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Celebrate 4-H Club with event

October 04, 2008|By BOB KESSLER

A 4-H Club open house will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at Franklin County's office of Penn State Cooperative Extension, 181 Franklin Farm Lane.

Free activities will include seeing sheep, goats and a pig at the 4-H Ag Learning Center; meeting Seeing Eye puppies-in-training; hands-on science experiments about how superabsorbent polymers can help the environment, and a simple 4-H craft activity. Watch for the green and white balloons.

One of America's largest non-formal education programs for youth, 4-H is for ages 5 to 18.

The organization makes a major contribution to our nation by helping youths acquire hands-on knowledge and develop life skills that help them become self-directed, productive and contributing members of our society.

For more information, contact Penn State Cooperative Extension at 717-263-9226.

Hardy honeybee queens

At 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 7, Adam Finkelstein, Maryland apiary inspector, will talk about "Selecting and Breeding Hardy Honeybee Queens" at the Franklin County Beekeepers' Association 2008 Annual Meeting. The public is invited to attend.

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Finkelstein is a certified organic farm owner-manager, the president of the Frederick County Beekeepers' Association, and the owner of VPQueens. He has bred queens in Maryland since 1989. Since 1999, he has worked to manage all his honeybee colonies without any mite treatments.

Finkelstein has bred bees for higher honey production, tolerance to winter and tolerance to two species of bee-killing mites. He has built a hardy queen-breeding population from his and others' survivor stock.

He hopes through the breeding and selection experience to continue to shift his breeding population in a direction that produces queens to head productive, thrifty colonies that can be managed without the use of chemicals.

For additional information on the meeting and the Franklin County Beekeepers' Association, contact Penn State Cooperative Extension at 717-263-9226.

Timber workshop

Years of growth are accumulated in a mature timber stand. The income from all those years is frequently marketed in a single transaction.

Too much is at stake to sell timber without having accurate knowledge of products, volume and value and without knowing how to establish the next crop for continued production.

Bruce Kile, retired natural resources service forester, will talk about timber sales at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 9, at the Cumberland Woodland Owners' Association meeting at the Cumberland County Extension Office, 310 Allen Road, Carlisle, Pa.

The Cumberland Woodland Owners Association is an organization of forestland owners and others interested in forestry issues in south central Pennsylvania.

Kile will go over components of a successful timber sale and basic IRS rules as they apply to the sale of timber.

He will also discuss the importance of sustainable forest practices including the required erosion and sedimentation control plan. He will describe how to ensure that the long-term management goals you have for your woodland are met.

Attendees do not have to be CWOA members and there is no cost to attend. The meeting will be at the new location for the Cumberland County Extension

For more information about the meeting or the Cumberland Woodland Owners Association, contact Fred Peabody at 717-776-3565 or e-mail fredp5@earthlink.net.

Fall invaders

The invasion of our homes has started already this fall. The brown marmorated stinkbug is the first that has arrived in our homes this fall.

Adult stinkbugs will enter our homes and other buildings seeking a protected area where they can overwinter. The bugs are harmless, but they can sometimes invade in large numbers.

The best way to protect yourself from them is to seal up openings and cracks they use to get in your home. The main entry points are the openings around windows and door trim, around exhaust fans, dryer vents.

If they get into the walls, they can get inside around the baseboard, the molding, trim and around windows and doors.

These can all be sealed with a good quality clear caulking. Run a small bead around all the windows molding where it meets the walls; the same with baseboards and floor.

If you have carpeted floors, this joint is covered by the carpet. Mostly this work needs to be done on the south side of the house but they might show up in rooms on the other sides of the house too.

Live or dead, stinkbugs should be removed from your house with a vacuum cleaner or a shop vac. Put something over the end of your vacuum hose so they don't crawl back out, especially the shop vac, which has a much larger opening.

Bob Kessler specializes in consumer horticulture and energy for Penn State University. He can be reached weekdays at 717-263-9226 or e-mail at rxk4@psu.edu.

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