Urban ecologist Mariellé Anzelone (CC ’93, GSNB ’00) leads “Plants are Cool, Too!” video series host Chris Martine through Inwood Hill Park, NYC’s primeval urban forest on the northern end of Manhattan. Martine is the David Burpee Chair in Plant Genetics and Research at Bucknell University, and the video series highlights intriguing plant research. This episode was partially sponsored by the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences and the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources. Also watch the episode shot on Cook Campus where Martine investigates Prof. Lena Struwe’s research on parking lots weeds.
Aug. 2–8 is designated “National Farmers Market Week” in an official proclamation signed by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. This year marks the 16th annual National Farmers Market Week in honor of the important role that farmers markets play in local economies.
An August 2014 USDA National Farmers Market Directory graph shows more than 8,000 farmers markets across the U.S., with steady growth each year. In New Jersey, there are currently more than 150 community farmers markets, listed in a searchable database maintained by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture (NJDA).
Rutgers University–New Brunswick has two of these seasonal markets that sell Jersey Fresh produce directly to consumers, as well as provide access to nutrition information through Rutgers Cooperative Extension. The Jersey Fresh program was developed 31 years ago by the New Jersey Department as a way to identify to consumers produce grown by New Jersey farmers.
The first market to open was the Rutgers Gardens Farmers Market, which was established in 2008 at the university’s botanical gardens located off Ryders Lane in New Brunswick. The market operates from May through November and its mission is to provide the local community, including residents, students, university faculty and staff, University Dining Services and restaurants, the opportunity to experience and purchase fresh, locally grown and prepared food products. [Read more…]
A new tomato that combines the nostalgia-inducing flavor of an heirloom with the durability of supermarket varieties is Rutgers’ answer to anyone who wonders what happened to the flavorful Jersey tomatoes of the past… The Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES) has tested hundreds of plants to try to create a new version of the luscious tomato – that carried the Rutgers name – and was popular from the Depression through the 1960s… "What people remember as the Jersey tomato was really the Rutgers tomato," said Tom Orton, a professor in the Department of Plant Biology and Pathology. "It was ubiquitous. People grew it in their backyards. It had a high flavor that explodes in your mouth and makes you say ‘wow, that is really good."… The project to recreate the Rutgers tomato was made possible by the discovery eight years ago that Campbell’s Soup Co. had retained derivatives of the original Rutgers parent seeds. The original tomato was released in 1934 as the result of a collaboration between the Camden-based company and the university.
Read the entire article at www.phys.org »
The Rutgers Equine Science Center will be gaining more prominence with a series of three new special events to offer a broad spectrum of equestrian-oriented information, from life with the U.S. Equestrian Team to a business and legal slant on the horse industry and a lecture on the history of the horse… "The traditional role of the center is having the vision to identify issues of importance to horse owners and the horse industry," said Karyn Malinowski, ESC’s executive director… Malinowski noted the forum is particularly appropriate for show managers, horse farm owners, breeders and horse owners. The date, she pointed out, is not only a holiday, but is even better because most professional barns are closed on Mondays, and there is no racing or showing that day.
Read the entire article at www.nj.com »
For those who loathed or loved last winter’s non-wintery Alaska weather, climate scientists have an important message: There is a good chance of a repeat this winter… Forces at sea, in the atmosphere and on land, both short-term and long-term, are combining to create what might be a perfect storm of heat for Alaska. That means another much-warmer-than-normal winter is expected for Alaska and northwestern North America… "As you lose that ice, then you’re allowing a lot more evaporation. That extreme water vapor into the Arctic atmosphere has a huge impact," said Jennifer Francis, a Rutgers University climate scientist and meteorologist who has been studying potential links between Arctic warming and weather extremes in temperate latitudes.
Read the entire article at www.adn.com »