August-September 2021

Welcome to OSU Marion County Extension's E-Newsletter! You will find educational articles and event information for you, your family, and your business. In this issue you'll learn about an agritourism survey and field crops research, ways to live and eat better, managing tansy ragwort and wildfires, 4-H online education, and new personnel who have recently joined our office and how they are serving you.

锘縒e hope you enjoy the newsletter and invite your comments and suggestions for future topics.
1320 Capitol St NE (corner of Gaines in the Oregon Farm Bureau Building) Suite #110
Salem, OR 97301
锘縋hone: 503-588-5301

The Extension office open weekdays from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. A mask is required for entry and service.

Visit the Marion County Extension Website

Click here to watch a video about Marion County Extension programs.

The Plant Clinic is OPEN! If you cannot come in call 503-373-3770.

Have a question? Who needs Google? OSU Extension has answers at Ask Extension.
We Are Open and Growing

The extension office is OPEN for visits. OSU requires visitors to wear a mask when they come into the OSU office area. We are still being careful to keep ourselves and our guests safe and healthy.

You can bring your pressure canning gauges to be tested for accuracy, and also test well water nitrate levels. The Master Gardeners are back at their plant clinic window so bring your samples and questions to them.

A six-week lull in the pandemic in June and July allowed for some in-person programming as our 4-H, SNAP-Ed and agriculture faculty were able to return to fairs, schools, and fields to work with youth, families and farmers.

Extension will continue to be flexible according to covid conditions, offering in-person programming when university leadership working with county and state health officials say it is safe to do so, but also offering extension programs online such as the series of Master Food Preservation classes that are available to you in an online archive.

We have added new people and programs to extension in Marion County. Neil Bell, who served as the community horticulturist for three decades retired, and we are fortunate that Brooke Edmunds was able to move here from Linn County to fill his position and not skip a beat.

Yuridia Reyes brings OSU Open Campus to Marion County and the Juntos program that helps Latino high school students to prepare for post-secondary school education. Juntos has demonstrated dramatic success across the country, and Yuri's personal experience fuels her passion for serving students and their families.

With wildfires never far from out minds, Amanda Brenner, program assistant to Glenn Ahrens in extension forestry is delivering vital information and resources to Marion County to mitigate, manage, and recover from wildfires, including a webinar targeted at Marion County property owners featuring speakers from a wide array of agencies and organizations.

Extension strives to deliver information and services that matter to the citizens of Marion County. The dedicated faculty in our office represent our commitment to this goal. Visit our office or website to learn more about who we are and what we do.

Mark L Chien, office manager
In This Month's Newsletter:
  1. Meet Brooke Edmunds, Community Horticulture
  2. Meet Yuridia Reyes, OSU Open Campus
  3. Meet Amanda Brenner and Manage Wildfires
  4. Mid-Valley Field Crops Research Update
  5. 4-H is Thriving Online
  6. Agritourism Survey to Improve Farm Direct to Consumer Sales
  7. Managing Tansy Ragwort
  8. Your Health: Smart Eating and Living Tips
  9. OSU North Willamette Research and Extension Center Newsletter
Got gardening questions? The Master Gardener Plant Clinic at the Extension office is open and ready to help. Drop in during office hours (call ahead) or send your garden questions and photos by email to or leave a message at 503-373-3770. Master Gardener volunteers will research and reply as soon as possible.
Meet Brooke Edmunds: Community Horticulturist for Marion County

When you arrive at the OSU Extension Office in Salem you first encounter the Master Gardener window. This is appropriate since the "MGs" are often the public face of the extension service at land grant universities in any of the fifty states. In Marion County there are over 200 certified master gardeners, volunteers who assist Marion County homeowners with their gardening questions. Succeeding Neil Bell in the position of community horticulturist, Brooke Edmunds steps in with seven years of experience in this role in Linn County, and she has hit the ground running. To learn more about Brooke and her program, click HERE...
Meet Yuridia Reyes and Juntos

By Yuridia Reyes, OSU Open Campus

Yuridia Reyes launches a new OSU education program in Marion County that focuses on Latino teen academic success and moving students into higher education. The Juntos program is well tested and has demonstrated impressive results with Latino students in other counties and regions across the U.S. Yuri brings great personal and professional experience and enthusiasm to this new program, which is yet another way that extension is partnering with locals schools to help students to learn and grow. She is a new member of the Marion County Extension family and her position is supported by the service district. Click HERE to read about Yuri and the Juntos program in Marion County.
Wildfire programs to help landowners recover from last year鈥檚 wildfire and prepare for future wildfire events

By Amanda Brenner, Forestry & Natural Resources

No one in Marion County needs to be told about the dangers of wildfire to our homes and communities. Extension is tackling this monumental problem head on. Four fire extension program faculty were hired in 2020, and an impressive stream of programming followed the September 2020 wildfires. Amanda Brenner is the education program assistant to Marion County's extension forester, and is pushing information and resources about how to prevent, survive, and recover from wildfires. She is a new member of the Marion County Extension family and her position is supported by the service district. We have almost certainly not seen the end of this threat, so it is prudent for everyone to be prepared, whether or not you live in or near woodlands. Click HERE to read more about Amanda and wildfire programs in Marion County.
Field Crops Update

By Betsy Verhoeven, Mid-Valley Field Crops

Betsy has been providing applied research and educational information and resources to Marion County field crop farmers for three years. Her research seeks to provide solutions to current problems and answer pressing production questions. She can most often be found in fields tending her research plots and collecting data, and has developed strong relationships with the growers she serves. Current research includes grass seed field soil health and fertilizer use efficiency, growth regulators as a tool to boost grass see yields, managing sod webworm, and hop nutrition. In this article Betsy provides an update to her summer research program. Click HERE to read more...


