Winter’s impending arrival brings about an opportunity for rest and recovery and a time to reflect on 2022 and prepare for 2023. Winter is also a time to take advantage of opportunities to refresh your knowledge, sharpen your skills or even learn something new and apply it to your farm. Ohio State University Extension has many opportunities during this season for you to attend programs, presentations, and other events. There are several ways for you to stay connected with Extension throughout the winter months, including newsletters, websites, blogs, social media, and video platforms.
There are university resources available for nearly every area of interest. Some of the more well-known newsletters include the C.O.R.N. newsletter and the beef newsletter. The C.O.R.N. (Crop Observation and Recommendation Network) newsletter, can be found at agcrops.osu.edu, and is the output of the Ag Crops team. This team works to provide information on topics such as soil sciences, agronomy, plant pathology, entomology, ag engineering and weed science. The Beef newsletter can be found at u.osu.edu/beef. This newsletter provides updates on topics such as manure management, grazing and forages, markets, feeding, health and management, and quality assurance.
The Buckeye Dairy News is a resource available for those involved with the dairy industry. This newsletter can be found on the Ohio Dairy Industry Resources Center website, dairy.osu.edu. Topics covered by newsletter articles include milk prices, ag law updates, manure management, livestock care and management and crop management, just to name a few.
The Ohio Ag Manager newsletter focuses on providing timely and relevant information to ag businesses and those involved with ag business operations. The areas of focus in this newsletter include “financial, labor, legal, marketing, and human resource development”. You can subscribe to receive updates from the Ohio Ag Manager site by going to u.osu.edu/ohioagmanager.
The Ohio Sheep Team site, u.osu.edu/sheep has a tremendous amount of information available. This site includes information and resources on economics, forages and pastures, management, marketing, feeding and nutrition as well as reproduction and wool.
The Buckeye Yard and Garden Online site is the perfect resource to keep you in the loop of happenings in yards and gardens. This team works on relaying timely information on growing conditions, pests, disease, and other cultural issues that may be affecting the plants in your backyard. This output may also be beneficial to those who work in the commercial nursery industry, garden centers, or landscape businesses. You can subscribe to receive updates from this team by going to bygl.osu.edu and clicking on “alerts”.
Fruit and Vegetable growers have several resources that they can utilize. The Ohio Fruit News can be accessed virtually at u.osu.edu/fruitpathology or sent via print edition (to request a print edition, please contact Melanie Ivey at email@example.com or 330-263-2849). This newsletter was developed by a team of researchers, state specialists and Extension educators focusing on management of diseases, insect pests, weeds and other relevant management topics. Another great resource for fruit and vegetable information is the VegNet newsletter, which can be found at u.osu.edu/vegnet.
Here are some additional newsletters: The Ag Safety S.T.A.T – Safe Tactics for Ag Today, subscribe on the Agricultural Safety and Health Program site, agsafety.osu.edu; farmoffice.osu.edu is home to the Ohio Ag Law Blog, Farm Management and Tax resources: Ohio Women in Agriculture can be subscribed to at u.osu.edu/ohwomeninag; The Ohio Woodlands Stewards newsletter can be found on the Ohio Woodlands Stewards Program website woodlandstewards.osu.edu; and the Rural and Farm Stress website, where updates can be sent to your email by signing up at u.osu.edu/farmstress.
There are also many county Extension offices who release their own Ag and Natural Resource focused newsletter. In Wayne County, we are currently in the process of revitalizing our newsletter, so make sure to watch for further updates!
If you are one who enjoys videos, you can find YouTube channels and videos from OSU Extension, OSU Extension Professionals, Farm Science Review, OARDC, The Ohio State University IPM Program, The OSU Vegetable Production Systems Lab, Ohio State Agronomy, Ohio State University Weed Science, and The School of Environment and Natural Resources, just to highlight a few of the available video resources.
Here is my charge to anyone reading this article: Challenge yourself to learn something new. Everyday is a new day and another opportunity to better ourselves. Challenging the way we do things allows us to take a deeper look at why we think the way we do, or do the things we do, and provides an opportunity to evaluate and make adjustments to our lives or our operations to be better farmers, growers, managers and neighbors.
Frank Becker is an extension educator of agriculture and natural resources with OSU Extension Wayne County.
He can be reached at 330-264-8722 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was previously published in The Bargain Hunter.