News Releases

  1. (Photo: Getty Images)

    Real vs. Artificial: Which Tree Is More Sustainable?

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — When it comes to Christmas trees, a real tree, surprisingly, isn’t always the greenest choice. If you buy and use an artificial tree at least four years, its environmental impact equals that of a fresh-cut tree purchased every year for the same number of years, said Elizabeth Myers Toman, an assistant professor in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) at The Ohio State University. That’s because each year’s drive to buy a real tree adds to the amount of carbon dioxide and other climate change-causing carbon compounds entering the atmosphere. Buying a plastic tree typically involves one trip to a store, which is usually a nearby retailer, then only annual trips by foot to the attic or basement to retrieve...
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    News Tips and Events for the Week of Dec. 10

    Tip 1: Using Technology to Improve Crop Decisions During the Growing Season: Knowing when to spray a pesticide, what type and how much can be challenging. If you don’t spray enough, you don’t fix the problem. Spray too much or the wrong pesticide and you may have wasted time and money. Apps, drones, satellite imagery and other technology can assist farmers in making those and other decisions about their growing crops. The speakers at Precision University, an annual conference sponsored by the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) at The Ohio State University can show how. At the Jan. 9 event, the speakers will include Anne Dorrance, a CFAES professor of plant pathology, who will discuss soybeans fungicides, and Jim DeGrand, Ohio’s assistant...
  3. Photo: Getty Images

    Chow Line: Picky Eating a Normal Part of Early Childhood

    My 4-year-old REFUSES to eat anything that is the color red — no red apples, tomatoes, red peppers or even pepperoni on her pizza. She didn’t used to care what color her food was, but within the past couple weeks, she’s taken a disdain for red foods. Is this normal? As frustrating as that may be for you when planning family meals and deciding what to feed your little one, picky eating habits are considered a normal part of a child’s development, according to health professionals. In fact, up to half of preschoolers have exhibited picky eating habits, from wanting their foods prepared only a certain way, to not wanting to try new foods, and to, yes, refusing to eat foods based on color, research has found. This could be in part because as a child...
  4. Drones like this one will be outfitted with sensors capable of detecting plant pathogens from the air.  Photo: Getty Images

    Aerial Crop Disease Drone Project Receives Gates Foundation Grant

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Aerial drones will scout, track, and hopefully prevent crop diseases in a study conducted by The Ohio State University and supported by a $100,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The study will include a system of plant disease surveillance drones that will be developed to monitor rice blast and maize dwarf mosaic, two devastating diseases in many countries like Tanzania, plant pathologist and principal investigator Enrico Bonello said. The drones will be mounted with spectral sensors capable of identifying plant pathogens from the air. It is hoped that the technology could allow crop managers to control the spread of disease even before plants show visual symptoms, said Bonello, professor of molecular and chemical ecology of trees in the...
  5. CFAES Scientist Honored on World Soil Day

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — The way Ohio State University scientist Rattan Lal sees it, many of Earth’s biggest challenges — from growing enough food to protecting water quality to reversing climate change — have answers in the soil. As Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), Lal has spent his career working to find those answers. Along the way, he’s gained a global reputation for his research and advocacy on soil-related matters along with multiple honors and awards. His latest recognition, a big one, comes on an appropriate day. Today, Dec. 5 — designated by the United Nations as World Soil Day — Lal received the Glinka World Soil Prize in a ceremony at the...
  6. (Photo: Getty Images)

    News Tips and Events for the Week of Dec. 3

    Tip 1: No-Till Conference: Growing crops without plowing the soil has a lot of environmental benefits, including reducing erosion. However, nutrients placed on the surface of a field that’s not plowed has the potential to run off with rainwater. Techniques that minimize disturbing the soil while also incorporating nutrients into the soil will be discussed among other topics on Dec. 11 at the Ohio NoTill Conference in Plain City, Ohio. The event gathers experts on no-till techniques who will discuss the benefits and challenges of no-till farming. Harold Watters, an agronomy field specialist with Ohio State University Extension, the outreach arm of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University (CFAES), will discuss considerations that need...
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    Chow Line: Update on Romaine Lettuce Safety Alert

    I’m confused about the romaine lettuce alert. Is it safe to eat romaine now? Well, that depends on where the romaine lettuce was grown. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this week that consumers may now safely consume romaine lettuce as long as they are sure that the lettuce they eat was not grown or harvested from the Central Coastal growing regions of northern and central California. However, the CDC still warns consumers not to eat any romaine lettuce if they don’t know where it came from. “It may still take some time before romaine lettuce with regional labels indicating harvest locations in Florida or Arizona to become available,” said Abigail Snyder, an assistant professor and food safety field specialist in the College of Food...
  8. (Photo: Getty Images)

    Media Advisory: CFAES Experts Can Address Climate Change Report

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Experts from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences are available to discuss with the media the effects of climate change on the environment in light of the recently released national climate report. The Fourth National Climate Assessment, which the White House released Nov. 23, states Earth’s climate is “changing faster than at any point in the history of modern civilization” and that the primary cause is human activity. For agriculture, the impact of rising temperatures is significant, according to the report. “Increases in temperatures during the growing season in the Midwest are projected to be the largest contributing factor to declines in the productivity of U.S. agriculture,” the report...
  9. News Tips and Events for the Week of Nov. 26

    Tip 1: National Climate Assessment: “Earth’s climate is now changing faster than at any point in the history of modern civilization, primarily as a result of human activities. The impacts of global climate change are already being felt in the United States and are projected to intensify in the future.” So begins the overview of the Fourth National Climate Assessment, which the White House released last Friday. Aaron Wilson, climate specialist with Ohio State University Extension, the outreach arm of The Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), can talk to the media about the effects of climate change in Ohio, including on agriculture. He’s at wilson.1010@osu.edu, 614-292-7930. Read the full climate assessment...
  10. Dicamba can damage soybean plants that aren't resistant to it, causing cupped leaves. (Photo: OSU Extension)

    New Tips To Try To Prevent Weed Killer’s Spread

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — New restrictions a federal agency has put on using a controversial weed killer aren’t enough to prevent it from spreading onto nearby plants, according to an Ohio State University weed expert. As a result, Mark Loux, a weed specialist with Ohio State University Extension, and colleagues from Purdue University and the University of Illinois have created a list of additional precautions that farmers should try to follow whenever they use dicamba. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). The additional recommendations from Loux and his colleagues include not applying dicamba if  the temperature is warmer than 80 degrees or if the forecast indicates wind gusts over 10...

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