Cover art for podcast Extension Calling: advice for the farm, garden, and home

Extension Calling: advice for the farm, garden, and home

100 EpisodesProduced by Karen Cox and Dan LimaWebsite

Your source for research based information for the farm, garden, and home. These mini-trainings will give you easily digestible, timely information on topics ranging from soil health to pest management. If you are a lifelong learner looking to improve your health, the health of your farm or garden, … read more

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Managing wildlife pests and tree health

August 7th, 2022

29:14

Watching wildlife can be a great pass time, but what do you do when those lovely critters become a nuisance? While deer often take center stage in the pest category, coyote, racoons, rabbits and groundhogs all come with …

Dear o' Deer!

July 31st, 2022

27:06

Deer, love 'em or hate 'em, they're everywhere. While, feeding the deer can make them sick, losing your crop to them can make you sick.  There are many ways to manage this prevalent pest. Tune in to find out which one's …

Hay, how well do your grasses grow?

July 24th, 2022

24:16

Turf, Pasture, and Hay all have a heavy grass component. Keeping that grass healthy means keeping the soil healthy. More nutrients in the soil lead to healthier and more nutritious grasses, and they'll be more resistant …

Do rainy days ruin hay?

July 17th, 2022

29:13

The nursery rhyme "rain, rain go away, come again another day," was probably written by a farmer trying to put up hay. Rain may or may not break your hay, only timing and moisture will tell. 

Identifying and Controlling Autumn Olive

July 10th, 2022

29:09

Autumn and Russian Olive are invasive, thicket forming, shrubs that can significantly reduce pasture quality. Like other woody invasives, tackling this pest takes work and patience. But, doing it the right way, the …

Poison Hemlock -Should you be worried?

July 3rd, 2022

28:39

Poison hemlock is in full bloom and starting to set seed. It can be found in pastures, hay fields, ditches, trails, and pretty much anywhere with a …

Scouting for fall armyworm and other pests

June 19th, 2022

28:21

Last year we were surprised by an outbreak of fall armyworm. This year we share advise on when and how to scout for this pest. We discuss …

Forage Quality

June 12th, 2022

28:19

What do cows eat? More importantly, what can they digest? What is CP? What is ADF?  Tune in to learn the answers and how to use this information to fine tune your feeding program.

Soil: nature's multivitamin

June 5th, 2022

29:22

While plants conduct photosynthesis for food, like us, they still need minerals to be healthy.  Your body uses a strong acid to break down food, but too much acid in soil (or too little) can keep your plants from …

What is Forest Farming

May 29th, 2022

28:42

Often forests are forgotten parts of farms. Slopes that couldn't be pastured or cropped, or areas waiting for a timber harvest. Forest farming is the …

Preventing Pests from Becoming Problems

May 22nd, 2022

27:10

Scouting regularly and early interventions are key in producing a healthy crop. Tired of losing your cucumbers to bacterial wilt? Protect them early …

Reducing Stress When Handling Livestock

May 15th, 2022

27:34

Who couldn't use a little less stress in their lives? If you find working or loading cattle difficult, we may have some tips to help you! The Beef …

We got the beets

May 8th, 2022

27:53

A beet-tacular episode full of information on this often ignored but amazing veggie.  The humble beet, a well rooted sister of Swiss chard, is grown …

Conserving Soil with Cost Share

May 1st, 2022

28:22

Soil and water are our two most precious resources. There are several programs available to help protect and improve them. Today we discuss many of these programs and lay out how you can use them to improve the …

Sweeten Your Summer with Sweet Corn

April 24th, 2022

27:42

Sweet corn is best fresh from a local farm, and a driver for farmers' market sales. New varieties improve stability of that sweet sugar and protect your ears. Make sure your soil is warm when you plant for good …

Muddy Pastures Mess with Sustainability

April 17th, 2022

27:54

Mud makes a mess, and this spring mud is a problem. From calf and lamb health to grazing success, excess mud can eat into the profitability and sustainability of your farm. Learn some steps to take to recover from mud …

Do's and Don'ts of Spring Lawn Care

April 3rd, 2022

29:11

Thinking about fertilizing your lawn with the first mow? Bad idea. But, if you have a problem with crabgrass, it is a good idea to treat now with a pre-emergent herbicide.  Learn more tricks and tips for a healthy lawn, …

Is Your Water Safe to Drink?

March 27th, 2022

28:32

There's no downplaying the importance of access to safe drinking water. But did you know your produce needs safe drinking water too?  Today we add a little clarity to water testing needs for drinking water and …

Spring Precautions, Asparagus and Rhubarb!

