Field and Forest, by Richard Gast

It’s garlic planting time

Garlic is delicious. And so versatile! You can use it chopped, sliced, sauted, minced, or roasted whole. You can put it in sauces, soups, side dishes, and main dishes. And it's good for you!Medical research on the health benefits of garlic, including research conducted by Weill Cornell ...

Private forest management field program

Our forests are sources of clean air and water, wildlife habitat, scenic landscapes, and wood products. Unfortunately, much of the private forest in our region has been relentlessly mismanaged for generations due to high grading and other poor forestry practices. High grading is the practice of ...

Certified chainsaw safety training offered

Chainsaws certainly are remarkable tools. Once used only by professional lumberjacks, they are widely used today by landowners, farmers; even homeowners. And they sure are useful! In fact, it's hard to think of a more efficient, time saving power tool.A well-running chainsaw with a properly ...

Improving quality of value added maple confections

On Thursday, Sept. 18, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Franklin County will be offering a workshop on "Improving the Quality of Value Added Maple Products" in the second floor Conference Room at the Franklin County Courthouse, in Malone.The workshop is made possible by the Cornell University ...

4-H: a positive educational experience

August already! And the 2014 Franklin County Fair is in full swing. This year, as always, there's a midway full of rides and games. And, of course, there are all sorts of concessions, commercial exhibits, and scheduled events, including demolition derbies, truck and tractor pulls, harness ...

Bee balm, a beautiful garden herb

Earlier this season, when my granddaughter asked me what my favorite garden flower was, I had to stop and think about it for a few seconds before telling her that my favorite is probably red bee balm. I was reminded of our conversation earlier this week. As I was working in the yard, the sun ...

Trickle irrigation is often best

Obviously, plants will not survive without water. But, there's a lot more to it than that. Without the proper amount of water, they will not thrive. Too little or too much will result in unhealthy plant development. If they don't drown or die as a result of dehydration, they will become weak ...

The National Climate Assessment — What does it mean for the North Country?

The 800-page 2014 National Climate Assessment, which involved more than 300 scientists, engineers and technical experts, was released last month, confirming that climate change is an existing threat. The report accepted that many global climate change predictions made a decade ago are ...

Be a locavore — support local farmers markets

The term "local food" is certainly not an unfamiliar one. I hear a lot of talk these days about eating locally. And I know several people who try to eat locally, whenever possible, for a number of good reasons.We live in an age of global markets, with most of us buying our food from chain ...

Emerald ash borer — a risk to ash trees locally and across North America

In an attempt to raise awareness and increase knowledge about an extremely destructive, invasive insect pest known as the emerald ash borer, New York marked its 4th annual Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week earlier this month. New York has more than 900 million ash trees, representing about seven ...

Build a better garden with raised beds

Most everyone I speak with has worked in, or at least seen a row garden. These are the standard, in-ground gardens, in which plants are grown in well-defined rows, with paths left between the rows to allow access for cultivating and harvesting. While row gardens have been the standard for ...

Asparagus — a taste of spring

Asparagus is one of only a few perennial vegetables that can be reliably grown in the North Country. For gardeners and consumers alike, it is one of the most anticipated early-season, local garden crops and a sure sign, especially after a long winter like this past one, that warmer weather is ...

Maple syrup producers can now recycle maple tubing locally

Those of you who may have ventured out to visit a nearby producer during Maple Weekend have seen, firsthand, how large sugaring operations utilize the latest equipment, machinery, tools, and the most advanced technologies available when making maple syrup. Once the sap flows, they are able to ...

Maple sugaring season is underway (sort of)

The calendar says spring is here. Most of us are looking ahead with enthusiasm and anticipation to warmer weather. Days are getting longer. And every time I get to feel the radiant warmth of the sun beaming down from a glacial blue sky with just a hint of clouds, it sure feels good!A lot of us ...

Spring is coming

"Winter had lasted so long that it seemed it would never end."Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote those words in her book, The Long Winter, a novel about enduring the winter of 1880 to 1881 in the Dakota Territory. In the book, Ingalls Wilder describes a winter so cold, snowy and relentless that the ...

Energy addiction — its not-so-obvious costs

We use energy in our homes every day of our lives -?a lot of energy. We use energy to keep rooms at comfortable temperatures, to provide lighting, and to heat water for bathing, hand washing and dishwashing. We also use energy to cook food and to power computers, copiers, games and appliances. ...

Applicable timber management practices can help deer survive the winter

It's not at all uncommon, especially during a hard winter or following a winter storm, to speak with hunting enthusiasts and landowners who express deep concern about the ability of deer to survive until spring without supplemental feed. Their concerns are legitimate, at least to some degree. ...

Extending the life of Valentine’s Day flowers

This certainly has been a trying winter. We've seen more than two months of often punishing and sometimes dangerous cold, with nighttime temperatures all-too-often falling well-below zero, and daytime temperatures sometimes remaining below zero. The wind, which has for the most part been ...

Avoiding, treating hypothermia and frostbite

In the wake of the recent death by hypothermia of a 31-year-old Australian soldier visiting the Adirondacks, apparently a suicide, I've received a number of inquiries about just what hypothermia is and about the dangers and symptoms of both hypothermia and frostbite. Most were from concerned ...

Maple school scheduled for Feb. 1

The Franklin County Maple (Producers) Association, in cooperation with Brushton Moira Central School Future Farmers of America and Cornell Cooperative Extension, has been busily organizing its second annual Franklin County Maple School. The all-day event will be held at BMCS on the Gale Road ...