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Showing posts from September, 2018

What's Killing My Kale? Episode 12 - Japanese Beetle

How Much Do We Really Know About Japanese Beetles?

Everyone is talking about Japanese beetles this season, but how much do we actually know about how to control them?

In this episode, Extension Educator Jeff Hahn and Entomology graduate student Dominique Ebbenga help me bust some myths about Japanese beetle control. We break down the ins and outs of this invasive pest, and they reveal some fascinating facts about what makes them such a
tough foe for fruits and vegetables in Minnesota.

Listen to this episode here, or on iTunes.

Farm Information Line FAQ for September

By Robin Trott, Horticulture Extension Educator, Douglas County 
Can you sell your vegetables if they got flooded this season? Do you want to know how to store unused pesticides or dispose of them? What are some of the financial counseling resources for financially stressed farmers? We answer these frequently asked questions today...on the Farm Information Line.
1. Flooded Vegetables Some areas of Minnesota were inundated with rain this summer, so much so that some vegetable crops were flooded out.  Is this a total loss or can you sell vegetables?

Floodwaters can contain harmful microbes such as E. coli or salmonella that could contaminate produce. If any edible portions of produce were touched by floodwater, that produce may be considered to be adulterated and cannot be sold.

However, there are two types of flooding. The first is localized ponding, which occurs when a heavy storm saturates the soil and water pools at the soil surface.  Ponding can kill plants if it takes too long for…

Remember to scout for scat prior to harvest

Every (garden) party has a pooper, and as growers we all know that keeping animals out of the garden can be incredibly challenging! No matter what we do, there’s always something that seems to find its way to our crops, whether it be birds, raccoons, rabbits, deer, or even a bear.

And it’s not just plant damage that we need to be concerned about; animals can carry human pathogens (bacteria, viruses, and parasites) in their feces and they can spread that contamination around fields as they move.


Eating raw produce that has been contaminated can make us very sick. Just this past summer, an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 was traced to romaine lettuce grown near Yuma, Arizona. The source of contamination is believed to be a nearby cattle feedlot. In total, 210 people were sickened and five people died, including two deaths in Minnesota.

Symptoms of foodborne illness generally involve diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea and/or vomiting, and can also include fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and …