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Management Transition Workshops

There has been a lot of talk lately about estate planning and getting all the necessary paperwork in order to make the transfer of the land, assets, etc. a simpler, smoother process; including your will, tax documents, power of attorney, etc. But have you thought about the transfer of the management skills necessary to continue the day-to-day operation of your farm or ranch?

Transferring the skills associated with management of any business can be difficult. This can be complicated though when it comes to the farm or ranch, which are often family owned. This could include hard skills such as how to determine what crop to rotate to next year, how much irrigation water to order, which heifers to keep and which to sell as well as finances and record keeping. Despite the challenges presented in passing these skills to the next generation, anyone involved in farming and ranching would agree that it is essential to continued sustainability of the operation.

The University of Wyoming Extension Agriculture and Horticulture Initiative Team is offering two programs to help producers address this part of the transition process. A farm focused program will be held in Torrington on March 5th and 6th in the Brand Room at the Goshen County Fair Grounds. A ranch focused program will be held in Douglas at the UW Extension Office on May 7th and 8th.

The program will not discuss the actual skills themselves, but will rather focus on opening the conversation about the topics and how to pass on the specific skills to the upcoming generation. It will also look at working together as the founding and the incoming generation.

Join us for these workshops and learn strategies that will help make the transfer of management skills a smoother process! For more information on the Torrington program please contact Caleb Carter at ccarte13@uwyo.edu or (307) 532-2436. For the Douglas program please contact Scott Cotton at secotton@natronacounty-wy.gov or (307) 235-9400.

2nd Annual Wyoming Bee College

Wyoming Bee College

The University of Wyoming Laramie County Extension is proud to host the second Wyoming Bee College Conference at Laramie County Community College, Cheyenne, WY, Conferences Building, Saturday, March 21 and Sunday, March 22.

The 2014 Bee College was very successful with 120 people attending from Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota and Montana. The attendees included a mix of individuals who were just learning the craft as well as more advanced beekeepers who wanted to learn more in-depth care of pollinators.

The 2015 Bee College we have reached out to find new and inspirational speakers to take everyone to the next level of beekeeping, bring more people into the craft and help others make a business of beekeeping or just be better at keeping bees and helping pollinating insects.

The conference will offer workshops and lectures for the new to bees to the experienced beekeeper. Our speakers come from various professional settings such as; university faculty, USDA research facilities and beekeepers known for their commitment to the craft. Our speaker line-up includes: Glen Anderson from Bridgetown Bees in Oregon to teach a beginning/apprentice beekeeping workshop, Dr. Wm. Meikle and Dr. Mark Carroll from the Carl Hayden Bee lab to discuss their latest research on bee hive health, bee nutrition and biological control of varroa mites, UW’s Dr. Randa Jabbour with her research on the pollinator farm crop connection, bee behavior from CSU’s Keziah Katz. Physician and author Dr. Ronald Fessenden will give an evening program on how honey is metabolized differently from other sweeteners. Also programs on permaculture and habitat hero, bee biology, marketing, crafts, making mead wine and much more.

The University of Wyoming Laramie County Extension has partnered with the Laramie County Conservation District we are committed to instructing our community in why and how pollinator insects are important and should be protected and promoted. We anticipate welcoming at least 150 people for the 2015 conference.

Registration is $65 for the Bee College, keeping the cost low is important and helped through grants and sponsorship. The conference host hotel is Holiday Inn Fox Farm road offering a rate of $85/night. For more information contact Catherine at cwissner@uwyo.edu.

Meetings explore small hydropower possibilities in Southeast Wyoming

Opportunities for agricultural producers, irrigation districts and other water users to develop small hydropower resources at existing water infrastructure will be covered in a roundtable and meeting in Torrington and Wheatland on February 17th.

The Wyoming Business Council, State Energy Office partnered with University of Wyoming Extension and the UW School of Energy Resources to develop the Wyoming Small Hydropower Handbook, which is the foundation of the discussion, said Milt Geiger, UW Extension energy coordinator.

Geiger and Skylor Wade, from Wenck Associates, will offer an overview of the development process and typical characteristics of a feasible development opportunity.

“Small hydropower offers water users the opportunity to make our Wyoming waters work even harder, producing electricity while serving the needs of irrigators and municipalities,” said Geiger.

The roundtable and presentation highlight the “where, what and how” of the evaluation process, including Wyoming case studies, he said.  Simplifying changes to the licensing and permitting will be addressed.   Incentives and the financing process will also receive attention.

