Safe, healthy and happy Thanksgiving
National Public Radio highlighted a growing concern for San Joaquin Valley tree fruit and nut farmers - diminishing winter chill in an age of climate change. "Warm winters mess with nut trees' sex lives," reported Lauren Summer on Morning Edition.
For example, adequate winter chill allows female and male pistachio trees to wake up simultaneously, which is ideal for pollen to be available for wind to carry it to blooms on female trees.
Fresno State agriculture professor Gurreet Brar, a former UC Cooperative Extension advisor, is testing whether horticultural spray application at different chill-hour intervals will trick trees into thinking they've been colder. Normally, the spray is used on fruit and nut trees to control insects, but it's also known to alter the tree's dormancy period.
"It's supposed to help the tree and buds wake up normally and have a normal bloom," Brar said.
Summer also spoke to Katherine Jarvis-Shean, UC Cooperative Extension orchard systems advisor in Yolo County.
"We're on this (climate change) march and it's really just a matter of how bad it's going to be, not whether it's happening or not," Jarvis-Shean said. "Threatening those crops is really threatening the livelihoods of a lot of Californians."
Fruit and nut trees that require the most winter chill will run into trouble by mid-century, when experts predict consistently warmer weather, Summer reported.
"Bing cherries, which is really the marquee variety in California, won't get enough chill," Jarvis-Shean said. "We'll need to be breeding new varieties that still have that rich ruby flesh and that juicy flavor that can do well under those low chill conditions."
Better-adapted trees may be the only strategy in the long-run, she said. Efforts are already underway to breed new varieties of pistachios that can handle warmer winters.
Rose Hayden-Smith, UC Cooperative Extension digital communications in food systems & extension educator, talked with Matthew Shapero about his work protecting California's natural resources. This is the second in a series featuring a few scientists whose work exemplifies UC ANR's public value for California.
Matthew Shapero is originally from California and has worked as an ANR Cooperative Extension livestock and range advisor since September 2017, based in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Matthew attended Columbia University and completed a Master of Science in range management from UC Berkeley. Prior to joining ANR, he farmed on the East Coast and in Nevada County, where he ran a ranch. His current research and Extension program focuses on several issues, including prescribed fire and how to prepare for and respond to wildfire. You can follow Matthew on Facebook and Instagram.
Tell us about your current research and Extension projects
I could certainly use the old ranching metaphor: “Way too many irons in the fire.” As a beginning advisor, one says “yes” to things that seem interesting and have promise, but projects develop in their own time. I'm currently working a great deal on wildfire issues, including prescribed fire and fire recovery. There's a need for long-term research to look at the effects of grazing as part of post-fire recovery. I am working with five ranches that experienced fire, and considering how land managers and agencies might be thinking about grazing and post wildfire recovery.
I'm also doing some research on soil seed bank, with a focus on how fire intensity impacts rangeland seed bank. [Editor's Note: “Soil seed bank” refers to the natural storage of seeds – often dormant – within the soil of ecosystems.]
Has thinking evolved on prescribed fire?
It has. I received an M.S. degree in range management from UC Berkeley. The program didn't cover much of the research and practices around prescribed fire, because it seemed to be an unrealistic land management tool in today's day and age. The Thomas fire occurred in December 2017, just three months after I started my work as a Cooperative Extension advisor. I've seen the political winds shift since then; prescribed fire has become much more palatable in this area since Thomas, as a technique to proactively deal with the threat of catastrophic wildfire.
There's a relatively short window (a couple of months annually) where the conditions and circumstances are aligned for prescribed burning. In Fall 2018, I was involved in a prescribed burn of 380 acres using a type of private burn permitting that hadn't been used in a long time. As a Cooperative Extension advisor, I played a relatively important role in connecting the dots and helping that burn get up and off the ground. Part of my work is nudging people, following up, connecting people. I think my work is a good example of how a Cooperative Extension advisor inserts himself/herself into the process. With ranchers, private landowners, county fire agencies and others involved, there is a need for good communication.
In the aftermath of that burn, I organized an event for elected officials, agency heads, and other decision makers to visit the prescribed burn site. It was helpful for them.
My program covers Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, which have different histories with prescribed fire. Santa Barbara County has had a strong range improvement association from the 1950s through the present, which conducted prescribed burns at a significant rate up through the 1990s. For example, between 1955 and 1964, this association burned over 100,000 acres in private land, with little assistance from the county fire department.
