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Daisy

Consumer Horticulture

Extension's Gardening Portal at NC State University provides access to a wealth of information, events and resources for gardeners in North Carolina.  Managed by the State Urban Horticulture Specialist and Cooperative Extension Horticulture Agents throughout the state, it is your doorway to guidance about successfully growing vegetables, herbs, fruits, flowers and ornamentals in your landscape.

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Daisy

Consumer Horticulture

Extension's Gardening Portal at NC State University provides access to a wealth of information, events and resources for gardeners in North Carolina.  Managed by the State Urban Horticulture Specialist and Cooperative Extension Horticulture Agents throughout the state, it is your doorway to guidance about successfully growing vegetables, herbs, fruits, flowers and ornamentals in your landscape.

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WNC AgOptions -
Grants for Diversifying Farmers - Now Available

WNC AgOptions intent to apply deadline Oct. 16; Application deadline Nov. 13. ASHEVILLE, N.C. — WNC Agricultural Options is now accepting grant applications from farmers diversifying or expanding their businesses. With funding from the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission, WNC AgOptions is distributing a total of $178,000 to western North Carolina farmers in 2016. The application deadline is Nov. 13. WNC AgOptions helps offset farmers' risk of trying new ventures with $3,000 and $6,000 grants. "The WNC AgOptions program is an excellent example of grant funds providing direct support to those who need it most," said Ross Young, Madison County Extension Director and WNC AgOptions steering committee leader. "Our farmers are arguably the most important people in our society. I sincerely appreciate the Commission's interest in supporting western North Carolina agriculture." The Commission has supported the mountain region throughout major changes in agriculture, ensuring farmers continue farming. "Farmers in western North Carolina have proven time and time again that they are very innovative, resourceful and creative in how they produce and market their products," said Bill Teague, Chairman of the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. "Our board is committed to the success of farmers in the targeted counties and we know these grants will encourage many successful projects." Applicants should contact their Cooperative Extension Agents by Oct. 16 to set up an appointment to discuss their projects. Applications are available at www.wncagoptions.org or at local Cooperative Extension Centers. Extension Agents remain a resource for farmers throughout the year as they complete their projects. Since 2004, WNC AgOptions has awarded nearly $2 million to farmers. Grants often pay for a simple improvement that make a big difference, such as the purchase of an air-forced refrigerator at Perry's Berry's in Burke County. The cold storage reduced Owners Debbie and Terry Perry's blueberry losses from 20 percent in 2014 to less than 5 percent in 2015. Cooling their berries immediately after harvest enhances the quality of their product, which they sell to a variety of customers, including Food Matters in Transylvania County, Fonta Flora Brewery in Burke County and Blind Squirrel Brewery in Avery County. Wehrloom Honey in Graham County has exceeded their expectations since opening a new retail store in Robbinsville in May. With the help of a WNC AgOptions grant, Owner Jessica Wehr added new products such as spun honey, which is a thick spreadable honey, and bee pollen, which is considered a superfood due to its rich source of vitamins. Hoopers Creek Botanicals expanded production with a 2015 WNC AgOptions grant, and Owner Wallace Souther says he is able to sell all the medicinal herbs that he can grow. He also secured a contract with Sow True Seeds in Asheville to grow winter squash, which he says he wouldn't have been able to do without the grant. "I feel so honored," Souther said. WNC AgOptions offers grants to farmers in the following counties/units: Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Cherokee, Clay, Cleveland, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, Watauga and Yancey counties as well as the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Applicants are encouraged to attend information sessions, which will be held throughout the region in the next two months. Check the WNC AgOptions website for exact dates and locations or call Project Coordinator Jennifer Ferre at (828) 252-4783. The administrator of WNC AgOptions is WNC Communities, a non-profit organization that has been improving agriculture in the region since 1947. WNC Communities provides a unique forum for leaders in western North Carolina to carry out innovative programs to improve the quality of life for rural communities and to enhance the agriculture economy. "WNC Communities is delighted to serve as administrator for WNC AgOptions," said L.T. Ward, Vice President of WNC Commuities. "We are grateful to the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission and North Carolina legislators for their support for twelve years." Members of the WNC AgOptions steering committee include: representatives from N.C. Cooperative Extension, N.C. Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services–Marketing Division, WNC Communities, Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project and other leaders in agribusiness. For more information, see the following: WNC Agricultural Options: www.wncagoptions.org; N.C. Cooperative Extension Centers: www.ces.ncsu.edu; N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission: www.tobaccotrustfund.org; WNC Communities: www.wnccommunities.org. 2016 WNC AgOptions Grant Application

