This week's news
briefs from Kansas State University Research and Extension:
2) Time Crabgrass Prevention Carefully
3) Three K-State Faculty Members Win Entomology Society Awards
4) New Series a ‘How-to’ on Strong Shorelines
Saving is key to building financial security, said Carol Young, Kansas State University Research and Extension financial management specialist.
Because it’s often difficult to do, however, Young offered these tips to help make saving a habit:
* Make saving automatic. Opt for direct deposit, so your paycheck or other income is deposited directly into your checking and savings accounts or is transferred monthly into a savings tool.
* If your employer offers payroll savings, enroll.
* If your employer offers such tax-saving accounts as a flexible spending account for medical expenses, enroll.
* If your employer offers to match retirement savings, take advantage of the gift! Matched saving is one of the best tools for achieving optimum long-term benefits.
“Once in the habit of saving – and seeing account balances grow – saving becomes easier,” Young said. “Set both short- and long-term savings goals and work toward them.”
All local K-State Research and Extension offices can offer a basic money management curriculum. Many Extension offices in the state are also emphasizing saving and spending strategies and financial management education as part of Kansas Saves, a program connected to America Saves – a “Save and Reduce Debt” initiative sponsored by the Consumer Federation of America and other partners.
Additional tips also are available on
Kansas Extension’s Web site:
MANHATTAN, Kan. – For many Kansans, trying to prevent crabgrass is a yearly game of chance.
“The problem is how much the state’s weather can vary from year to year. To work, all but one of the crabgrass preventer products need to be on the lawn before spring weather signals the crabgrass seed to germinate. But, these products will begin to break down soon after they’re applied. Most will be ineffective in 60 days, so timing’s vital,” said Ward Upham, Kansas State University Research and Extension horticulturist.
On average, southeast Kansans can apply crabgrass preventer successfully about April 1, Upham said. Those in the northwest can wait until May 1, and everyone else can use April 15 as their target.
“Because of the weather, though, many people base their timing on the bloom of ornamental plants. The Eastern redbud tree is a good choice. When your area’s trees are approaching full-bloom, apply crabgrass preventer. Then apply a follow-up about 8 weeks later, unless you’re using Dimension or Barricade,” he said.
Dimension (dithiopyr) and Barricade (prodiamine) are preventers usually sold mixed with lawn fertilizer. They’re the only products that can give season-long crabgrass control from a single application.
In fact, Barricade can still be effective if applied the previous fall, Upham said.
The earliest date to apply Dimension is usually March 1. But Dimension also is the herbicide of choice for busy lawn care companies and lawn owners who must apply preventer as late as May or early June.
“Dimension is a pre-emergence herbicide, as the other preventers are. But, you can apply it later, because it also can kill young crabgrass up to its two- to three-leaf stage,” Upham explained.
Another plus is that Dimension is “kind” to tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass seedlings as young as two weeks old.
“Normally you shouldn’t apply a pre-emergence herbicide to recently planted turf until the seedlings have grown enough to need mowing two to three times,” the horticulturist warned.
Crabgrass preventers are a prime example
of why reading labels carefully can be important not only to personal
and environmental safety, Upham said, but also to the well-being of the
MANHATTAN, Kan. – Three entomologists affiliated with Kansas State University’s Department of Entomology have won awards from the North Central Branch of the Entomological Society of America.
Gerry Wilde received the 2007 Award of Excellence in Integrated Pest Management, and Greg Zolnerowich won the 2007 Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching, said Jim Nechols, interim department head.
Mike Dryden, an ancillary faculty member in the entomology department, won the 2007 Recognition Award in Urban Entomology. He is a faculty member in K-State’s College of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Pathobiology and Diagnostic Medicine.
The honors are especially noteworthy,
Nechols said, because the North Central Branch is the largest ESA
branch. That means K-State’s entomologists compete with entomologists
from fourteen states and three Canadian provinces.
MANHATTAN, Kan. – What people are planting next to water in the central High Plains changed in the 1990s, after Kansas State University scientists reported findings from the ‘93 flood.
“Aerial photos taken before and after the flood showed that riparian forest buffers along 37 miles of the Kansas River were responsible for new deposits of an average 10 feet of soil. In contrast, grasslands lost an average 78 feet of sediment, while croplands lost an average 155 feet,” said Deborah Goard, watershed forester with the Kansas Forest Service.
Yet, maintaining soil stability is only one reason for planting trees and shrubs next to bodies of water, including streams – year-round or intermittent.
“Woody riparian buffers slow down runoff from nearby lands. This allows any soil particles, nutrients, bacteria, and ag. or lawn chemicals to settle out before the water reaches a surface or underground water supply,” Goard said. “The filtering process can actually help buffer plants. But it’s vital to our maintaining clean water.”
Extra benefits of the plantings can include better habitat for both fish and wildlife, she said. If carefully planned, riparian buffers also can yield occasional harvests of high-quality hardwood timber.
To help Kansans garner such benefits, Goard has developed a series of publications. It’s available at any county’s K-State Research and Extension office, from any district KFS forester, or on the Web at http://www.ksre.ksu.edu/. (Search for “Riparian Forest Best Management Practices.”)
The riparian buffer management series includes “Riparian Forest Buffers” (MF2746), “Timber Stand Improvement” (MF2747), “Tree and Shrub Planting” (MF2748), “Timber Harvesting” (MF2749), “Tree Revetments” (MF2750), “Willow Cuttings” (MF2751) and “Fencing” (MF2752).
K-State Research and Extension is a short name for the Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service, a program designed to generate and distribute useful knowledge for the well-being of Kansans. Supported by county, state, federal and private funds, the program has county Extension offices, experiment fields, area Extension offices and research centers statewide. Its headquarters is on the K-State campus in Manhattan.