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Purdue Extension Martin County Blast February 20, 2023




Calling all 4-H Members to help with Ag Day!  Would you be able to help at Martin County Ag Day?  All enrolled 4-H members, 3-12 graders, help is needed!  Please call 812-295-2412 to sign up and report at 7:30 am on the 18th at the Community Building.



WHERE:  Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds, 2666 US Hwy 50, Loogootee, IN

TIME:  8:00 am to 11:00 am EST


Door prizes – Petting Farm – Vendor’s – Celebrate Ag – Breakfast Tickets


Why celebrate Ag Day?  Because all Americans need to understand the value of agriculture in their daily lives.  Here are just some of the key reasons why it’s important to recognize and celebrate Ag Day each year!

  • Increased knowledge of agriculture and nutrition allows individuals to make informed personal choices about diet & health
  • Informed citizens will be able to participate in establishing the policies that will support a competitive agricultural industry in this country and abroad.
  • Employment opportunities exist across the board in agriculture.



Save the date:  Tuesday, April 25, 6 PM, Community Building, Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds & Event Center. More details coming soon! Qualifiers will be invited to participate in the Area III Youth Performing Arts Contest to be hold on Friday, May 12 at North Posey School.



Jolly Jug Rox 4-H Meetings


Location: Shoals Christian Church in the CRC Building

Time: All meetings are from 6 to 7 p.m.


Tuesday, February 28

Tuesday, March 14

Tuesday, April 3

Tuesday, April 18 

*April 25 Performing Arts performance at the Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds & Event Center

Tuesday, May 2

Tuesday, May 15

Monday, June 5

Tuesday, June 20


Jr. Leaders 4-H Club Activities


Sunday, March 12: Monthly meeting, Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds & Event Center

Sunday, April 2: Easter Egg Hunt Community Service Event, followed with monthly meeting 

Sunday, May 7: Monthly meeting, Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds & Event Center

June 13-17: State Jr Leader Conference (free for many members to attend, sign up now!)

June 20-21: Day Camp for younger youth. Jr Leader members are day camp counselors and camp leaders.


Indiana 4-H Quality Livestock Care Program information


The Indiana 4-H Quality Livestock Care Program training replaces the YQCA program. Youth in grades 3-12 showing Beef, Dairy, Poultry, Sheep, Goats, Swine, or Rabbits at the Martin County 4-H Fair and/or the Indiana State Fair are required to complete this training by July 1st to be able to exhibit.  


Indiana 4-H Quality Livestock Care Training core components, program goals and expectations emphasize the importance of care, safety, and youth as industry ambassadors. The goal of the Indiana 4-H Quality Livestock Care Training program is to help youth understand their responsibility in increasing consumer confidence, animal stewardship, and overall gaining and applying pertinent information and credibility, relating to food systems. The curriculum is relevant and timely with an emphasis on assisting youth in making their best livestock practices even better.


Cornerstone beliefs of the training include:

  1. Animals from youth livestock programs are treated with the utmost care.
  2. Youth livestock exhibitors are contributing to a safe, wholesome food supply.
  3. Youth livestock exhibitors are prepared to be ambassadors for animal agriculture.


Martin County training dates are: 


Monday, May 1, 2023               4 PM

Thursday, June 15, 2023           2 PM

Thursday, June 15, 2023           4 PM


Registration is due two days prior to class by calling 812-295-2412. The training cost is $3 and payment by cash or check will be accepted at the door.


Indiana 4-H will accept online YQCA certifications for 2023. If you choose to complete the YQCA option (still required for most national shows, especially swine), you will register for the online course at The cost of the online YQCA course is $12. After completing the course, you must email your certificate to the Dena at or bring a copy to the Extension Office. 


Lawrence County 4-h Rabbit Renegades Open Rabbit Show MARCH 10 & 11, 2023

WHERE:  Lawrence County Expo Hall 

COST:  $4 pre-registration per rabbit per show


INFORMATION:  Please contact Keri Barker: Phone:  812-276-1428  Email: 

This is for Single All Breeds O/Y on 3-10-23 and Triple All Breeds O/Y on 3/11/23  

Unlimited Specialties

There will be a silent auction and concessions. This show helps support the Lawrence County 4-H Rabbit Club 



