News and Events


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ADSC: Closed for Remodeling

ADSC: Closed for Remodeling 22 May 2020

ADSC: Closed for Remodeling

Last day to receive samples is June 10...no exceptions!

The Agricultural Diagnostic Service Center (ADSC) will be closed from Wednesday, June 10, through Monday, July 13. The ADSC, located in Sherman Laboratory, is entering a major phase of HVAC construction work. Currently the entire second floor is sealed off with a ventilation system, along with a chute and dumpster for construction debris.

Helping Hands

Helping Hands 22 May 2020

Helping Hands

4-H sews a thousand-plus masks

“Hands” is one of the four “H’s” of 4-H, and O‘ahu 4-H youth and volunteers have been putting their hands to good use in this time of high need! Over the past month, they’ve sewn more than 1,000 masks and donated them to health care workers, military personnel, postal workers, Extension agents and staff, houseless individuals, and more!

Congratulations to the “Screenhouses” Team

Congratulations to the “Screenhouses” Team 14 May 2020

Congratulations to the “Screenhouses” Team

Winners of the 2020 Dean’s Award for Extension

Normally celebrated at the CTAHR Annual Banquet, this year’s Dean’s Award recipients will be honored here, on your laptops and tablets, and with their names carved into the plaques that adorn Gilmore Hall. Prize monies will also be distributed, per the usual means. The 2020 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Extension goes to Koon-Hui Wang, Jari Sugano, Jensen Uyeda, Kylie Tavares, Theodore Radovich, Joshua Silva, and Amjad Ahmad.

Help Fund Koa Haole Research

Help Fund Koa Haole Research 14 May 2020

Help Fund Koa Haole Research

Your survey input may lead to new forage varieties

Leucaena is a versatile, adaptable, nitrogen-fixing tree widely grown in the tropics as cattle forage. It’s high in protein, and cattle eat it readily. But most people in Hawai‘i know it as the weedy shrub koa haole, covered in rattling brown pods full of seeds. Over the decades, CTAHR has developed a few seedless, and therefore sterile, hybrids of Leucaena that won’t become weedy.

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 13 May 2020

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

USDA webinar (TOMORROW morning!) will guide the direct payment process

The USDA Farm Service Agency will soon begin accepting applications for its Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). This program will provide direct payments to farmers and ranchers to offset losses resulting from price volatility and market supply-chain reductions from COVID-19. More details about CFAP direct payments will be announced soon.

Direct-to-Consumer Livestock Sales

Direct-to-Consumer Livestock Sales 12 May 2020

Direct-to-Consumer Livestock Sales

Learn how to e-market your animal products online

Know about livestock, but not about social media? If you’re interested in diversifying your business by marketing meat and other animal products direct-to-consumer, then RSVP for a new “Online Livestock Marketing Webinar Series,” starting Tuesday, May 19, at 6:00 p.m.

Go Ahead, Brighten My Day

Go Ahead, Brighten My Day 11 May 2020

Go Ahead, Brighten My Day

CTAHR donates 400+ sunflowers to local hospitals

Happy hues of orange and yellow radiate in the sunshine as Russell Galanti prepares to harvest his latest crop. The Extension agent in ornamental crops has a big afternoon ahead. The sunʻs glare will soon ease into a soft, warm glow, making it less harsh on freshly cut sunflowers. That’s Russell’s cue to begin cutting, trimming, washing, and bundling the 400+ stalks he has tended to lovingly at the Oʻahu Urban Garden Center.

 

Mahalo, UHM!

Mahalo, UHM! 8 May 2020

Mahalo, UHM!

CTAHR brightens the day for Tripler nurses

The ICU ward at Tripler Army Medical Center overflowed with smiles this week, thanks to a delivery of sunflowers by Extension agent Russell Galanti. Originally meant for CTAHR’s Annual Banquet, the 400+ sunflowers grown at the Urban Garden Center were donated to hospitals across O‘ahu to thank our healthcare workers for braving COVID-19.

What Do Your Family and Community Need?

What Do Your Family and Community Need? 8 May 2020

What Do Your Family and Community Need?

You can help guide FCS Extension programming

What social programs would best serve the community? To gain a better understanding, Extension agents Marielle Hampton, Heather Greenwood, and Hallie Cristobal have put together a “Hawai‘i Needs Assessment of Intergenerational and Youth Development Programs.” The survey will gather important feedback on educational and social programs.

Thanks for the Memories

Thanks for the Memories 7 May 2020

Thanks for the Memories

O‘ahu Cooperative Extension says Aloha! to two esteemed colleagues

Two longtime members of the CTAHR ‘ohana are leaving for fresh adventures. Naomi Kanehiro, an Extension agent in Human Nutrition, Food and Animal Sciences; and Nestor Dela Cruz, an agricultural technician at the Urban Garden Center, have dedicated their careers to CTAHR and will be missed.

The Case for Collard Greens

The Case for Collard Greens 6 May 2020

The Case for Collard Greens

These perennials are a constant food source and love the summer sun

As summer approaches, you might consider adding collard greens to your backyard garden. Whereas the intense heat can overwhelm many local greens that grow well during the cooler months, collards will thrive throughout the year. 

Circle of Giving

Circle of Giving 4 May 2020

Circle of Giving

Hand sanitizer donation supports fruit donation

MBBE’s Fermentation Biochemistry class, and their mock company 3Rewery, have donated more than 6 liters of hand sanitizer to the volunteers at the Urban Garden Center. Four liters went to the UGC’s Fruit Hui, a dedicated group of six volunteers who continue to meet every week to maintain the tropical fruit orchard and harvest fruit—which is entirely donated to the Hawaii Foodbank.