This is in contrast to Ventura County, which has less of a surviving rancher-led burn culture. While producers burned within the county, there is no formal existing organization that plans and executes burns. I've been helping to revive burn culture in Santa Barbara County, but there's been less to draw on in Ventura County. Both have county fire agencies instead of CalFIRE. They are supportive of private-led burning, but to actually implement prescribed burns is easier in Santa Barbara County than in Ventura County. Ranchers and private landowners in Santa Barbara are more comfortable with fire, and many have some of the resources required (water tending trucks, drip torches, flamethrowers, etc.). We're building momentum, though, and the conversation has shifted since the Thomas Fire.
Did the Thomas Fire change perceptions about the value of ranchland in Southern California?
The Thomas Fire demonstrated that even if you live in a city or suburb, the way natural resources are managed impacts you. Livestock production is not an agricultural sector that generates a lot of gross revenue (it barely registers in the list of top 10 crops by revenue in each county), but it has great spatial impact. How it is managed impacts water quality, wildlife habitat, and the view those living on the peri-urban interface enjoy. There is important public and economic value in the way rangelands are managed.
What are the challenges facing the ranching industry in Southern California?
The challenges the ranching industry faces in Southern California aren't necessarily new. I recently came across an Extension research bulletin published in 1972 that explained how Santa Barbara County was trialing new nitrogen fertilizer on rangeland. My predecessors identified “rising taxes and land scarcity” as challenges facing ranchers, and these things would still hold true.
These challenges are not unique in California, but the impact may feel different here. The Southern California counties in particular have a long and deep ranching history that was defined in many ways by Spanish ranchos.
The industry is potentially at a critical breaking point, though. It's not just land, but the lack of supporting infrastructure. For example, it's much more difficult to get cattle trucks down here; the nearest approved USDA slaughter house is hours away, and the nearest sale yard is in Kern or Monterey County. In Santa Barbara County, there is increasing pressure for land conversion and land use change. Many individuals are interested in creating vineyards and estates, which is breaking up and making into smaller parcels larger ranches, so that they can no longer be run profitably as livestock operations.
In an optimistic sense, there has been a shift in public opinion over the last 20 years about ranching. At one time, ranching was vilified as being harmful to land, especially public lands. The Bay Area has had more sophisticated conversations about how ranching and environmentalism can co-exist, and what the co-benefits are.
There is every reason to think that the conversation around ranching will mature and become more nuanced in Southern California as well. Topics such as water quality and endangered species - which seemed like flashpoints and a source of friction – have given way to discussions that identify areas of co-benefit. Ranchers do so much for wildlife in keeping rangelands open and undeveloped. But they are often targeted with what they regard as unfair legislation around fencing and vegetation removal. Urban public opinion should recognize the value of keeping ranchers on the land.
Why are you working for Cooperative Extension?
I'm interested in the public value aspects of the work. Traditionally, Cooperative Extension measured the impact of our work by the increase of forage grown per acre, or the number of pounds of beef extracted from a ranch. While those things are important, I see our role expanding. In addition to increasing agricultural production, my work is also about the potential to engage on policy and on a cultural level.
Livestock advisors throughout the state are an important point of nexus in terms of communicating the value of ecosystems management. We are often the connection between the broader general public and an agricultural constituency. I spend a lot of my time translating how and why ranching benefits the general public, why cattle might be good for the planet (not bad), and why cattle have ecosystem benefits for rangelands. I find as much as my work is increasing and improving herd health, it is also lubricating public policy discussions, and providing analysis that has benefits for ranchers and the general public.
Extension grounds positions in science and through neutrality. There is an important role for Extension in facilitating the conversations that identify mutual benefits.
The University of California is providing a free online course, Healthy Beverages in Early Care & Education, in English and Spanish for child care providers in California. The 30-minute on-demand class is a friendly way to learn about the latest recommendations for healthy beverages for children and help child care providers meet the California Healthy Beverages in Child Care Act (AB 2084) requirements.
- Milk - whenever milk is served, serve only lowfat (1%) milk or nonfat milk to children two years of age or older.
- Juice - limit juice to not more than one serving per day of 100% juice.
- Sweetened Beverages - serve no beverages with added sweeteners, either natural or artificial. Beverages with added sweeteners does not include infant formula or complete balanced nutritional products designed for children.
