Tracy Turner

Technical Editor
Focus Areas: 
Chow Line, consumer news, food safety, nutrition.
  1. Precision Ag Technology Day is Aug. 5

    WAUSEON, Ohio – Growers who want to learn more about how using precision agriculture technologies can help them make informed agronomic decisions can attend the Northwest Ohio Precision Agriculture Day Aug. 5, offered by experts with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.  The annual day-long event will offer information on combines, precision harvest technology, grain handling and data collection and will feature discussions and demonstrations from college researchers and farm equipment, seed and technology professionals, said Eric Richer, an Ohio State University Extension educator. The event, which is geared toward producers, certified crop consultants and anyone interested in precision agriculture, will feature...
  2. Participants Value Ohio State’s Aquaculture Programs

    PIKETON, Ohio – Current and future fish farmers who’ve attended aquaculture programing taught by researchers from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences say the techniques they learned not only increased their overall knowledge of the industry but also increased their confidence to work in this industry, according to a recent survey. In fact, some participants said the training taught them important concepts such as how to operate a successful fish farm and helped them clarify potential obstacles to running a successful aquaponics business, said Estefania James, program coordinator for the Aquaculture Boot Camp. The program is offered by the Ohio Center for Aquaculture Research and Development at the Ohio State University South...
  3. Aronia

    Blueberry, Brambles and Winegrape Production Workshop Offered July 15

    PIKETON, Ohio – As the health benefits of so-called “superfruits” continue to become more widely known, growers in Ohio can take advantage of increasing consumer demand for these foods by adding them to their farm operations. Fruits such as elderberry, aronia and goji berries are being called super berries because of their nutrition content and their promise to combat a variety of ailments, said Gary Gao, an Ohio State University Extension specialist and associate professor of small fruit crops at Ohio State University’s South Centers in Piketon. And as the consumer demand for healthier foods continues to grow, farmers who are able to add small fruit crops to their farm operations may find that berry production is a potentially lucrative option, Gao said....
  4. Farm Science Review to Focus on New Technologies and Innovation

    LONDON, Ohio – Information on new agricultural technologies and innovation awaits growers and producers who plan to attend this year’s Farm Science Review Sept. 16-18 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio. Following the theme “Experience the Difference,” the 52nd annual event will not only showcase the latest technological advances in agriculture, but it will also give participants the opportunity to learn the latest educational research on how to improve their farm operations’ financial bottom line, said Chuck Gamble, manager of the show, which is sponsored by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. From providing the most-up-to-date techniques and research to help growers improve water and...
  5. Tips for Safe Hay Baling

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – As growers statewide finish their first cutting of hay crops, now is a good time to do preventative maintenance tasks that can boost farm profits and protect farm workers, says a safety research associate and lecturer from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Completing some preventative maintenance tasks on balers and other farm machinery can help lessen the potential for delay down the line because of a breakdown, said Andrew “Dewey” Mann, safety research associate for Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural Safety and Health program. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. “We all know that farmers have a list of at least 10 things to do at any given time,”...
  6. Higher Beef Prices Prompting Some Producers to Consider Expanding

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – While the declining number of beef cattle nationwide has meant higher costs for consumers, the resulting higher prices that producers are fetching may likely encourage them to expand their herds, says a beef expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. According to the recently released 2012 Census of Agriculture, the nation’s beef cow herds have dropped to 28.9 million head, a decline of 3.8 million from 2007, said John Grimes, beef coordinator for Ohio State University Extension. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. The number of farms with beef cows has also declined to 727,906 with an average herd size of 39.8 cows, compared to 764,984 farms with an average herd size of 42.9 in 2007,...
  7. Precautions Can Help Prevent Uncontrolled Burns

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – A controlled burn is one way to rid farmland of tree limbs, brush and other debris that’s found its way onto the area thanks to recent high winds, heavy rain and floodwaters. But before you light that match, there are steps to take to ensure the burn is not only safe but also legal, according to Dave Torsell, an Ohio State University Extension program manager for the Agricultural Rescue and Emergency Management program. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Knowing some simple safety precautions to take before and during an open burn is critical to reduce the potential for injuries, Torsell said. While it’s important to keep areas around buildings, barns, tack sheds,...
  8. Asiatic Garden Beetle Potential Problem in Northern Ohio Corn Fields, Sandy Soils

