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Virginia Cooperative Extension, Loudoun County

Virginia Cooperative Extension, Loudoun County Extension helps lead the engagement mission of Virginia Tech and Virginia State University, the land-grant universities. Building local relationships and collaborative partnerships, we help people put scientific knowledge to work.

Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information,
veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension

Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information,
veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension

Operating as usual

What a gorgeous day for VCE-Loudoun’s Mature Apple Tree Pruning Workshop, taught by Commercial Horticulturist Beth Sastr...
03/04/2022

What a gorgeous day for VCE-Loudoun’s Mature Apple Tree Pruning Workshop, taught by Commercial Horticulturist Beth Sastre! Thanks to Tara and the crew for welcoming us and offering us this opportunity to learn.

03/03/2022
Grafting: A Lamb Saving Management Tool. - Sheep & Goats

SHEEP & GOAT THURSDAY. Extension Agent Carrie Swanson (Albemarle) successfully grafted a newborn kid to a foster dam while she was participating in a program coordination Zoom meeting! Go Carrie, you saved a goat kid.! To learn more about grafting kids or lambs read this publication from University of Illinois: http://livestocktrail.illinois.edu/sheepnet/paperDisplay.cfm?ContentID=9831

Grafting (Fostering) is an alternative for producers who do not enjoy raising lambs on artificial milk. The ability to graft, or switch, a lamb from one ewe to another is a management tool that can save many lambs during a lambing season.

Do you know what’s in your water? Find out by testing your well, spring, or cisterns through VCE-Loudoun’s Household Wat...
03/03/2022

Do you know what’s in your water? Find out by testing your well, spring, or cisterns through VCE-Loudoun’s Household Water Quality Program. Learn more and register at bit.ly/VCE220401.

Tax Considerations for Farmers.  Thursday, 3 March via Zoom.  Registration details in the flyer below.This is an educati...
03/01/2022

Tax Considerations for Farmers. Thursday, 3 March via Zoom. Registration details in the flyer below.

This is an education program open to the public. At the invitation of VCE-Loudoun, Chris Pearson, CPA will speak with producers about tax law revisions and resulting changes to tax record keeping and reporting. Chris understands the questions and concerns of new and small-scale producers and can guide them away from tax errors that erode enterprise and operations profits.

Event is on March 19th!  Don't miss out and register today!
03/01/2022

Event is on March 19th! Don't miss out and register today!

It's EQUINE MONDAY.  Horse owners often seed paddocks and pastures with perennial cool-season grasses. Because these gra...
02/28/2022

It's EQUINE MONDAY. Horse owners often seed paddocks and pastures with perennial cool-season grasses. Because these grasses accumulate sugars and fructans, they may be unsuitable for horses with metabolic issues, such as insulin dysregulation or laminitis. Read more . . .
https://ker.com/equinews/pasture-forage-for-horses-carbohydrate-content-of-grass

Thank you Kyla of the MAREC and University of Kentucky Equine Research

The mammals have all agreed that PSA posts relating to the ongoing HPAI Avian Flu outbreaks are more important than thei...
02/23/2022
USDA APHIS | Defend the Flock Program

The mammals have all agreed that PSA posts relating to the ongoing HPAI Avian Flu outbreaks are more important than their weekly, scheduled spotlight.

This URL leads to an excellent USDA website for backyard flocks and keeping birds safe.

https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/animal-disease-information/avian/!ut/p/z1/fY87D4IwEMd3PwWLIznA92gcjMTBxwJdmhNaqZQW2mr029sQEl30hv_jcr_hgIyCYOQHMh98HOSXA1H4EFd0QiuUkEFO5nSXJJs4nsb7bbpaRsfNJJqdDtvJOV5A2oMf_luA_GezgR3Ofxjk4tZ1ZA2k0Mqxp4MM20pY2lflqBQXg-Y1jixSfTeU6-Ju-4ZKNChpxVC66ntTCsvQMioU16bpnx1H_m_0VjLOVBm6ioVc6qIOW6OvBhtoa5K_AQFPjoE!/

The .gov means it’s official. Federal government websites always use a .gov or .mil domain. Before sharing sensitive information online, make sure you’re on a .gov or .mil site by inspecting your browser’s address (or “location”) bar.

It's FFA Week!  Virginia FFA is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their p...
02/22/2022
Virginia FFA Association & Team Ag Ed

It's FFA Week! Virginia FFA is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education.

