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Kentucky grain producers are expected to harvest a large corn crop this year and much of it will likely go into storage along with hopes of better marketing opportunities in the next few months. With good weather conditions predicted for the next few weeks, Kentucky producers may let their corn dry in the field a little longer before harvest as it could reduce...

UK to host regional fencing schools this fall to help livestock producers learn new techniques

Katie Pratt University of Kentucky The University of Kentucky will host two regional fencing schools this fall to help livestock producers learn about the newest fencing techniques and sound fence construction. The schools are Oct. 13 at the Wolfe County Extension office in Campton and Oct. 15 at the Barren County Extension office in Glasgow. Each day will begin with registration at 7:30 a.m. local...

HealthyWoods app helps owners understand woodlands with research-based information

By Carol Lea Spence University of Kentucky A new mobile app makes receiving research-based woodland management information as easy as reaching for the phone. HealthyWoods, a collaborative effort between forest specialists from Kentucky and other hardwood-producing states in the Appalachian region, provides woodland owners with a convenient tool to scout the health of their woods. “Traditional extension...

UK Forestry and Natural Resources technicians study new invader in Kentucky forests — laurel wilt disease

By Carol Lea Spence University of Kentucky Megan Buland bent over a spicebush in Floracliff Nature Sanctuary, looking for the elusive spicebush swallowtail caterpillar in its tiniest larval stage. Buland, a forest health technician with the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, is getting a baseline count this summer as part of a study on the effects of the fungal disease,...

UK study finds some birds could aid integrated pest management; benefits may outweigh negative effects

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Birds have long been considered the nemesis of many farmers, as they can feast on agriculturally important crops like blueberries and corn. But University of Kentucky research suggests, in some instances, the benefits of some birds may outweigh their negative effects. Birds provide an often unseen benefit to farmers as they can consume a large number of insect...

Free pasture-finished beef production workshop offered online by UK, Virginia Tech and WVU

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky Beef producers and consumers have a growing interest in forage-finished beef. The University of Kentucky, Virginia Tech and West Virginia University are offering a free pasture-finished beef production online workshop Aug. 11-13 from 7-9 p.m. “Getting adequate growth to reach a ‘finished’ state and addressing market issues can be challenging for producers...

UK pilot study finds high levels of contaminants in Martin County drinking water samples

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Martin County drinking water regularly exceeded U.S. Environmental Protection Agency maximum contamination levels for cancer-causing disinfection byproducts and coliform bacteria, according to preliminary findings of a University of Kentucky pilot study. The pilot study was conducted by Jason Unrine and Wayne Sanderson, both professors in the UK College of Agriculture,...

UK research reveals cover crops, no-tillage systems could slow climate change on farms

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky Cover crops combined with no-tillage systems can increase soil organic carbon, which could help slow climate change on farms, according to a recent study by University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment scientists. The project was conducted at UK’s Blevins research plots. Located at UK’s Spindletop Research Farm in Lexington, the plots...

Extended heat wave in forecast will put stress on Kentucky livestock producers, corn growers

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky Things are heating up again in the Bluegrass. As the week progresses, the humidity and temperatures will rise and Kentucky’s agricultural producers need to be aware of the impacts the heat may have. “We are looking at an extended period of heat stress, beginning July 15,” said Matthew Dixon, meteorologist for the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture,...

UK’s James B. Beam Institute receives donation of distilling equipment to advance teaching, research

By Aimee Nielson University of Kentucky The James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits at the University of Kentucky received a large donation of distilling equipment from the institute’s founding partner, the James B. Beam Distilling Company. Jim Beam’s donation included two tractor-trailer loads of stills, tanks, pumps and instruments from the historic craft distillery in Clermont, reducing...

Recent studies by UK entomologists find invasive paper wasps preying on monarch butterfly larvae

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky An invasive paper wasp may be stymying the efforts of urban gardeners to rebuild monarch butterfly habitats, according to recent research by University of Kentucky entomologists. Adam Baker, UK doctoral student, and Daniel Potter, UK entomology professor, found Polistes dominula, more commonly known as the European paper wasp, preying on monarch larvae on milkweed...

UK entomologists say new stinging ant species could cause problems for Kentuckians

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky University of Kentucky entomologists want people to be aware of a new stinging pest in the state, the Asian needle ant. Recently, Asian needle ants invaded a home in south central Kentucky and stung the homeowner. This is one of the state’s first reports of the ants coming indoors. The insect has been in Kentucky since at least 2013 and in the U.S. since the...