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Self-guided exhibit at FSR to teach on-farm electrical safety

Electricity from power lines near grain bins can arc to a conductor and farm equipment can be that target, putting the farmer, family, friends or farm hands at risk for electrocution.

Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program will have an exhibit at this year’s Farm Science Review explaining the dangers of overhead power lines and what those working on the farm should look for to stay safe.

“There is a misconception that as long as that equipment can clear the power lines then everything is OK,” said Dee Jepsen, OSU Extension state safety specialist. “But if you have, say a 2-foot clearance, that isn’t enough. Electricity can arc to the auger, wagon, combine, whatever equipment you may be operating at the time.”

Between 1990 and 2009, there have been eight fatalities related to electrocutions in Ohio, three of which where grain bin related, according to the OSU Extension Agricultural Safety and Health Program Web site.

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Energy effeciency a focus of Ohio Rural Electric Cooperative at FSR

The Ohio Rural Electric Cooperatives (OREC), long-time sponsors of the Farm Science Review, are bringing the Touchstone Energy hot air balloon back to the Review this year. The 18-story balloon will make morning and evening flights (weather permitting) over the grounds each day of the event.

This year’s exhibits located in the OREC Education Center include a strong focus on being energy efficient and include:

• A hands-on energy efficiency wall display featuring the right way and the wrong way to insulate, caulk and seal. Additional displays will feature renewable energy, heat pump water heaters, the Touchstone Energy Home program and energy efficient windows.

• The latest in lighting featuring outdoor and commercial lighting, along with natural home lighting technologies by First Day Natural Lighting.

• Both air source and geothermal heat pumps displayed by Habegger Corporation and Utility Marketing. A federal tax credit of up to 30% of the cost of an installed geothermal heat pump is available until 2016.

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Learn about rain gardens at FSR

Gardens do more than beautify an area, instill a love for plants, and provide food and shelter for wildlife. They also can be a source of environmental conservation.

Visitors to Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review have the opportunity to tour a newly installed rain garden on the grounds of the Lawrence G. Vance Soil and Water Conservation Park along Friday Avenue in the exhibitor area.

The 480 square-foot rain garden was installed by members of the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts to educate visitors on how properly constructed rain gardens using Ohio native plants can combat flooding and drainage issues, alleviate erosion, provide wildlife habitats, and provide a value-added benefit to property.

“Having a presence at Farm Science Review really gives us the opportunity to promote the value of conservation to farmers, students, homeowners, business owners and others visiting the show,” said Mindy Bankey, CEO of the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.

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CRP land signed up

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that USDA will accept 4.3 million acres offered by landowners under the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) general sign-up. The selections preserve and enhance environmentally sensitive lands, including wetlands, while providing payments to property owners.

“Interest in this open enrollment period was high, and I’m pleased that producers and landowners across the nation continue to realize the environmental benefits of enrolling land in the CRP,” said Secretary Vilsack.

For this 39th general sign-up more than 50,000 offers were received on more than 4.8 million acres, nationwide. Enrollment of the 4.3 million acres will keep the program enrollment close to the 32 million acre statutory cap, which will maintain and enhance the significant environmental benefits the program has already achieved. CRP’s 39th signup will bring the total enrollment in the program to 31.2 million acres, leaving sufficient room under the 32 million acre cap to continue enrollment in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, continuous signup and other CRP initiatives through FY 2011.

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Time to Wrap Up the Last Cutting of Alfalfa

By Mark Sulc, Ohio State University Extension

It is time to take the last cutting of alfalfa and red clover in Ohio. Cutting this week will allow plenty of time for the stand to regrow and store energy and proteins in the taproots, which are important for winter survival and early growth next spring.

It may be tempting to wait to cut the alfalfa because of low yield due to the recent dry weather, in hopes that rains will come and more growth will occur. But delaying the last cutting of alfalfa to late September into mid-October can carry serious risk to the health of the stand. Cutting later will interrupt the process of storage of energy and proteins in alfalfa taproots. When cut during the fall rest period, the plants will regrow and utilize precious taproot energy and protein reserves without sufficient time to replenish them before a killing frost.

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Learn to launch grape business at FSR

Ohio growers interested in launching a wine grape business or expanding an existing vineyard can learn more about the new Vineyard Expansion Assistance Program at Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review.