    WOOSTER, Ohio – A pest not traditionally known to Ohio corn growers has been found in pockets of the state and, in some cases, has the potential to cause stunted corn and yield loss. Some Ohio corn growers, particularly those in northern Ohio with fields that contain sandy soils, are finding fields with wilted and stunted corn thanks to an infestation of Asiatic garden beetle grubs, said Andy Michel, an Ohio State University Extension pest expert in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The grubs are a relatively new pest to Ohio field crops and have the potential to cause significant economic losses for growers, said Michel, who also has an appointment with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. OSU Extension and OARDC are the statewide...
  9. Uneven Soybean Emergence May Not Mean Replanting

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – While cool, wet, muddy conditions in May slowed planting and crop growth for soybeans in much of Ohio, and drier soil conditions this month have contributed to uneven soybean emergence, that doesn’t automatically mean that growers need to replant, said a field crops expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Unless growers with uneven soybean emergence are able to determine that their seedlings are dead, they may want to hold off on replanting decisions, said Laura Lindsey, a soybean and small grains specialist with the college’s outreach arm, Ohio State University Extension. Growers should start evaluating their soybean fields to see where they are at but should realize that there may be some...
  10. Tips to Stay Safe When Spraying

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – It may sound simple, but wearing a long-sleeve shirt and long pants when using pesticides is just one way in which farmers can decrease their risk of injury when spraying, a safety coordinator with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences said. Knowing some simple safety precautions to take when using a pesticide sprayer is key for farmers to reduce the potential for injuries, said Andy Bauer, an Ohio State University Extension agricultural health and safety professional. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. With spring planting well underway, this is a time when farmers should take extra precautions to prevent accidental exposure when working with a sprayer, Bauer said. One of the most important things...
  11. Anthesis vs. early grain-fill: from left to right: flowering; two days after flowering and five days after flowering.

    Scab Development Potential Low This Week, Regional Forecasting System Says

    WOOSTER, Ohio – Most Ohio wheat growers can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that the risk for Fusarium head blight development is likely to be low this week, according to a wheat expert from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Now that the majority of Ohio wheat is between anthesis (flowering) and early grain-fill, the threat of Fusarium head blight, also called head scab, is decreased, particularly since the region has experienced at least four rain-free days over the past week, said Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension wheat specialist. This information is gleaned using a regional online assessment tool to determine head scab development risk. The Fusarium Risk Assessment Tool available at the Fusarium Head...
  12. Ohio State’s Conservation Tillage Conference Supports Research

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State University’s annual Conservation Tillage Conference is well-known for providing research-based agronomic information for farmers that helps increase their operations’ financial bottom lines. The conference, which is sponsored by the university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and held each March in Ada, Ohio, offers the latest research, insight, tips and techniques on conservation tillage, including cover crops, no-till, soil quality, seeding technology, water quality and nutrient management for growers, crop consultants and agribusinesses. But the two-day CTC conference also funds mini-grants for researchers who in turn are able to present their findings at the following year’s event, according to...
  13. Slug

    Weather Delayed Late Planting Increases Need to Scout for Pests

    WOOSTER, Ohio – With fields beginning to dry out from the excessive rains experienced throughout the state and as temperatures begin to warm, crop growers should look to scout their fields for insects that have the potential to cause economic losses, an entomologist with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences said. In addition to cereal leaf beetle, alfalfa weevil and black cutworm, crop growers need to be on the lookout for slugs, especially in fields with a history of slug damage, said Andy Michel, an Ohio State University Extension pest expert. The region is likely entering into a period of heavy slug feeding, so corn and soybean growers need to be out inspecting their crops for the slimy pests, said Michel, who also has an...
  14. Dairy cows

