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April, 2015

  • 15 April

    Asparagus, Considered a Delicacy since Ancient Times

    BY KIM HUGHES – Asparagus was first cultivated about 2500 years ago in Greece. The name is a Greek word, meaning stalk or shoot. The Greeks believed asparagus was an herbal medicine which, among other things, would cure toothaches and prevent bee stings. Second century Physician, Galen, described asparagus as “cleansing and healing.” Claims for medicinal benefits of asparagus persist ...

  • 10 April


    BY MICHAEL CATE – The second annual invitational Spring Dogwood Walk at Avalon Keep Botanical Gardens was a pleasant success and the weather cooperated beautifully Wednesday April 8.  There were not as many trees in full bloom as last year, due to the natural cycle of the woodland.  Participants learned how to spot the abundance of trees tucked amid the ...

  • 7 April

    What You Should Really Say When Your Friend Declares, ‘I’m So Fat!’

    BY COUNTY EXTENSION AGENT, KIM HUGHES When a friend complains about her weight, what do you say? Do you go the supportive route and encourage her to start dieting? Or do you follow the unspoken rule of female friendship and tell her that she looks great just as she is? New research suggests that the latter option is actually the most ...

  • 4 April

    USDA Extends ARC and PLC Deadlines

    WASHINGTON, March 27, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today provided farm owners and producers one additional week, until April 7, 2015, to choose between Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC), the safety-net programs established by the 2014 Farm Bill. The final day to update yield history or reallocate base acres also will be April 7, 2015. ...

March, 2015

  • 31 March

    Living Well With Diabetes

    BY KIM HUGHES – Diabetes is widely recognized as one of the leading causes of death and disability in Arkansas.  The prevalence of diabetes in Arkansas has been at or above the national average for the past 10 years. Diabetes is associated with long-term complications that affect almost every part of the body.  The disease often leads to blindness, heart ...

  • 24 March

    Avian Influenza Not a Risk in Properly Cooked Poultry

    BY KIN HUGHES – Fast Facts: •   Proper cooking of poultry destroys avian influenza virus •   Poultry should always be cooked to an internal temp of 165 degrees •   Basic hygiene can prevent contraction, spread of bird flu There is no danger of contracting the current strain of avian influenza from eating properly cooked chicken because heat destroys pathogens. “This ...

  • 20 March

    Friends of Polk County Master Gardeners Recognized

    SUBMITTED BY ANN GLENN – Polk County Master Gardeners Vice President, Patricia Roberts, presents a certificate of appreciation to Paul Stanley, as representative of the Polk County Farmers Association Co-Op., which was voted 2014 Business Friend of Master Gardeners. Shown with them is “Doc” Sorge, well known as the “go-to-guy” for answers to all manner of gardening questions. Kathy Russert ...

  • 14 March

    Houseplants are Great!

    BY KIM HUGHES – There’s a reason the professional designers place them in businesses– they can really change the look of a room and compliment offices, hallways and entries. Many people find them comforting. But these great living potted life forms can do much more than just look nice. They can also clean the air we breathe. All indoors plants ...

  • 6 March

    Find Mindsets That are Imperative for Frugal Living

    BY KIM HUGHES, COUNTY EXTENSION AGENT, FCS – Frugality is a lifestyle, right?  It sure is.  It is a lifestyle that involves thinking against the flow.  Here are five mindsets that I believe are imperative to living the frugal “against the flow” lifestyle:  Simplicity – Simplicity in meals means less exotic ingredients you have to buy.  Simplicity in lifestyle means ...

  • 4 March

    Mother Nature Forcing Rescheduling for Pruning & Pond Management

    BY CARLA VAUGHT, COUNTY EXTENSION AGENT – Like everyone else, Mother Nature has caused a lot of changes in events hosted and sponsored by the County Extension Office in the past 2.5 weeks. We are working to get things rescheduled and publicized so everyone has an opportunity to participate in our programs. The orchard pruning demonstration we postponed due to ...