Nebraska Extension - Gage County

May 2022 Newsletter

In This Issue:

  • Office Closed
  • Land Link
  • Well Testing
Upcoming Events
  • Yard and Garden
  • GROBigRed
Horticulture - Nicole Stoner
  • Spring Vegetable Gardens
  • Landscape Irrigation
4-H & Youth Development - Jacie Milius
  • 4-H Enrollment Now Open
  • Anytime Learning Projects
Food, Nutrition & Health - Tara Dunker
  • Food choices today for a better tomorrow
  • Label reading for beginners
  • Mark your calendars for the Farmers Market
Water and Integrated Cropping Systems- Nathan Mueller
  • Handling Treated See Safely
  • Control Winter Annual Weeds Early
  • Will Alfalfa Weevil Be a Problem Again?


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Land Link - Connecting Landowners with Land Seekers

Nebraska Land Link provides opportunities to connect land seekers with retiring landowners.

Land access is one of the biggest challenges facing aspiring and beginning farmers. For some landowners, they simply do not have the next generation available to take over their operation.

When you apply to Nebraska Land Link, either as a land seeker or a landowner, Nebraska Extension personnel will work to match your application with the most compatible counterpart. Using the answers you submit and offer in a potential interview, Nebraska Land Link matches are based on the shared values, interests and skills of both parties, so that a mutually beneficial and satisfying partnership can be forged over the course of the transition plan.

Before and throughout the process, we work to provide important educational information regarding transfers, communication, negotiations, goal setting and more. And we are here to answer any questions you might have.

Nebraska Land Link is a project of Nebraska Extension's Farm and Ranch Succession and Transition program and Nebraska Women in Agriculture.

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Yard and Garden

Friday's, 10-11:30am - Yard & Garden Live starts April 1 on KUTT 99.5 FM &

Your favorite thing to do on Fridays returns... ask Nicole and her guests all of your horticulture questions!! Call in number: 402-729-3383.

Missed a live episode? Listen to Nicole's podcast! You can now listen to it anywhere- on the website, Spotify, Apple Podcast, and Google Podcast. Just search Yard and Garden with Nicole!


The GROBigRed Virtual Learning Series from Nebraska Extension kicks off on February 24 with a 6-week series ‘Growing Fruit in the Home Garden’. Join us at 6:30pm CT each Thursday for two short presentations and an opportunity to ask your pressing garden questions. Register for this free program at

Spring Vegetable Gardens

We are entering the season to plant spring vegetable gardens. But don’t get plants out in the garden too soon, or they could be injured by late freezing temperatures or frost events.

Landscape Irrigation

Currently most of southeast Nebraska is in the ‘Moderate Drought’ level on the drought monitor. As we move into the spring and summer we could see the drought continue and irrigation will be critical.

4-H & Youth Development - Jacie Milius, Extension Educator

4-H Enrollment Now Open

Enrollment is open for 2022 Gage County 4-H. All 4-H youth (ages 8-18), Clover Kids (ages 5-7), and leaders are required to enroll online every year. This year, Nebraska 4-H has switched to 4-H Online 2.0. You will now be using the new website Current families and members, you will be able to use the same log in information that you have used in previous years. All of your information should have transferred over from the 1.0 version.

Enrollment deadline is June 15. We encourage all members to enroll using a computer and not your mobile device. This site is not mobile friendly and can cause some issues when it comes time to pay your dues online. Enrollment instructions for new members can be found at the Extension Office or online at Call Jacie or Sarah at 402-223-1384 with any enrollment questions.

$12 dues must be paid online at conclusion of enrollment process. **No enrollment fee for Clover Kids.

Anytime Learning Projects

4-H learning takes place year-round at your home, club meeting, 4-H workshops, and the County Fair. We present the 2022 spring and summer projects and exhibits for 4-H youth to learn skills, work together, and have fun. Workshops will be announced at a later date. Enrollment deadline: May 1 (unless otherwise noted) or the project has limited enrollment and is full. Note project enrollment fees when applicable AND project indicated for the youth to enroll in 4HOnline. Those registered will receive complete project/workshop information. Don’t miss out…register early, have fun, and learn new skills!

Food, Nutrition & Health - Tara Dunker, Extension Educator

Food choices today for a better tomorrow

On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans took to hundreds of city streets and college campuses to raise environmental awareness and spark change. Fifty two years later, the theme for April 22, 2022 is to "invest in our planet." And while you may not be ready to make a big, sweeping investment, there are plenty of small, local actions you can take today for a better tomorrow. While food choices may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about being kind to Mother Earth, they have an undeniable impact. Here are a few things to consider when deciding how your own eating pattern stacks up.

Label reading for beginners

Options are great, but with so many choices in today’s grocery stores it can be overwhelming to navigate all the health claims, nutrition facts and ingredients lists. Every packaged food has a Nutrition Facts Label that gives information about the nutritional value of the food inside. Let’s use the label to see how to make the best decision when it comes to sliced bread, canned soup and fruit juice, since these three products come in so many varieties.

Mark your calendars for the farmers market

Ready for some fresh, local goods? The Beatrice Farmers Market kicks off on Thursday, May 19. As with past seasons, it will be open every Thursday from 4-6:30 p.m. until mid-October.

The market will continue to be hosted in the Centenary United Methodist parking lot at Sixth and High Streets. Follow along on Facebook at to get updates throughout the season.

Water and Integrated Cropping Systems - Nathan Mueller, Extension Educator

Handling Treated Seed Safely

Planting season can be busy and stressful, so please don’t forget to be safe when handling treated seed and check the seed tag or talk to your seed dealer for specific handling and use directions. Treated seed is another route of exposure for farmers and other handlers, whether this exposure is to fungicide, insecticide, or nematicide treatments present on the seed. Remember that reducing your exposure is key to reducing the overall risk when handling pesticides.

Control winter annual weeds early

The spring growth of winter annual weeds is underway. A winter annual weed is an unwanted plant in your field that germinated last fall, overwintered, resumed growth this spring, and will soon begin flowering and producing seed. There are numerous species of winter annuals weeds common in southeast Nebraska including henbit (figure 1), marestail, field pennycress, shepherd’s purse, and tansy mustard. Nebraska Extension has two practical publications for you to use including EC104 Identification of Winter Annual Weeds and EC130 2022 Guide for Weed, Diseases, and Insect Management in Nebraska.

Will alfalfa weevil be a problem again?

Alfalfa is the third-most grown crop in Saline, Jefferson, and Gage counties with approximately 16,500 acres. Given the current drought and hay price, I expect demand for alfalfa to remain strong. Protecting your fields from insect damage will be important. Last year, I received my first call on April 30 about alfalfa weevil and the calls kept coming until May 18. Since we can see alfalfa spring growth from the road and with soil temperatures finally warming up, it will soon be time to start scouting for one of our early spring insects, alfalfa weevil.