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County Extension

  • New dietary guidelines

     The new Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) have been out for about six months. Professionals in the nutrition field anxiously awaited their release, but I’m guessing most other folks haven’t heard much about them. The DGA are developed to help promote health and prevent chronic disease for current and future generations by making recommendations about what makes up a healthy diet.

  • Sports drinks

     I’ve watched with amused interest when winning football team members cooperate to distract the coach so other members can douse him with the remaining liquid in the large Gatorade container. I’m guessing it’s all in fun and probably a show of respect and affection for the coach. All I can ever think of is how the coach now has cold wet sugary sticky hair and clothes to contend with throughout the celebration. I guess I don’t fully appreciate this Gatorade baptism ritual.

  • Diagnosing root diseases, Part III

     Sam Marshall

    Horticulture Agent

     

  • Summer survival

     Although the first day of summer isn’t officially for a few more weeks, this holiday weekend usually is the kickoff for summer events and activities. Typically our lifestyles change a little in the summer and some of our health habits need to change with them. Here are a few strategies from experts can help you make the most of the summer while fostering healthful habits.

     

    Summer Survival Tip 1: Get active

  • Understanding and preventing plant diseases in landscapes: Part II

     By Sam Marshall

     

  • Great food preservation resources

     The beautiful spring weather we’ve been having is a great inspiration to start a garden. This also means it’s a good time to remind people thinking about preserving foods they need to have up-to-date recipes. Food preservation recipes and techniques are constantly being studied and revised. Just because “you’ve always done it this way” or this is how your mother (or grandmother) taught you, it may not be the most up-to-date method. Also, just because you found a recipe on the Internet or saw it on a cooking show on television does not make it safe.

  • Iron and your blood

     Last month I saw this posted by a friend on Facebook: “A disappointing morning ... I am a regular blood donor and was sent away last week because my iron count was too low. Tried again today after trying to consume more iron but sent away again. I won’t give up but left feeling pretty defeated.”

  • Understanding and preventing plant diseases in landscapes: Part I

     By Sam Marshall

     

    For all the challenges of growing plants in our region, there are probably known more diverse and frustrating to understand as those that arise due to plant disease. While some can be severe, leading in some cases to outright death of plants, most plant diseases are quite harmless and are easily prevented and controlled. In all cases, early detection of diseases is an essential component of your landscape integrated pest management (IPM) program.

     

    The ecology of plant diseases

  • Options for making your garden sweet

     Ask most gardeners about sweet-smelling flowering shrubs for the garden and gardenia will be at the top of the list. This prom corsage favorite is a little too sickening-sweet for my taste, but it does a great job of perfuming the garden. Once you get past gardenia, the consensus on making your garden life sweet breaks down. Luckily, there are lots of options for sweet-smelling shrubs in southeastern North Carolina.

  • Whip up a dip

     Getting kids to eat the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables a day can be a challenge for parents. The key is to make the fruits and veggies appealing to them, but how? Some nutrition experts have observed children are more likely to eat fruits and vegetables that are cut up, rather than eating them whole. After cutting up your produce, why not offer a dip to make the experience more enticing and fun?