August 2019
Inside this Issue:

Alexander County Farmer's Market
will be open on Saturday's
8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Old Hospital Parking Lot

If you would like to be a vendor at the farmer's market please visit the website below:
August Garden Calendar

Preserving the Harvest

Dehydration 101
August 27, 2019
Demonstration Kitchen 
5:30-8:30 p.m.
Cost:  $15.00

Dehydrated fruits and veggies can pack intense flavors while offering a healthy alternative to artificially sweetened snacks. Come learn the basics of dehydration as we dehydrate seasonal fruits and veggies, and learn how to make fruit leather. Almost everything can be dehydrated, so don't miss out on this opportunity. Register by August 16th. Cost of this class is $15 and is due at time of registration.  

Jams and Jellies Class will be offered on Tuesday, September 24th at 5:30 p.m. 


Alexander County Junior Livestock Show
The 2019 Alexander County Junior Livestock Show will be held on Saturday, August 24th at H&H Arena.  For more information regarding this event click the link below:
How Much Fertilizer Do I Need to Stockpile Fescue?
Article wrote by:  Allison Brown, Ag Extension Agent

Recently studies have been done to see how efficient fertilizer applications are on fescue fields that have been set aside to stockpile for winter grazing. In the past recommendations have been between 60 and 80 lbs of nitrogen. In 2018 - 2019 Dr. Alan Franzluebbers conducted close to 30 trials across NC in known fescue areas to see if this was an accurate and cost effective recommendation.

One of those trials was conducted on my farm in Hiddenite. Forage was collected, weighed, and sampled at greater than 4 inches height and 2 to 4 inches in height. A comprehensive soil test was completed as well as a complete nutritional analysis on the forage.

The results showed that the forage yield responded to a small dose of nitrogen fertilizer when harvested at the lower cutting height. The break-even price ratio was assumed from $200/ton of hay and $.50/lb of N fertilizer. My bulk cost of urea this year averaged around $.45/lb of N fertilizer or $21.00 / acre. Of course this does not include costs of application or labor. Essentially applying 40 lbs N/ acre in the fall would be sufficient and economical enough to provide growth for stockpiling fescue for winter grazing.

This study also analyzed Total Organic Carbon and Soil Microbial Biomass Carbon. The hopes are that through rotational grazing and better soil management we can greatly reduce the total amounts of fertilizer needed in the future by improving our organic matter in the soils.

We still have some work to do on our land but it is improving. In the beef business we have to look at all input costs and fertilizer can be a major one. However, we can't just say that we won't put out fertilizer if we don't put in the work beforehand. Overgrazed and continuously grazed pastures will likely not have adequate amounts of organic matter to provide the forage growth you need for your cattle.


DJ Salyer, Alexander County 4-H Extension Agent; Merylin Davis, Alexander County 4-H Volunteer and Kaylor Berwick, Alexander County 4-H'er attended the 72nd Annual Electric Congress  July 9-11 at Western Carolina University.  Youth have to meet certain requirements in order to be able to attend this event.  Kaylor is a member of the Shockers 4-H Club in Alexander County and Merylin is the club leader.  If you have youth ages 5-18 that have interest in Electricity and Science please call the N.C. Cooperative Extension-Alexander County Center at 828-632-3125 to learn more about the club and when they meet. 

Youth Attend N.C. 4-H Congress

Alexander 4-H Youth attended N.C. 4-H Congress from July 20th-23rd in Raleigh, NC.  Youth from across the state come together for a opportunity to build leadership skills, experience educational tours and social events, and recognize the accomplishments of attendees.  Alexander County 4-H had one individual that performed at the N.C 4-H Gala on Monday evening, which is a great accomplishment.  Nolan Heath, Shockers 4-H Club, played his guitar and sang a tune for the crowd and did a superb job.  Alexander 4-H had two other youth attend the events, Anna Beth Harris, Whisk it Up 4-H Club, and Kaylor Berwick, Shockers 4-H Club.  Anna Beth Harris just finished up her term as the South Central District 4-H President.  She has done a wonderful job representing South Central District and Alexander County.  Way to go Alexander 4-H!


Attend the 2020 NC Farm School 
Foothills Area

Realize the dream of owning your own farm....Learn from successful farms of our graduates!
  • Marketing, budgeting, finance, risk management, and farm production training tailored to your goals
  • One on one business consultations with NC State University Specialist
  • Continued events and relationships to help you develop your business beyond 2020 NC Farm School
  • Access to farming resources developed in our program exclusively for NCFS Students
  • Relationships with Extension Agents in your county connecting you to valuable resources
For more information please call 828-632-4451 or visit the link below:

 Read more N.C. Cooperative Extension news at >>
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