“Most irrigation drops or pipelines will not be economically feasible to develop,” said Geiger. “We want to help water users make an informed decision whether to proceed or to purposefully choose inaction.”

Wade, the handbook’s lead author, also emphasized, “Just like growing any crop, finding a profitable market for electricity from small hydropower is essential. If you cannot produce it at a profit, it is best to simply watch the water flow by.”

A roundtable discussion is planned for Torrington while a more formal presentation will take place in Wheatland. UW Extension Educator Caleb Carter (Goshen County) will host the events.

Carter adds, “We hope irrigators and other water users come with their questions and specific circumstances, allowing for a better understanding of where and when development is feasible.”

Location and meeting times are:

  • Torrington – 10 am Tuesday, Feb. 17, Platte Valley Bank community room, 2201 Main Street. Pastries and coffee will be served.
  • Wheatland – 6 pm Tuesday, Feb. 17, First State Bank Community Room, 1405 16th Street. Coffee and dessert will be provided.

Additional renewable energy information, including small hydropower, is available from UW’s Efficient and Renewable Energy website http://renewables.uwyo.edu.

pesticide application

Upcoming private pesticide applicator trainings

It’s that time again. Private pesticide applicator trainings will be offered over the next couple of months across  Southeast Wyoming.

The course will focus on your ability to properly read and understand the label, types and use of personal protective equipment, and federal reporting requirements.  Upon completion of the course, your application will be submitted to the Wyoming Department of Ag for approval and the issuance of licenses.  Obtaining your private pesticide applicator license will allow you to purchase and apply restricted use pesticides for your own private use.

Two opportunities in Goshen County will be available for individuals interested in gaining a new or renewal of an existing private pesticide applicator’s license.  The first will be held on Thursday January 15th, 9:00 to 12:00 PM at the Platte Valley Bank community room.  The second opportunity will also be held on Thursday, January 15th  from 1:00 to 4:00 PM, also at the Platte Valley Bank community room.

The training will be offered in Laramie County in Albin, WY on January 28th from 1 to 4 pm at the Community Building on the Laramie County Fair Grounds. As well as in Platte County in Wheatland at the First State Bank Community Building on February 12th, also from 1 to 4 pm.

If you are not able to attend one of these trainings, you still have options. You can come into your local Extension Office an take an online test or obtain a home study guide. Either one will also get you a private applicator license.

Details for these and other upcoming training opportunities are available at the following internet location:  http://uwyoextension.org/psep/calendar/.  We would appreciate you letting us know if you are planning on attending, so that we can plan accordingly.  Please call Caleb Carter at the Goshen County Extension office with your intentions or if you have questions concerning the course at (307) 532-2436.

Corn field near Torrington, WY

2014 farm bill resources

If you had the opportunity to attend one of the 2014 Farm Bill Update meetings across Southeast Wyoming this week, then you know that there is a lot of information to wade through! As well as some big decisions to be made.

To help with this process the RightRisk Team has created a web page with all the resources provided and other helpful links. Recordings of the presentations will also be uploaded soon for those who missed the meetings.

2014 Farm Bill – Wyoming

Web-based decision tools

Another set of resources that have been created to help producers decide which programs to sign up for include a series of online decision tools:

  1. Agriculture Policy Analysis System (APAS) 
    • No registration required – results can be saved to your computer
    • APAS Sample Farm: Provides analysis for selected counties based on county average yields and acreage for selected crops
    • APAS Custom Farm: provides the opportunity to analyze your own farm, using your data, including:
      • base reallocation
      • yield update
      • price forecast changes
      • farm program choice
      • crop insurance choices
  2. Agricultural and Food Policy Center (AFPC) Tool
    • Requires registration – info saved on their servers
    • AFPC helps analyze your farm
      • base reallocation
      • yield update
      • price forecast changes
      • farm program choice
      • SCO insurance
  3. RMA Crop Insurance Decision Tool
    • No registration required
    • helps analyze your farm, and evaluate the SCO decision crop-by-crop as well as crop insurance decisions
    • presents details for expected payments at various yield levels
    • provides an estimate of premium required and amount of protection offered

It is important to remember that none of these decision tools are designed to give you the answer about what choice(s) you should make for your farm. They are a tool that can help you evaluate possible outcomes that might follow after a certain set of programs is chosen and following a set of prescribed circumstances. For more information on these programs, see:

2014 Farm Bill Web-based decision aids

If you have any further questions, please feel free to call Caleb at (307) 532-2436 or ccarte13@uwyo.edu. You can also contact your local FSA office to find out what your current base is and for help with any questions.

