Alexander County Center
January, 2017
Alexander County Center
Hay Alert Website

Just a reminder to livestock producers that if you are running low on hay or think you will run low, start looking now to purchase additional hay if you haven't already.  The Hay Alert website is a resource for farmers in need of hay to connect with those that who have hay or forage for sale, for arranging transportation if needed and/or transport with suppliers.  This site will list names, addresses, and other pertinent information.  The website is

Don't wait... With the weather patterns we have been having, you never know when grass will start growing again.  Better to have too much hay than not enough

January Garden Tips

  • Use wood ashes on your vegetable garden, bulb beds and non-acid loving plants if the pH of the soil is below 6.0.
  • Plant asparagus crowns this month when soil is dry enough to work.
  • Prune grape vines.
  • Prune broken and undesired limbs on your shade trees.
  • Remove "weed" or undesirable trees from your landscape.
  • None
Lawn Care
  • Keep tree leaves from collecting on your lawn.
  • Slow-release fertilizers may be applied on cool-season lawns.
  • Hardwood cuttings of many landscape plants like forsythia (yellow bells), flowering quince, weigela, crape myrtle, juniper, spirea and hydrangea can be taken this month.
Specific Chores
  • Do not forget to care for holiday house plants like poinsettia, amaryllis, Christmas cactus, gloxinia and cyclamen.
  • Order your small fruit plants like strawberry, blueberry and blackberry for a mid-March planting.
  • Study your home landscape to see what additions or improvements can be made this spring.
  • Visit your local Extension Center for landscape and garden information.
  • Prepare a spot in the vegetable garden for early spring vegetables like English peas, cabbage, carrots, onions, Irish potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, spinach and turnips.
  • Study your seed catalogs and check for the All-American Selections of flowers and vegetables.
  • Order fruit trees, if not done last fall.
  • Contact the Extension Center to find out the recommended small fruit varieties.
Plant Sale Underway

Now is the time to order fruit trees and other fruit plants.  We are offering a variety of small fruit plants and trees this year.  Plants will be available for pickup in March.

Blueberries - Tifblue, Powder Blue, Premier, Climax
Strawberries - Earliglow, Jewel, Albion
Blackberries - Triple Crown, Natchez
Grape - Concord (Seedless)
Muscadines - Ison, Late Frye
Figs - Celeste, Brown Turkey
Apples - Galarina, Goldrush, Honey Crisp
Asian Pears - Hosui, Shinko, Olympic
Peach - Contender
Mulberry Tree
Paw Paw Tree

Here is a link to the order form and more information on each variety.  If you have any questions please call the Extension Center at 828-632-4451.
Master Gardener Program for 2017

Are you an avid gardener, but still wanting to improve your knowledge on all aspects of gardening?  Well the Nationally known Extension Master Gardener Program might just be for you.  Our Master Gardener Program is an educational program designed to enhance public education and assistance in horticulture in our communities.  It provides a comprehensive 12 session educational program to its participants.
The Master Gardener Program is supported by a State Master Gardener Volunteer Coordinator housed in the Horticultural Science Department at N.C. State University and by various Extension specialized agents and subject matter specialists. As a participant in the Master Gardener Program, you will receive 40 hours of training in all aspects of Horticulture including fruit and shade trees, ornamentals, lawn care, and vegetable culture.  After the training if you wish to be certified as a Master Gardener, you will have the opportunity to provide 40 hours of volunteer service.  This can be done by either judging 4-H gardens, assisting with fairs and their horticulture entries, planting or caring for community or public gardens/landscaping, or assisting with educational programs through the Extension Center. 
Plans are well underway for the 2017 series of Alexander/Caldwell Master Gardener classes.  Classes will be meeting on Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:30 PM beginning on March 8 and ending the first week in June.
From the looks of things, this is going to be one GREAT YEAR!!! We have recruited outstanding speakers, presenters, and subject matter specialist to meet the needs of interested citizens.  Some classes will be taught in the Alexander Extension Center, three at outdoor settings, and several at the Caldwell Extension Center to which we will ride together to attend jointly with the Master Gardener groups there.
Application for acceptance into the Extension Master Gardener Program will be taken into February or until the class is full which ever comes first.  The cost is $100 which will be used to cover the costs of the Master Gardener Notebook, hands on supplies, and field trip expenses.
Call the North Carolina Cooperative Extension - Alexander County Center at 632-4451 for more information, or to register for the 2017 Extension Master Gardener Program. Please plan to register now as the class usually fills up.  
Commercial Poultry Grower Meetings

Cooperative Extension is offering Commercial Poultry Grower meetings across the state this winter. The meetings will provide up to date information on Waste Management Plans and record keeping, Emergency Action Plans, AI response, and Cost Share programs.
The agenda should cover all the aspects that the NC Poultry Federation recommended that growers receive training on during 2017. Please share with your growers and fellow poultry producers and contact me you have any questions or would like PDF or hard copies of the flyer. you can use this link to register directly for your preferred meeting date and location  click here to register online .   These meetings have also been approved for 3 hours of Animal Waste Operator CEUs.

Now Accepting:  
Commissioners' Choice Application 
Deadline March 1st    

NC Agritunity Conference & Tradeshow
Saturday, March 4th, 2017
Iredell County Agricultural Center
444 Bristol Drive, Statesville, NC 28677
Registration starts 8:00am
Programs from 8:30am-3:30pm

NC Agritunity is a one-day educational conference for farmers of all types, featuring a tradeshow and a keynote speaker. Large commodity producers, livestock producers, small farm managers, beginning farmers, and anyone just interested in agriculture are welcome to attend. Continuing education credits (CEUs) and pesticide training credits will be available in some of the presentations for existing license holders.  To learn more about the educational session and feature vendors, please visit our website at or contact your local Cooperative Extension Center. 

The event is free and open to the public. 

You can sign up via the 2017 NC Agritunity registration form or call the Iredell County Cooperative Extension Center at 704-873-0507. Please contact Danelle Cutting at (704) 216-8970 or Lenny Rogers at  (828) 632-4451 if you are interested in setting up as a vendor. For additional information on how to be a vendor please visit our website. Walk-in registration may be limited. 

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination Statement

2.1.  North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equal opportunity regardless of race, color, religion, creed, national origin, sex, a ge, disability, or veteran's status. In addition, the two Universities welcome all person without regard to sexual orientation.  North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating.

2.2.  Persons with disabilities and persons with limited English proficiency may request accommodations   to participate by contacting Alexander County Extension Director, Lenny Rogers, at (828)632-4451 or or in person at the County Extension Office at least 14 days prior to the event.
Julie Campbell, Administrative Assistant
376 1st Ave. SW, Taylorsville, NC 28681