In today’s Ag News Roundup, the OSU food preservation hotline starts taking calls on Monday, Oregon rangeland experiences profit shortfall, FARM Team program is working for farmers in Washington, Hermiston watermelon harvest to begin soon, and bronze birch borer spotted in Klamath Falls.
OSU Opens Food Preservation Hotline
Oregon State University Extension will begin taking calls and answering questions about canning and other food preservation and preparation starting July 10, 2017. The hotline will remain open weekdays from 9am to 4pm until October 13, 2017. All questions will be answered by extension-trained and –certified master food preservers. The hotline can be reached at 800-354-7319.
Eastern Oregon Rangeland Not Making Money for State
Due to environmental regulations, wildfires, and other issues, nearly 600-thousand acres of Eastern Oregon rangeland has struggled to turn a profit for decades. While the state does lease the land to ranchers to graze livestock, the state experienced a $1.2 million-dollar shortfall on the land in 2016.
Farmers and Buyers Connected by FARM Team
The Washington State Department of Agriculture Food Assistance and Regional Markets (FARM) program is working to connect small farms with buyers and potential markets. The program is also designed to help farmers share ideas and improve practices to generate further profits.
Hermiston Watermelon Harvest Begins
Thanks to record-high temperatures, this year’s harvest of Hermiston watermelons is expected to begin mid-July. While the season did get off to a slow start with a wetter-than-usual spring, the harvest is only a week off projected forecasts.
Watering is the Best Defense Against Bronze Birch Borer
Oregon State University horticulturalists have found symptoms of the bronze birch borer in Klamath Falls. The beetle was first discovered in Portland in 2003, and has quickly migrated south. OSU has issued several recommendations to fight the beetle, including regular watering of mature trees.