Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Lunch Box Winners Workshop at Earthfare

If you missed the "Lunch Box Winners" Workshop in March, when the Playhouse was Earth Fare's Friend of the Quarter, you have another chance to attend. Lunchbox Winners will be offered from 1:45 to 2:30, Wednesday, May 12th at the Earth Fare Café, King Street, Boone. Learn quick and easy recipes for nutritious lunches even picky eaters will like. Extension Agent, Registered Dietitian and Mom Margie Mansure, will share tips for reducing waste and getting kids involved. There will be lots of free samples, plus recipes and coupons to take home and a drawing. Presented by Two Rivers Community School in cooperation with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service and sponsored by Earth Fare.
Two Rivers Community School is Earth Fare’s Friend of the Quarter for April, May and June. When you shop with a re-usable bag at Earth Fare, they will make a donation to the school.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Kids In the Creek

Since 2001, Wendy Patoprsty with the Watauga County Cooperative Extension and Dick and Joan Hearn of the Watauga River Conservation Partners have been playing in the creek water with all the 4th graders in the county.  Kids in the Creek is a program that was developed to create water quality awareness in the high country's youth.   The program delivers participatory education on water testing, watersheds, non point source pollution, and of course live creek "critter" identification. Patoprsty and the Hearns recently visited the 4th graders of Parkway Elementary School and helped them find stoneflies, mayflies, crayfish, and salamanders.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Pond Management Seminar, May 13

Do you have weed problems in your pond? Would you like to learn more about how to better manage your pond for fishing, swimming, aesthetics or other interests? A Pond Management Seminar will be held on May 13, 2010 from 9:00 am – Noon at the Watauga Agricultural Conference Center. The seminar will be hosted via Extension’s web-based Elluminate system.

Topics to be covered include: pond construction, stocking rates, fish species, managing water quality, balancing fish populations, recreational trout ponds, feeding fish, aquatic weed identification and control methods.

For commercial pesticide applicators, pesticide education credits have been approved for 1 hour in the categories of A N D X. To receive credit, attendees will need their pesticide applicator license number.

There is a $5 fee to attend the session. To register, please contact Jim Hamilton at the Watauga Cooperative Extension Service at 264.3061.

Friday, April 16, 2010

4-H Plant Sale in Full Swing

Several volunteers and 4-H Agent Karee Mackey tagged and bagged blueberry plants, apples, azaleas, and a cornucopia of other plants that arrived fresh this week from nurseries across the state. Close to $5,000 worth of fruit plants, native plants, and apple trees were sold to help support 4-H club activities throughout the year. Thank you to all of the volunteers and Extension staff that helped make the 2010 plant sale a huge success!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Ramp Research with National Agroforestry Center

Spring is the season for many forest herbs. From a culinary perspective, ramps are high on the priority list this time of year! On Thursday, April 15, the National Agroforestry Center visited several sites in Watauga County to gather environmental data on ramp habitat. They collected elevation & aspect, forest & soil type, and associated plant data. The National Agroforestry Center is interested in putting together information for private forest landowners on suitable site considerations for ramp production and cultivation. Extension, NRCS, and Watauga Soil and Water district identified several sites around the county for inclusion in the database and accompanied the group to several locations in the county.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Forestry Students Visit High Country

Jim Hamilton, Watauga Extension Director, and Brian Chatham, Watauga Soil and Water District, recently hosted a class of 14 forestry students from Haywood Community College. The students are participating in a soils and hydrology class and toured the Beech Creek Bog, the Boone Stormwater Wetland, and other sites in the county. Harry Yates of Yates Christmas Trees and Landscaping provided the class with a background on the Christmas tree industry and soil fertility issues.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Kathy Lee, Support Specialist

Kathy has been with the Watauga County Extension Office since 2007. A native of Avery County, she worked in the North Carolina Department of Corrections and at Appalachian State University before coming to Extension.

Kathy works closely with the 4-H program on their annual plant sale and is a licensed notary public. She completed the Master Gardener's Program in 2010.

Eddy Labus, Livestock and Crops

Eddy Labus joined the Watauga County Extension office in 2008. Originally from West Virginia, he holds a Bachelors degree in Agriculture from Berea College in Kentucky. Eddy is the Extension liaison for the Watauga County Cattlemen's Association and is actively promoting the Beef Quality Assurance program.

Eddy also works with landowners on pastured pork and poultry and the FAMACHA parasite monitoring protocols. He serves as the county's pesticide education coordinator and has also been working with landowners and farmers throughout the county on a multiflora rose eradication program.

Meghan Baker

Meghan Baker is the Christmas tree and Commercial Horticulture Extension Agent for Watauga County. She is the Extension Liaison for the Watauga County Christmas Tree Association, Watauga Beekeepers Association, and is also in charge of the county's Master Gardener program. Meghan also works extensively in the area of home horticulture and conducts numerous programs on gardening, weed management, and pest control--such as hemlock woolly adelgid control.

Meghan received a Bachelors Degree from Appalachian State University in 2001 and her Masters Degree in Plant Science and IPM from Clemson University in 2005. She has been with the Watauga County Extension Center since 2005.

Wendy Patoprsty, Natural Resources

Wendy Patoprsty is the Extension Agent for Natural Resources and Environmental Education in Watauga County.  She moved to Watauga County in 2000 after receiving a Bachelor of Science in Horticulture from the University of Georgia.  She started with Extension in 2001 as a grant funded Water Quality Technician and was hired as a Natural Resources Extension Agent in 2003.  In October 2008, NC A&T State University hired Wendy as an Environmental Education Extension Agent.  In this position Wendy collaborates with community development projects, stormwater projects, and community environmental education.

In 2014, Wendy received her Masters degree in Geography from Appalachian State University.  She coordinates the Kids in the Creek Program, the Big Sweep river cleanup which removes tons, literally, of trash from High Country streams each year. Wendy is also very involved in Operation Medicine Cabinet, which brings together more than a dozen agencies throughout the High Country to keep pharmaceuticals out of area watersheds. She is a Natural Resource Leadership Institute Fellow, has her NC Environmental Education Certification, and participated in the 2010 Marine Mammal Institute.

Susanne Winebarger, Admin. Secretary

A native of Watauga County, Susanne has been with the Watauga County Extension office for almost 20 years. She graduated with a degree in secretarial science from Kings College in Charlotte, NC in 1991. As the "senior" member of the Watauga County Staff, Susanne has worked with 4 different county directors.

Susanne has received numerous awards for leadership and customer service from Cooperative Extension and the Boone Chamber of Commerce and also serves as the secretary for the Watauga County Christmas Tree Association. 

Richard Boylan, Alternative and Organic Ag

Richard Boylan is the Area Agent for Alternative and Organic Agriculture for Watauga and Ashe Counties. Richard received his bachelors degree from Antioch College and a Masters degree from Syracuse. 

In 2009 Richard received the Sustainable Ag Extension Agent of the Year award from the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association. A strong and passionate proponent of sustainable agriculture, he helped jumpstart the area’s organic farm marketing cooperative, New River Organic Growers. He has helped local farmers adapt organic farming practices to the climate and soil conditions of the region and sell their products to consumers across the state. He also works closely with the farmers' markets in both counties...and grows some mean garlic!