Rutgers Helps Friends School Students Get a Taste of Gardening

Students were skeptical at Friends School Mullica Hill, an independent PreK to 8th grade school in Harrison Township, when Luanne Hughes passed around tiny cups of a green frothy brew at her lunchtime demonstration. Hughes, a registered dietician and professor at Rutgers University Cooperative Extension of Gloucester County, was visiting as part of a partnership to help the school develop its on-campus gardening project… Using fresh spinach the students at Friends School grew and collected in their own raised bed garden, Hughes blended together a shake that also included bananas, orange juice and fresh kiwi. Watching the ingredients whipped together into a bright green shake elicited a few groans of disapproval from some of the middle schoolers. The kids were encouraged to "be brave" and "try something new" by Hughes as she passed around the sample cups… "Having our garden supported by Luanne and Rutgers University has been invaluable," said Reaves. "They are helping us to teach kids the importance of fresh farm produce."

Read the entire article at www.mycentraljersey.com »

Gypsy Moths Return With a Vengeance

Just one year removed from a relatively quiet season, the Garden State is once again under siege from a familiar perennial pest – the gypsy moth. In South Jersey, Atlantic County recorded more damage this year alone than the rest of the state combined in 2014, according to the state Department of Agriculture’s 2015 gypsy moth survey… The 12-day aerial survey that began on June 17 revealed an estimated 290,696 acres of such trees throughout the state that had suffered damage from the hungry gypsy moths – about 220 times more than last year’s 1,330-acre defoliation total… Hemant Gohil, a Rutgers Cooperative Extension Agriculture Agent serving Gloucester County, said he’s received some reports from residents about moth damage. "One lady told me that her swimming pool was full of gypsy moth caterpillars crawling around," Gohil told Gannett New Jersey. "She said they could not use it for weeks."

Read the entire article at www.thedailyjournal.com »

NJ 4-H Members to Attend 2015 4-H Leadership Program

New Jersey delegates who attended the 2014 Leadership Washington Focus held at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

New Jersey delegates who attended the 2014 Leadership Washington Focus held at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Sixteen 4-H members have been selected to represent New Jersey at the second annual 4-H Leadership Washington Focus (LWF) Conference. This leadership conference will be held July 12-17 at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Leadership Washington Focus (LWF) is a 4-H leadership development program for 4-H members entering grades 7-9. Youth from across the nation will be participating in this 5-day event. The program will provide an opportunity for youth to listen to motivational speakers and participate in workshops that will develop communication skills, increase leadership capacity and build lifetime skills. [Read more…]

NJ 4-H Members to Attend National 4-H Citizenship Conference

New Jersey 4-H representatives for the 2014 Citizenship Washington Focus Conference

New Jersey 4-H representatives at the 2014 Citizenship Washington Focus Conference

Thirty 4-H members have been selected to represent New Jersey at the 2015 Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF) Conference. This conference, now in its 56th year, will be held July 5-11 at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Citizenship Washington Focus is a 4-H leadership program for high school youth. Delegations from across the country attend this six-day program at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center, located just outside Washington, D.C. The program is aimed at enriching young people’s lives by broadening their appreciation and respect for themselves and others in the world. Participants attend workshops, committee meetings, field trips and social events, giving them hands-on opportunities to learn and grow. They learn and practice skills that will make them better citizens and more successful individuals. [Read more…]

National Park Celebrates Earth Day with Children’s Garden Opening

The scissors were barely through the ribbon at the borough’s newly opened children’s garden, when Mother Nature unleashed a brief Earth Day deluge on the soon-to-be growing crops. It was pretty good timing all around, said National Park School Principal Carla Bittner… "Today for Earth Day, in addition to opening the garden, we had health and wellness activities for the students, with different stations around the school," said Bittner following the ceremony, which at the end saw about 275 students fleeing from the rain. "Rutgers Cooperative Extension had a station where the students made veggie egg rolls, with food provided by Food Corps."… In addition, the Rutgers Cooperative Extension is expected to supplement some of the food supplies for some of the garden-related educational events at the school next year.

Read the entire article at www.nj.com »