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econet_seal

State Climate Office
of North Carolina

Our partners at the State Climate Office of North Carolina provide the most accurate climate information to the citizens of our state. Their website includes recent news from their Twitter feed, featured products, quick links, and a map of data from their ECONet weather stations. You can also view data from more than 1,000 Southeastern weather stations on their full CRONOS map or follow their blog.

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nickels

COUNTY NICKELS FOR
KNOW-HOW REFERENDUM ANNOUNCEMENT

County Nickels for Know-How Referendum The Jackson and Swain County Nickels for Know-How Referendum will be held on Thursday, November 1, 2016. Robert Hawk, County Extension Director said polling places have been established in the County.  The polling locations are as follows: Jackson and Swain County Extension Office Hawk explained that the referendum is being held to let users and produces of feed or fertilizer decide if they wish to continue the self-assessment program.  This program has been in place since 1948, and the law requires that a new referendum be held every six years. A 2/3 favorable vote will mean that growers are willing to continue to assess themselves to support agricultural research and education.  The assessment is fifteen cents per hundred pounds on feed and fertilizer produced in North Carolina. The funds, about $1.4 million annually, are collected by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and then allocated by the NC Carolina Agricultural Foundation, Inc.’s 148 volunteer Board of Directors to support agricultural research and extension projects at NC State University benefiting agriculture in North Carolina. For more information on the referendum please call your County Extension Office at: 586-4009 - Jackson or 488-3848 - Swain.

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Solar panels

Solar Energy Property
Tax Resources

With a surge in solar power installations across North Carolina, Extension specialists have developed materials to address questions about tax implications, land appraisal and more. Solar Generation Property Taxation Solar and Wind Energy Development Opportunities: Tax Implications

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NEWS View All

Postharvest Handling for Enhanced Shelf Life Workshop

The economic success of fruit and vegetable production is highly dependent on postharvest quality preservation. When marketing fresh fruits and vegetables, understanding the processes affecting product quality during storage and transportation is essential MORE »

Ski Walking

Smokies Ski Walking School

We are fortunate to have mountains to see everyday, but also to condition ourselves with well maintained trails that climb our mountains, but also pathways that we have at our parks, schools, developing MORE »

hunteng

The Leopold Education Project (LEP)

Jackson and Swain counties have many wonderful natural attributes such as clean water, diverse forests, good bottomland soils for agriculture, fish and wildlife to harvest or enjoy. Our counties have produced many heroes MORE »

County SNAP Programs

As your Family and Consumer Science Agent at the Jackson County Extension Center, it has been my pleasure to present SNAP Ed programs to our Seniors and Pre-K groups throughout the county. MORE »

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EVENTS View All
Ginseng Production Seminar - SwainTue Aug 30, 2016
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Where:
Swain County Cooperative Extension, 60 Almond School Road, Bryson City
— 2 days away
CloverbudsWed Aug 31, 2016
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM— 3 days away
CloverbudsWed Aug 31, 2016
3:45 PM - 5:00 PM— 3 days away
Ginseng Production Seminar - Jackson Thu Sep 1, 2016
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM Where:
Jackson County Cooperative Extension, Scotts Creek Road, Sylva
— 4 days away
YLCSun Sep 4, 2016
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM— 7 days away
YLCSun Sep 4, 2016
5:45 PM - 7:30 PM— 7 days away
Ski Walking DemonstrationTue Sep 6, 2016
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM Where:
Jackson County Extension Center, Scotts Creek Road, Sylva
— 1 week away
Nursery Weed Management Field DayWed Sep 7, 2016
8:00 AM - 1:00 PM Where:
Hawksridge Farms 4243 S. NC 127 Hwy, Hickory, NC
— 1 week away
More Events