- Drinking Water - make clean and safe drinking water readily available and accessible for consumption throughout the day.
The training includes videos, short quizzes and activities, and covers topics such as milk, types of fruit juice, drinking water and reading a nutrition label. A professional development certificate will be provided upon completion of the class.
To sign up for the class, visit http://bit.ly/NPIccbevE for English and http://bit.ly/NPIccbevS for Spanish and create an account. Providers outside of California may have similar beverage requirements. And all young children, regardless of licensing or Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) requirements, can benefit from consuming healthy beverages. The course is free for California providers and available for child care providers outside of California for a $15 fee.
This class was developed by the UCSF School of Nursing, California Childcare Health Program in partnership with the University of California Nutrition Policy Institute and Cooperative Extension, with support from a grant by UC Agriculture and Natural Resources.
On a crisp and clear morning late last year, around 20 volunteer firefighters, landowners and community members gathered on a plot of land outside of the small rural community of Kneeland in Humboldt County. They listened intently to detailed instructions on how to safely burn 20 acres of private property that gradually rises on a hill before them. The volunteers gathered to learn how to successfully undertake a prescribed burn. It was all part of the ongoing education and training being conducted by Humboldt County's Prescribed Burn Association – the first of its kind west of the Rockies.
Lenya Quinn-Davidson and Jeffery Stackhouse, who both work for the UC Cooperative Extension in Humboldt County, developed the program in 2017 and have seen it steadily grow ever since. The association is comprised of landowners, nonprofits, volunteer firefighters and other community members who work together to carry out prescribed burns on private land. Until the association was created, most landowners and community members had lacked access to prescribed burn information and training.
“Fire is a natural part of California's landscape. Prescribed fire is a way for us to bring fire back to the landscape as a natural process under controlled conditions. We can choose the weather, we can choose how it's going to burn,” says Quinn-Davidson. “Private landowners have largely been left out of the fire picture and we realize that is a big part of the problem.”
The goal of the prescribed burn on that October day was to eliminate an invasive type of tree that was overtaking the grassy hill and restore the land to a state where native oaks can thrive once again. The property owners are receiving the same training as the volunteer firefighters on hand. Beyond eliminating invasive species, the association is utilizing prescribed burns to reduce fuels to prevent future wildfires, as well as restore wildlife habitat. But most importantly, the training and education empowers landowners and others to reconnect with fire as a management tool.
Will Emerson is an assistant fire chief for the volunteer Bell Springs Fire Department in northern Mendocino County. He and his three colleagues made the 2.5-hour trip to participate in the prescribed burn training session in Humboldt County. He sees the trainings as a “really great experience” for volunteer fire departments, some of which have new trainees who have never worked a fire before.
“It's excellent training for them — just to get comfortable working with fire,” Emerson says.
The concept of a prescribed burn association is catching on. Quinn-Davidson and Stackhouse have presented the Humboldt County model to numerous counties around the state, and new associations are cropping up around California.
“We use our program to train people, to inspire people, to empower people,” Quinn-Davidson says.
The value of Humboldt County's Prescribed Burn Association goes beyond the training it provides. Quinn-Davidson and Stackhouse view the association as a “community cooperative,” bringing together groups that have traditionally been at odds. At any training session you may find volunteers from the ranching or timber industry, environmentalists or cannabis growers.
“Instead of being on opposite sides of an issue, people are gaining understanding for the other side,” Stackhouse says. “It has opened the door for real, honest communication between different groups that otherwise would not be happening. Having people work together who have been on different sides of the community really is amazing.”
Quinn-Davidson agrees. “We are building community and we are using fire as this positive, synergistic thing,” she concludes. “And I feel so positive about it.”
The CSAC Challenge Awards were created in the early 1990s to recognize county innovation and best practices. Humboldt County's Prescribed Burn Association is a recipient of a 2019 CSAC Challenge Award – one of only 18 Challenge Awards presented statewide out of 284 entries.
To view a video of this program on YouTube, click here.
California ag faces a decade of challenges
(Farm Press) Tim Hearden, Jan. 31
…“We're getting close to a point where field work in agriculture is similar to or higher than the wages in other sectors,” said Dan Sumner, director of the University of California's Agricultural Issues Center in Davis. “But the problem is the hours of work.”
Much of agricultural work is seasonal, making the 40-hour work week impractical in many circumstances, Sumner and others say.
