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March 2011 Archives

Thumbnail image for WelcomeHome.jpgMilitary kids and families from around the state are invited to attend Operation: Military Kids Camp this summer. There are currently approximately 17,000 kids in Minnesota who are affected by having a family member deployed.

Operation: Military Kids will offer eight opportunities for youth and families to attend camp this summer. Camps are delivered by University of Minnesota Extension's 4-H program and other partners to help youth understand the deployment process, cope with the stress of a deployment, build communication skills valuable for a homecoming, and connect with other Military youth.

Farmers who are prevented from planting their crops due to spring flooding can manage this risk if they have purchased federal crop insurance. Federal crop insurance includes prevented-planting coverage for flooding.

Producers have been asking about the idea of early soybean planting in northern Minnesota as soybean production pushed further north. Soybean acreage has dramatically increased with better yielding varieties and the introduction of glyphosate-tolerant soybean.

To answer the question "How early do we dare plant soybeans in northwest Minnesota?" University of Minnesota Extension carried out a five year (2006-2010) research project with grant funding from the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council.

Thumbnail image for talk-to-teens.jpgWhen a natural disaster occurs in the community, it will affect every member of that community or household in a variety of ways. It is important for parents to take a moment from the immediate needs that must be met and talk with their children.

"When parents do not discuss the disaster with children, it appears that these things are so horrible that even adults dare not talk about them," said Kathleen Olson, a family relations educator with University of Minnesota Extension.

flooded-house.jpgIf your home is in a location where seasonal flooding may occur, you need to know how to prepare your home to resist or survive flooding. Flooding can occur in a number of ways.

new-insights.jpgPounds of calf weaned per breeding female is one of the most important variables affecting profitability in a beef cow/calf operation. The reason is simple: beef producers market total pounds produced and have the expense of maintaining cows. The more cows that have a calf, the more pounds of beef can be marketed.

Producers need to optimize reproductive efficiency in their beef herds to maximize profitability.

red-file.jpgDevastating disasters like a flood are a vivid reminder of life's uncertainty. With the high likelihood of spring flooding in many areas, ask yourself if you would know what to grab if you only had minutes to escape from your home.

flood-livestock.jpgThe impact of a natural disaster on a community always makes headlines. If you happen to be a livestock farmer, the impact on you seldom makes headlines, but it makes a big impact on you, your livestock and the viability of your operation.

"Many natural disasters give you little or no warning, but flooding is usually forecast, giving farmers time to think about contingency plans and take action," said Chuck Schwartau, a livestock educator with University of Minnesota Extension.

For those of us involved in agriculture, March 15 will have special meaning this year. That day is National Agriculture Day, a day set aside to recognize and celebrate American agriculture.

In a perfect world, every American would understand agriculture's history and could easily explain the economic, social and environmental significance of agriculture. But, most Americans live in urban areas and are three, four or five generations away from a family connection to a farm or a farmer. That is one of the reasons we need National Agriculture Day and other efforts to increase agriculture literacy.

University of Minnesota Extension announced today its coordinated system of educational resources available for those with flood-related questions, both in preparation for a flood emergency and while recovery efforts are underway.

conifer.jpgConifers are planted as shelterbelts, windbreaks, living snow fences and winter wildlife thermal cover on farms and in other rural areas. They bear cones and are sometimes called evergreens.

The U.S. Postal Service issued four "Holiday Evergreens" stamps for the 2010 holidays. Many people have asked University of Minnesota Extension if the trees shown on those stamps can all be grown in Minnesota.

In the coming months, 2,500 members of Minnesota's National Guard will be deployed. More than 15,000 Minnesota youth have been personally affected by military deployment.

The Extension Center for Youth Development's 4-H program delivers Operation: Military Kids (OMK), which supports military youth in Minnesota in discovering positive ways to cope with deployment. Minnesota does not have military bases which often provide such support systems.

Click on "Continue Reading" for a video on Operation: Military Kids

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