WHERE:  Tippecanoe County Fairgrounds

TIME:  10:00 am EST

REGISTRATION:  9:30 am to 10:00 am EST

COST:  $10.00 Per youth participant

FOR INFORMATION:  Contact Ashlee Davis – or Mercedes Brunton –


Junior Pork Day at Purdue: Saturday, March 4, 2023

Location:          Land O’ Lakes, Inc. Center Lobby (New Animal Sciences Meats Lab), Purdue University, 720 University Clinic Drive (off Harrison St.), West Lafayette, IN 47907

Registration Time: 8:30 am EST

Registration Fee:   $5.00 


This program is being supported by the Indiana Swine Breed Associations, Indiana Pork Producers Assoc., NSR, NJSA,

 and the Purdue University Animal Sciences and 4-H Departments.  If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Dr. Brian Richert – Extension Swine Specialist at 765-494-4837,  or Courtney Stierwalt -4-H Extension Specialist at 765-494-8435,



4-H Horse Bowl and Hippology Contest – March 25th at Purdue University, West Lafayette

4-H Horse Communications Contest- April 13th held Virtually

4-H and FFA Horse Judging- May 6th at Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds


Upcoming sessions of the 4-H VOLUNTEER Leader Training Series

All are invited to the following Professional Development 4-H Volunteer Leader Training Series.  Current leaders and prospective new leaders are targeted, ANYONE AND EVERYONE with an interest is welcome to attend! RSVP requested but not required: Dena Held at or 812-295-2412. Each session is stand alone, so attend one, some or all!


Thursday, March 9, 2023 6 pm - 4-H Club Charters fo Tractor Club and Jr. Leaders Club will be presented


Thursday, March 30, 2023 6 pm


Location: Martin County 4-H Fairgrounds, Community Learning Center, 2666 US Hwy 50, Loogootee, IN


VOLUNTEER opportunities

Have you ever thought about a talent you have or a talent you want to develop alongside youth in the 4-H Program?  Purdue Extension & Martin County 4-H is seeking adults to work to MAKE THE BEST BETTER through 4-H programs. Contact Dena to explore how to work together in this way.  No matter how much time you have, volunteering with 4-H makes a difference by helping youth explore and discover the skills they need to lead for a lifetime. There are lots of ways to get involved! Currently, 4-H Club Leaders are needed for All Terrain Vehicle Program, Shooting Sports and STEM/Robotics. Various content specialist and general volunteers are also needed.


Parents, family and adult friends of 4-H members are often a natural fit to help with programming and is one way to spending quality time with the youth in your lives!



The 2023 4-H ATV safety skills assessment training will occur Saturday, April 1 at the Putnam County 4-H Fairgrounds. Pre-registration is required through 4-H Online. The $25.00 registration fee includes training materials and lunch. 4-H adult volunteers will be reimbursed their Indiana OHV/ORV safety certification fee. Indiana 4-H skills assessment and Indiana OHV/ORV certifications do not require renewal. The training flyer is attached and available on the 4-H ATV Safety web page.  


One way to earn admission into Purdue University is through Fast Start. Indiana Students can take the Modern States online courses for free.  Those who pass a minimum of five corresponding College Board CLEP exams and meet Purdue’s standard admission requirements are assured admission to Purdue and designated Klinsky Scholars. CLEP testing centers are now open along with online options. The Purdue Extension Martin County Office staff are available to help local students access this opportunity! 



2023 INDIANA STATE FAIR – JULY 28 – AUGUST 20, 2023 Closed Monday & Tuesdays


MARTIN COUNTY 4-H FAIR 2023 4-H Related Schedule of Activities

*More activities to be added/subject to change*


Wednesday- Friday, April 26-April 28

8:00 am – 4:00 pm                    4-H Swine tags to be picked up 


Friday, April 28

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm                    Martin County 4-H Animal tagging day for cattle, sheep & goats

(No new livestock tags will be distributed after April 28)

Thursday, May 11

6:00 pm – 7:00 pm                    4-H Poultry Bleed & 4-H Rabbit Tattooing


Monday, May 15

All 4-H project drop/add on

All 4-H animals must be identified on

Equine Health forms & applicable leases are due


June 1-June 20

All 4-H exhibits for the fair must be entered on


Saturday, June 10

9:00 am                                    4-H Tractor Contest – All Disciplines


Tuesday, June 27

6:00 pm                                    Set up at 4-H Fairgrounds for all 4-Hers, Leaders & Volunteers – check in & out at the tree


Thursday, June 29

3:30 pm                                    4-H Fashion Revue Judging, at the Community Learning Center

