Greetings from UCCE Central Sierra!

September finds schools back in session, summer coming to an end, and autumn days on the horizon. Enrollment for the 4-H Youth Development Program is in full swing and clubs across the Central Sierra are offering a wide range of in-person projects for the upcoming program year. Meanwhile, the UCCE Master Gardeners and UCCE Master Food Preservers continue to host a variety of events and online classes relevant to the changing season. Important work is being done to research, educate, and support the needs of our community members, and our commitment in doing so is stronger than ever. Check out this article by our UCCE Master Gardeners offering sound advice to help your plants and gardens survive this unseasonal heat. Please do not hesitate to reach out should you have questions. Take care and stay healthy.

JoLynn Miller
University of California
Cooperative Extension
Central Sierra Nevada
Multi-County Partnership

Forests and woodlands in the Central Sierra Nevada are beautiful, extensive, diverse and owned by both public and private landowners. Active management is needed to reduce forest density and to help forests recover after wildfire. The goal of the Central Sierra forestry program is to empower landowners to overcome these challenges.
Post-Fire Workshop
Online September 6 - October 4, 2022 &
In-Person Thursday, 10/13 or Friday, 10/14

Participants will learn about managing forestland after wildfire using online resources on their own time to complete learning modules and short activities. Zoom meetings with all participants and presenters will take place once a week on Tuesdays from 6-7:30pm. The focus is on recent fires in the northern / central Sierra Nevada. The in-person field trips will visit the Dixie,
Caldor & Tamarack fires to see fire impacts, restoration needs and strategies and restoration projects on private and public lands. Contact Susie Kocher with questions.
Cost for the workshop is $25. REGISTER HERE
UCCE Amador Office Welcomes Administrative Assistant
Bonnie Fraser is the new administrative assistant for the UCCE Cooperative Extension in Amador County. In addition to assisting UCCE staff and volunteers, Bonnie also works for the Amador County Department of Agriculture and Weights and Measures. For the last 20 years she has been working in medicine, most recently as a staff supervisor and surgery coordinator for an orthopedic office in Folsom. She has two children. The oldest is a Corporal in the U.S. Marine Corp, stationed in Washington D.C. The younger is a senior at Amador high school who plans to work towards a degree in agriculture. Family and friends are the most important thing in her life and her favorite thing to do is spend time with them. Bonnie said that so far, she has really enjoyed her new job and looks forward to learning and helping as much as possible.
The 4-H Youth Development Program offers educational opportunities for children, teens, families, and adults. 4-H helps young people to reach their full potential as competent, confident, leaders of character who contribute and are connected to their communities.
Enroll NOW for the 2022-2023 Program Year!
Calaveras County 4-H Welcomes New Program Representative

Last month, Lynnelle Madsen started with UCANR as 4-H Community Education Specialist for Calaveras County. Lynnelle has worked with children birth to twelve for the past 12 years. During her tenure she wrote successful grants for innovative teaching strategies and sought to provide developmentally appropriate educational experiences. Lynnelle views inclusion and equity as a main priority for program development as 4-H impacts everyone involved positively.
Born and raised in Ripon, she grew up showing horses, pigs, and cattle across the state and nationally. Lynnelle was an active member in numerous clubs and focused on leadership development, serving locally and regionally. Lynnelle has a bachelor's degree in Psychology and studied Early Childhood Education at TCSJ. When not volunteering with local organizations, Lynnelle enjoys crafting, camping with her daughter, and cooking for friends and family. Welcome, Lynnelle!
The 2022 California State Fair