March 20th, 2022

28:55

With the passing of the equinox, spring is officially here. But the dangers of frosts and freezes are not gone. Row-cover is just one of the precautions you can take to protect young crops. Some crops like asparagus and …

Managing Fruit Tree Diseases

March 13th, 2022

28:48

Timing sprays to prevent problems is more effective. Today we discuss how to time your sprays right with a focus on preventing Apple Scab and Plum …

Biosecurity Keeps Animals Safe

March 6th, 2022

28:47

If you have poultry, you're hopefully aware that the highly pathogenic avian influenza is back again. Biosecurity simply means to take steps to keep …

Spotted Lanternfly Update

February 27th, 2022

27:25

Like we knew it would, Spotted Lanternfly is spreading.  Many vineyards have already been lost, but you can help control the longer-term impacts by …

Effective Frost Seeding and Good Grass

February 20th, 2022

26:07

Frost seeding utilizes the natural freeze thaw cycle to embed clover seedlings to a proper depth. But seedlings need your help to survive, "We've killed more clover seedlings by putting nitrogen on during a frost …

Fundamentals For Funding Farming

February 13th, 2022

28:59

Farming can be a very rewarding career, but it is also a very expensive business. There is no such thing as a free lunch but finding the right grant …

Common Diseases of Leafy Greens

February 6th, 2022

28:06

Leafy greens are common winter crops for high tunnels due to their low light needs, but disease can spread quickly in indoor growing systems.  …

Check your roots

January 30th, 2022

27:40

Whether your growing grass, trees, or hydroponic spinach, healthy roots are key for healthy plants.  Many plant problems start with unhealthy roots. Maintaining proper oxygen and moisture levels can be tricky with some …

Food safety plans are a step toward farm sustainability

January 16th, 2022

29:01

Food safety can benefit your produce, whether you are growing for home consumption or wholesale.  Keeping records of your activities can aid your …

Planning Considerations for Raised Beds

January 9th, 2022

28:21

Raised bed gardens can help you great good growing conditions where you once had none.  However, thinking ahead for site, design, and material considerations can take you from frustration to success.

Calculating Input Costs and Output Values to Get Down to Profits

December 26th, 2021

28:36

When growing anything, including livestock, the best way to maximize your returns is to make sure that the inputs (fertilizers, time, etc.) don't cost more than what your end product is worth. Today you'll hear about …

Poinsettia Care Throughout the Year

December 19th, 2021

26:05

Poinsettias and Christmas Cactus both bloom during the holiday season. If you're up for the challenge, you can keep these plants healthy through the …

Worried about Nitrogen Costs

December 12th, 2021

27:00

Input costs always factor in your profit margin, especially when costs are high. But fertilizer cost per pound isn't the only thing to look at. …

Forestry and Carbon Credits

December 5th, 2021

29:00

Carbon credits are the new buzz, should you sign on? What about harvesting? Work with a professional forester to make a plan and do what's best for …

How to not waste grass

November 28th, 2021

28:11

Another way to say the baler broke is "stockpiling by accident." While it may not be ideal, it doesn't have to be waste. Get back in and graze that hayfield, access to water and fencing required.  Use surplus hay to …

Meating Expectations: Processing wild game

November 21st, 2021

27:56

Wild meat is a healthy and sustainable addition to your dinner table. But, you must take steps to do it safely.  Our special guest Josh Peplowski …

Safe steps for hunting season

November 14th, 2021

28:11

Stay safe this season, wear blaze orange while hiking and avoid areas where people are hunting. Hunters should always ask permission to use private …

Daylight Savings: how light impacts plant growth

November 7th, 2021

27:49

There's more to light than meets the eye. Duration, quality, and intensity each have different impacts on plant growth. Understanding and …

Spotted Lanternfly: Scout It Out

October 31st, 2021

29:41

Do your part and help scout out spotted lantern fly.  Egg masses can be hard to identify but, wine, walnuts, hops, and maple syrup are all at stake. Special guest Erika Lyons joins us from Jefferson County who's …

IPM for Growing Under Cover

October 24th, 2021

27:54

Following basic Integrated Pest Management is key to keeping problems manageable in fields, high tunnels, and greenhouses.  Monitor the environmental …

Forage Quality Factors

October 17th, 2021

27:25

Grazing and haying is easy to do right but it's also easy to mess up.  Paying attention to the growth of your forage and the weather is key to giving your animals what they need when it's time to feed.

