Winter workshops continue for farmers

By Deborah Reinhart Brown - Ag update

Just a quick reminder of the 2019 Ohio Beef Cattle Webinar being held tonight, Tuesday, Feb. 5. This starts at 7 p.m. and will be here at the Shelby County Extension office on Fair Road in Sidney. Please let me know if you plan to attend!

OSU Extension Greene County will be hosting An Afternoon of Hostas! this Saturday, Feb. 9, from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Joy Pierzynski, director of the OSU Plant and Pest Diagnostic Clinic, will present the “Top Three Scourges of Hosta: Causes and Management.” Here you will learn to identify and manage virus X, foliar nematodes, and petiole rot on hosta.

Bob Iiames, president of the Miami Valley Hosta Society, will present “Hostamania,” a guide on the culture, care, and many uses of hostas. Gene Wogoman, retired hosta grower, will present “Hosta and Companion Plants,” a look at using other plants to compliment hosta plantings.

This program will be held at the Greene County Extension office on Fairground Road in Xenia. Yes, it’s a ways to drive, but if the weather is nicer and you’re ready to get out of the house … and if you’re a true gardener who likes hostas or just wants to learn more, it’s probably worth it. The cost is only $10. You can register on line at You can find more information at

Our Planning for Life’s Transitions program begins next Monday, Feb. 11. It will be held here at the Ag Center Meeting Room on Fair Road in Sidney. This four-session class will deal with family communications, planning for retirement, passing the business onto a next generation and estate planning.

The meeting dates are Monday evenings: Feb. 11 and 25, and March 11 and 18. We will begin with a light supper at 5:30 p.m. with the program to begin at 6:15 p.m. You can find a copy of the flier and registration form at Please register by this Friday, Feb. 8; space is limited …

There is a two-day Soil Health Workshop being held in Wapak on Wednesday, Feb. 27, and Friday, March 1, 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each day. Yes, you need to attend both days for the whole thing!! This program will be held at the Auglaize County Administration Building on South Blackhoof Street, downstairs meeting room.

Some of the topics to be discussed include nutrient recycling, biology of the soil, soil health, economics, and homegrown nitrogen. This program is organized by the NRCS and OSU Extension and will feature Jim Hoorman, Soil Health Specialist for NRCS as the presenter.

The cost for this program is $10 and includes the program and Certified Crop Adviser credits. Contact Jeff Stachler at 419-739-6580 or to register for this class.

And, speaking of Soil Health, there is a new documentary from the Soil Health Institute called “Living Soil.” This documentary captures the background of the current soil health movement and its momentum, beginning with painful images of the Dust Bowl, and then transitions to personal experiences of innovative women and men who are managing their land to enhance soil health. The film features rural and urban farmers from Maryland to California, selling everything from corn to bouquets, united by their care for the soil.

It’s been in my “in-box” for quite a while, but with the cold weather last week, I finally got around to watching it. Yes, it is an hour long, but it has some very interesting information, primarily dealing with cover crops to build soil health as well as to prevent soil from leaving the farm. It is free to download at I would highly recommend anyone to take the time to watch it. It may spur some good discussion, if nothing else!

By Deborah Reinhart Brown

Ag update

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at