  1. Agronomic, slug and weed management and research, September 15, 8:30-10:00
  2. Vole and insect management and research, September 16, 8:30-10:00 AM
  3. Wheat: variety, disease and agronomic management, September 28, 8:30-10:00

Click HERE for meeting information, speakers, and registration link. ODA recertification credits are available.
4-H is Thriving at Home

By Daniela Castillo-Davalos, 4-H Program Coordinator

The pandemic forced 4-H faculty to devise creative ways for youth to thrive online. Two virtual learning tools include a bi-weekly family activity workbook and short-term classes offered through 4-H & U, which in addition to helping youth, it offers teachers a chance to hone their online teaching skills. Click HERE to read more about 4-H online in Marion County.
Agritourism Survey to Improve Farm DtC

By Audrey Comerford, Agritourism Program Coordinator

The pandemic hit Marion County farms hard but they have bounced back and many are seeking to enhance their direct sales to customers as a way to increase revenue as well as public exposure of their farm and products. Audrey is using the data from a national agritourism survey titled Increasing Farm Viability Through Agritourism and On-Farm Direct Sales to help guide her agritourism program so it can have the most impact for farmers. In this article she shares survey results and how they can be applied to help Marion County farms. Click HERE to read more...
Understanding and Managing Tansy Ragwort

By Hayley White, Small Farms Program Coordinator

During the summer in the Willamette Valley we see a lot of yellow in fields. It's not always welcome. Scotch broom and tansy ragwort are noxious weeds that interfere with land management and crop and livestock production. Tansy ragwort has been around since the 1920s but continues to be a weed that is difficult to control. Fortunately, there are options for growers, including biological control methods. Our new small farms program coordinator, Hayley White, offers an overview of the plant and ways to manage it in the field. Click HERE to read more...
Smart Living and Better Nutrition Tips

Family and Community Health issues and education are very important for residents of Marion County. We lost our faculty person in this field but the beauty of extension is there are faculty in other counties who can share their valuable information and resources. Growing is the extension newsletter in Linn and Benton counties. Here are two valuable diet and health articles for you to enjoy and use:

Thanks to Crystal Conner, OSU dietetic intern, and Laurie Gibson, office specialist in Linn County, for sharing these articles.
OSU North Willamette Research and Extension Center Newsletter: Down on the Farm

Farmers love applied research. Faculty survey producers in their crop area, learn the critical issues, and then prioritize them for research that will provide answers and positive impact on quality and production. This is the specialty of OSU NWREC, and even though the facility is in Clackamas County, agriculture in Marion County benefits greatly from its research in small fruits, olives, ornamentals, Christmas trees, vegetables, weed control and more. Mike Bondi is the amazing leader of this research station, and though he is trying to retire, he continues to guide it and produce results, and an excellent newsletter that is worth reading. Click HERE to read it...
OSU Extension Position Announcement: Linn County

Linn County Extension in Tangent is seeking a front office/4-H support person. It is a full-time Office Specialist 2 position at OSU. Click HERE to see the job posting.
OSU Extension Service: Our Attitude
We believe the best way to make a difference is to get straight to the heart of the matter. We begin with an accessible and practical approach and build on it with passion. We listen to our clients, respect their needs, and amplify their voices to create research-based solutions together that empower real and sustainable change. It鈥檚 what we鈥檝e done for more than 100 years, and we鈥檙e committed to doing it for the next 100 years.
Thank you for reading our newsletter!
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Please send them to

Thank You! -- Mark Chien, Editor
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Oregon State University Extension Service prohibits discrimination in all its programs, services, activities, and materials on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, familial/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, genetic information, veteran鈥檚 status, reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)

Declaraci贸n de Discriminaci贸n
El Servicio de Extensi贸n de Oregon State University proh铆be la discriminaci贸n en todos sus programas, servicios, actividades y materiales en base a la raza, color, origen nacional, religi贸n, sexo, identidad de g茅nero (incluyendo la expresi贸n de g茅nero), orientaci贸n sexual, discapacidad, edad, estado civil, estatus de la familia/padres, ingresos derivados de un programa de asistencia p煤blica, creencias pol铆ticas, informaci贸n gen茅tica, estado de veterano, represalia o represalia por actividad previa de los derechos civiles. (No todos los t茅rminos prohibidos se aplican a todos los programas.)