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm                    Static Project Exhibit Check-In Judging at the Community Building

                                                 Includes Mini 4-H exhibits (excludes 4-H foods, 4-H garden and 4-H floriculture)


Saturday, July 1

                                                All livestock purebred animal registration papers due

Quality Assurance training certificates for cattle, swine, sheep, goat, rabbit & poultry exhibitors are due

Health forms for felines & poultry are due


Wednesday, July 5

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm                    4-H floriculture, 4-H foods & 4-H garden projects exhibit check in 

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm                    All Open Class Exhibits Check-In


Thursday, July 6

6:00 pm – 7:30 pm                    4-H Livestock Check-In


Friday, July 7

6:00 pm -7:30 pm                     4-H Horse & Pony Check-In Option 1


Friday, July 7

3:00 pm                                    4-H Cat Show in The Emergency Management Building

5:00 pm                                    Community Building and vendors Opens

6:30 pm                                    Queen Contest, 4-H Fashion Revue & Mini Sewing Modeling


Saturday, July 8

6:30 am – 7:00 am                    4-H Horse & Pony Check-In Option 2

9:00 am                                    Community Building Opens

9:00 am                                    4-H Beef & Dairy Show

9:00 am                                    4-H Horse & Pony Show

1:00 pm                                    4-H Rabbit Show

5:30 pm                                    4-H Poultry Show


Sunday, July 9

1:00 pm                                    Community Building Opens

6:00 pm                                    4-H Goat & Sheep Show


Monday, July 10

5:00pm                                    Community Building Opens

5:00 pm                                    Oreo stacking and watermelon seed contest by Martin County 4-H Jr. Leaders

6:00pm                                    4-H Swine Show


Tuesday, July 11

5:00 pm                                    Community Building Opens 

5:15 pm - 6:00 pm                    4-H Projects released & 4-H gratitude station Opens

5:30 pm                                    4-H Supreme Showmanship

7:00 pm                                    4-H Ten year and Last Year Member Recognition

7:00 pm – 745 pm                     4-H Projects released & 4-H gratitude station Opens

7:15 pm                                    4-H Livestock Auction


Wednesday, July 12

6:30 pm                                    Clean up *All 4-H members & 4-H volunteers/leaders*


Monday, July 17 to Friday, July 21

8:00 am – 3:00 pm                    Static projects (except foods) for the Indiana State Fair are to be provided to the Extension Office or as individually scheduled by calling 812-295-2412. 

Tuesday, August 1

4:00 pm to 4:30 pm                   Foods projects for the Indiana State Fair are to be provided to the Extension Office or as individually scheduled by calling 812-295-2412.



Join Purdue Extension Specialists for demonstrations of pruning grapes, apples, peaches and brambles and learn best management practices with hands-on experience. Learn the first step in balancing grape vines through dormant pruning and gain experience pruning apples on dwarf and semi-dwarf rootstocks for a bountiful harvest.

Space is limited.  This is a free workshop but registration is required.

WHEN:  Wednesday, March 1, 2023

TIME:   1:00 TO 4:00 pm

WHERE:  Meigs Horticulture Research Farm, 9101 South 100 East, Lafayette, IN  47909.

REGISTER:  by Monday, February 27, 2023 at:

Need accommodations or questions:  Karen Mitchell at:

Snow / Rain Date will be Wednesday, March 8, 1:00 to 4:00pm


When: Wednesday, March 8, 2023 12-4 PM ET

Where: VU Shircliff Humanities Bldg, Room A204 (130 E. Harrison St. Vincennes, IN)


  • learn canning basics, food safety guidelines for home canning, where to find resources
  • course includes lecture, handouts and hands-on practice in the kitchen
  • participants will take home their own sample of home-canned product that they make

Cost: $25 or $40 for two people registering at the same time

Register by sending the following information to Purdue Extension – Knox County 4259 N. Purdue Rd., Vincennes, IN 47591. Make check payable to Purdue Education Fund. Sponsorships are available; inquire at 812-882-3509

If you need a reasonable accommodation to attend this program, please contact Tonya at 812-882-3509 at least 10 business days prior to the event.


WHEN:  March 9, 2023

TIME:  9:00 AM ET

Learn more or register at:

For further information, please contact Tonya at 812-882-3509

Question:  Contact Daniel Walker at and visit



A program of The Daviess, Dubois and Martin County Soil and Water Conservation Districts:


Do you want to learn more about invasive species on your property?  Have an Invasive Species Specialist come to your property and identify invasive species that are taking up residence?  We can help you learn to identify, prioritize, and control problematic invasive plants.  You can even receive an invasive management plan customized to your property.  We can also refer landowners to state and federal programs for invasive control cost-share assistance.  Help raise awareness about invasive species in your county. 