An inside look at improving the herd

October 10th, 2021

28:20

Healthy cows have healthy calves. However, there's more to it than that: what traits are your livestock passing down? Calving ease, temperament, and maternal instincts are important to consider when breeding. Planning …

Establishing New Pastures

October 3rd, 2021

28:34

Quality pastures and hay fields require a variety of healthy, digestible plants and a lack of undesirable ones. When you are starting from scratch, you have a great opportunity to set things up right, but you'll also …

Converting Woodland to Pasture

September 26th, 2021

28:18

Cutting trees and planting grass are obvious steps in converting woodland to pasture. But if that is your whole plan, you are destined for a rough …

Can Livestock and Woodlands Coexist?

September 19th, 2021

28:41

It is a longstanding view in the world of forestry that livestock and timberland cannot coexist. Livestock can cause significant harm to trees, forest soils, and the all important duff layer on the forest floor.  …

Fall Armyworm

September 12th, 2021

26:56

It's 2021, a pandemic is still impacting our lives, a hurricane just passed through causing flooding, and so the next logical thing would be an …

Post harvest handling for fall crops for winter storage

September 5th, 2021

27:50

Proper treatment of crops at and after harvest is critical in keeping food safe, beautiful, and long lasting. Harvesting at the right time and …

Fall and Winter Crops

August 29th, 2021

28:36

The end of summer doesn't have to mean the end of your production season. Fall and winter produce can not only extend your market season but may also bring you higher prices. Tune in to learn how to extend your season.

Knotweed Control

August 22nd, 2021

27:40

Knotweed infests our waterways, our farms, and our gardens. Unfortunately, many removal techniques make knotweed problems worse including cutting or …

Basic Biosecurity for Livestock

August 15th, 2021

28:56

Keeping animals healthy is a livestock managers primary objective.  However, simple things like tires and boots may be carrying disease across your …

Understanding your Forage Test

August 8th, 2021

24:51

Congratulations! You took a forage sample and sent it in for analysis! Now you know your dry matter, TDN, & crude protein, but what does it mean? …

Mulch for microbes!

August 1st, 2021

26:59

You can't know too much about mulch!  But, you can have too much mulch!  Keep mulches 2-3 inches deep.  Freshen them each year to build up a healthy …

Poop is good food (for plants)

July 25th, 2021

24:09

Planning ahead for winter grazing is key in balancing soil nutrients, preventing compaction, and protecting the health of your livestock.  Plan to stockpile forages and use hay to supplement that feed.  This reduces the …

Managing manures, salts, pastures, pathogens, and produce

July 18th, 2021

28:01

Protect your fields from over grazing, protect your animals from mycotoxins, protect our waterways and soils, and as always, protect your bottom line! This week's farm talk variety show covers: Pasture and silage, …

Preventions for produce problems

July 11th, 2021

28:01

Heat stress, diseases, nutrient deficiencies, and water stress can all impact the quality and quantity of your tomatoes, cucumbers, cole crops and …

Maximize Calf Profits and Timber Sale Basics

July 4th, 2021

24:48

Farming is an expensive hobby. Make sure your cattle are bringing in the best return for your business by watching your input costs and planning ahead. Then we jump into the woods and talk about timber harvesting.  A …

Ag Leasing part 2 Plus Knotweed and Multiflora Rose Control

June 27th, 2021

27:55

This week we finish up on what to include on your Ag Lease.  For more great information on this, visit:

Preparing for and Recovering from a Flood

June 17th, 2021

24:58

While some of our state is facing drought, other parts are seeing flash floods.  This recording can help you prepare for a flood emergency and help you sort things out afterwards. Make an emergency plan for your …

Leasing Ag Land

June 13th, 2021

25:48

Farming is no ordinary business so don't use an ordinary lease.  Soil quality stays with the land but also impacts the quality of the crop, so who is responsible for buying and applying fertilizer? You may also need to …

Wet soil woes for veggies, hay, and lawns + paperwork for processed food producers

June 6th, 2021

29:54

This week is quite the variety show.  First we start with a reminder for small processed foods producers to get your preventive controls rule …

Tick Safety

May 30th, 2021

25:15

Lyme disease is on the rise in many parts of the country.  Take precautions and be prepared.  After a brief discussion on the new Asian Longhorned Tick, we discuss methods to keep you and your animals safe this summer.