The next 100 years together…

Extension 100 years

By now you have eaten the last turkey sandwich and that slice of pumpkin pie is only a memory, though I hope the time with friends and family remains fresh in your minds. My Thanksgiving was spent at the in-laws near Sheridan, WY, celebrating birthdays, eating turkey and hunting elk. Back in the office, with the Christmas season upon us and then the new year, I take this opportunity to reflect on the past, and look to the future.

Elk Hunt
Successful Thanksgiving weekend elk hunt.

I have almost completed my first year and a half as the University of Wyoming Extension Educator in Goshen County and looking back over my short time I am excited about what has been accomplished and excited to continue working to provide sustainable and practical agriculture and horticulture education across Southeast Wyoming.

In 2014, Extension celebrated 100 years of providing education and outreach to the inhabitants of Wyoming and across the country. Extension began with the signing of the Smith-Lever Act in 1914. This act funded extension and outreach activities at the Land-Grant Universities founded by the Morrill Act of 1862.

While cleaning out old documents here in the office, we found a publication from 1963 called The Wyoming County Agent. Celebrating the 49th anniversary of Extension, it includes articles written by several current and former directors and leaders within Extension in Wyoming and the College of Agriculture.

The Wyoming County Agent, 1963
The Wyoming County Agent, 1963

In an article titled “Some Early Experiences of the First Wyoming Extension Director”, Albert E. Bowman recalled his efforts to get agreements signed between the county commissioners and the University of Wyoming. In his own words, he recounts his first experience in Goshen County.

“Progress was slow, but sometimes even a cattleman was willing to take a gamble, on what seemed to be a crazy idea, as happened on my first appearance in Goshen County. After trying to explain the matter, the commissioners sort of laughed at the idea. Finally, a prominent cattleman said, “well, hell, I’m willing to give it a try. What can it hurt[?]”

It’s fun to look back and get a good laugh about the beginnings of Extension in Goshen County, but I do want to say that Goshen County and Southeast Wyoming have been very welcoming and supportive of the efforts of Extension, despite some early …apprehensions.

In the same publication, Dr. N. W. Hilston, Dean of the College of Agriculture at the time, wrote an article titled “Jeans, Business Suits and House Dresses.” In it, he described the role of Extension in Wyoming:

“In each Wyoming County stands an open door to the university. That door is the Wyoming Agricultural Extension Service. Through this portal, County Agents carry information and education to nearly everyone in the state. …Contacts between state residents and the university are maintained on a highly personal basis through this open door in each county.”
“[other responsibilities] of the County Agricultural Agent [come] from personal contacts with ranchers, farmers, businessmen and homemakers.  …observ[ing] local problems…spot[ing] trends… These facts, then returned to the university, serve well to project research into useful channels and adjust teaching to meet current demands.”

 It is interesting to note that the thoughts on Extension in 1963 were not much different than the vision for Extension today. To add to that, Dr. G.D. Humphrey, President of the University of Wyoming, stated in the opening article, titled “Agricultural Extension’s Responsibility and Relationship with the University of Wyoming”:

“These [Extension} programs continue to increase the efficiency of agriculture, raise the standards of living in homes, educate our youth for tomorrow’s home and civic responsibilities, and contribute to the growth and development of state and nation.”

Though times have changed, as well as the name, the mission of The University of Wyoming Extension today of improving lives and communities through lifelong learning still embodies these goals discussed by Dr. Humphrey in 1963.

As I look to the next 100 years, I am excited to continue the respected tradition of Extension. I also see a need to adapt, this blog and email newsletter being prime examples, as well the use of social media. This will not change the mission inherent to Extension, nor the importance of one-on-one interactions. The handshake is still the most powerful tool in Extension.

With that, it is important to remember, as Dr. Hilston stated, the information flow goes both ways. We are here to serve, and would like to hear from you about what concerns you are dealing with. My goal in the coming year is to strive to reach out to you, both individually and as organizational partners, to continue to work together to provide outreach and service across Southeast Wyoming.

Thank you and happy holidays to you and yours!

 

 

2015 Goshen County Master Gardener Classes

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The Master Gardener Program

The Master Gardener Program of the University of Wyoming Extension Service (UWE) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) exists to extend the university to the people of Wyoming via volunteer service in horticulture. The Master Gardener Program provides sound, research-based, regionally appropriate horticultural information to the general public. 