This Service is available in Daviess, Dubois, and Martin Counties.  Contact Emily Finch, Invasive Species Specialist at 812-482-1171 Extension #3, or Email at:

This Program is provided by the Daviess, Dubois and Martin County Soil and Water Conservation Districts.  With funding from a Clean Water Indiana Grant.






Purdue Extension works with residents to build vibrant communities, strong families and profitable businesses.  Purdue Extension provides programing to residents in the following 4 areas:

  • Agriculture and Natural Resources
  • Community Development
  • Health and Human Sciences
  • 4-H Youth Development

Our vision:  We will be a leader in providing relevant, high-impact education programs that transform the lives and livelihoods of individuals and communities in Indiana and the world.


Make a difference today:  You can Help!  For in person donations to Martin County Extension, please contact: Dena Held at or visit us at 2666 US Hwy 50, Loogootee, IN.

To make a donation on line visit:



Adapted from the Forestry & Natural Resources Got Nature Blog, February 2, 2023

Rob Swihart, Professor of Wildlife Ecology
Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, Purdue University






Question: I’m interested in doing regeneration planting of oaks and hickories on my property, and have made attempts with both direct seeding, as well as starting in Rootmaker containers and then planting the seedlings after one year of growth. I have been having a major problem with voles, despite my best attempts at barriers, and am wondering if there is anyone who would be able to advise me?

As an example, I had a black oak seedling, one year old, with great growth, about 18″ tall and with a rootball of comparable size, which I planted this fall. After 2-3 months, in December, the entire root system was eaten and all that remained of the seedling was the stalk, with clear gnaw-marks where it had been chewed off at the base. It was protected by a wire mesh enclosure that covered all sides plus the top, and was set about four inches into the ground. The mesh was finer than the standard chicken wire; the openings were about dime-size.

I would appreciate any guidance your experts can share.


Answer: Based on your description, it certainly sounds like pine (=woodland) voles, Microtus pinetorum, although trapping would be needed to confirm. I am no longer doing work on voles, but earlier work, Selective Feeding of Pine Voles on Roots of Seedlings, showed that they really do like roots of oak seedlings.

When I want to exclude small mammals, I use ¼ inch mesh size or smaller. One other approach I’ve used with success is to create an “apron” of hardware cloth underground and extending outward several inches from the cylinder. Since pine voles create tunnels below the ground surface, this ism’t a guarantee of exclusion, but it certainly should discourage them.

If the problem is too severe for you to tolerate, a rodenticide bait such as zinc phosphide is another option. Thiram is a repellent that could be used – like all repellents, it has variable and short-term effectiveness (but still tends to be better than other commercial products).

The following link offers some practical tips on voles and vole control, including trapping to verify that voles are present, and methods of scouting and treating with rodenticide to reduce exposure risk to other nontarget wildlife and pets, Controlling Voles in Horticulture Plantings and Orchards in Missouri, University of Missouri Extension.


USDA Announces Conservation Reserve Program Signup for 2023 




WASHINGTON, Feb. 16, 2023 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that agricultural producers and private landowners can begin applying for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) General signup starting February 27 through April 7, 2023. CRP is a cornerstone voluntary conservation program offered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and a key tool in the Biden-Harris administration’s effort to address climate change and help agricultural communities invest in the long-term well-being of their land and natural resources.  


“The Conservation Reserve Program is one of the largest private lands conservation programs in the United States, offering a range of conservation options to farmers, ranchers and landowners,” Vilsack said. “CRP has and continues to be a great fit for farmers with less productive or marginal cropland, helping them re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and support wildlife habitat. Under this administration, we have made several updates to the program to increase producer interest and enrollment, strengthen the climate benefits of the program and help ensure underserved producers can find a pathway to entry into CRP.”  


Producers and landowners enrolled more than 5 million acres into CRP through signups in 2022, building on the acceptance of more than 3.1 million acres in the largest Grassland CRP signup in history. There are currently 23 million acres enrolled in CRP, with 1.9 million set to expire this year. USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is aiming to reach the 27-million-acre cap statutorily set for fiscal year 2023.  


