NDSU Extension Service
Is your garden producing a bumper crop this year? If you have more fruits and vegetables than you can use now, preserve some to eat later. Canning is a great way to preserve food, but don't let your efforts turn into a health hazard. Be sure to use research-tested recipes and follow proper canning procedures. (NDSU photo)
If one of your trees dies because of the very dry weather, you should consider a more drought-tolerant species planted in its place. For example, adapted cultivars of hackberry, boxelder, white poplar and honeylocust are some of the more drought-hardy trees to consider.
(Photo courtesy of Wendy Cutler)
NDSU Extension specialists will screen your water free of charge. If you drink water or irrigate from a private well or question the quality of your livestock water, you can have your water screened by Extension water quality specialists at no charge.
- July 17 - Carrington Research Extension Center
- July 18 - North Central Research Extension Center, Minot
- July 24 - Williston Research Extension Center
Substances that Extension specialists will test for on-site include nitrates and total dissolved solids. They'll also test for pH (acidity or alkalinity) and hardness. Other testing also is available.
Eating right is important if you want to perform your best and keep yourself from being injured during practice or a game. One of the biggest roadblocks to good nutrition is lack of planning. So make sure you have a game plan for eating a balanced diet, and read Nutrition Facts labels to help you select foods and beverages that let you power up while avoiding empty calories.
With the increase in obesity in the U.S., making smart beverage choices is vital. Health experts recommend making milk and water your beverages of choice and limiting the amount of beverages with added sugars that you drink. Here are some tips for making smart beverage choices: Carry a bottle of water and keep it filled throughout the day. Add slices of lemon, lime, cucumber or watermelon to make your water more flavorful. When you opt for a sugar-sweetened beverage, go for the small size. (Photo courtesy of Greg Riegler Photography)
If you don't have a lot of space for gardening, try growing vegetables in containers. Old barrels, bushel baskets and 3- or 5-gallon buckets work well. Just make sure the containers have drainage holes so water doesn't pool in the bottom and damage the roots. Also make sure you use potting soil, not soil from your yard. You can start your own seeds or buy plants. Remember, plants in containers need to be watered and fertilized more often than those planted in the ground. One major advantage of container gardening is that you can move the container to a spot with more sun or shade when necessary. (NDSU photo)
Keep sun protection in mind when you're outdoors. A few serious sunburns can increase your risk of skin cancer. Sunscreen and clothing are among the best ways to protect yourself from the sun's rays. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both types of ultraviolet rays and has a sun protection factor of at least 30. Reapply it every two hours. Also, cover up with clothing, and wear a hat and sunglasses. (Photo from NDSU Extension Service)
It is a new year and spring is here, so it’s time to get flooded landscapes back into shape. Bare spots in the lawn can be reseeded or resodded when the ground is dry enough to work. Thin lawns will benefit from fertilization, especially if you did not fertilize last fall. Trees and shrubs can be planted in early spring as soon as the ground is dry. The lack of snow this winter will allow people to establish these plants earlier than in most years. However, it’s too early to plant vegetable seeds in the garden because most of the state is susceptible to frost damage at least until mid to late May.
The forecast calls for higher temperatures coming our way, so thoughts are turning to what to plant in the landscape this year.
Annuals and perennials are an excellent source of color and accent to North Dakota landscapes. They come in different colors and sizes and varieties can be chosen for shady, sunny, dry or wet locations.
For good advice on what to plant, read “Annual and Perennial Flower Selections for North Dakota” by Ron Smith and Barb Laschkewitsch.
When buying an appliance or electronic device, remember that it has two costs: the cost of buying it and the cost of running it. New heating systems must disclose how much energy they deliver from their fuel source. The EnergyGuide label provides the average amount of energy that home appliances will use in a year and the average cost for that energy. Look for the ENERGY STAR label to find the most energy-efficient home electronics.