Learn how FFA strives to spotlight agriculture's importance to our county, state, and nation. https://www.vaffa.org/

Okay, enough baby goat pictures -  it's EQUINE MONDAY, not GOAT WEDNESDAY.  The good folks at the Middleburg AREC offer ...
02/21/2022
Grass Founder | AAEP

Okay, enough baby goat pictures - it's EQUINE MONDAY, not GOAT WEDNESDAY. The good folks at the Middleburg AREC offer this equine care information bit. Thank you Kyla and AAEP:

". . . Spring might be the best time of the year, but if we have horses that are prone to developing grass founder, this season may be the beginning of serious problems for some of our horses." Read more. https://aaep.org/horsehealth/grass-founder

Written By Tom Lenz, DVM, MS Spring might be the best time of the year, but if we have horses that are prone to developing grass founder, this season may be the beginning of serious problems for some of our horses. Horses that are over the age of 10, easy keepers, overweight or cresty-necked seem es...

Returned to Mama.  Exploring works up an appetite.
02/21/2022

Returned to Mama. Exploring works up an appetite.

Are you my Mama?  The two-hour old explorer.  Mama's in the kidding jug with the content to stay put sibling.  The explo...
02/21/2022

Are you my Mama? The two-hour old explorer. Mama's in the kidding jug with the content to stay put sibling. The explorer was led astray by the misbehaving older cousins who at one-week old boldly stray 10 - 15 yards from their dam.

VCE-Loudoun on hand Saturday to help Fauquier FFA members set up  a promotional display at Tractor Supply.  The wind was...
02/19/2022

VCE-Loudoun on hand Saturday to help Fauquier FFA members set up a promotional display at Tractor Supply. The wind was chilly but the public's reception was warm.

PASTURE & PONDS FRIDAY Take 2.  Time for forage seedings.  We've covered this topic recently but the reminder helps.
02/18/2022

PASTURE & PONDS FRIDAY Take 2. Time for forage seedings. We've covered this topic recently but the reminder helps.

Time for Forage Seedings

Overseeding

Late February and March is the time frame for broadcast seeding clover on the surface of pastures and hay fields. The sod to be overseeded needs to be short (1-2 inches). Fertility and soil pH need to be adequate to encourage legume growth. Weeds need to have been killed. Seed 6-8 lbs. of red clover per acre on pastures and hay fields that will be grazed. Allow cattle to remain on the overseeded field to help cover the seed. Pulling a drag of some type behind the broadcast seeder will help. Graze overseeded pastures early to favor the legume seedlings. Cut overseeded hay fields early for the same reason.

No-Till Seeding Alfalfa and Other Forages

In sods killed last fall, most likely an application of glyphosate will be needed to kill any winter annual weeds that have appeared. Seed as soon after March 1 as possible. If seeding alfalfa, use fungicide treated seed to protect against seedling diseases.

Killing sod this spring and seeding is risky at best. Unless it is a dense tall fescue sod that will provide a thick mulch, do not plan to kill and seed into sods this spring. Instead, kill the sod and plant a smother crop such as foxtail millet or dwarf pearl millet and seed the forage stand in late summer. Another alternative is to wait until August to kill the sod and seed.

Thin grass stands in pastures can often be improved by no-till seeding grass into them in late February - early March, without first killing the sod. The existing sod needs to be very short. Fertility and pH must be adequate. Such pastures should be grazed periodically in spring to favor growth of the new seedlings.

Seedings into small grains is an excellent way to establish new stands. There are several alternatives. On is to kill the small grain stand with glyphosate when plants are 8-10 inches tall and seed. Or, remove the small grain for silage, allow 3-4 inches of regrowth, apply glyphosate and seed. Also, no-till seeding in standing small grains and then harvesting it early for silage will work.

Thin stands resulting from seedings made last fall can be very effectively "thickened up" by seeding no-till in early March. About 1/2 the normal seeding rate should suffice.

Conventional tillage and seeding is still an excellent option in low erosion-potential fields with weed problems or in need to be smoothed. It is important to prepare the seedbed and seed as early as possible. Be careful not to place the seed deeper than 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep, then firm the soil over the seed.

Vol. 10, February 1988. Agronomy Tips
Harlan E White, Virginia Tech Extension Forage Agronomist

I just returned from a farm visit to Long Stone Farm; Casey Wisch was generous with her time and insights.  VCE-Loudoun ...
02/17/2022
pasture-raised meat and eggs

I just returned from a farm visit to Long Stone Farm; Casey Wisch was generous with her time and insights. VCE-Loudoun is developing educational programming for small-scale beef production; hearing first-hand about direct marketing was very helpful. Thank you Casey. https://longstonefarmva.com

owned & farmed thoughtfully by Justin, Casey, Piper, Boone & Timber Wisch [email protected]

BEEF TUESDAY (kinda sorta - ok, it's not Tuesday).  This short video from Iowa State University provides a great review ...
02/16/2022
Phenotypic Selection of Replacement Beef Heifers

BEEF TUESDAY (kinda sorta - ok, it's not Tuesday). This short video from Iowa State University provides a great review of replacement heifer considerations - things to know and look for when selecting among different heifers.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54YDQkvJ54I

Iowa State University Extension & Outreach beef field specialist, Beth Doran, outlines phenotypic evaluation considerations considerations for beef heifers. ...

