Yellow Flowers in the Pasture
Apr27

Yellow Flowers in the Pasture

Yellow flowers in the pasture As our cold days are moving out, we start seeing the flowering of many weeds turning into yellow flowers. As I was starting my working week, several friends and producers ask me about “this little yellow flower that grows everywhere”. Diligently, I went into finding of such as pesky flower and found not one but several weeds flowering with yellow blooms in the country side. From the many yellowing flowers...

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Water puddles: Mosquito Habitat
Apr20

Water puddles: Mosquito Habitat

As rain continues in Hopkins County and temperatures steadily increase, I have felt recently the first mosquito bites of the season. As I reflect on vector borne diseases, I cannot help but to remember how complex and difficult task is mosquito abatement. During my days as a graduate student, I was involved in the Harris County mosquito abatement program using mosquito strains as reference for insecticide resistance. One of my...

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Hot and Humid Issues; Coming Events
Apr13

Hot and Humid Issues; Coming Events

  by Mario Villarino Just as I started thinking about this week notes, and as I was watching rain on and off in Sulphur Springs, I recalled the issue related to molds growing in our crops. The critical part of a healthy plant environment is for the rain cycles to have a chance to dry out. Although plants enjoy watering, certainly too much of it can become a problem. A good optimal environment in the ground is to have an...

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Master Gardener’s Present Outdoor Education at Douglas Elementary
Apr07

Master Gardener’s Present Outdoor Education at Douglas Elementary

A new concept of outdoor education is currently “growing up” in Douglas Campus in Sulphur Springs. With the leadership of Mr. Tim Thomas, science teacher in the campus and 4-H leader, Hopkins County Master Gardener’s volunteers and Hopkins County 4-H, the idea of outdoor education has become a reality. “My life long desire of incorporating physical activity, science projects and gardening has become a reality- Thomas said. According...

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Plant with Tumors: Crown Gall of Rose
Mar31

Plant with Tumors: Crown Gall of Rose

by Mario Villarino, DVM, Ph.D. Hopkins County Extension Agent East Texas is widely known for using roses as focal points in our gardens. After all, roses can play a significant role of any landscape but particularly the Northeast Texas landscapes. Recently, a call from a professional landscaper pointed out a disease new to me in roses: crown galls in roses. This disease is caused by a tumor inducing bacterial that causes a growing...

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Water Quality Training: The Importance of Water
Mar22

Water Quality Training: The Importance of Water

by Mario Villarino, DVM, Ph.D. It is easy to understand the importance of water as a need and resource for our society. Both extremes (the absence or abundance of water) can provoke catastrophic consequences. Recently (as early as last year) we suffered both sides of the equation in the same year. Although a normal recurrence, the absence or abundance of water can cause stress in farmers and ranchers and communities as well. Both...

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Soil Management
Mar17

Soil Management

by Mario Villarino, DVM, Ph.D. Soil management is an important component of ranch management. During our grass or hay production process, soil nutrients get transformed from inner materials into forage and then into beef or milk. It is a basic cycle that has kept us producing the food we consume and at the same time protecting our resources in an environmentally accepted process. In our region, several conditions can make this process...

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Annual Hay Clinic is March 30th
Mar09

Annual Hay Clinic is March 30th

by Mario Villarino As our winter season starts dwindling into spring, our pastures and hay meadows must be getting for the spring and summer hay season. Depending on the farmer plan our hay schedules are mainly divided in a fall-winter cycle and a spring-summer cycle. The fall-winter cycle relies on winter crops, mainly rye grass and a short crop before or wheat and oats. The rye grass crop picks during February and March and must be...

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A Summer Between Two Winters
Mar02

A Summer Between Two Winters

by Mario Villarino DVM, Ph.D   Our winter suddenly is starting to warm up. With the increase of temperature, plant activity in lawns and gardens starts to kick in. I have visited with several members of our community who are even getting their lawnmowers getting ready to start an early mowing season. IT is however important to remember that the chances for cold days are not over and it will be wise to have a way of protect our...

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About Composting
Feb25

About Composting

As we prepare for spring planting, many growers and gardeners are looking for good soil mixes to start their crops or gardens. An excellent option is composting at home. I have included here technical data from Texas AgriLife Extension related to home composting. In the home place are many sources of raw materials for the compost pile. From the kitchen comes coffee and tea grounds, and vegetable and fruit trimmings, which amount to...

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