News and Events


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Deer in Drought

Deer in Drought 24 February 2021

Deer in Drought

Glenn Teves comments about the effect on Molokaʻi

Axis deer, invasive and detrimental to Molokaʻi’s fragile ecosystem, have also fed the local community for generations. But with the prolonged drought, these starving wildlife are destroying farm crops and forest watershed, leading to erosion and runoff into the ocean. “They started moving into the farm area and are just raising hell,” said Glenn Teves, Extension agent and Molokaʻi native, in a recent interview for the Star Advertiser newspaper about the ongoing situation. He suggests that killing the deer for slaughterhouses could help food banks and those in need during the pandemic.

Banana is Back!

Banana is Back! 9 February 2021

Banana is Back!

Extension distributes a disease-free culture to re-establish Hawaiʻi orchards

It was less than four years ago when our banana industry was reeling from the double punch of Panama Wilt and Bunchy Top Virus. With the value of their product in freefall, Oʻahu farmers reached out to Extension. In response, Amjad Ahmad, Koon-Hui Wang, and Jari Sugano obtained a Specialty Crop Block Grant Program administered by Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture. The grant allowed Extension’s Jensen Uyeda to screen field-grown banana plants for the virus, using a new Agdia Amplify RP XRT rapid DNA amplification technology – an improvement over the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, or ELISA, method. Extension then partnered with Dr. Ming Li of the Hawaiʻi Agriculture Research Center & East County Hawaiʻi Farm Bureau to move clean, BBTV-free plants into tissue culture for multiplication.

Fast forward to now. With Extension’s help, banana growers on Oʻahu’s Windward side are re-starting new banana fields, using BBTV-free keiki plants derived from tissue-cultured mothers. Extension has also developed a rotational insecticide program, designed to work in conjunction with the BBTV tissue culture program.

“We were just about to stop growing apple banana because we had no resources for clean planting material,” says Clyde Fukuyama of Kahuku Farms. “We are very excited and looking forward to start increasing our plantings again. This will definitely help and benefit our farm.”

To date, 875 tissue-cultured banana plants have been distributed to 22 growers, and Extension is optimistic the program has the potential to re-establish previously destroyed banana orchards, and enable growers to rebound from the devastating effects of BBTV and Panama wilt. The initial success has led to another grant secured to distribute a larger number of seedlings (5,000-10,000) to statewide producers. 

“With almost a thousand BBTV-free plants distributed to growers, along with rotational insecticide, we’re hopeful the local banana industry will rebound quickly,” says Jari. "It’s important to note, these plants are not disease resistant — just free of the virus. Growers must closely follow the insecticide rotation in order to keep the aphid vector away.”

Extension + GoFarm

Extension + GoFarm 9 February 2021

Extension + GoFarm

It’s Winter Squash Week on the Culinary Breeding Network

Glenn Teves of the Molokai Extension Office and Jay Bost of GoFarm Hawaiʻi were co-hosts of the online seminar, Tropical Squash, on the Culinary Breeding Network’s YouTube channel. Glenn and Jay collaborated with Linda Wessel Beaver of the University of Puerto Rico and Edmund Frost of Commonwealth Seed, a farmer breeder with whom both they share germplasm.
 

Mahalo! Hilo Medical Center

Mahalo! Hilo Medical Center 6 January 2021

Mahalo! Hilo Medical Center

Extension researchers donate flower bouquets for healthcare workers

Joanna Bloese has joined the Extension team at Komohana Research Center, and one of her first projects with researcher Joanne Lichty is to examine the effects of soluble silicon fertilizers on plant defense responses, mainly thrips damage in two flowers beloved in the Hawaiian islands: dendrobium and anthurium.

Besides the good news, that preliminary results suggest the fertilizers show potential for improving plant resistance across some cultivars, Joanna and Joanne also found a more immediate impact on the community: as “Thank you” bouquets for healthcare workers on the front lines of Covid.

The Poi Dog Factory

The Poi Dog Factory 6 January 2021

The Poi Dog Factory

Cattle-breeding technologies are positioning Mealani as an industry leader

I received my BS and MS in Animal Sciences from CTAHR and went to work for the college, but after a long career, I’ve hung up my spurs and retired.

Before I say Aloha! and Mahalo!, I want to tell you about a special cattle-breeding project by Extension at Mealani Research Station.

AgCurious Kicks Off

AgCurious Kicks Off 6 January 2021

AgCurious Kicks Off

GoFarm will start a new cohort Jan. 14 in Hilo

Know someone or some family that might be looking to improve their farming production and agribusiness skills? CTAHR’s highly successful GoFarm program will kick off 2021 with a new cohort at its Alae site in Hilo. Please forward and share with your networks.

Immediate Benefits

Immediate Benefits 21 December 2020

Immediate Benefits

Taro trials also feed a hungry community

What hasn’t changed during this pandemic is the need for research trials. What HAS changed is the community’s greater need for food donations.

 

Saving Seed

Saving Seed 15 December 2020

Saving Seed

Glenn Teves and Jay Bost join "The Conversation" on HPR

Hawai’i Public Radio’s “The Conversation” series recently hosted two special guests: Glenn Teves of Molokai Extension and Jay Bost of GoFarm.

The Conversation’s Community Growers Urge Residents To Plant Seeds “really resonated with our audience” and “received positive feedback during and after the show!” notes HPR.

Mushroom Trip

Mushroom Trip 15 December 2020

Mushroom Trip

Extension’s hands-on school program stokes excitement and interest

What is a mushroom? Is it a fruit, or is it vegetable? Is it even a plant? During this pandemic, it’s more important than ever to create hands-on “classroom” activities that students can do from home. Look no further than Extension educators, who’ve been able to deliver on CTAHR’s Land Grant obligations by helping Oʻahu students cultivate oyster mushrooms.