…When they mechanize, growers encounter more regulations. For instance, Steve Fennemore, a UC plant sciences specialist in Salinas, has been helping a company develop an autonomous weeder and is aghast at a state safety requirement that there be a person within 10 feet operating each agricultural robot in use.
“We have a tremendous labor shortage,” Fennemore said. “We have teams of robots working a field. Why do I need more than one person to run them?
“Shouldn't we be encouraging this kind of research” into labor-saving tools, he asks. “We need to do everything we can to mechanize.”
Pistachio Winter Juvenile Tree Dieback A Confounding Issue
(AgNet West) Brian German, Jan. 31
Pistachio growers will be watching for signs for winter juvenile tree dieback (WJTD) as trees begin to come out of dormancy in the spring. Damage is typically found in trees between three and five years old, although there have been instances where older trees in their seventh or eighth year have been affected. Narrowing down the exact cause of the issue also presents its own set of challenges
“I'm somewhat hesitant to call it freeze damage because we've seen it in places where we couldn't find a freeze. But I think more than anything it has to do with root hypoxia; that's a lack of oxygen in the root zone,” said Craig Kallsen, UC Farm Advisor in Kern County. “We see it in old lakebeds, low elevation areas where cold air collects but that's also where the salt is so it's hard to separate those factors.”
IQ 2020 Presents: Research That Will Change the Way You Make Wine
(Wine Business Monthly Jan. 31
…Kaan Kurtural, associate specialist at the UC Cooperative Extension, is working with Levin, but is focusing specifically on Red Blotch's effects on the Cabernet Sauvignon winegrape. In addition to that research, Kurtural will also share his experience with the latest in mechanization's role in ultra-premium winemaking and discuss how precision viticulture can affect phenolics. The results of his experimentation will be available for tasting during the trials breakout session.
Newsom's budget proposes increase for UC Extension
(Farm Press) Tim Hearden, Jan. 30
After snubbing the agency last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom has slipped a 5 percent increase for the University of California's Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources into his $222 billion overall budget proposal for 2020-21.
The boost would mean an increase of $3.6 million annually for UCANR to begin rebuilding its ranks of researchers and educators working with growers, said Glenda Humiston, the division's vice president.
“We are making progress,” Humiston said in an email. “More people are recognizing and giving credit to the research, public service and outreach UCANR provides to help Californians improve their lives and businesses.”
Mating disruption shows promise for NOW control
(Farm Press) Todd Fitchette, Jan. 30
Studies by the University of California suggest consistent, positive results with no clear winners among various products by the major companies – Suterra, Semios, Pacific Biocontrol Corporation and Trécé – currently providing pheromone products to tree nut growers, according to David Haviland, an Extension entomologist based in Kern County.
Master Gardeners have a love of gardening and a passion to share it with others
(Stockton Record) Marcy Sousa, Jan. 30
Do you need to figure out what variety of apple is less susceptible to fire blight? A Master Gardener can help with that.
Do you have a plant that has a mysterious problem you can't seem to diagnose? Are you interested in vermicomposting but not sure where to start? Yup, call a Master Gardener for help.
Bites: Yin Ji Chang Fen heads to Berkeley, Super Bowl specials, Shawarmaji at Forage Kitchen
(Berkeleyside) Sarah Han, Jan. 29
…RAISING THE BAR Emeryville-based Clif Bar and the UC system have joined forces to found the California Organic Institute, which will be dedicated to organic research and education under the direction of the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR). According to the Daily Cal, both Clif Bar and UC President Janet Napolitano have donated $500,000 to create the research institute, with the goal of promoting organic farming practices and food security in California.
North Coast Pear Research Meeting set for Feb. 6
(Lake Co News) Jan. 29
The University of California Cooperative Extension, California Pear Advisory Board, Pear Pest Management Research Fund and the and Lake County Department of Agriculture will host the annual North Coast Pear Research Meeting on Thursday, Feb. 6.
UCANR to Establish First-Ever California Organic Institute
(AGNet West) Jan. 28
The University of California will be establishing its first institution designed specifically for organic research and education; the California Organic Institute. The new institute will be developed through UC's Agriculture and Natural Resources division (UC ANR) thanks in part to a $500,000 endowment gift from Clif Bar & Company, as well as another $500,000 in matching funds from UC President Janet Napolitano.
