UMaine Extension’s Integrated Pest Management Program Cited in Press Herald Article

June 25th, 2014 9:42 AM


The University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s integrated pest management (IPM) programs were mentioned in a Portland Press Herald article about local organic strawberries being limited in Maine. Cathy Karonis of Fairwinds Farm in Bowdoinham said she has contemplated going organic, but can’t risk crop failure or inconsistent quality on her 14 acres of strawberries. Karonis said she follows UMaine Extension’s IPM reports and sprays when necessary. IPM is a comprehensive, decision-making process for solving pest problems. It is a sustainable approach providing economical control with the least possible hazard, to people, property and the environment.

Jemison Plants Beans, Talks Warm Soil for WVII ‘Backyard Gardener’ Series

June 24th, 2014 8:49 AM

John Jemison, a soil and water quality specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, was featured in the latest installment of the “Backyard Gardener” series on WVII (Channel 7). Jemison spoke about the importance of warm soil for vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, melons, squash and cucumbers. He said laying out a roll of black plastic can heat the ground and minimize weeds. Jemison also demonstrated how to plant beans.

Witt Demonstrates Pallet Gardening on WLBZ

June 17th, 2014 9:22 AM

Amy Witt, a horticulture professional with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, demonstrated on WLBZ (Channel 2) how to grow flowers and herbs vertically by using a pallet. Witt said pallet gardening is great for growing annuals, herbs, crops that vine and greens such as lettuce. She also spoke about UMaine Extension’s “Ask the Expert” day to be held Wednesday, June 18 at Tidewater Farm in Falmouth.

Drummond Talks to BDN About Blueberry, Bee Research

June 17th, 2014 8:59 AM

Frank Drummond, an entomology specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension and a UMaine professor of insect ecology, spoke to the Bangor Daily News about a five-year, $3.5 million research project on the role bees play in blueberry production. Drummond is leading the project that involves biologists, economists, anthropologists and graduate students from UMaine, as well as researchers from other states. Drummond said renting commercial beehives is, on average, the most expensive production cost for Maine’s blueberry growers. The project aims to study the role native bees play in blueberry pollination, the status of native bee populations, and which species of bees are best for adequate pollination. “The whole purpose of this project is to look at what are some of the best pollination strategies that growers might be able to use,” he said. The project also includes outreach to blueberry growers in the form of workshops hosted by Drummond to teach growers about pollination.

Jemison Plants Carrots, Onions for WVII ‘Backyard Gardener’ Series

June 13th, 2014 10:34 AM

John Jemison, a soil and water quality specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, was featured in the latest installment of the “Backyard Gardener” series on WVII (Channel 7). Jemison spoke about the importance of crop rotation and demonstrated the best way to plant carrots and onions.

Handley Offers Tips on Growing Berries for Press Herald Article

June 11th, 2014 12:20 PM

David Handley, a University of Maine Cooperative Extension specialist of vegetables and small fruits at UMaine’s Highmoor Farm in Monmouth, was interviewed for a Portland Press Herald article about the best methods for growing native berries. Handley shared tips for successfully growing strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries at home.

UMaine Cooperative Extension Mentioned in Sun Journal Article About Peru Garden

June 11th, 2014 11:16 AM

The University of Maine Cooperative Extension was mentioned in a Sun Journal article about a town meeting in Peru. At the meeting, Brenda Swan, director of the Peru Food Bank, was granted permission from selectmen to use land near the Town Office for a community garden. Swan said she is looking to form a steering committee for the project and UMaine Extension will provide guidance.

WABI Advances Cooperative Extension Weed Identification Walk

June 6th, 2014 8:41 AM

WABI (Channel 5) reported the University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer a free weed identification walk Thursday, June 12, at Stutzman’s Farm in Sangerville. Donna Coffin, an Extension educator, will lead the walk that will focus on common weeds that invade vegetable, fruit and other cultivated crops. Participants are encouraged to bring a photo of problematic weeds found in their gardens.

Cooperative Extension to Give Away Tomato Plants

June 2nd, 2014 3:31 PM

University of Maine Cooperative Extension in Piscataquis County will give away 300 cherry tomato plants as part of the One Tomato Project to increase the number of people growing food.

One Tomato LogoThe One Tomato Project, which originated in Ontario, Canada, encourages people to plant, grow, and eat more vegetables, and to give extra to food banks. The mission: “To grow healthier communities, one tomato at a time.”

Extension personnel will distribute tomato plants to county food cupboards June 13 and 20. And plants will be given away, while supplies last, the week of June 23, at the extension office at 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft. People will be asked to complete a survey about their gardening experiences. Extension staff will provide information about container gardens and sign up those interested in receiving the Piscataquis & Penobscot Garden Newsletter.

growing a tomato in a bag“Starting a garden can be intimidating,” says Donna Coffin, Extension Educator. “But if you just start with one tomato it seems less daunting. One tomato can be grown anywhere there is full sun — in a vegetable garden, in a flower garden, in a window box, in a pot or even in a bag. With regular watering you can start harvesting in no time.”

About one-third of households nationwide grow some type of food; the typical household spends about $70 to do so and yields about $600 worth of produce, according to the National Gardening Association’s 2009 report “Impact of Home and Community Gardening in America.”

Walter Boomsma, president of the Piscataquis County Extension Executive Committee, supports the project. “This is the type of program that clearly has a direct benefit to our citizens and county,” he says. “One Tomato has practical value with very little rhetoric and the potential for big returns on a relatively small investment. People can try gardening with practically no risk and discover the fun of becoming more self-sufficient and eating healthier.”

Participants will be invited to post about their plant progress on the UMaine Extension Piscataquis Facebook page. For more information, visit or call 207.564.3301, 1.800.287.1491 (in Maine).

Jemison Talks to WVII About Preparing Soil

June 2nd, 2014 1:19 PM

John Jemison, a soil and water quality specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, spoke with WVII (Channel 7) for the latest installment of its “Backyard Gardener” series. Jemison spoke about how to prepare soil for gardening.