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Extension Update by Jenny Rees

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Upcoming Events:

Italicized items may be available via remote access. Please click on the link or call for information.
Apr. 2: Chemigation Training, 1:30 pm, Fairgrounds, Holdrege, (308) 995-4222
Apr. 8: Yonts Water Conference, Gering Civic Center, Gering
Apr. 17 & 24: Intro to Beekeeping Field Days, TBD
Apr. 20-21: Better Process Control School for Acidified Foods, UNL Food Processing Center
May 2: Intro to Beekeeping Field Day, TBD

May 13: Field Scout Training, ENREC (former ARDC near Mead)
June 24: Weed Management Field Day, SCAL near Clay Center
July 8: Palmer Amaranth Mgmt Field Day, near Carleton

Last week I shared about how difficult events impact us. This past week, life was disrupted for many due to COVID-19. We watched numerous events being cancelled or restricted in numbers, some unprecedented. We’ve observed many reactions and have been inundated with information. There’s times I’ve struggled to wrap my head around all this. Perhaps you have too? Ultimately, we’re just not in control. However, we can seek to be wise in our actions and choices.

One of those choices is in the information we choose to believe. We’d recommend the CDC website and local health departments as trusted sources of information. As more is learned, information will continue to be updated and changed; we need to seek patience with this.

Another can be the choice to appreciate leaders making decisions and appreciate the difficulty surrounding those decisions. The consistent message from CDC, Med Center, and health departments on “flattening the curve” has led to many closings and cancellations of events. There’s naturally many reactions to this. Those in leadership are in a difficult place with making these decisions as they’re seeking the well-being of many people based on information that is continually changing.

Regarding Nebraska Extension’s Response, the following is from Dean Chuck Hibberd, “Nebraska Extension is fully committed to the health and well-being of Nebraskans. In a disease situation like COVID-19, the principle of social distancing is one of the main methods that can be used to help reduce the spread of the disease.

Chancellor Ronnie Green has issued guidance that all UNL classes will move to ‘remote’ modes. To be consistent with that guidance, Nebraska Extension will, whenever possible, provide Extension programs remotely (video or teleconferencing) but will not provide in-person Extension programs, at least until May 9. We recognize that this practice may create some level of disruption relative to the important information we provide to Nebraskans.”

Each office is working through the currently scheduled programs as to which will be cancelled, postponed, or taught remotely. There are already online options available for certification such as pesticide, chemigation, and dicamba. Please contact your local Extension Office with any questions regarding meetings or options to obtain certification. As of now, clientele are still welcome to come to the Extension office with your questions and we can still make field, lawn, garden visits. With the move to online information, there may be students and farmers who aren’t able to access classes at home due to low internet connectivity. There may be an opportunity to utilize a computer at your local Extension Office depending on room and computers available. Those details are in progress.

Ultimately, this is a difficulty we’re all facing together in life. Please take care of yourselves and your families during this time!

CropWatch: This week’s CropWatch at cropwatch.unl.edu has several articles regarding financial shocks and stress, the stages of recovery after a disaster, and emotional well-being after a disaster. Helpful as we get closer to planting and gardening season, soil temperature information is also available at: https://cropwatch.unl.edu/soiltemperature.

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