UC researcher is promoting healthy families
(Morning Ag Clips) Jan. 28
UC Cooperative Extension nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor Deepa Srivastava arrived in the San Joaquin Valley in 2017 to conduct a research and education program that makes children and families healthier in Tulare and Kings counties.
Srivastava joined Cooperative Extension with diverse experience in obesity prevention research and program implementation and evaluation. Her job combines extension, research, university and public service to promote healthy living among families and children in low-income communities.
Young California ranchers are finding new ways to raise livestock and improve the land
(Conversation) Kate Munden-Dixon and Leslie Roche, Jan. 28
As California contends with drought, wildfires and other impacts of climate change, a small yet passionate group of residents are attempting to lessen these effects and reduce the state's carbon emissions. They are ranchers – but not the kind that most people picture when they hear that term.
These first-generation ranchers are young, often female and ethnically diverse. Rather than raising beef cattle destined for feedlots, many are managing small grazing animals like sheep and goats. And they are experimenting with grazing practices that can reduce fire risk on hard-to-reach landscapes, restore biodiversity and make it possible to make a living from the land in one of the most expensive states in the country.
UC system will establish its 1st organic research institute
(Daily Cal) Emma Rooholfada, Jan. 28
Clif Bar and UC President Janet Napolitano have each donated $500,000 to fund the California Organic Institute, which will be dedicated to organic research and education.
Headed by the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources division, or UC ANR, the institute will be the first of its kind in the UC system. According to UC ANR Associate Vice President Wendy Powers, the primary goal of the institute is to promote the development and adoption of techniques for more efficient organic farming.
“President Napolitano is committed to supporting a healthy California stemming from agriculture of all kinds: large, small, traditional and organic,” said UC Office of the President spokesperson Sarah McBride in an email.
Preschoolers harvest dinner at Farm Smart Festival
(Desert Review) Kayla Kirby, Jan. 26
The Farm Smart program and UC CalFresh Healthy Living hosted the second annual Farm to Preschool festival at the UC Desert Research and Extension Center Saturday, January 25, to show preschool age children and their families where they get their food, how it's grown, and ways to live a healthy eating lifestyle.
Master Gardeners Mark 16 Years Of Demonstration Garden
(My Motherlode) Jan. 26
In 2004, University of California Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners of Tuolumne County entered into a collaborative agreement with Sonora Union High School District to provide gardening demonstrations for the community and develop instructional projects for the students at the District's Alternative Education Campus (the ‘Dome'). The garden was originally planted by Jim Johnson, a teacher at Cassina High, and his students. It was used by Mr. Johnson and fellow teacher Bob King for school projects. Containing several varieties of fruit trees, blackberries, grape vines, raised beds, a small rose garden, and shaded tables, the garden is also an ideal break area for students.
Watch: exclusive interview with Frank Mitloehner
(Irish Farmers Journal) Lorcan Allen (subscription only), Jan 24
Prof Frank Mitloehner came to Dublin this week and gave a fascinating presentation on the biogenic cycle of methane and agricultures role in capturing carbon.
Ag awards presented during Farm Bureau annual meeting
(Corning Observer) Julie R. Johnson, Jan. 23
…In preparation to presenting the evening's awards, Christensen said, “Each year we recognize several people or organizations for their dedicated partnership with the Tehama County Farm Bureau.”
He then presented the 2019 awards as Friend of the Year to Josh Davy from University of California Cooperative Extension, and Doni Rulofson and Tom Moss of the Department of Agriculture; Media Person of the Year to Chip Thompson; Member of the Year to Eric Borror; Insurance Agent of the Year to Steve and Kelly Mora of Heritage Insurance, and Agriculture Educator of the Year to Trena Kimler-Richards of Shasta College.
Untreatable fungal infections threaten local almond orchards
(Bakersfield Californian) John Cox, Jan. 22
…It's unclear how many cases of infection have been confirmed locally. But of three kinds of ganoderma fungus infections identified recently in California almond orchards, University of California researchers say 94 percent of the cases were of the adspersum variety.
…"We are seeing those trees collapsing at 11, 12, 15 years old, ” said orchard systems advisor Mohammad Yaghmour with the UC cooperative extension in Kern County.
Growing your own celery is easier than you think
(LA Times) Jeanette Marantos, Jan. 22
…But for some reason, celery is not a winter garden staple like other greens, and that's a shame, says Gardening in L.A. blogger and master gardener Yvonne Savio. “If you're a cook, you need to grow celery, because you get twice as much as what you buy at the store.”
