Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Press Herald Interviews Coffin About Free Tomato Plants

Monday, July 21st, 2014

The Portland Press Herald spoke with Extension educator Donna Coffin about the University of Maine Cooperative Extension in Piscataquis County handing out free tomato plants. In June, staff members and volunteers handed out 220 cherry tomato plants and donated 50 to prisoners at the Charleston Correctional Facility, hoping to inspire new vegetable gardeners, the article states. “The idea is if they start with one tomato, it is not as intimidating,” Coffin said.

 

4-H Adventures in Health Science

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Once again, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension 4-H program, in collaboration with Mayo Regional Hospital and C.A. Dean Memorial Hospital, will offer 4-H Adventures in Health Science to students ages 12 to 18. The program offers youth the opportunity to learn about careers in the field of health care through direct interaction with medical professionals who practice in Piscataquis County.

Each program begins with a three-day summer immersion experience. The first will be at Mayo Regional Hospital’s Resource Center in Dover-Foxcroft, on July 15, 16, and 17. The second group will meet at C.A. Dean Memorial Hospital in Greenville, on July 22, 23, and 24. Both groups will meet from 10:00 to 2:00 each day.

This summer’s area of exploration will be muscles and bones.  Students will meet the experts in the areas of anatomy, phyaical or occupational therapy, eating for strong muscles and bones, emergency care of injuries and injury prevention.  The hands-on activities will be fun as well as educational.

Following the initial event, students will be eligible to participate in all 4-H activities at the local, state, and national levels.  4-H members learn about topics that interest them, do public service projects, and participate in field trips, among many other activities.

Space is limited. To register, contact Sheila Norman at 564-3301 or email sheila.norman@maine.edu.  Applications will be accepted on a first come-first served basis.

For more information or to request a disability accommodation, call 564-3301.

UMaine Cooperative Extension to Give Away Tomato Plants, Maine Edge Reports

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

The Maine Edge carried a report stating the 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. Extension personnel will distribute tomato plants to county food cupboards June 13 and 20, and plants will be given away the week of June 23, at the Dover-Foxcroft Cooperative Extension office.

WABI Advances Cooperative Extension Weed Identification Walk

Friday, June 6th, 2014

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

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

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 http://umaine.edu/piscataquis/programs/home-gardening/one-tomato/ or call 207.564.3301, 1.800.287.1491 (in Maine).

What’s That Weed? UMaine Extension Knows

Thursday, May 29th, 2014
Cinquefoil

Rough cinquefoil (Potentilla norvegica L.) in flower, June. Photo by Jennifer Cote

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a free weed identification walk at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 12, at Stutzman’s Farm, 891 Douty Hill Road, Sangerville.

Common weeds that invade vegetable, fruit, and other cultivated crops will be the focus of the walk led by Extension Educator Donna Coffin. She’ll have references available for those who want to learn how to identify and manage weeds. Participants are encouraged to bring a digital photo of problematic weeds in their farms and gardens. Two hours of pesticide recertification credit are available for private pesticide applicators.

For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, contact Coffin at 207.564.3301, 800.287.1491 (in Maine), or donna.coffin@maine.edu. Details also are available at calendar.umaine.edu/events/.

Starting Seeds at Home Workshop

Friday, April 25th, 2014

Would you like to start your own seedlings to transplant out in the garden when the weather warms up?  Do you know how long it takes to have the transplants ready for the garden?  Do you know it is important to start with good quality seed?  Do you want to learn how to do a germination test to determine the seed’s viability since different types of seed remain viable for different lengths of time?

Please attend our workshop presented by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension in Piscataquis County.  It will be held on May 8th, 2014 from 6:00 – 7:30 pm at the Greenville High School Cafeteria.  There is a $5 fee that supports the Greenville Adult Education program.  For further information please contact Ana Bonstedt at ana.bonstedt@maine.edu or 207-564-3301.

UMaine Extension offers hayfield, pasture management workshops

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering free workshops on hayfield and pasture management this spring around the state.

Rick Kersbergen, UMaine Extension educator in Waldo County, will lead the “Got Hayfields?” workshops, which focus on how to best manage hayfields and pastures to produce high-quality feed for livestock. Topics include weed control, managing soil fertility, hay and pasture renovation techniques, grazing management and basics of forage quality.

Workshops are scheduled for the following dates, times and locations:

  • March 25, 6:30-8:30 p.m., UMaine Extension, 992 Waterville Road, Waldo
  • April 3, 6-8 p.m., Farmington Grange, 124 Bridge St., West Farmington
  • April 10, 7-9 p.m., UMaine Extension, 307 Maine Ave., Bangor
  • April 24, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Vassalboro Grange, Route 32, East Vassalboro
  • April 30, 2-4 p.m., UMaine Extension, 57 Houlton Road, Presque Isle
  • May 14, 5:30-7:30 p.m., UMaine Extension, 24 Main St., Lisbon Falls
  • June 3, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Noon Family Sheep Farm, 78 Sunset Road, Springvale

Pre-registration is requested. To register, or to request a disability accommodation, call 1.800.287.1426, or visit http://umaine.edu/waldo/programs/events/got-hayfields.

MS Dishes on Food-to-Market Course

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

Morning Sentinel reported that University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a six-session course that covers moving a specialty food product to market. The class will take place Tuesdays, April 8–29, 2014 in Skowhegan and Dover-Foxcroft. Two May class sessions are scheduled to include individual business consultations and a tour of the Dr. Matthew Highlands Pilot Plant — UMaine’s state-of-the-art facility that assists food processors, entrepreneurs, farmers, researchers and students in the food industry.

From Recipe to Market: Learn to Cash in on Opportunities

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a six-session course that covers moving a specialty food product to market.

The class, which meets 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. each Tuesday, April 8–29, 2014 will be held in two locations — 7 County Drive, Skowhegan, and 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft. Two May class sessions will include individual business consultations and a tour of the Dr. Matthew Highlands Pilot Plant, a state-of-the-art UMaine facility that assists food processors, entrepreneurs, farmers, researchers and students in the food industry.

Topics to be covered include licensing, safe preparation and packaging of food, assessing potential profits and locating resources to support a developing business. The class is for people operating a value-added business and those seriously considering one; participants must have a specific food product or recipe in mind and are expected to attend all sessions. Presenters include: Beth Calder, UMaine Extension food science specialist; James McConnon, UMaine Extension business and economics specialist; and Kathy Hopkins, Debra Kantor and Donna Coffin, UMaine Extension educators.

Cost is $35 per person. Partial scholarships are available. Registrations must be received by April 1 to reserve a space. More information, including online registration is online. For questions, or to request a disability accommodation at the Skowhegan site, call 207.474.9622 or email tammy.bodge@maine.edu. For questions, or to request a disability accommodation at the Dover-Foxcroft site, call 207.564.3301 or email amanda.miles@maine.edu.