Goshen County Master Gardener Club

The Goshen County Master Gardener Club meets every 2nd Tuesday of the month at the Extenion Office and provides an opportunity for socializing as well as involvement in numerous community service projects. These include the local farmers market, the Goshen County Master Gardener Plant Sale as well as helping with yard calls and horticulture questions that come into the office.

Master Gardener Class

The University of Wyoming Extension Service conducts Master Gardener classes in horticultural education open to residents of the Goshen County area. Students learn basic knowledge and competencies in the areas of botany, regionally appropriate plant selection, diagnosis of plant problems and their solutions, lawn and garden cultural practices (including soil testing, fertilizing, watering, etc.) and more. Students who complete this training program, as well as the required 40 hours of volunteer service hours, are then recognized as Master Gardeners.

Master Gardener students will be given approximately 40 hours of classroom instruction to develop basic horticultural knowledge. Eight hours of practical experience in a number of horticultural areas will be provided to assist the student develop competencies under the supervision of experienced Master Gardeners. An additional 40 hours of volunteer work in the community are required to meet program goals and further refine the Master Gardener’s knowledge and competencies. Goshen County’s Master Gardener Club provides trained volunteers to supplement the University of Wyoming Extension Service.

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Master Gardeners provide county residents with information and guidance regarding horticultural problems, environmentally sound horticultural practices such as lawn, garden and ornamental plant problems, Integrated Pest Management and sustainable agriculture. Each year, active Master Gardeners perform community service, through participation in a number of horticultural projects and by providing assistance and consultation to residents of the county with questions regarding horticultural problems.

Classes will be held every Tuesday from 6 to 9 pm at the Goshen County Extension Office beginning on March 10, 2015, ending May 26th. Some Saturdays will also be required.

If you are interested in taking the class you can obtain an application at the Goshen County Extension Office or download an application here. If you have any questions, please call Caleb Cater at the Goshen County Extension Office at ccarte13@uwyo.edu or (307) 532-2436.

The final schedule is still being finalized, and will be available soon.

Goshen County Extension

Position opening at the Goshen County Extension office!

Office Manager/Youth Show Coordinator

As you may be well aware, Lori Schafer, our long time office manager and youth show coordinator here at the Goshen County Extension office left us in September. We are now looking to fill this position!

Job Description

Essential Duties: Assist UW Extension Educators with overall management and daily operations. Provide leadership and management to the Goshen County Fair Youth Shows. This position will require occasional evening and weekend work and some overnight travel. Specific responsibilities can be found in the Position description.

Preference will be given to applicants with a minimum of two years professional experience, Microsoft Office experience, record maintenance and management experience and fiscal management experience and those with excellent organizational and communication skills. Successful candidate will possess a strong attention to detail and effective problem resolution skills.

Required Materials for application include a completed Employment Application, professional résumé, and cover letter. These must be received by December 8, 2014. The position description and application are also available at the Extension Office.

The deadline for application is December 19, 2014.

With questions, please stop in at the University of Wyoming Extension, Goshen County office in Torrington at 4516 US HWY 26/85 or call (307) 532-2436. You may also contact Megan Brittingham at mbrittin@uwyo.edu.

2014 Farm Bill

2014 Farm Bill Update

Do you have questions about how the new 2014 farm bill will affect you and production on your farm? You are not alone, and there are many factors you need to consider and decisions that need to be made that can have lasting affects on crop insurance and other programs within the farm bill.

To help decipher the new farm bill and what the changes mean to you the University of Wyoming Extension – Sustainable AG & Horticulture team in cooperation with Wyoming Farm Service Agency (FSA), will be offering a series of meetings covering details of the new farm programs.

Highlights include:

Base acre update, yield update, Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC-CO/IC), Price Loss Coverage (PLC), Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO), Non-insured Crop Disaster Assistance (NAP) buy-up coverage, online decision tools, analyzing information for your farm, and more…

2014 Farm Bill Webinar Series Schedule

DATETIMELOCATION
ADDRESS
12-Dec10 AMWorlandCommunity Center, 1200 Culbertson Ave.
15-Dec10 AMCheyenneLCCC Health Sciences - Rm. 111, 1400 E. College Drive
15-Dec2 PMWheatlandFirst State Bank, 1405 16th St.
16-Dec10 AMTorringtonPlatte Valley Bank, 2201 Main St.
17-Dec10 AMRivertonFremont County Fairgrounds, 1010 Fairgrounds Rd.
17-Dec2 PMWind River CasinoCasino training room, 2 miles south of Riverton
18-Dec10 AMPowellUW Research and Extension Center, 747 Rd. 9
19-Dec10 AMGilletteCampbell County Library - WY Room, 2101 S. 4-J Road