The State Fair this year was a really fun event. I originally was only going to spend three days down there, one for the County Best of Competition, one for the poultry show, and one for the goat show, but I ended up spending the whole week at State Fair! While I was down at State Fair for the County Best of, I took a test to see if I could qualify for the Small Animal Challenge of Campions. Challenge of Champions is an opportunity to demonstrate your small animal knowledge. I took the rabbit test and I got in! We then had to come down to State Fair again for the next round. The semi-finals were really fun. I competed just for rabbits and I had to show the judges I knew how to tattoo a rabbit, what to use in a nest box, what to feed a rabbit, how to cull rabbits, how to identify Angora fiber, and a lot of other things. I then qualified for the finals. Now I had to demonstrate my knowledge of both rabbits and chickens. There was a lot of stuff I didn’t know on the tests, and it was challenging! I ended up getting first place in the 13 and under category and Champion Rabbit Exhibitor. Getting to go to State Fair was amazing and very exciting. I was proud to exhibit my Black Langshan chickens, and get Best Large Fowl with one. I also brought my goats and did goat showmanship as well as exhibit them. State Fair was great, I am excited for next year, and I encourage you to join the fun!
-Lily Himmel, Amador County Ambassador
Have questions about 4-H? Contact

UCCE Master Gardeners are community members who have been trained under the direction of the University of California Cooperative Extension. Each volunteer has completed more than 50 hours of formal classroom training to provide practical scientific gardening information to the home gardeners.
Questions about your home garden or landscape? Interested in upcoming classes and events?
UCCE Master Gardeners are available to answer your questions!
September 10, 2022 | 10AM – 1PM
The UCCE Tuolumne County Master Gardeners will be holding an Open Garden Day at the Demonstration Garden located at 251 S. Barretta Street in Sonora, (Cassina High School Campus.) Open Garden Days are held on the first Saturday of the month, from February through November, rain or shine. This month the UCCE Master Food Preservers talk about how to preserve your harvest using a solar dehydrator. Activities begin at 10:30am.
September 17, 2022
Amador County
September 24-25, 2022
Tuolumne County
September 2022
El Dorado County

Through the CalFresh Healthy Living (CFHL) UCCE Central Sierra program, we teach free classes in local schools, community centers, libraries, and other public locations. Our classes show people how to choose, grow, cook, and enjoy affordable healthy foods, and how to make physical activity a regular and fun part of life. We also work to create environments where it’s easier for people to make healthy choices, by supporting school wellness policies, community and school gardens, walking clubs, and more.
The Foothill Indian Education Alliance + CFHL, UCCE Central Sierra: Fostering Youth Cultural Knowledge in Food & Cooking 
CalFresh Healthy Living, UCCE (CFHL, UCCE) in collaboration with the Foothill Indian Education Alliance (FIEA), provided five weeks of garden-based nutrition education, cooking lessons, and integrated indigenous cultural art and history lessons to 17local indigenous youth with varied tribal affiliations including Cherokee, Apache, Miwok, and Maidu through the summer of 2022.The goal of the summer program was to create an opportunity for indigenous youth to continue education-based learning and foster greater cultural connection. The activities provided youth with opportunities to build upon their cooking skills, garden knowledge, and experience recipes with culturally relevant ingredients. The success of this summer program will foster partnerships and programming with the local Native American communities to provide garden-based nutrition education and youth engagement opportunities. Read Success Story

Photo: Talia (6th grade), Lacey (4th grade), and Maurice (8th grade) students, holding Leah’s Pantry Young, Indigenous, and Healthy cookbook.
Introducing a few new faces for the UCCE Central Sierra UC CalFresh Health Living Team!
Kathleen Carter
Nutrition Educator, Amador County

Kathleen Carter joins UCCE Central Sierra's CalFresh Healthy Living nutrition education program in Amador County as a Community Education Specialist 1. Kathleen recently graduated from California State University, Chico with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nutrition and Food Sciences. With prior experience interning for the Center for Healthy Communities in Chico, Kathleen is thrilled to continue working with CalFresh programs and others that share her passion for nutrition communication and education. Kathleen can be reached
Mariana Garcia
Program Coordinator, El Dorado County Western Slope

Mariana Garcia joins the UCCE Central Sierra CalFresh Nutrition Education Program as a Community Education Specialist 3, located in El Dorado County's Western Slope. Mariana earned a Bachelor's degree in Nutrition with a Minor in Child Development from California State University, Sacramento. She previously volunteered with Bridges, an after school program, where she had the opportunity to work with elementary school children. In her free time, Mariana enjoys hiking, baking, and trying new places with friends. Mariana is excited to join the team and start her journey with UC CalFresh Healthy Living and UCCE Central Sierra.
Diedra Werner Liske
Nutrition Educator, El Dorado County Western Slope

