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News from the Center

How About Them Apples?
Linda MacIntosh variety
Sep 21, 2016

Location, location, location. Apparently, this factor for success applies to both real estate and apple trees. Considering the many challenges that fruit tree growers faced during the summer of 2016 with a decimated peach crop and extended drought, at least there is good news for apple aficionados. Jon Clements, UMass Extension educator and fruit specialist, keeps a close watch on orchards across the state. He said, “The overall crop in Massachusetts is down about 20% from average, but it varies widely from orchard to orchard.

Worried About Watering Your Lawn in the Drought?
Drought resistant cultivar lower right corner
Sep 1, 2016

At UMass’s Joseph Troll Turf Research Center in South Deerfield, the researchers are doing some of the worrying for you. When most people they drive by the Research Center, what they see is a lush green lawn. What they may not realize is that these 20 green acres are home to an extensive field of research that many of us benefit from without even knowing it. The primary focus of UMass research at the Research Center is the conservation and protection of one of our most precious natural resources: water.

Curbing the Spread of Clubroot Disease in Nepal
Clubroot gall in Nepal
Aug 23, 2016

Rob Wick, professor of plant pathology and nematology in the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, was invited by USAID and Winrock (a leader in U.S. and international development with a focus on agricultural issues) to help farmers curb clubroot disease of brassica crops in Nepal. Clubroot is a serious soil-borne disease that affects brassica crops. Farmers cannot easily eliminate this disease, but they can learn methods for controlling the spread of infested plants and soil. This is a serious growing issue that needs systematic intervention and Wick was tapped to help them.

“Your Future Starts Now": A New 4-H Collaboration
Your Future Starts Now Team
Jul 14, 2016

A new collaboration has formed to offer a positive path for a group of young men currently in detention. Called, “Your Future Starts Now,” this four-week program is organized in partnership with UMass' Extension 4-H program, Center for Human Development (CHD),  the Department of Youth Services, and the UMass Student Bridges organization.  4-H Extension Educator Lauren DuBois, along with Stacy Tchouanguem, Alisha Ross and Khalif Nunnally-Rivera of Student Bridges will facilitate this program.

4-H Summer of Science Camp
Physics camp teaches logic
Jun 28, 2016

The wide-ranging menu featured unlikely matches: strawberry jam, physics, horses and movies. It must be summer at 4-H. The UMass Extension 4-H Youth Development program was in full gear June 26-28 as they engaged 59 students from across the state in active hands-on learning on the campus at UMass Amherst.

Fish Passage 2016: International Conference on River Connectivity
Riverwatcher exhibitor
Jun 22, 2016

June 20-22, UMass Amherst hosted an important international forum for researchers and practitioners. The event was at capacity with attendees who have an interest in advancements in technical fishways, nature-like fishways, stream restoration and stabilization, dam removal and road ecology participating from around the world.  Social issues surrounding connectivity projects were also explored including the myriad of funding opportunities, safety concerns, climate change, and more.

Opening of New State Apiary to Celebrate Pollinator Week in Mass.
Lebeaux, Skyrm, Sieger hold full bee frames
Jun 21, 2016

Amherst, MA—June 20, 2016. Governor Charlie Baker declared June 20–26, 2016 as “Massachusetts Pollinator Week.” In support of this declaration, a celebration was held at UMass Amherst’s Agricultural Learning Center (ALC), 911 North Pleasant Street, to open the first state apiary. John Lebeaux, MDAR Commissioner; Daniel Sieger, Massachusetts Assistant Secretary for the Environment; and Kim Skyrm, State Apiary Inspector, examined full Langstroth bee frames. The purpose of the apiary is to serve as a vessel for education, outreach demonstrations and research related to agricultural sustainability, pollination, honey bee health and hive management. This apiary is also considered to be a critical component of the Stockbridge School’s student farm pollinator habitat conservation project.

UMass Hadley Farm Revitalizes the Bay State Morgans
Bay State Legacy
Jun 15, 2016

Hadley, MA – June 13, 2016 – UMass Hadley farm announces its newest arrival, “Bay State Legacy,” a Morgan filly named in memory of alumni and long-time supporter Susan B. Roberts, who passed away unexpectedly last year.

The Bay State Morgan line was established in 1951 when the U.S. government disbanded its cavalry horses.

Massachusetts Pollinator Week
Bombus on thistle
Jun 13, 2016

Massachusetts Governor Charles Baker has declared the week of June 20th as MA Pollinator Week. Government officials will visit and learn more about the state apiary located at UMass Amherst Stockbridge School of Agriculture at the Agricultural Learning Center, 911 North Pleasant St. The declaration recognizes the impacts of pollinators on agriculture and encourages the public’s support of pollinators. The kick-off is on Monday June 20 at 10 am, and the event is open to the public.

Summer of Science with 4-H on June 26-28 at UMass Amherst
Robotics camp
Jun 2, 2016

Massachusetts 4-H Program expanded its traditional one-day science program to a 3-day 2-night science opportunity on the UMass Amherst Campus.  Each year youth have an exciting opportunity to select a track of study where they spend the day exploring a field of science with faculty, staff or a professional in the field.


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