Poultry Producers,The USDA APHIS website confirms the presence of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a mixed fl...
02/16/2022
USDA APHIS | USDA Confirms Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in a Flock of Commercial Broiler Chickens in Kentucky and Backyard Mixed Species Flock in Virginia

Poultry Producers,

The USDA APHIS website confirms the presence of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a mixed flock of backyard poultry in Fauquier County, Virginia. Additional information is available at:
https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/newsroom/stakeholder-info/sa_by_date/sa-2022/hpai-ky-va-flocks .

Key to effective protection from HPAI is implementing bio-security measures. Minimize or eliminate your birds’ contact with other flocks and wild birds. If there is more than one backyard flock in your neighborhood, consider that wild birds, squirrels, rodents, and people (neighbors, children) may transport the virus from flock to flock.

The .gov means it’s official. Federal government websites always use a .gov or .mil domain. Before sharing sensitive information online, make sure you’re on a .gov or .mil site by inspecting your browser’s address (or “location”) bar.

EQUINE MONDAY.  Horse heart rate monitoring - a fitting topic for Valentine's Day.  Thank you Kyla of VA Tech's MAREC an...
02/14/2022
Fitness Training for Eventers: A Role For Heart Rate Monitoring - Kentucky Equine Research

EQUINE MONDAY. Horse heart rate monitoring - a fitting topic for Valentine's Day. Thank you Kyla of VA Tech's MAREC and KER.com.

https://ker.com/equinews/fitness-training-for-eventers-a-role-for-heart-rate-monitoring/

Learn about the insights gained when researchers gathered heart rate, speed, and lactate during the cross-country phase of eventing and how you can apply this research to your fitness program.

So what can FFA in middle schools look like?  You can see for yourself (webpage below).  But I thought Extension was all...
02/11/2022
Career & Leadership Development Events (CDE/LDE)

So what can FFA in middle schools look like? You can see for yourself (webpage below). But I thought Extension was all about 4-H? It is; 4-H is a wonderful program! FFA is too. Together, they are pillars in life-long agricultural education. Is there a connection between 4-H and FFA? Yes, in addition to the youth development aspects, the Virginia FFA Association and the FFA teacher's professional association are administered within VA Tech's College of Agriculture & Life Sciences (CALS). Just like Virginia Cooperative Extension, so we're cousins!

https://www.vaffa.org/cde-lde

Daggone it, why is SHEEP THURSDAY always bumped for Public Service Announcements?  Poultry and Fowl Producers, Michael E...
02/10/2022

Daggone it, why is SHEEP THURSDAY always bumped for Public Service Announcements?

Poultry and Fowl Producers, Michael E Persia, PhD, Associate Professor and Extension Specialist (Poultry Nutrition) at Virginia Tech sends the following update regarding Avian Influenza:

A commercial turkey flock in Nova Scotia was identified the beginning of this month. This resulted in high mortality and depopulation of the nearly 12,000 head flock. Just this week, a flock of commercial turkeys in Southern Indiana received a positive diagnosis and has been depopulated as of Wednesday. As you can expect this has caused a lot of moving parts in the commercial poultry industry here in Virginia. So I wanted to send out another reminder to please work with small flock poultry holders to make sure they are taking proper biosecurity measures to protect their birds.

GOAT WEDNESDAY.  Everyone talks about and looks for the Barber Pole worm (Haemonchus contortus).  A different worm that ...
02/09/2022
Meningeal Worm (Meat Goat Home Study Course)

GOAT WEDNESDAY. Everyone talks about and looks for the Barber Pole worm (Haemonchus contortus). A different worm that can be more problematic if you're effectively managing the Barber Pole is the Meningeal worm (Parelaphostrongylus tenuis). One nearby farm hasn't lost a goat to Barber Pole for at least 10 years: however, three does and one wether have shown Meningeal worm symptoms in four years. Thank you to PSU for this brief article and the Meat Goat Home Study Course.

https://extension.psu.edu/programs/courses/meat-goat/health/miscellaneous-health-issues/meningeal-worm#:~:text=Meningeal%20worm%20or%20brain%20worm,or%20slugs%20on%20pasture%20grasses.

Meningeal worm or brain worm is caused by a parasite that is carried by deer.

