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County Extension

  • It’s time to freeze some cranberries

    I bet there are cranberries in your house right now. Cranberries are a must for most families at Thanksgiving.
    What’s your favorite way to serve them? For some, it has got to be the jellied cranberry sauce…complete with those little ridges straight from the can. Other families look forward to a sauce made with fresh whole cranberries and oranges, or maybe you prefer a special jelled cranberry mold.

  • Gardeners offer tips on holiday gifts

    By Tom Woods and Sharon Dowdy

    Newspapers are filled with holiday ads. Wrapping paper and decorations appear on department store shelves. The holiday will soon be here. If your gift-giving list includes a gardener, take some advice from a few of Brunswick County’s most experienced gardeners.

  • Five tips to stretch your food dollars

    Before heading to the grocery store, plan your meals for the week. Include meals like stews, casseroles or stir-fries, which “stretch” expensive items into more portions. Check to see what foods you already have and make a list for what you need to buy.
    Locate the “unit price” on the shelf directly below the product. Use it to compare different brands and different sizes of the same brand to determine which is more economical.

  • It’s time to clean out your refrigerator

    In honor of Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day on Nov. 15, let’s play Food: Keep or Toss? Should you “keep” or “toss” the following food:
    1. Tacos left on the kitchen counter overnight?
    2. Meat thawed all day on the kitchen counter?
    3. Cut or peeled fruits and vegetables left at room temperature more than two hours?
    4. Leftover pizza placed in the refrigerator within two hours after it was cooked?
    5. Leftovers kept in the refrigerator for more than a week?

  • Practicing the not-so-scary art of pruning hydrangeas

    By Judy Koehly
    Master Gardener
    Pruning hydrangea bushes is not necessary unless the shrubs have become overgrown or unsightly.
    You can safely remove spent blooms (deadhead) anytime. However, there are deadheading tips to keep in mind for optimal results. Try to keep cuts above the first set of large leaves or only cut down to the last healthy buds. This ensures the safety of any developing blooms for the next season.

  • Washing fruits and vegetables

    Research shows that eating lofts of fresh fruits and vegetables reduces our risk of some cancers and other diseases, but we also hear of the risks associated with eating raw produce.
    There have been cases of food-borne illnesses linked to melons, sprouts, spinach, tomatoes and several other items. The bacteria that cause these illnesses are destroyed by heating, but many fruits and vegetables, like lettuce, melons and strawberries, are never cooked, so you may wonder how to reduce the risk while getting the nutritional benefits.

  • Master Gardeners lend a hand to spruce up Carolina Shores

    A group of Master Gardeners from the Brunswick County Community Extension Service, all of whom live in Carolina Shores and the Carolina Shores Golf Course, have all come together for a beautification project that benefits everyone.
    A small island of land on golf course property that that leads to the entrance of the golf course had become overgrown and unsightly but, because of the golf course’s financial difficulties, the course could not do the necessary pruning and landscaping that it had previously done before.

  • Eating together is cheaper, better

    A couple weeks ago, I wrote in this column about the importance of family meals. I shared some research on why family meals are important to the social, educational and moral development of a child. I got lots of positive comments on this column. Thank you.
    There’s some additional research that shows when families eat together, the meals are healthier.

  • 4-H’ers teach elementary kids about building strong bones

    During National 4-H Week, Oct. 7-13, youth in Brunswick County had the opportunity to teach on a farm during Brunswick Counties 4-H School Enrichment-Life on the Farm. They also learned about robotics engineering through participation in the 4-H National Youth Science Day experiment and taught youth at Communities in Schools’ after-school programs at Union and Virginia Williamson schools.

  • Tourism authority wins awards

    The Brunswick County Tourism Development Authority (BCTDA) was recently awarded two Destination Marketing Achievement awards from the Destination Marketing Association of North Carolina (DMANC). The awards were presented at a ceremony on Sept. 27 at the Tourism Leadership Conference, a joint annual meeting of DMANC and the North Carolina Travel Industry Association (NCTIA), at the Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley in Raleigh.