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County Extension

  • Thinking about canning this year? It’s time to heat up your kitchen

    The home canning season isn’t really that far away. If you’re thinking about “putting food up” this summer, this is a great time to learn more, before the busy time gets here.
    As a friend of mine who is a food safety specialist says, “Home canning isn’t rocket science, but it does require time and effort. And it must be done properly to ensure safety.”
    People have been preserving food for centuries in an effort to keep food from a time of plenty for a time of need.

  • Canning class is March 9

    It’s home canning time again. Soon, local kitchens will be filled with canning equipment to preserve fresh produce from gardens and local markets. For those wanting to learn how to “put up” food by canning this spring and summer, come join Sarah Barnwell, extension agent, for a pressure canning class.
    Class will be from 10:30 a.m.-noon Saturday, March 9, in the demonstration kitchen at N.C. Cooperative Extension, 25 Referendum Drive in Bolivia.

  • Planting and growing camellias in North Carolina, Part I

    By Shirley Waggoner-Eisenman
    Brunswick County Master Gardener

  • Sprouts: Good nutrition, high risk

    You probably haven’t given the topic of sprouts much thought, but when people do, they usually think good nutrition, health food or perhaps a health food restaurant.
    Nothing could be further from the truth. The foodborne illness risk associated with sprouts far outweighs its nutritional benefits.
    In last week’s column, I talked about the risk some people take when eating undercooked meats, eggs and seafood. Some of the same risks and concerns apply to raw sprouts.

  • Protecting landscape plants from cold damage in winter

    By Tom Woods
    Agricultural Technician
    During the winter months, it is necessary to offer protection to certain North Carolina landscape plants. Winter protection does not mean to keep plants warm, as this is virtually impossible, but to provide protection from damaging wind, heavy snow and ice, the alternate freezing and thawing of the soil beneath the plants and heat from the sun on very cold days.

  • When it comes to foodborne illnesses, who is at risk?

    Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness, especially if you have certain medical conditions.
    Consumer advisories such as this are starting to appear on menus and walls at local restaurants. This is all part of the new food code adopted by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Health. These new rules went into effect last September and affect all food service operations in the state.

  • Is eating pie for breakfast as healthful as eating fruit?

    OK, you know you’ve done it. Even the healthiest eater has fallen under the spell of pie. Possibly it was the day after Thanksgiving when the pumpkin pie jumped at you from inside the refrigerator. Or maybe you “passed” on dessert last night and now it’s breakfast.
    Then you think to yourself, could this be one of my fruit and vegetable servings for the day? You know and I know that really is stretching the idea.

  • Brunswick’s 4-H Teen Council has busy January

    On Saturday, Jan. 12, Brunswick County 4-H Teen Council had a special visit from 4-H alumni Perry Grosch, a former teen council officer and a once extremely active 4-H youth in Brunswick County.
    A junior at the College of Wooster in Ohio studying archaeology, Grosch worked on an archaeological excavation of a Roman town in England during the past summer. He made a presentation on archaeology and answered questions about college life, 4-H and his experience in England.

  • Pineapple is tasty any time of the year

    It’s hard to get fresh fruits this time of year. The selection at the grocery store is limited and the prices seem to be going up each week.
    For a special treat and a little variety, you may want to try a pineapple. If you can’t find fresh, it’s always available in the canned fruit section.
    Although available year round, the peak season for Hawaiian pineapple is late spring into summer and Caribbean pineapples have two seasons: December through February and August through September.

  • The pest is back: Kudzu bugs overwinter here

    By Judy Koehly
    Master Gardener
    There is a new pest in town: the kudzu bug. Megacopta cribraria, commonly referred to as the kudzu bug, was first discovered on kudzu in the vicinity of Atlanta, Ga., during the fall of 2009. Unfortunately kudzu is not the only plant it has on its diet. It quickly moved across Georgia and South Carolina, causing extensive soybean damage.
    In 2011, it was found in North Carolina, Alabama and Virginia, and by 2012 is being found in at least two more states—Florida and Tennessee.