    Ohio State Experts: Farmers, First Responders Need to Prepare for Agro-terrorism

    JEFFERSON, Ohio – Agroterrorism may be a term many farmers haven’t heard of, but it’s one they need to understand in order to combat it, according to an expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Farmers are prepared to respond to natural disasters, but in an age where the risk of human-caused disasters such as agroterrorism is an issue, farmers must be vigilant and know what to look out for, said David Marrison, an Ohio State University Extension educator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. “It’s one of those things that we hope never happens, but based on the reality of how the world is today, it’s best to be prepared,” Marrison said. According to the Federal Bureau of...
  15. Fusarium Head Blight of Wheat

    Scab Forecasting System Can Determine if Fungicides Are Needed for Wheat

    WOOSTER, Ohio – With Ohio wheat nearing the critical flowering growth stage, it’s important for growers to use a regional online assessment tool to determine their risk for Fusarium head blight development, according to a wheat expert from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Fusarium head blight, also called head scab, is of particular concern for growers now as wheat heads are most susceptible to the scab fungus during flowering, and infection is favored by warm, wet or humid conditions, said Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension wheat researcher. Much of the state has experienced cooler conditions this week, thus reducing the risk of head scab for wheat flowering, said Paul, who is also a plant...
  16. Wheat field

    Growers: Wheat Nearing Critical Growth Stage, Time to Scout for Foliar Disease

    WOOSTER, Ohio – Wheat in Ohio is nearing the critical growth stage, and with recent heavy rainfalls and the forecast calling for cooler temperatures over the next few days, growers should scout their fields for any indication of disease development, said a wheat expert from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The rainy weather helps to create conditions favorable for foliar disease to develop, producing spores and new infections, said Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension wheat researcher. The amount of moisture experienced recently favors significant foliar diseases that impact wheat crops near critical growing stages, said Paul, who is also a plant pathologist with the Ohio Agricultural Research and...
  17. Palmer amaranth

    Ohio State Weed Specialist: Preventing the Spread of Costly Herbicide-Resistant Weed Calls for Zero Tolerance

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – If you see even one of this notoriously damaging weed in your field, pull it up – fast! Otherwise it could be the worst mistake you’ve ever made in your farming career, according to a researcher from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Palmer amaranth, a glyphosate-resistant weed also known to many cotton and soybean farmers in the South as a “pigweed on steroids,” has already begun showing up in Ohio fields, said Mark Loux, an Ohio State University Extension weed specialist. OSU Extension is the statewide outreach arm of the college. Because of its fast growth, herbicide resistance and ability to destroy entire crops, Ohio growers are going to have to take a zero...
  18. Spring Planting Requires Increased Focus on Safety

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Working fast to get crops in to beat incoming weather is just one instance in which farmers increase their risk of injury, a safety expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences said. Knowing some simple safety precautions to take during spring planting is critical for farmers to reduce the potential for injuries, said Kent McGuire, an Ohio State University Extension agricultural health and safety professional. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. Spring planting is a time when farm workers are continually moving from one piece of equipment to another and climbing on equipment to fill with seed or make repairs, McGuire said.  This is a time that farmers should take extra precautions to prevent...
  19. Hops cone for beer production

    Correction: Statewide Tour Series Features Hops Production, Aquaponics and Urban Agriculture

    EDITOR: This news release, originally sent May 5, contained an incorrect date in the 16th paragraph. The date is now corrected. The Non-Profit Urban Farm Tour in Toledo is Aug. 9. We apologize for any inconvenience this error has caused. COLUMBUS, Ohio – Hops production, aquaponics and urban agriculture are hot topics in agriculture today -- so much so that they are among the topics featured in the 2014 Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series. From increasing consumer demand for fresh, locally grown, healthful foods, to the growing demand for local hops production to feed Ohio’s rapidly expanding and increasingly lucrative craft brewing industry, the demand from producers and growers for information and resources on these agricultural options is huge, said Mike...
  20. Yellow Perch

    Ohio State Aquaculture Research Program Offers Fish Farmers Online Instructional Videos

