Friday, February 24, 2012

Fruit Fun

Growing your own fruits and berries is lots of fun!  Order your plants and benefit Watauga County 4-H

The fruit plant sale order form is available at the Extension office at 971 West King Street, 264-3061 or can be downloaded HERE
Orders are due by Friday, March 30.   The plants will arrive Friday, April 20, 12:00-6:00 and Saturday, April 21, 9:30-12:30

Ways to have fun with fruits and berries:
Grow strawberries in a creative container. The Seascape variety does well in containers
We offer these strawberry varieties:  Seascape and Chandler
Make an edible landscape with blueberry bushes.  Have fun making blueberry pies, pancakes, muffins and more!
We offer Blue Crop, Blue Ray, Jersey, Blue Chip, Duke varieties
Make something crazy in the kitchen.  Invent a recipe, experiment- add raspberries to your salad.  Make a raspberry vinegar.
We offer Caroline and Josephine varieties of raspberries.
Blackberries make great dyes.  Experiment with plant dyes from your garden. 
We offer Chester and Ouachita varieties of blackberries. 
Want to cool down in the summer?  Pop a frozen grape in your mouth.  Or for a wild experiment, make “grape lightning”- pop a grape half in your microwave (adult supervision here please)
We offer Concord and Catawba varieties this year.
Apples connect us with our heritage.   Carve dried apple faces with your extra apples. 
We offer the following heritage varieties:  Virginia Beauty and Yellow Transparent;  Gala is also offered. 
Play with your food.  Food art is lots of fun.  Pears make a great canvas for creating all sort of art.
We have Bartlett and D’Anjou varieties
Explore fruit drying.  Make your own solar food dehydrator.
What is a dried plum called?
Plum varieties:  Damon, Mount Royal
Since we are toting fruits and vegetables, we had to add some vegetables to our plant sale!  Is rhubarb a vegetable?
Explore the medicinal benefits of plants grown in your yard.  Rhubarb has historically been used as a medicinal plant.  Who is credited with bringing Rhubarb to America?
Do any vegetables grow each year without having to be sown?  Rhubarb and asparagus are two perennial vegetables. 
Explore the world with fruits and vegetables- geography, history, cultures, art, science.  Do you know where asparagus was first raised?  Why is asparagus green?  Asparagus would make a fun paintbrush. 
We offer the Hybrid F2 variety.  It does not have a pretty name.  How about renaming it….  The Green Clover Asparagus variety, in honor of 4-H?!
Asparagus does not bear its produce for us right away, so it teaches us patience.   So many fun and tasty things to learn and do in the garden!  

Monday, February 20, 2012

4-H Camps 2012

Can't make it to camp with us the week of 
June 24-29?  Other 4-H camping opportunities are available directly with the 4-H camps across North Carolina:

North Carolina 4-H Specialty Camps - 2012
Check each camp’s website for more details and registration forms

Betsy – Jeff Penn 4-H 
Cloverbud (ages 5-8)                                    July 15-18                           $180
Leader in Training (LIT) (ages 15-17)         Weekly                           $475

Eastern 4-H Center  –
Cloverbud Camp (ages 5-8) July 15-19 $300
Cloverbud Camp (ages 5-8) July 22-26 $300
Marine Science & Sailing (ages 12-17) July 15-20 $460
Camp Canvasback (ages 12-17) July 15-20 $460 educates young hunters on waterfowl conservation.
Takeoff 4-Health (ages 12-18) July 22-Aug 10               

Millstone 4-H
Fur, Fish & Game Rendezvous (age 12-15) June 20-25 $385
4-H Horsemanship Camp (ages 9-19) June 13-19 $390
Camp Corral (age 8-15)                   July 15-20, 22-27, 29-8/3 No Charge for children of wounded or disabled veterans

Sertoma 4-H
Deaf Camp (Ages 8-16) June 17-22 $350

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

4-H Fruit Plant Sale

The annual 4-H Fruit Plant Sale flyer is now available.
This year, we expand our fruit trees by adding plum and pear trees. Several varieties of heritage apples continue, along with the usual offerings of blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.

Most of our berries come in the form of bare roots, rather than potted in soil in containers. This allows the plants to be sold at a lower cost. One possible advantage to bare root plants is that the plants do not have to transition between soils and may       establish more quickly.                                               

However, we do have some varieties of blueberries and grapes in containers.
We continue with the asparagus and rhubarb, which did well last year.

Informational Links on growing fruits:

 Photograph provided by Erica Cornett

Explore 4-H!

5-9 year olds explore fun, hands-on 4-H activities from taste science to hovercrafts.  Meets monthly at the Agricultural Conference Center.
Next meetings:
Thursday, March 1, 6:00
Thursday, April 5, 6:00

4-H Teen Retreat

Join us for the District 4-H Teen Retreat!
March 30-31
Swannanoa 4-H Center

Teen Retreat is a great way to meet others in 4-H, get inspired, learn more about 4-H opportunities, and have fun!

Cost:  $65.00
Registration deadline:  March 2 by noon

Friday evening:  dinner, opening meeting, organized games, 4-H campfire
Saturday:  3 workshops, and lunch
Workshop topics include options such as teamwork, leadership, citizenship and more!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Video Games Meet STEM (science, technology, engineering, math)

For those who love video games (5th grade on up), here is a competition to design original video games.   Due date is March 12. 
If all else, maybe the website could offer some ideas to harness education, math and science to the appeal of video games-  The Resource section lists some game-making platforms