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As an Agriculture Extension Agent for Texas AgriLife Extension Service I have had an opportunity to be involved in just about every aspect of agriculture. From the 5,000 cow dairy to the types of trees to use in a home landscape I have had a chance to learn how the different parts of an agriculture systems work together. Seedless watermelons, drip irrigation, pecan orchard management, fruit crop development, dairy nutrient management, environmental issues confronting agriculture, producer tours, field days, research projects and more have been a part of my life for over 30 years as I lived and breathed agriculture. Since 2004 I have been actively involved in consulting internationally working in Honduras, Guatemala, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, India, and China. I have worked with missionaries and other groups dedicated to alleviating poverty among third world farmers. I lived in the Middle East in 2007-2008 working on a project for the Borlaug Institute of International Agriculture at Texas A&M University. In this project I was the Chief of Party and Team Leader for a $5.7 Million dollar effort to train Iraqi Extension agents and specialists in all aspects of agriculture.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Oak Wilt and other Tree Diseases Workshop

If high summer temperatures and lingering drought weren’t enough to humiliate landscapes add in the Oak Wilt disease and homeowners are finally ready to sell out and move into an apartment!
This has been a terribly hot, dry summer for lawns, trees and shrubs. Homeowners have had some of the largest water bills in history but heat and drought are not the only cause of death for thousands of Live and Red Oak trees in Williamson County. We can blame the disease Ceratocystis fagacearum commonly known as Oak Wilt with steadily marching across the county landscape killing oak trees that are hundreds of years old. Add in the problem with Hypoxylon Canker on many species and a host of other problems in trees and we will see trees go down for years to come.
To help Master Gardeners, Professional Landscapers and even landowners better understand Oak Wilt and other Tree Diseases and know more about possible treatment options, Texas AgriLife Extension Service and the Texas Forest Service have teamed up to offer the program “Oak Wilt and other Tree Diseases Workshop.” This is a day-long workshop starting at 8:30 a.m. and ending with an oak wilt injection demonstration close to 5:00 p.m. The training will be offered at the Williamson County Training Room, 3151 SE Inner Loop in Georgetown and end at the demonstration site. Cost is $10 and includes a catered lunch and break. You must preregister by paying $10 in advance to secure your spot. 3 Pesticide Credits will be offered to Private, Non-Commercial and Commercial applicators, one in IPM and two in General.
Speakers for the program will include Rob Grotty, Staff Forester with the Texas Forest Service (TFS), Jim Houser, TFS Oak Wilt Coordinator and Dr. Dave Appel, Extension Plant Pathologist and Associate Department Head of Plant Pathology at Texas A&M University.

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