Invasive Pests, Part III

Invasive Pests, Part III 23 November 2020

Invasive Pests, Part III

Extension hosts another mini-conference December 15

With the main objective to bring stakeholders together, in the same forum, to discuss and share current issues, concerns, and updates on the status and research in Hawaiʻi, CTAHR Extension will host the third Invasive Pests Mini-Conference via Zoom: December 15, 1:00 p.m.

Giant Smiles, Part II

Giant Smiles, Part II 16 November 2020

Giant Smiles, Part II

4-H contest gets keiki excited about agriculture

“The opportunity to grow ‘giants’ with my children is a blessing,” says Wendi Sasaki. “We were able to spend quality time together, learning and growing.’”

The parent participant is referring to a contest of giant fruits and vegetables, brought to Big Island families by the Hawai'i County 4-H program.

I Owe Uncle Sam What?!

I Owe Uncle Sam What?! 9 November 2020

I Owe Uncle Sam What?!

Learn to navigate Ag taxes with GoFarm Hawaiʻi’s free seminars

If doing taxes is a piece of cake for you, then stop reading now. But for the rest of us who cringe at the thought of preparing our own Agribusiness General Excise taxes, Schedule F and other forms of sole proprietorship or partnership, help is on the way.

Mahalo, Volunteers!

Mahalo, Volunteers! 2 November 2020

Mahalo, Volunteers!

Urban Garden Center hosts the 2020 Volunteer Appreciation Day

Forty-eight cars and trucks took their turns, driving thru the grounds of the Urban Garden Center for a well-deserved chance to vote on their favorite Halloween decoration, and receive tools generously donated by City Mill, as well as other tokens of mahalo! from the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture, UH Agricultural Diagnostic Service Center, UH Bookstore, and CTAHR.

Coffee Leaf Rust

Coffee Leaf Rust 2 November 2020

Coffee Leaf Rust

Pest confirmed on Maui and tentatively on Hawai`i Island

Coffee leaf rust (CLR) has been confirmed by the U.S Dept. of Agriculture from coffee plant samples collected on Maui last week. In response, the Hawai`i Dept. of Agriculture (HDOA) began statewide surveys and has detected suspect plants on Hawai`i Island.

ʻŌhiʻa Love Fest

ʻŌhiʻa Love Fest 2 November 2020

ʻŌhiʻa Love Fest

Celebrating one of Hawaiʻi’s most beloved plants

“The most abundant tree in Hawaii’s native forest is the ‘ōhi‘a lehua, a tree critical to providing the water we drink, keeping our ocean reefs clean, and to the native Hawaiian culture,” says Ambyr U. Mokiao-Lee, Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death (ROD) Statewide Outreach Coordinator. “For these reasons and more, ‘ōhi‘a will be celebrated in a week-long virtual event called ʻŌhiʻa Love Fest.

Extension Growth

Extension Growth 2 November 2020

Extension Growth

The Hawaiʻi chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi is recruiting members

Ever wonder what Extension is up to – across the pond? Want a mechanism to share experiences, ideas, what works and what didn’t, with fellow professionals on the Mainland? Then consider joining Alpha Omega, the Hawaiʻi chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi.

MacNut Pest Management

MacNut Pest Management 13 October 2020

MacNut Pest Management

A new study on the felted coccid can help growers manage loss from pests

Some years ago, an Australian native insect called the “macadamia felted coccid” found its way to Hawaiʻi, causing leaf and branch die back, flower drop and sometimes, tree death among Macadamia trees. Relatively recently, the invasive pest insect became widespread on the Big Island – and of course, this has led to reduced crop yields.

Hawaiiscape Green

Hawaiiscape Green 6 October 2020

Hawaiiscape Green

Extension teams up with LICH to help small and minority-owned businesses

Please join Extension agents Russell Galanti and Hannah Lutgen on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 3:00 p.m., as they present the first in a planned series of webinars on the local green industry. The first webinar will look at small and minority-owned businesses in the green industry and programs that will improve their economic situation and help them recover from COVID-related economic effects.

Piggeries in Puna

Piggeries in Puna 29 September 2020

Piggeries in Puna

A new deep-litter design may help jump-start family farms

Lower Puna has felt the stinging triple punch of hurricane, lava, and now, pandemic. Enter Mike DuPonte and a new deep-litter piggery.

Beyond Beginners

Beyond Beginners 15 September 2020

Beyond Beginners

GoFarm Hawaiʻi consults on business plans, grant writing, and a whole lot more.

Financial analysis, marketing support, business plan production, grant writing – perhaps not what you’d expect from a beginner farmer training program.

But as Janel Yamamoto explains in a recent article, GoFarm Hawaiʻi offers services for those already working in the agricultural industry.

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20 March 2024

Outstanding Civil Servant

Eunice Domingo of Hawaiʻi County is CTAHR’s 2023 recipient

Outstanding Civil Servant

The 2023 Dean’s Award for Outstanding Civil Service Employee goes to Eunice Domingo. 

Eunice has been with CTAHR Hawaiʻi County for more than 30 years! She exhibits exceptional dedication and commitment to the achievement of Hawaiʻi County’s program objectives. She has played a pivotal role in implementing key initiatives and projects, and by keeping people accountable to meet deadlines. 

Eunice is the definition of a team player. She is proactive, takes the initiative, and definitely exemplifies the Aloha spirit. Not only does she provide great customer service to faculty and staff, she also provides excellent service to vendors and visitors at the Komohana Station. We are so lucky to have Eunice be a part of the Hawaiʻi County Team for all these years!