Diedra works for the CalFresh Healthy Living Central Sierra as a Nutrition Educator. She holds a degree in journalism and a multiple-subject credential and has worn many hats in her
professional life: from a reporter at a weekly paper to a content and assessment editor at a large publishing company in addition to 12 years of elementary classroom experience.
She is a life-long learner and considers every life experience as an opportunity to grow and develop as a human. She is an avid slow/whole-food cook, gardener, amateur forager, and became a certified California Naturalist in 2021.
Prior to landing in Placerville in 2018, her family slow-traveled across the US and Canada, living fulltime in a 5th wheel RV and road schooling her two boys. Throughout her family’s four years of travel and while at home, she continues to grow as a cook, one who prioritizes fresh, healthy and affordable food. She has made meals and meal time an integral part of family life and takes great joy in feeding her family
with foods that she has grown.
Diedra is a poet and writer and often inspired through her deep love of the outdoors. She regularly explores her local Sierra foothill lands through mountain biking, hiking, camping. She is thrilled to assist students, adults and families make and nurture healthy choices.
Harvest of the Month: Watermelon
Try the Look, Lift, Turn! When selecting a watermelon, look for a firm watermelon that is free from bruises, cuts or dents. Scratching is ok. Lift it up. The watermelon should be very heavy for its size. Turn it over. The underside of the watermelon should have a creamy yellow spot from where it sat on the ground and ripened in the sun. If you want to try the thump, you’re listening for a dull, muffled, hollow sound if it’s ripe. If it’s unripe, the sound may be more of a metallic, clear ring. Another way to describe it is a “ping” for unripe or a “pong” when ready. 

Watermelon is fat free, saturated fat free, cholesterol free, sodium free, and a good source of vitamin C! Store whole watermelons at room temperature and refrigerate cut watermelons in airtight container for use within 5 days. Watermelon is common in cuisines of South East Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos), Africa, Southern, Mediterranean, and Latin. Learn More
Watermelon Gazpacho
Labor Day BBQ? Try this simple and delicious gazpacho recipe using leftover watermelon! In less than thirty minutes, watermelon can be combined with a few savory ingredients for a surprising and refreshing twist.

The UCCE Master Food Preserver program trains dedicated volunteers to assist the county UC Cooperative Extension staff provide up-to-date food preservation information. Our current program is active in El Dorado, Amador, Tuolumne, and Calaveras counties.
Ask a UC Master Food Preserver online, any time! Plus sign up to get e-news, event updates and free class schedules delivered to your inbox each month. Subscribe Here
Learn preservation methods and recipes for seasonal produce just in time for the holidays!

The Central Sierra foothill region produces a wide variety of agriculture commodities. The University of California brings research and outreach to area farms to assist with growing and cultural practices, pest and disease management, and more!
8th California Oak Symposium
Sustaining Oak Woodlands Under Current and Future Conditions
Oct. 31-Nov. 3, 2022
Embassy Suites, San Luis Obispo, California

Join Us for the 8th Symposium to:
  • Listen to science based talks from leaders in academia, industry and agencies.
  • View thought provoking abstracts and posters from colleagues.
  • Experience tours of San Luis Obispo County's various Oak Woodland habitats.
  • Engage in discussions and network with other like-minded professionals, researchers, and scientists.
Presented by the University of California's Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the 8th California Oak Symposium is intended for anyone involved in research, education, management, and conservation of California’s oak woodlands. This includes foresters, range managers, tribes, arborists, landowners, community groups, land trusts and policy makers. REGISTRATION NOW OPEN
More UCCE Central Sierra Programs
California is reopening all activities statewide, but it is important to remember that the pandemic is not over and COVID-19 remains a health threat. As we plan and implement a return to in-person ANR programs, we should stay informed about COVID-19 trends statewide and in our communities. Here are a few resources from the CDPH and other trusted sources.
 530-621-5502 | 888-764-9669 | |