Maurus Brown, an OSU Extension small fruit specialist, and Christy Eckstein with the Ohio Grape Industries Committee, will present a session on the program at 3 p.m. Sept. 21 at the Center for Small Farms, located on Beef Street in the exhibitor area.

The show is sponsored by the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, OSU Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Brown said the program, which was launched this year, replaces the Ohio Vine Grant Program. The new program attracted 35 applicants, 19 of which were approved $2,000 each for their vineyards.

“The Vineyard Expansion Assistance Program is designed to encourage the establishment of new wine grape vineyards in Ohio, as well as expand existing vineyards, specifically for the production of vinifera and French-American hybrids,” Brown said.

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Learn how to grow lettuce using hydroponics at FSR

Ohio lettuce growers looking for new, innovative ways of growing produce year-round have hydroponics as a viable alternative. The technology will be demonstrated during Farm Science Review, Sept. 21-23 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London.

Robert Hansen, an Ohio State University agricultural engineer with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, will share research results from OARDC’s Hydroponics Lettuce Research Laboratory. Hansen is collaborating with CropKing, Inc. on maintaining a hydroponic lettuce research laboratory, and with Beth Fausey, OSU Extension floriculture and hydroponic vegetable specialist, on outreach education and marketing.

“Hydroponics, like greenhouse production, is an alternative crop production system to field crop production,” Hansen said. “Hydroponics provides the potential to grow produce year-round, giving consumers access to locally grown vegetables.”

Hydroponics is a method of growing crops without soil, with nutrients delivered to the plant via water. Hansen said that initial input costs of hydroponic systems are high, but the control of system inputs — everything from lighting to nutrient levels to controlling insects and diseases — affords the greatest opportunities for a successful, high quality, high-value crop.

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Soggy fields offer oppurtunity at FSR

Those with soggy fields on their farms see a problem. Those with soggy fields at one of the nation’s premier farm shows see an opportunity to create a win-win solution.

“One of our production fields had some drainage problems. We had problems with gully erosion and wet conditions in the field due to poor drainage,” said Matt Sullivan, assistant manager of the Farm Science Review (FSR). “We saw the opportunity to promote some new drainage practices with this.”

Going into 2007, the FSR was looking to show visitors some cutting edge drainage installation techniques with the Ohio Land Improvement Contractors of America (OLICA). While OLICA was very interested in the opportunity to get some exposure at the FSR, the association also had limited time to do the proper legwork for a successful drainage installation job leading up to the show.

To address this problem, FSR turned to students in Ohio State’s Agricultural Engineering program.

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Wheat shortage creates opportunity for U.S. farmers

Russia’s ban of wheat exports is giving U.S. farmers the opportunity to produce more of the crop to meet demands around the world, a Purdue University agricultural economist says.

Chris Hurt predicts there will be an increase of 50-75 percent in the amount of wheat planted in the Eastern Corn Belt this fall over 2009, a record low year. Indiana farmers last fall planted 300,000 acres of wheat, which annually is the state’s third-largest crop, behind corn (6 million acres this year) and soybeans (5.3 million acres).

Because of the expected increased interest in wheat, Hurt recommended that farmers contact seed suppliers now to secure the varieties they hope to plant. “Seed availability may be the limiting factor on how many acres of wheat get seeded this fall,” he said.

Drought and wildfires greatly reduced wheat supplies in Russia — the fourth-largest wheat exporter in the world — and in neighboring Ukraine and Kazakhstan.

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FSR programs focus on business for farm women

Farm women who want to become more comfortable with the business side of farming will find out how they can learn more by visiting the Farm Science Review, Sept. 21-23 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London.

Ohio State University Extension educators plan to share information about projects aimed to help women in agriculture become more familiar with production risk, cash flow, crop insurance options and other business-related issues on the farm.

“Many times, women on the farm have the responsibility of record-keeping, but they’re not really involved in the decision-making in the farm operation,” said Julia Nolan Woodruff, educator with OSU Extension. “But, obviously, they have a big stake in how the farm does economically. If they had more familiarity with the concepts of risk management, their insight could lead to better decisions on the farm and an improved financial outlook.”

According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, 40% of Ohio farms have at least one woman operator, Woodruff said.

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Ag safety bin rescue demonstration return to FSR

Last year’s popular grain bin rescue demonstrations highlighting the proper safety precautions of grain storage and handling are returning to Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review.

Dee Jepsen, Ohio State University Extension state safety leader, said more times have been added to the daily demonstrations to accommodate more requests for information related to the potential risks when working with grain on the farm.