Controlling Erosion through slope and plantings

May 23rd, 2021

28:55

It's hard to imagine a streambank or riverbank that's not being eaten away by water. Anytime water meets bare soil erosion happens.  Through proper sloping of trails and managing healthy riparian buffers you can reduce …

Soil Compaction, Prevention and Repair

May 16th, 2021

29:13

Soil compaction is a long term problem that is best to be avoided.  Keeping heavy equipment off of saturated soils is a good start.  However, with clayey soils it is often hard to avoid compaction using tillage radishes …

Selecting and Establishing Cover Crops

May 9th, 2021

27:10

Establishing a cover crop can add valuable organic matter, protect your soil from erosion, and prevent valuable nutrients from leeching out of the soil. This show introduces you to grass and legume species that work …

Pasture Management for Weed Control

May 2nd, 2021

27:35

Many farmers struggle with persistent weed problems. We help you identify some of the biggest trouble makers and discuss how to best manage them.  …

Spring Forage - Protecting first cut hay

April 19th, 2021

27:50

Spring showers bring May flowers but they also bring saturated soils and a rush to get the first cutting.  Fallen trees and invasive weeds can taint your hay and make your cattle sick. Taking a walk through the field …

Multiflora Rose Control in Pastures and beyond

April 11th, 2021

27:22

Multiflora rose started out as a good idea. But we know where the road of good intentions leads... Multiflora rose is a nuisance in fields and …

Soil is the Foundation - don't let it wash away

April 4th, 2021

31:01

Erosion comes in many forms and costs associated with soil loss are undervalued. Join us and our special guest Joe Lehman from the USDA NRCS and learn about how to take care of your soil and keep our streams running …

Small changes can make a big difference

March 28th, 2021

27:43

Ergonomics is often looked at as silly fluff. But, what if your back could hurt just a little less after harvesting all day? Wouldn't that be nice?  …

Preventing Grass Tetany in Spring

March 24th, 2021

21:54

Potassium and Magnesium are important nutrients but they must be in balance to give a healthy diet to your livestock. Too much potassium in your fields from over fertilizing with manure can cause too little magnesium to …

Springing into Soil Nutrients

March 21st, 2021

21:23

April showers bring May flowers, but be careful with Nitrogen in the spring. Your choice of a Nitrogen source can impact plant uptake, runoff, and …

Repairing Wind and Ice Storm Damage: Trees and Forests

March 14th, 2021

27:20

The impacts of winter storms linger in city and forest trees alike. From broken limbs to damaged crowns, special guests Dave McGill and Greg Dahle discuss how to identify dangers associated with the aftermath of ice and …

Apple Varieties and Rootstocks

February 28th, 2021

25:50

Start your orchard off right or bring in stronger varieties as old trees phase out.  This week we discuss characteristics for a variety of apples …

Calf Health from birth to weaning

February 21st, 2021

27:56

Good nutrition, colostrum, and electrolytes are your best weapons to prevent and combat calf diseases like scours. By keeping a good vaccination …

Get Your Food Safety Plan working for you

February 14th, 2021

26:15

While we mostly hear about big farms in the news for outbreaks, food safety is important even in the back yard garden.  Washing your hands before harvesting is a critical first step in any food safety plan. But, it's …

Soil Testing, Fertilizing, and Lime

February 7th, 2021

24:50

Seed catalogs are enticing but if you don't know your soil nutrient levels your garden and pasture won't meet their potential.  If you didn't test last fall, get a sample in as soon as possible. We recommend soil …

Pruning and Prevention for Orchards and Vineyards

January 31st, 2021

23:44

Local fruit is delicious and nutritious. Make sure your crop is market ready. Take steps early to clean up your plants and use preventative measures …

Methods for Fruitful Frost Seeding

January 24th, 2021

25:02

With last year’s soggy spring followed by a dry summer, odds are good that you are looking at some pastures that need a little help. Frost seeding is …

May the New Year Bring Better Pastures

January 17th, 2021

23:58

Whether for your personal health or the health of your pastures, stick to your resolutions by having an overall plan and set smaller SMART goals.   …

The Poinsettia and Christmas cactus

December 27th, 2020

25:33

Winter blooms can light up rooms like nothing else. If you are thinking of keeping your poinsettia with the hopes of it blooming next year, tune in to find out what extra steps this unique plant will need.  We also talk …

Caring for Live Christmas Trees

December 6th, 2020

27:12

With Thanksgiving behind us Christmas trees are on the minds of many.  Keeping a live tree safe takes extra care including watering daily, getting a clean cut, and going easy on the lights.  Pick up more details …

