USDA Farm Bill Funding Deadline
The 2014 Farm Bill Program Funding deadline is just around the corner! The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service offers assistance to growers and ranchers through programs such as the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) and the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). For more information, please visit: fl.nrcs.usda.gov/programs or nrcs.usda.gov/programs. For 2014 funding, the cut-off date to apply for EQIP, WHIP, and CSP is November 15, 2013. You must submit an application by the cut-off date. For more information about the 2014 programs click here or view the EQIP applicaiton flyer here.
Preventing Mosquito Bites
A wet summer means mosquitoes - lots of them. Mosquitoes are troublesome pests that can cause itchy bites and transmit viruses. The best way to avoid being bitten is to stay clear of mosquito-infested areas and wear protective clothing and insect repellent. Click the links to learn more about mosquitoes and preventing mosquito bites.
Turning the Tide on Childhood Obesity
Recent news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported the rate of obesity among low-income pre-school children appears to be declining for the first time in decades. The declining rates show that our collective efforts are helping to gain ground on childhood obesity, particularly among some of the more vulnerable populations in our country. Low-income children are often at a disadvantage when it comes to getting the food they need to grow up healthy, which is why USDA’s nutrition programs and resources are so vital. The UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County Family Nutrition Program (FNP) is one of the programs in Sarasota that has been providing Nutrition Education to low-income families for to fight childhood obesity over a decade . FNP works with programs such as WIC, All Faiths Food Bank Growing Healthy Kids, and the School Food and Nutrition Service.
Local, Interactive Green Map Launches
A new interactive "Green Map" of sustainability features is now available online at www.scgov.net/greenmap. The interactive mapping tool provides residents and visitors with information on sustainable community resources and aspects, such as ways to find local produce, locate green hotels or check out the solar installations in their neighborhood.The map is a collaborative effort between Sarasota County, UF/IFAS Extension and SCOPE. Read more.
Concrete Support in Times of Need
In times of need, families will often turn to other family members or friends. While these types of informal supports are important, some needs may require more concrete financial or material support. Concrete supports allow families to maintain their financial security and ensure that they are able to meet daily needs or unexpected costs. There are many state and local programs that provide concrete support to families who qualify. Read on to find out when to ask for help and where to go and what to do to receive assistance.
Wherever you are in Florida, you are close enough to harm or help Florida's coastal treasures, its estuaries. A Practical Guide to Estuary-Friendly Living (SGEB 64) gives you actions you can take to protect Florida's estuaries. Now you can get the e-pub from the iBookstore and the Kindle Store, so pass it on to a friend!
Fishing at the Trash Can Grand Slam
On June 12, UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County, Sea Grant, and 4-H partnered to create the 4-H Trash Can Grand Slam, a kids fishing tournament where a catfish counts as much as a redfish. The tournament provides an opportunity to bring families together for a day of fishing, community and education. Forty participants attended the one-day tournament designed to provide a better understanding of the ecological importance, diversity and issues surrounding Sarasota Bay. Click here to watch a Living Green segment about Sustainable Fishing.
Gardeners Giving Back
The UF/IFAS Extension Sarasota County Master Gardeners, have completed a beautification project at Sarasota’s Oak Park School. Oak Park School serves more than 300 special needs students. The project was headed up by Master Gardener volunteer Bonnie Feise and her husband George with help from Oak Park School teacher Carol Wojtyna. The Feises have a grandson with who is challenged with Asperger's syndrome, and Wojtyna's daughter is a graduate of the school. The project received support from a Sarasota County Master Gardener grant, as well as contributions from community leaders and local businesses, including Lowe's, Home Depot, Wal-Mart, Troy's Nursery, Albritton's Nursery, Treasure Cove Statuary and St. Thomas More Catholic Church. More...
Neighborhood Grant Workshops
A series of free grant orientation workshops under the Sarasota County Neighborhood Grant Program will be held August through October at several locations around the county. Residents can learn what improvement projects are eligible for the program and how to apply for a neighborhood grant during the two-hour workshops. Attendance at a workshop is required for grant applicants. Attendees must RSVP. More...
Plagued by Air Potato?
A natural enemy for the air potato has recently been introduced: the air potato leaf feeding beetle. After extensive research, these eating machines are being released around the state in infested areas. As their name suggests, the beetles feed exclusively on air potato leaves, and are the only natural pest found to be effective at controlling this plant. Click here if you are interested in finding out more about the beetle. Or click here to report air potato sightings.
Find Answers To Your Lawn, Garden and Pest Questions
Master Gardener Plant Clinic
6700 Clark Road
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