OSU Extension, in partnership with Heritage Cooperative and City of Urbana Fire Division, is featuring Agricultural Grain Bin Rescue demonstrations designed to educate both emergency crews and farming communities on the appropriate techniques for using rescue equipment in agricultural emergencies. Additional partners, including Pleasant Valley Joint Fire District, City of London Fire Department, and Central Townships Joint Fire District, will be conducting the rescue demonstrations.

“In the past 10 years, Ohio has experienced 19 fatalities from grain engulfments,” Jepsen said. “The demonstrations are designed to help bridge the knowledge gap between emergency personnel and farming incidents they may encounter, in addition to providing farming families with steps they can take before the emergency personnel arrive.”

The Agricultural Grain Bin Rescue demonstrations will be held daily every hour on the half-hour from 9:30 a.m.

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What's new at FSR this year

This year’s Farm Science Review will feature a little new in addition to all of the popular staples that make the event a must visit for the world’s agriculturists.

The field demonstrations at the event are a highlight for many visitors because there are few opportunities to see side-by-side comparisons of harvest and tillage equipment anywhere. Along with this, visitors will have expanded opportunities to ride-and-drive equipment this year.

“We’re going to have Honda, JCB and Yamaha in the ride-and-drive this year. If someone is interested in driving an ATV, four-wheeler or high-speed tractor, they can get that hands-on experience,” said Matt Sullivan, FSR assistant manager. “The ride-and-drive has worked really well for precision ag and we’re trying to build on that. We’re going to be providing a shuttle out to the ride-and-drive at the north Kottman Street gate. The shuttle will be running until about 2 in the afternoon. The ride-and-drive is just north of the exhibit area by I-70.

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Weekly Crop Progress Report, Sept. 13th

Cooler weather provided relief for livestock and crops. Farm activities included tillage, installing tile, hauling grain, hay bailing, and field application of fertilizer, lime and manure. Corn and soybeans are drying well throughout the state, the harvest has begun at some operations. Pest worms were reported in both corn and soybeans. There were also reports of corn stalk disease.

As of Sunday September 12, 90 percent of corn was dented, compared to 64 percent last year and 80 percent for the five-year average. Corn was 50 percent mature, which was 40 percent ahead of last year and 34 percent ahead of the five-year average. Three percent of the corn has been harvested throughout the state, this is the earliest recorded corn harvest in the past five-years. Corn for silage was 78 percent harvested compared to 29 percent last year and 43 percent for the five-year average. Fifty-two percent of soybeans were dropping leaves, compared to 22 percent last year and 33 percent for the five-year average.

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Christmas trees part of a long line of agriculture on the Bailey Century Farm

By Matt Reese

In 1829, Isaac Bailey came to Lordstown in Trumbull County with $4.50 to his name. According to historic documents from Trumbull and Mahoning Counties, “by hard work, rigid economy and frugal living” he came to acquire 100 acres of land. Bailey was a religious man and was said to have walked, with no shoes, with his first child to the nearest church for baptism, a 30-mile round trip.

A Lutheran church was eventually added on his property and he became very active in every aspect of the neighborhood that would eventually be known as Bailey’s Corners. As the Bailey clan grew in subsequent generations, Isaac (I.E.) Bailey III bought 21 acres in 1900, some of which had been previously owned by Baileys. I.E. was a noted carpenter like the Isaac Baileys before him. His hammer that was used to build the church and many of the homes in the area hangs on a plaque on the wall in the home today.

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Control Aquatic Vegetation in Your Pond. Get Tips at Farm Science Review

Come to Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review and learn what a fish management specialist would do to manage his own private pond.

Bill Lynch, an Ohio State University Extension associate in aquatic ecosystem management, will present, “If It Were My Pond, I Would&hellip.” at the Gwynne Conservation Area Sept. 21 from 10:30 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. and Sept. 22 from 1:30 p.m. until 2:30 p.m. Farm Science Review will take place Sept. 21-23 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio.

Attendees can get to the Gwynne by catching the free shuttles at the west end of the exhibitor grounds.

“Excessive aquatic vegetation is what causes all of the headaches for pond owners,” said Lynch. “It’s the most challenging aspect of pond management because of all of the excess nutrients that end up in the water.”

Lynch said that cattails, filamentous algae and harmful algal blooms are some of the more common aquatic surface vegetation found in ponds.