Being thankful for our Soil Dwelling Friends

November 29th, 2020

25:15

While our area's plants are going into dormancy, and animals are seeking warmer places to spend the winter, our soils are still quite busy places.  Microbes may slow down in lower temperatures but healthy soil is never …

What you don't know can hurt you

November 22nd, 2020

29:23

Pesticides are an important tool in the home and on the farm.  It is important to know the signal words like caution, warning, and danger.  Let us …

Important Questions for Starting or Expanding a Farm Enterprise

November 15th, 2020

28:04

When starting a new business there are an overwhelming number of questions to answer.  When starting a new farm enterprise there are even more.  "Think about the different available markets and consider what your end …

Hunting Safety and Wildlife Management with Dr. Sheldon Owen

November 8th, 2020

28:28

It is hunting season, and a "great time to get out there and enjoy the outdoors," according to Dr. Sheldon Owen, WVU Extension's Wildlife Specialist.  He joins us to help review safety tips like letting someone know …

Fall Garden Clean Up

November 1st, 2020

27:18

Fall may feel like a time of ending but it is really a time of renewal.  Plants are preparing for winter, help them out by mulching.  As for your …

Hunting Leases

October 25th, 2020

27:35

Many landowners lease their lands to allow hunting.  Whether you are inviting people to your woodlands to hunt deer or mushrooms, there are a few …

Reduce streambank erosion with riparian buffers

October 18th, 2020

25:41

Good water quality benefits everyone.  Keeping your stream from eating away at your land helps too.  Learn the benefits of grassy strips and forested riparian buffers and how to install them.  Contact us for your very …

Maintaining Pasture Health with Ed Rayburn

October 11th, 2020

32:05

Most of you are taking the necessary steps to maintain your pasture's health, but sometimes the weather just doesn't cooperate.  Ed Rayburn, Forage Specialist from WVU Extension, joins our show to clarify when an open …

Fracking Water

September 27th, 2020

22:57

Testing your water is important for many reasons, to protect your family from biological contamination, to prevent blockages in irrigation lines, and …

Reducing Storage Losses for Hay

September 20th, 2020

29:04

Simple steps like storing hay on a well drained platform or covering it can reduce storage losses. Moisture content of your bales can not only lead …

Assessing Fall Risks at Home and On The Farm

September 13th, 2020

30:57

For Fall Prevention Month we invite Lorrissa Dunfee, Family and Consumer Science Educator from Belmont County to learn the risks associated with falls, at home and on the farm. Lorrissa shares that while aging plays a …

Storing and Curing Produce for Better Shelf Life

September 6th, 2020

27:38

Harvest season is in full swing, but do you know how to make the bounty last?  Tune in to this week's program to get the run down on how to store …

Produce Harvest and Storage: beans, broccoli, and tomatoes

August 30th, 2020

28:17

Whether you grew a garden for the first time or want to improve the shelf life of your market crops this show is going to help you out.  We cover …

Summer Pest Update

August 23rd, 2020

27:49

After a brief review of the livestock markets Dan and Karen dive into current pest forecasts.  We're starting to see Downy Mildew nearby so get your preventive spray program going.  We also cover many insects to watch …

Managing Pastures and Cattle in Drought Conditions

August 16th, 2020

28:52

It's hot, it's dry.  Neither make raising cattle easier.  Tune in for some tips on how to make the most of what you have, take an inventory, and plan for the winter. We toss in a few notes on keeping your lawn healthy …

Weed ID: Step 1 in weed control

August 2nd, 2020

28:30

You can't get rid of a weed if you don't know it's secrets.  Things like, does it have deep roots? and is it a biennial or an annual?  Just because it looks dead, doesn't mean you've rid yourself of the problem.  From …

Leasing Land for Agriculture

July 26th, 2020

28:22

Today we bring you the livestock report and a flashback to a show from 2018 on how to lease land for agriculture.  You shouldn't treat it like a …

What comes out must go in: keeping tabs on soil inputs

July 19th, 2020

26:37

Great job! You have your soil test results and you are following them to a T, but should you be?  If your harvest is less than the production …

Lessening the likelyhood of Lyme Disease

July 12th, 2020

27:56

Ticks are part of summer (well, all seasons really).  As people venture outdoors the risk of getting bitten increases.  Unfortunately, ticks carry several zoonotic diseases.  Today we discuss the most common one in this …

New Tomato Disease update and a look at kudzu and poison hemlock

July 5th, 2020

24:38

There's a new tomato virus, thankfully it's not in town.  Learn steps to help keep your tomatoes protected.  We'll also help you understand how to …

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