Thursday, January 17, 2008

Beware of De-icers

In WNC for the past few years, we have had minimal snowfall and ice. However, knowing how to properly get rid of snow and ice when we are faced with it, will help gardeners prevent permanent damage to plants.

Sodium chloride or rock salt has been used since the 1940’s as a common deicer that can burn plants and corrode metal and concrete. If you must use salt, use it judiciously, and erect barriers with plastic fencing, burlap or snow fencing to protect sensitive plants and minimize contact with salt. We can also reduce salt damage by mixing salt with sand and/or removing snow before salting.

When possible, use de-icing agents with calcium chloride, or calcium magnesium acetate (CMA), a salt-free melting agent made from limestone and acetic acid. You may also have some success with using cat litter or sawdust to create traction on sidewalks.

Do not pile snow containing salt around plants and trees or put it where runoff will flow over root zones. Plants placed near roadways and sidewalks should be salt tolerant. Many plants can recover from occasional salt spray. If it is a yearly occurrence however, death of the plant may result. See your local Extension office for salt tolerant plants recommended for your area.

Symptoms of salt injury can include desiccation, stunting, and branch dieback or plants. If salt buildup occurs, water liberally before spring growth by applying 2" of water over a 2-3 hour period and repeating this a few days later to "flush" the sodium from the soil.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Community Garden

On February 19th, there will be a meeting for everyone interested in participating the the 2008 Haywood County Community Garden. This meeting will be held at the Haywood County Extension Center, 5pm-6:30pm in conference Room A. The garden is located in Canton and is available to all Haywood County Residents interested in growing their own food. During this meeting, we will discuss start dates and rules for this years garden.

There is no cost to attend this meeting but there is a $35.00 fee to participate in the garden. For more information contact Tim Mathews or Erin Freeman at 456-3575.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Compost and Recycling Workshop

The Haywood County Cooperative Extension Center is sponsoring a series of workshops to encourage individuals to practice composting and recycling techniques.

This series of four workshops is designed to raise awareness of and provide practical ways to recycle and compost much of the trash that is currently being sent to our landfills. As a result of these workshops, participants will learn solid waste management alternatives and their consequences and implement strategies that protect the environment.

Workshops will meet on Thursdays, from 9-12pm starting February 7th at the Haywood County Extension Center. Other dates are February 14, 28 and March 6th. There will not be a meeting on February 21. Each sessioin will focus on different subjects so participants are encouraged to attend all sessions.

Cost for this workshop (all four days) is $10. To Register or for more information contact Erin Freeman at (828)456-3575.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

WNC Clean Streams Program

North Carolina Cooperative Extension will be conducting a Clean Streams Workshop on Tuesday, February 26th from 9:00am till 4:30pm at the North Carolina Arboretum.
WNC Clean Streams is an interdisciplinary, multi-county initiative of the NC Cooperative Extension Service to provide training, resources, and support for best practices in a variety of business and residential applications to protect and improve water quality throughout the region. Clean Streams is the umbrella for a range of Extension programming aimed at various audiences — urban, agricultural, residential, and commercial. Protecting water quality must be everyone’s business.

Subjects to be covered are:
• Maintaining a Water-Wise Landscape
• Maintaining a Water-Wise Home
• Raingardens
• Xeriscaping - Planning for Wise Water Management

Tours of Best Practices at the Arboretum -
• Water Systems
• Raingardens
• Green Roofs
• Plant Selection

BONUS: Mini Trade Show of Water Quality products and services
Cost for this prgram is $30.00
For registration information or questions call 456-3575

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Christmas Tree Recycling

The Environmental and Conservation Organization (ECO) is coordinating their annual tree recycling event in conjunction with Henderson County Parks and Recreation. Residents are encouraged to drop off their trees at a designated site in Jackson Park near the covered picnic area. Hendersonville city residents may leave their trees at curbside, where they will be gathered and included in the recycling project.

Be sure to remove all lights and decorations before dropping your trees at the park. No wreaths, balled trees or greenery with wire will be accepted. Christmas trees will be chipped to make mulch from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. on Jan. 5 at Jackson Park. Mulch created from the chipping will be given away free of charge, so bring a bag if you’re interested in taking some home.

Call the ECO office at 692-0385 for more information.