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June 2011 Archives

Ingrid Schneider, director of the University of Minnesota Tourism Center, has been reappointed to the Explore Minnesota Tourism Council by Governor Mark Dayton.

Is it time to start thinking about pricing the 2012 corn crop?

Over the past two months, December 2012 corn futures have been trading in a range of $5.70-$6.00 per bushel. While this price is lower than contracts for delivery in 2011, $6 corn points to a margin of $1 or more per bushel for most Minnesota farmers.

Bee populations are in decline in Minnesota and throughout the nation. As bees are vital pollinators of our fruits, vegetables, flowers and seed crops, it is critical that we support their health and diversity. Fortunately, there are two easy steps to take: Plant bee-friendly flowers, and reduce pesticide use.

Mowing grass A lawn provides a place to play, exercise, or while away the hours on a perfect summer day. Thick, green turfgrass beautifies a home. But taking lawn care to extremes isn't good for the ecosystem.

University of Minnesota Extension turfgrass specialist Bob Mugaas teaches "low-input lawn care," which takes less time and chemical inputs, and Mary Meyer talks about how to add punch to landscapes with native plants.

soybeans.jpgControlling weeds can be a battle for corn and soybean farmers, but organic producers face special challenges and higher risks.

Weed management for organic crop production falls into two categories: cultural weed control and mechanical weed control. Cultural methods include diversifying rotations, delayed planting, changing planting rates, timing nutrient applications and using cover crops. These are the first line of defense against weeds.

Girl-with-veggie-smile.jpgUniversity of Minnesota Extension and seven partners are kicking off a new set of training workshops this month for school cooks and menu planners to bring more nutritious, kid-friendly foods into school cafeterias next fall. The collaboration, known as the Great Trays Partnership, is funded by a $2.3 million grant from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and provides training and tools to help schools statewide improve their menus and help kids eat healthier meals.

The Great Trays Partnership works to train school staff to prepare foods using more Minnesota-grown foods from the farm - and to help overcome equipment and cost barriers that make it hard for many schools to cook with fresh foods.

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