Presenters include:

Dr. Nicole Ballenger, UW Ag & Applied Economics
John Hewlett, UW Farm/Ranch Management Specialist
Farm Service Agency, Farm Program Specialists

For more information or with questions, please contact John Hewlett at hewlett@uwyo.edu or (307) 766-2166; or Caleb Carter at ccarte13@uwyo.edu or at (307) 532-2436.

Cows and sunset

South East Wyoming Beef Production Convention

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SAREC

 A collection of workshops covering the issues affecting profitability of livestock producers 

Goshen County Extension and The James C. Hageman Sustainable Agriculture Research and Extension Center (SAREC) will again be hosting the Southeast Wyoming Beef Production Convention in Torrington in November.

The Convention will be held on Tuesday, November 18th at the Rendezvous Center, on the Goshen County Fair Grounds. Registration will begin at 9:30 am with the program starting at 10. We have had a last minute change in the agenda. Now, the day will begin with a presentation from Marc and Kate Vogel. 

They work with Marc’s family on Vogel Land and Livestock near Ballantine, MT, just east of Billings. They have integrated no-till and cover crop practices into their production, as well as grazing of their cover crops. They are also dealers for Green Cover Seed, located just south of Hastings, NE. For more information, check out this video from a couple years ago, featuring Marc and Kate in the Out on Land Series.

Following lunch, we will hear from Jenna Meeks. Jenna is a graduate student at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, WY. She is looking at the use of winter forage crops to increase the nutrient value of corn stalks for winter grazing.  Her research is ongoing and taking place at the James C. Hageman Sustainable Agriculture Research and Extension Center (SAREC), located near Lingle, WY.

The remainder of the day will consist of a series of concurrent sessions as well as a producer panel after lunch. Some of the session topics will include pasture revitalization, utilizing corn stalks in grazing, feedlot research updates, risk management options, heifer development budgets as well as some tips on preparing for and surviving disaster. A trade show will also be a part of the convention activities.

To wrap up the day, Jim Rob from the Livestock Marketing Information Center (LMIC) in Denver will present on the future market outlook. Cost for the convention is $20 and includes lunch and the trade show. 

Complete convention schedule:

Time

Event/Topic/Speaker

Room

9:30-10:00 Registration Foyer
10:00 Welcome and Introductions – Caleb Carter Rendezvous Main
10:00-10:50 Speakers – Marc and Kate Vogel Rendezvous Main
11:00-11:45
Improving pasture productivity – Jerry Voleski Rendezvous Main
Your Beef Checkoff Dollars at Work: the Beef Ambassador program – Rachel Purdey Brand Room
Silent but deadly: poisonous plants of eastern Wyoming rangelands – Brian Sebade 4-H East
The Use of Sexed semen in the beef industry – Chance Marshall 4-H West
11:45-12:30 Lunch Rendezvous Main
12:30-1:30 Supplementing corn stalk grazing with winter forage crops – Jenna Meeks Rendezvous Main
1:40-2:20
Risk Management for livestock production – John Hewlett Rendezvous Main
Corn stalk grazing research – Aaron stalker Brand Room
Annual Forages: Species, Varieties, and Importance –Anowar Islam 4-H East
Monitoring soil moisture – Caleb Carter 4-H West
2:20-2:45 Break – sponsored by ABS
2:45-3:30
Surviving disaster – Scott Cotton Rendezvous Main
Replacement heifer development budgets – John Ritten Brand Room
Wheat variety trial info – Keith Kennedy 4-H East
Feedlot research update – Matt Luebbe 4-H West
3:45-4:30 Market Outlook – Jim Robb, LMIC Rendezvous Main
4:30-5:00 Door Prizes and Conclusion Rendezvous Main
Registration

Registrations are being taken online for attendees, and vendors interested in the trade show, at: http://bit.ly/sewyobeef

You can also download this brochure and mail it to:

Caleb Carter, 4516 US HWY 26/85, Torrington, WY 82240

For more information call Caleb at the Goshen County Extension office at (307) 532-2436 and we hope to see you in November!

Wyoming Livestock Roundup

 

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