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Growing Grass in the Shade

by Tim Baker, Extension Professional and Horticulture Specialist

One common question I frequently receive concerns how to establish and maintain a lawn in the shade. While we like to have shade trees in the yard, it’s sometimes difficult to persuade grass that it needs to grow underneath those spreading branches. Grass prefers to grow in full sunlight, and the reduced sunlight and the increased competition for water and nutrients makes

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Historic Winter Storms — Don’t Park It Here

by Tim Baker, Regional Horticulturist

As I write this in early January, we are well into winter’s grasp. So far, it hasn’t been too severe here in Daviess County, other than that polar vortex that hit everyone in the Midwest.

But when looking at historic winter storms, it becomes apparent that severe winter weather can come upon us very quickly, with sometimes life-threatening conditions.

One of the classic winter storms

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Excitement Growing for Growers Conference

by Tim Baker, Horticulture Specialist

In less than one month, it will be time for the Great Plains Growers Conference. This is an exciting conference for horticulture producers, with many new ideas presented from growers, researchers, and Extension specialists. The conference is organized by Extension educators from five states: Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, and South Dakota. We hold the conference every January in St. Joseph, Missouri. Our 18th annual conference

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Introduction to Agroforestry

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

Agriculture, when taken as a whole, can be a very complex system. We tend to isolate our thinking in terms of our specialty. I am a Horticulture Specialist. We also have agronomy, livestock, Ag business, and Ag engineering specialists, all studying some concentrated aspect of agriculture.

Now don’t get me wrong. I really like the specialist system. But sometimes we need to think

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It’s a Good Egg, The Eggplant

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

If we were to make a list of favorite garden vegetables, you probably wouldn’t find eggplant very near the top of the list. While it may not be as popular as the tomato, it does produce good yields of fruit, which can be used in a wide variety of dishes. In addition, it is somewhat attractive, and has been used on occasion in

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And the Skies Are Not Cloudy All Day

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

It seems to be a common theme in American music that clear skies are good. Cloudy, stormy skies are bad. When Irving Berlin wrote “Blue Skies” in 1926 he seemed to have that idea. Even the frontier physician, Dr. Brewster M. Higley, felt that way when he penned the words to what is now known as “Home on the Range,” where the “skies

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Update Includes Private Applicator’s License, Drought Info

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

Every year, Extension agricultural specialists in the Northwest Region conduct meetings that we call “Ag Updates.” These are held in a number of the counties in our region.

The original idea behind these meetings was to provide another place for pesticide applicators to obtain or renew their Private Applicator’s License. In addition, the agronomist would update the farmers on new research, insects, diseases,

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Winter meetings and Master Gardener classes

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

It’s been a hard year for growers, to say the least. Heat and drought certainly took a toll on our crops. Some livestock producers had problems getting water for their livestock, and increased feed prices are not making life easy.

But at least the 2012 growing season is behind us, and now we can look toward next year… and hope we get some

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The culture of the cranberry crop

by Tim Baker, Northwest Region Horticulture Specialist

One of the traditional foods seen on Thanksgiving tables every year is cranberries. These native North American fruits are grown in several of the northern states, especially Massachusetts, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Washington, and Oregon. Since most folks in Northwest Missouri are not familiar with the culture of this crop, I thought I would give you a little background about this interesting fruit.

Cranberries

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