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County Extension

  • 4-H’er attends Raleigh program

    Brunswick County 4-H member Sammi Lawrence attended 4-H Citizenship North Carolina Focus in Raleigh on June 11-13. She returned home from three days where more than 200 youth and adults representing more than 75 4-H programs across the state gathered to exchange ideas, gain knowledge and learn through hands-on experiences about the different levels and branches of government.

  • Learn to identify many poisonous plants

    Tom Woods
    Horticultural Technician
    Some of the plants in your garden and in your home are more than just pretty; they may also be poisonous if ingested. It is wise to be aware of the plants that can cause harm, especially if you have children or pets on the premises.
    One of the prime rules is to avoid any white fruits, both in the northern part of the country and in the tropics.

  • Local seafood is plentiful at the coast

    "When you’re lucky enough to live by the ocean, you’re lucky enough.”
    We have all heard this saying or seen it on one of those cute little signs at the gift stores, but it certainly applies to those of us who live in Brunswick County. Not only are we lucky to have our wonderful beaches and amazing ocean, we have access to great local seafood.

  • Senior horticulture team wins

    The Brunswick County Senior 4-H Horticulture Judging Team of Darby Dawkins, Carlyn Clark, Tori Norris and Camden Clark won first place in the North Carolina statewide horticulture judging competition at North Carolina State University in Raleigh on May 19. Dawkins also accrued the highest individual score.
    The Horticulture Judging Competition entailed three components: 1. Judging the quality of horticulture products (plants, flowers, fruits and vegetables); 2. Identification of 100 plants; and 3. A written test on horticultural practices.

  • Red bugs and those itching chigger bites

    Are you itching at the ankles soon after hiking, picnicking or walking on a lawn? You may have chigger bites.
    Chiggers found in North Carolina, also known as red bugs, are the immature form of a mite. The bites can cause small, red bumps or welts on the skin and intense itching.
    Chiggers occur most frequently in areas of thick vegetation where the animals they normally bite (small mammals, birds, and reptiles) live. Although chiggers are more common in damp, shady areas, they also occur on golf courses or lawns.

  • 4-H’ers gain a lot and then give back through experience

    From 2006-2011, Brunswick County 4-H’er Elizabeth Mintz has embarked on a journey of hard work and dedication to be a part of the livestock show world. She has raised everything from turkeys, rabbits and dairy goats to beef cows.
    Her efforts have led her down the road to success with multiple first -lace, overall grand-champion, and showmanship titles under her belt. She even has the bragging rights to the Cape Fear Fair Expo’s coveted Claude McAllister Fancy Feather Award for the second year in a row.

  • Watch temps, not color, when cooking hamburgers

    The grill is fired up and your mouth is ready for a thick juicy hamburger.
    When talking food safety, how do you know when it is done? I bet you say: color. When it’s brown, it’s done. Not always.
    Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees to destroy any possible illness causing bacteria in the meat. Some ground meat may prematurely brown before this internal temperature has been reached. One out of every four hamburgers turns brown before it reaches 160 degrees.

  • Slime molds popping up on irrigated lawns

    By Tom Woods
    Master Gardener
    A few homeowners have recently asked me about gray powdery stuff showing up in small areas of their lawns. This slime mold on turf looks like burnt wood ashes that have been scattered in small spots on a lawn.
    Those of you lucky enough to get a few sporadic showers or who have irrigated lawns may notice these slimy areas.
    Hopefully, rain will arrive soon to relieve us of this extended drought. When it does, slime mold may pop up on more lawns.

  • Refresh in June, Iced Tea Month

    June is Iced Tea Month. After checking several references, I couldn’t find out who made this declaration or how long it’s been around. But does it matter, especially here the South where iced tea is frequently the beverage of choice? We don’t really need a special month to celebrate this popular beverage.
    Statistics show Americans now drink more tea than the British and approximately 85 percent of that is iced tea.
    As with many foods and beverages, there are many stories of how iced tea got started.

  • Our plants prosper in spite of us

    The world is full of luscious landscapes comprised of the color green. Everywhere we look, from the city streets to the beaches, there is plant life. No matter the situation, plants seem to grow and even to prosper despite the best efforts of people and geography. Yet we are not happy.
    If there is an oak in our backyard, we are disappointed if it is small; if there is a rose on our trellis, we are disappointed if it is not covered in blooms; if there is a tomato plant on our patio and it is not covered in bright, red tomatoes, we are disappointed.