Fast Green Food

Fast Green Food 1 May 2020

Fast Green Food

Grow a salad bowl in your back yard

You may be eating less salad these days. Everyone’s making fewer trips to the supermarket, and lettuce and other tender greens are easily perishable. But growing your own lettuce is a great solution—now and going forward. Lettuce is fast growing and ideal for backyard gardens.

For Our Frontline Fighters

For Our Frontline Fighters 1 May 2020

For Our Frontline Fighters

CTAHR donates sunflowers to the nurses braving COVID-19

Extension agent Russell Galanti is harvesting, trimming, washing, and bundling 400+ sunflowers he planted months ago at the O‘ahu Urban Garden Center. The bright, morale-boosting blooms will be donated to local hospitals, to thank staff members who are keeping our community safe from the pandemic. More photos and video, coming soon!

Eating Local: How and How Much?

Eating Local: How and How Much? 30 April 2020

Eating Local: How and How Much?

Honolulu Magazine consults CTAHR on a critical issue

Any answer to the question “Can We Ever Eat All Local in Hawai‘i?,” the subject of a recent Honolulu Magazine article, depends significantly on CTAHR’s work in education, research, and community outreach. So it’s fitting that the article features several members of the CTAHR ‘ohana, including ag economist and assistant Extension agent Sarah Rehkamp, MS alumnus Gabe Sachter-Smith, and GoFarm Hawai‘i graduate Rob Barreca.

4-H Gives Aloha

4-H Gives Aloha 30 April 2020

4-H Gives Aloha

Kaua‘i youths create signs of hope

Kaua’i 4-H Federation created “Signs of Aloha” to show appreciation and support for the staff of the island’s three local hospitals. 4-H families hand-built and sanded the signs, and then 4-H participants designed and painted a theme for each aloha board to honor the heroic medical personnel working on the front lines.

Germination Is a Beautiful Thing

Germination Is a Beautiful Thing 28 April 2020

Germination Is a Beautiful Thing

Understanding how seeds sprout will help your garden

Whether you’re a fuzzy neophyte or gnarled veteran of the backyard garden, we should never lose our fascination with the seed germination process. It is magical how such little things, buried in darkness, will quickly emerge from the surface, full of life and independence. If you’re growing vegetables for the very first time, it’s helpful to understand how plants propagate.

The Pests Keep Coming

The Pests Keep Coming 28 April 2020

The Pests Keep Coming

So the work continues at Kona Research Station

Fighting plant pests is just one of the many ways Nick Yamauchi, Dylan Cunningham, Matt Miyahira, Andrea Kawabata, Elizabeth Whitney, Yoshiaki Higashide, Justin Yeh, and other CTAHR faculty and staff on Hawai‘i Island are working diligently to keep grant-funded projects moving forward, while maintaining social distancing and other precautions.

Hydroponics vs. Aquaponics

Hydroponics vs. Aquaponics 27 April 2020

Hydroponics vs. Aquaponics

These soil-less gardens just need a little fertilizer

Tilling the soil before you plant can be difficult, especially if the land is rocky or paved over. But don’t let that stop you from growing vegetables! Soil-less agriculture is an alternative that requires less physical effort and uses less space. Two good examples are hydroponics and aquaponics. But which one better suits you? That depends on your preference for dealing with soluble fertilizer or live fish.

Good Source of Resources

Good Source of Resources 27 April 2020

Good Source of Resources

CTAHR’s COVID-19 response page is better than ever

If you haven’t visited lately, COVID-19 Resources for Hawai‘i, compiled by Extension agent Nancy Ooki, has added new resources to help you…and your clients and stakeholders. The webpage is broken up into Food Safety and Sourcing, Plants and Agriculture, Human Health, and more, and each category is replete with critical, science-backed information.
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5 November 2019

Maui Burning

NREM researcher warns that recent wildfires require proactive response

Maui Burning

Clay Trauernicht (NREM) wrote a chilling article on a hot topic in Civil Beat. The wildland fire researcher and Extension faculty member discussed Central Maui fires that burned nearly 20,000 acres this summer (see image of burned area from the Sentinel-2 satellite). 

This “unprecedented” area reflects “dramatic increases in wildfires across the state,” he warns. “Much of the 4,600 acres that just burned at Maalaea (the fourth-largest incident there since 2006) were once ranch lands and sugarcane. This historical context makes it difficult to place singular blame for fire incidents, and indicates that policies of ‘benign neglect’ applied to large swaths of our watersheds aren’t working.”

The Pacific Fire Exchange organized a field tour of the burned area so state and county leaders can talk about what to do next. This revealed “some positive takeaways. Cooperation among firefighters, equipment operators and landowners is excellent.” As well, fires in the Islands tend to be quickly extinguished, unlike the uncontrolled blazes in California. 

But there are problems with infrastructure: firefighters have limited access to many areas and to sufficient water. Climate change and the decline in agriculture, with its concomitant lack of irrigation and growth of non-native flammable grasses, are also to blame.

It’s important to focus on prevention and risk reduction, Clay emphasizes: “Torching abandoned cars is a key ignition source on Maui, so increasing awareness of the Junk Vehicle Assistance Program could have impact. For fuels, putting land back into agriculture, expanding livestock grazing, converting grasslands to less flammable vegetation, also conventional fuel breaks and prescribed burning, all reduce the potential for fires to ignite and grow.” It’s also crucial that enough funding be allocated to this growing problem.

“Making our communities and landscapes more resilient over the long-term on all fronts—social, economic, and environmental—will take creative partnerships, increased valuation of land stewardship, and vision for what our future landscapes could look like,” Clay concludes. “The real challenge seems to be not just communicating the value of what we stand to lose, but reminding ourselves we can choose a better way forward.”

Read the full article here.