Address

750 Miller Drive SE, Ste F-3
Leesburg, VA
20175

General information

Agriculture and Natural Resources Agriculture and natural resources (ANR) programs help sustain the profitability of agricultural and forestry production and enhance and protect the quality of our land and water resources. We help the agriculture industry use the most current technology and management practices to develop strong businesses that prosper in today's economy. We deliver programs that help put research-based knowledge to work for Virginia's agriculture industry. Family and Consumer Sciences Virginia Cooperative Extension views the family unit as the cornerstone of a healthy community. We strive to improve the well being of Virginia families through programs that help participants put research-based knowledge to work in their lives. 4-H Youth Development 4-H is a community of young people across America who are learning leadership, citizenship, and life skills. 4-H, the largest comprehensive youth development program in the nation, educates young people, ages 5 to 18, through a variety of experiential techniques that encourage hands-on, active learning. Community Viability Community viability programs are dedicated to strengthening communities and their economic viability by creating innovative programs that allow citizens and local governments to respond to local issues. Our faculty can assess community needs, design a plan of action, and determine the appropriate delivery method suitable for various programs.

Opening Hours

Monday 8:30am - 5pm
Tuesday 8:30am - 5pm
Wednesday 8:30am - 5pm
Thursday 8:30am - 5pm
Friday 8:30am - 5pm

Telephone

(703) 777-0373

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What a gorgeous day for VCE-Loudoun’s Mature Apple Tree Pruning Workshop, taught by Commercial Horticulturist Beth Sastre! Thanks to Tara and the crew for welcoming us and offering us this opportunity to learn.
SHEEP & GOAT THURSDAY. Extension Agent Carrie Swanson (Albemarle) successfully grafted a newborn kid to a foster dam while she was participating in a program coordination Zoom meeting! Go Carrie, you saved a goat kid.! To learn more about grafting kids or lambs read this publication from University of Illinois: http://livestocktrail.illinois.edu/sheepnet/paperDisplay.cfm?ContentID=9831
Do you know what’s in your water? Find out by testing your well, spring, or cisterns through VCE-Loudoun’s Household Water Quality Program. Learn more and register at bit.ly/VCE220401.
Tax Considerations for Farmers. Thursday, 3 March via Zoom. Registration details in the flyer below. This is an education program open to the public. At the invitation of VCE-Loudoun, Chris Pearson, CPA will speak with producers about tax law revisions and resulting changes to tax record keeping and reporting. Chris understands the questions and concerns of new and small-scale producers and can guide them away from tax errors that erode enterprise and operations profits.
Event is on March 19th! Don't miss out and register today!
It's BEEF TUESDAY. Adapting to changing weather is hard on cattle, especially in the spring when Mother Nature, it seems, can't make up her mind. read more: https://www.beefmagazine.com/americancowman/health/0304-spring-requires-cattle-issues Thank you Beef Magazine.
It's EQUINE MONDAY. Horse owners often seed paddocks and pastures with perennial cool-season grasses. Because these grasses accumulate sugars and fructans, they may be unsuitable for horses with metabolic issues, such as insulin dysregulation or laminitis. Read more . . . https://ker.com/equinews/pasture-forage-for-horses-carbohydrate-content-of-grass Thank you Kyla of the MAREC and University of Kentucky Equine Research
SHEEP THURSDAY. Sometimes, you just need to ask a livestock-related question. When you're gathering information, consider Loudoun Goat and Sheep owners as a source: https://www.facebook.com/groups/677010295763378
The mammals have all agreed that PSA posts relating to the ongoing HPAI Avian Flu outbreaks are more important than their weekly, scheduled spotlight. This URL leads to an excellent USDA website for backyard flocks and keeping birds safe. https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/animal-disease-information/avian/!ut/p/z1/fY87D4IwEMd3PwWLIznA92gcjMTBxwJdmhNaqZQW2mr029sQEl30hv_jcr_hgIyCYOQHMh98HOSXA1H4EFd0QiuUkEFO5nSXJJs4nsb7bbpaRsfNJJqdDtvJOV5A2oMf_luA_GezgR3Ofxjk4tZ1ZA2k0Mqxp4MM20pY2lflqBQXg-Y1jixSfTeU6-Ju-4ZKNChpxVC66ntTCsvQMioU16bpnx1H_m_0VjLOVBm6ioVc6qIOW6OvBhtoa5K_AQFPjoE!/
It's FFA Week! Virginia FFA is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through agricultural education. Learn how FFA strives to spotlight agriculture's importance to our county, state, and nation. https://www.vaffa.org/
Okay, enough baby goat pictures - it's EQUINE MONDAY, not GOAT WEDNESDAY. The good folks at the Middleburg AREC offer this equine care information bit. Thank you Kyla and AAEP: ". . . Spring might be the best time of the year, but if we have horses that are prone to developing grass founder, this season may be the beginning of serious problems for some of our horses." Read more. https://aaep.org/horsehealth/grass-founder