    PIKETON, Ohio – A new set of how-to videos that teach beginning aquaculturists the ins and outs of fish farming is now available online. The five-part video series offers an in-depth look at key issues in fish farming in a short, succinct, easy to understand format. It was produced by the Ohio Center for Aquaculture Research and Development at Ohio State University South Centers as part of its yearlong Aquaculture Boot Camp program. The boot camp, offered in 2013 and 2014, provided new and beginning fish farmers a hands-on approach to aquaculture and the business of fish farming, giving participants the opportunity to study the technique at the Piketon facility. The videos are designed to provide information on getting started for those interested in learning more about or going...
  21. Black cutworm

    Ohio State Entomologist: Begin Scouting for Spring Pests at Planting Time

    WOOSTER, Ohio – A migrating moth that can cause significant stand loss in corn is just one of the pests growers should be on the lookout for as they gear up for spring planting, an entomologist with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences said. Black cutworms have been reported in the neighboring states of Indiana and Pennsylvania in significant numbers in traps set up by entomologists to determine the number of moths migrating up from the south, said Andy Michel, an Ohio State University Extension pest expert. That means Ohio growers should be prepared to begin scouting their fields for this insect, he said. The pest, while not a widespread problem throughout Ohio, tends to prefer to infest fields with significant ground cover and...
  22. Ohio State Offers Free Screening of Film Dedicated to Increasing Urban Agriculture

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State University Extension will host a free viewing of a film next month that examines urban agriculture and the ways growers are increasing food production in urban settings. "Growing Cities: A Film About Urban Farming in America" is a documentary that examines urban agriculture as a way to help growers develop local food systems, said Mike Hogan, an OSU Extension educator and sustainable agriculture coordinator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Hogan said the viewing is part of the college’s overall efforts to help expand agriculture into more urban areas and to help promote the understanding of how to create or expand agriculture-related business...
  23. Damage caused by spotted wing drosophila. Photo courtesy of Hannah Burrack, North Carolina State University, Bugwood.org.

    Spotted Wing Drosophila Impacts Berry Crops

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – John Albert is keeping an eye out for a new winged pest in Ohio that, while it looks like a common vinegar fly, instead has the potential to wipe out entire fruit crops because of its propensity to attack healthy ripening fruit. Although the spotted wing drosophila hasn’t reached his 50-acre Ruffwing Farms produce and livestock farm in Lancaster, Albert is ready to tackle the harmful insect should it come seeking his blueberries and black and red raspberries. “It would be devastating to my crops,” he said. “For example, black raspberries have a very short harvest, maybe a two-week window to harvest. “So if I had spotted wing drosophila on my farm, I would have to shut down the harvest for a week, potentially resulting in a 30- to 50-...
  24. Extension centennial logo

    One Hundred Years and Counting: Extension Marks Centennial and Looks to the Future

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- As Ohio State University Extension celebrates the 100th anniversary of the nation’s Cooperative Extension Service on May 8, its leaders hope the occasion provides the opportunity to broaden people’s understanding and awareness of what today’s Extension organization has to offer. “I firmly believe Extension is needed more today than it was in 1914,” said Keith Smith, director of OSU Extension and associate vice president for agricultural administration at Ohio State University. “With so much information that’s hitting the public these days and coming at us so fast, people have to ask, What’s true? What can I rely on? What’s going to be best for me? “People need an unbiased, research-based foundational source...
  25. Participants take part in an aquaculture boot camp at the Ohio Center for Aquaculture Research and Development at Ohio State University South Centers. The boot camp is just one program that the center offers for fish farmers.

    First Friday Tours: Ohio State Aquaculture Research Program

    PIKETON, Ohio – An innovative fish farming program offered by the Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences is offering monthly tours of its facilities, including its fish hatchery. The Ohio Center for Aquaculture Research and Development at Ohio State University South Centers is offering new and beginning fish farmers and anyone else interested in aquaculture an opportunity to tour fish farming operations at the Piketon facility. The free tours are designed to be a mini-workshop to provide information on getting started and what resources are available, said Laura Tiu, OSU Extension aquaculture specialist. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. The OSU South Centers also are part of the college. “We were constantly...

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