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Biomass and Cover Crops Showcased at Farm Science

From poplar and willow trees to sweet sorghum and switchgrass, visitors to Ohio State University’s Farm Science Review can learn more about the potential for producing bioenergy crops in Ohio.

Nearly two dozen biomass crops will be part of the demonstration plots exhibited at the east end of Friday Avenue of the Farm Science Review exhibitor grounds. Farm Science Review will be held Sept. 21-23 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio.

Visitors making their way to Gates A-E from the parking area can tour not only biomass crops, but also cover crops, antique corn, soybean trials, manure application plots, weed control demonstrations, corn hybrids, forage plots, and popcorn trials.

Ohio State University Extension educators will be on-hand to give details of the plots and answer any questions.

“Farmers are always interested in maximum production environments and the economics of creating those environments,” said Chuck Gamble, Farm Science Review manager.

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Self-guided exhibit at FSR to teach on-farm electrical safety

Electricity from power lines near grain bins can arc to a conductor and farm equipment can be that target, putting the farmer, family, friends or farm hands at risk for electrocution.

Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program will have an exhibit at this year’s Farm Science Review explaining the dangers of overhead power lines and what those working on the farm should look for to stay safe.

“There is a misconception that as long as that equipment can clear the power lines then everything is OK,” said Dee Jepsen, OSU Extension state safety specialist. “But if you have, say a 2-foot clearance, that isn’t enough. Electricity can arc to the auger, wagon, combine, whatever equipment you may be operating at the time.”

Between 1990 and 2009, there have been eight fatalities related to electrocutions in Ohio, three of which where grain bin related, according to the OSU Extension Agricultural Safety and Health Program Web site.

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Farm Science Facts

Some Farm Science Review Facts…..

Location

Ohio State’s 2,100-acre Molly Caren Agricultural Center is located 2 miles north of London on U.S. Route 40.

Directions

From the east, take Interstate 70 to state Route 29 south and follow U.S. 40 west.

From the north, take state Route 56 to U.S. 40 east or state Route 42 to U.S. 40 west.

From the south, take state Route 38 to the site.

From the west, exit I-70 at state Route 56 south to U.S. 40 and take U.S. 40 east to the site.

Airport accessibility

The Columbus and Dayton airports are nearly equal distance from the site. Small planes can use the 4,000-foot runway located at the Madison County Airport across the road from the Molly Caren Ag Center.

Admission

$5 in advance from most Ohio agribusinesses and all county offices of Ohio State University Extension or $8 at the gate. Children 5 and under admitted free.

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September 10th USDA Crop Report

Ohio Report

Based on conditions as of September 1, Ohio’s average corn yield is forecast at 173 bushels per acre, down 3 bushels from the August 1 forecast and 1 bushel below last year’s state yield of 174 bushels per acre. Total production is forecast at 585 million bushels, up 7 percent from 2009. Growers expect to harvest 3.38 million acres for grain in 2010, 240,000 acres more than in 2009.

Soybean yield is forecast at 48 bushels per acre, up 2 bushels from the August 1 forecast but down 1 bushel from the 2009 state average. Total soybean production for Ohio is forecast at 224.6 million bushels, up 1 percent from the previous year. Harvested acreage is forecast at 4.68 million acres, up 150,000 from 2009.

National Report
Corn Production Down 2 Percent from August and Forecast Soybean Production Up 1 Percent

Corn production is forecast at a record 13.2 billion bushels, down 2 percent from the August forecast, but up from the previous record of 13.1 billion bushels set in 2009.

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Some Ohio Corn Ready for Harvest

 

Ohio’s corn crop may be ready for harvest sooner than anticipated.

Peter Thomison, an Ohio State University Extension agronomist, said that a warmer-than-average summer has hastened the development of the crop. Add the dry spell parts of the state are experiencing and the crop has dried down to levels ready for harvesting.

“The crop is at moisture levels right now that we would have been dying for last year. Much of the corn is already in the low 20s,” said Thomison. “Growers should consider preparing for harvest now. We typically don’t like to drop below 20 percent moisture because of the risk of yield losses.”

According to the Ohio Agricultural Statistics Service, 24 percent of the crop is mature, 17 percent higher than the five-year average and 21 percent higher than this time last year.

Thomison said that some growers are already harvesting their crop, but others may wait for the crop to dry down further.

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