… You can plant the seedlings in the ground or in a large pot, Savio said. Celery roots range from 18 to 24 inches, according to a vegetable root depth guide prepared by the University of California Cooperative Extension for Los Angeles County, so look for a pot that's as deep as possible, Savio said. “For any vegetable, find the optimum depth and then add another 4 inches to the pot so the roots have some room to grow. You don't want them pushing against the sides of the pot.” Finally, choose a sunny location; celery can't handle high summer temperatures, but during the winter, when days are shorter and the sun less intense, they need at least four to six hours of sun daily.
Proposed Budget Includes Increase for UC ANR
(California Ag Today) Tim Hammerich, Jan. 21
Governor Gavin Newsom released his proposed state budget this month, which includes a much needed 5% increase for the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Dr. Glenda Humiston, Vice President of UC ANR explains why this increase is so critical.
Humiston…”We currently have only about half as many cooperative extension people out in the field that we had 20 years ago. And it really is creating a hardship for communities and industry sectors that rely upon that research and science to help keep them functional and thriving.”
‘Kiwi Queen' Frieda Caplan, produce-industry pioneer, dies at 96
(LA Times) Dorany Pineda, Gustavo Arellano, Jan. 18
They called her “Kiwi Queen” and “Mother Gooseberry.” “Mushroom Lady” and “the “Mick Jagger of the produce world.” The woman who broke the glass ceiling in the testosterone-doused produce world and forever changed the way Americans eat fruits and vegetables.
She was Frieda Rapoport Caplan, a tenacious maven credited for introducing kiwis, mangoes, habanero and shishito peppers, passion fruit, bean and alfalfa sprouts, baby carrots, sugar snap peas, starfruit, blood oranges, shiitake mushrooms, turmeric, and hundreds more fruits and vegetables into the supermarket mainstream. Into the bellies of American consumers.
…“Who the hell had heard of jicama or spaghetti squash?” said Ben Faber, a UC Cooperative Extension farm advisor who works with specialty crops. “We were a meat and potatoes society in the 1960s,” he added. “She changed our eating habits.... Frieda was able to tap into aspirations that people had after the Second World War ... something new and different other than mac ‘n' cheese.”
Fresno State students create pesticide safety videos in Hmong language
(ABC30) Shayla Girardin, Jan. 18
…For farmers, keeping food fresh is no easy task and for workers in the Hmong community trying to follow pesticide regulations, the lack of resources in their language posed a problem.
"It's the language, the culture, and if everything is in English and you don't speak the language, you don't understand what it's about," explained Michael Yang, education specialist with UC Extension.
EcoFarm bus tour rolling through Pajaro Valley
(Pajaronian) Johanna Miller, Jan. 17
…The EcoFarm bus tour, which Earnshaw and Baumgartner will lead along with UC Cooperative Extension's Richard Smith, has been held for nearly as long as the conference itself. Participants load into a fleet of buses at the conference grounds in Pacific Grove and take off to local farms, where they learn about various aspects of organic farming.
Northern California Sturgeon Farms
(California Ag Today) Tim Hammerich, Jan. 16
If you've ever had sturgeon, there's a good chance it came from a Northern California sturgeon farm. A conservation success story, sturgeon farming has been commercialized thanks to conservation work started at UC Davis decades ago. Cooperative Extension Aquaculture Specialist Dr. Jackson Gross explains.
Gross..”Sturgeon started off as a conservation story for California, our Sacramento sturgeon or Sacramento white sturgeon over 30 years ago, they started working at white sturgeon conservation here. Part of that was the aquaculture, the role of aquaculture, conservation aquaculture, People understood that sturgeon, in terms of caviar, could also be of a high quality, which also could provide food as well as income to an industry. Um, and that, that started, uh, to what we have today is a sustainable sturgeon industry in the greater Sacramento area.”
Composting made simple
(Gilroy Dispatch) Jan. 16
Cole Smith goes over the basics of composting hay during a “Manure Composting Made Easy” workshop in Gilroy on Jan. 11. The workshop, presented by the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, taught attendees composting with food scraps, green waste and livestock manure. In addition, a new solar-powered compost system at the Gilroy High School Future Farmers of America Farm was showcased. Smith is the composting education program coordinator for the UC agriculture division.