General CRP 


General CRP helps producers and landowners establish long-term, resource-conserving plant species, such as approved grasses or trees, to control soil erosion, improve water quality and enhance wildlife habitat on cropland. Additionally, General CRP includes a Climate-Smart Practice Incentive to help increase carbon sequestration and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by helping producers and landowners establish trees and permanent grasses, enhance wildlife habitat, and restore wetlands.  


Continuous CRP 


Under Continuous CRP, producers and landowners can enroll in CRP throughout the year. Offers are automatically accepted provided the producer and land meet the eligibility requirements and the enrollment levels do not exceed the statutory cap. The Climate-Smart Practice Incentive is also available in the Continuous signup.  


FSA offers several additional enrollment opportunities within Continuous CRP, including the Clean Lakes Estuaries and Rivers Initiative (CLEAR30), the State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE) Initiative, the Farmable Wetlands Program (FWP), and the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). The CLEAR30 Initiative, which was originally piloted in twelve states in the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay watershed, has been expanded nationwide, allowing producers and landowners to enroll in 30-year CRP contracts for water quality practices. Under this administration, FSA also moved SAFE practices back to the Continuous CRP signup, giving producers and landowners more opportunities to participate in the initiative. Through the FWP, producers and landowners can enroll land in CRP as part of their efforts to restore previously farmed wetlands and wetland buffers, to improve both vegetation and water flow.  


This administration has also made significant improvements to CREP, which leverages federal and non-federal funds to target specific State, regional or nationally significant conservation concerns. Specifically, USDA made significant improvements to CREP to reduce barriers and make the program more accessible to a broad range of producers and new types of partners. These updates included flexibility for partners to provide matching funds in the form of cash, in-kind contributions, or technical assistance, along with an investment in additional staff to work directly with partners. Through CREP, for the first time ever, three Tribal Nations are now partnering with USDA to help conserve, maintain, and improve grassland productivity, reduce soil erosion, and enhance wildlife habitat.  


Grassland CRP 


FSA will announce the dates for Grassland CRP signup in the coming weeks. Grassland CRP is a working lands program, helping landowners and operators protect grassland, including rangeland and pastureland and certain other lands, while maintaining the areas as working grazing lands. Protecting grasslands contributes positively to the economy of many regions, provides biodiversity of plant and animal populations, and provides important carbon sequestration benefits to deliver lasting climate outcomes.   


How to Sign Up 


Landowners and producers interested in CRP should contact their local USDA Service Center to learn more or to apply for the program before their deadlines.  


Producers with expiring CRP acres can use the Transition Incentives Program (TIP), which incentive producers who sell or enter a long-term lease with a beginning, veteran, or socially disadvantaged farmer or rancher who plans to sustainably farm or ranch the land. 


More Information 


Signed into law in 1985, CRP is one of the largest voluntary private-lands conservation programs in the United States. It was originally intended to primarily control soil erosion and potentially stabilize commodity prices by taking marginal lands out of production. The program has evolved over the years, providing many conservation and economic benefits.   


USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit



Premier Companies, headquartered in Seymour, Indiana, has announced another $50,000 annual gift to support 4-H in Southeast Indiana, acknowledging the importance of 4-H youth development programming.

Martin County Purdue Extension and Martin County 4-H has received $3000 to support agricultural related youth development programs.


Harold Cooper, CEO of Premier Companies, is dedicated to inspiring the next generation of agri-business leaders. Premier Companies began in 1927 with the goal of providing energy and agricultural services in Indiana. Since then, the company has grown to reach multiple states and has become a strong supporter of rural youth.


Premier has been a generous sponsor of the Indiana 4-H Leadership Summit the past few years and has been committed to supporting 4-H members directly through 4-H livestock auctions.

Premier Companies has chosen to continue their support of 4-H through another $50,000 annual gift to the Indiana 4-H Foundation to broadly support 4-H in Southeast Indiana. Premier Companies is proud to support opportunities for youth to gain understanding in plant and animal science and agricultural related career programming.


Premier Companies’ thoughtful and considerate support of Indiana 4-H will provide 4-H youth with greater opportunities for growth and learning. With tremendous gratitude, the Indiana 4-H Foundation and Martin County thanks Premier for their investment in our youth, as we continue our mission to provide resources that give the opportunity for all Indiana youth to develop life skills that benefit their communities.


“I don’t know how big 4-H is dreaming,” said Cooper, “but what a moment to be transformative. Premier is excited, even in a small way, to get behind their efforts.”


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