First year at OSU extension passed by so very quickly

On the Farm

Is it just me, or did 2016 come and go way too fast? December marks my one-year anniversary as the ag and natural resource extension educator for OSU Extension, and what a great year it has been.

When I started on the job, I knew I would have a lot to learn because my experience prior to this job was primarily with potatoes and lowbush blueberries. I hit the ground running to get up to speed as quickly as possible and became a Certified Crop Adviser, obtained my pesticide applicators license, and attended as many educational opportunities as possible.

But the best resource I had during my first year were the farmers, producers and residents of northeastern Ohio.

Visiting white mold infested soybean fields with the Millers, riding in the combine with Dan Schwartz, talking with Joe Turon at the fair and touring a heifer barn with Art Logan were all really valuable, hands-on learning experiences.

I would like to thank these folks, as well as the rest of the farmers, producers and residents with whom I worked this past year. Your patience, insight, and time have helped me tremendously to get settled into a role that I love and look forward to filling for a long time.

I also want to send a special thank you to the Trumbull County commissioners, as OSU Extension would not be here to provide services to Trumbull County residents without their continued support.

Looking forward to 2017, I will be bringing on-farm research to Trumbull County with the goal to improve soil fertility, disease prevention and pest monitoring.

Ohio State University has tremendous resources available to assist farmers with a variety of issues, but as you all know, northeastern Ohio is a different world from Columbus or the areas west of I-71. Collecting local data will provide state specialists with a picture of our current issues, which could in turn lead to tailored fertilizer or pesticide recommendations for our region.

Although I was able to meet many farmers in 2016, there are many more that I have not yet had the privilege to meet. If you are ever in the Cortland area, please stop into the office to say hi, or just give me a call.

I will also work to increase our educational opportunities for a variety of topics, with a special interest on farm safety. Keep an eye on our Facebook page, and trumbull.osu.edu for upcoming events. A few events you should put on your calendar now are below.

Trumbull County Master Gardeners will host Tim Malinich, OSU Extension educator from Erie County, on Jan. 12 as he discusses how to grow and maintain houseplants. Tim has years of experience working with the greenhouse industry and personally growing beautiful houseplants. Come learn how to keep your plants alive during the winter, and all year long. The program is open to everyone and the cost is $15 a person.

Trumbull County Master Gardener Volunteers are accepting applications for their 2017 training class. If you have an interest in gardening and volunteering, and would like to be involved with helping gardeners throughout the county with your expertise, consider becoming a Master Gardener.

To become a MGV, you must complete 50 hours of advanced training and volunteer 50 hours your first year to any of our ongoing projects. The training class will begin March 7 and runs for eight weeks. Classes will be 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays here in Cortland. Applications are available on our website at trumbull.osu.edu, or you can also receive one by emailing me (beers.66@osu.edu). Applications must be received by Feb. 1 for consideration.

If your private pesticide applicators license expires on March 31, we have three upcoming opportunities for recertification. Classes will be held Jan. 13 in Williamsfield, Jan. 27 in Burton, and Feb. 8 here in Cortland. The cost for the class is $35 (or $45 if you would also like lunch) and will offer recertification for all categories. Pre-registration is required one week in advance to avoid a late fee. You can register by calling the OSU Extension Geauga County office at 440-834-4656.

For more information on any programs or to register, call 330-638-6783 or visit trumbull.osu.edu. Don’t forget to check out and “like” the OSU Extension Trumbull County’s Facebook page for current programs and up-to-date information.

Have a safe and happy holiday season, from all of us at OSU Extension.

Lee Beers can be reached at beers.66@osu.edu or 330-638-6738.