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Soil paintings hung in Bradfield/Emerson foyer

artists with their work

Undergraduate and graduate students gathered with members of the Cornell Soil Health Team to celebrate the hanging of the paintings they created as part of a community art project commemorating Global Soil Week last December.

Participants mixed finely sifted soil grains with water and the traditional binder known as gesso to turn the varying hues of soil into paintable mixtures. Similar to acrylic, the paint retains the texture and character of the soil from where it originates, with hues of varying colors.

You can view the paintings in the foyer at the east entrance to Bradfield and Emerson Halls.

Seminar video: Faking wine and making millions: Wine counterfeiting through the ages

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, we managed to capture it more or less despite the campus-wide power outage: Faking wine and making millions: Wine counterfeiting through the ages with Justine Vanden Heuvel, Associate Professor, Horticulture Section and Michael Fontaine,  Associate Professor, Department of Classics  is available online.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: Creating a Garden for Climate Change Education

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar,  Creating a Garden for Climate Change Education with Sonja Skelly, Director of Education, Cornell Plantations, it’s available online.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: When darkness comes: Student mental health, university gardens, and the Nature Rx approach

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar,  When darkness comes: Student mental health, university gardens, and the Nature Rx approach with Erica Anderson
MPS ’16 Public Garden Leadership, Cornell University and Assistant Curator of Education, Department of Horticulture, Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library and Don Rakow, Associate Professor, Horticulture Section, it’s available online.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: A Journey into the Underbelly of the Processed Food Industry

If you missed Wednesday’s Messenger Lecture hosted by Thomas Björkman, A Journey into the Underbelly of the Processed Food Industry  with author and investigative journalist Michael Moss,  it’s available online.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: Dry farming viticultural practices in Spain

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar,  Dry farming viticultural practices in Spain with Adam Karl, 2015 Dreer Award Recipient and PhD candidate, Graduate Field of Horticulture, it’s available online.

Learn more about the Frederick Dreer Award, which funds overseas travel by students to study horticulture topics.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Seminar video: Broccoli production in the Northeast

If you missed Monday’s Horticulture Section seminar, Broccoli production in the Northeast , with Thomas Björkman, associate professor, Horticulture Section, it’s available online.

Visit Björkman’s Eastern Broccoli Project website.

More seminar videos: Horticulture | School of Integrative Plant Science

Register now for Camp Mushroom

camp-mushroomIf you’ve gotten shut out in years past because Camp Mushroom sold out before you even heard about it, now’s the time to sign-up for the annual event which will be held June 3 – 4 at Hidden Valley Camp, Watkins Glen NY.

Camp Mushroom is Cornell University’s annual two-day event for farmers, woodlot owners, and hobby growers who want to cultivate their own shiitake, oyster, lions mane, and stropharia mushrooms. This year marks the 11th year of the course, as forest mushroom cultivation blossoms in the Northeast as a new small farm industry.

This course is geared for those interest in the commercial production of mushrooms. Participants will be trained in four methods of mushroom cultivation; shiitake on bolts, lions mane/oyster on totems, oysters on straw, and stropharia in woodchip beds. Additional topics include laying yard and management considerations and the economics of production.

Each participant will also inoculate a shiitake bolt to take home. Anyone who wants to get into mushroom growing as a serious pursuit should not miss out on this opportunity to learn from the experienced growers and researchers who will present for this event.

Visit the Camp Mushroom webpage for more details and registration information.

Meantime, you can view new series of short videos that detail forest cultivation of lions mane, oyster, and wine cap stropharia mushrooms. Here’s a sample:

Soil Health Program featured in USDA video

A new video from the USDA’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program features Cornell’s Soil Health Program, based in the Soil and Crop Sciences Section of the School of Integrative Plant Sciences.

“We’re still very much in a rapid growth phase in terms of doing the soil health assessment,” Harold van Es, professor in Soil and Crop Sciences who was instrumental in the development of the test, says in the video. “We currently get about 2,000 samples per year submitted to our lab. That has been steadily growing as there’s more interest the assessment framework and the test. All in all, we’ve reached many thousands of farmers and consultants.”

The video also features Donn Branton, a cooperating farmer in Le Roy, N.Y., who has worked with van Es and the Cornell Soil Health Team, and Bianca Moebius-Clune, former coordinator of the Cornell Soil Health Program who is now director of USDA-NRCS’s Soil Health Division.

Special kudos to Jenn Thomas-Murphy, an Extension support specialist in the Soil and Crop Sciences Section, who shot and edited the video.

See also: Innovative Assessment Helps Farmers in the Northeast Improve Soil Health at the SARE website.

PBS documentary looks at Cornell’s broccoli research

bjorkman on pbsHorticulture professor Thomas Björkman is breeding new varieties of broccoli that thrive in the eastern climate. His research as part of the Eastern Broccoli Project could mean fresher, better tasting broccoli grown in New York and other eastern states, reducing the demand for the vegetable grown and shipped from California.

This web exclusive to the PBS documentary In Defense of Food takes a look at Björkman’s research and his effort to create a year-round supply of high-quality, Eastern-grown broccoli.

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