County News

March 6, 2014

Creating new plants from old ones, and forcing spring flowering trees and shrubs to bloom indoors is simple, according to horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. They share techniques suited for propagating grape vines and willow trees and forcing forsythia and pussywillow to bloom indoors. To have additional questions answered, contact the Iowa State University Hortline at or 515-294-3108.

March 3, 2014

Stronger families, increased family financial capacity, economic development in communities and youth who are productive citizens, effective leaders, and literate and prepared for careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) – Iowans identified these as priority community needs that Iowa State University Extension and Outreach should address with educational efforts.

February 28, 2014

With a little planning, homeowners who enjoy picking ripe, juicy fruit from their own trees can successfully grow fruit trees, such as apples, pears, plums and cherries – even homeowners with only small yard space.

February 20, 2014

Understanding how plants grow, why pruning is necessary and which tools to use can remove the mystery surrounding this routine practice. Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach answer pruning questions. 

February 13, 2014

Winter can be tough on Iowa’s trees and shrubs. Low temperatures, rapid temperature changes, winter desiccation and the weight of ice and snow can damage vulnerable trees and shrubs. Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach answer questions about the effect this winter’s frigid temperatures will have on landscape plants. 

February 11, 2014

During February, family life specialists discuss children’s attitudes about aging in the Science of Parenting blog from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

February 11, 2014

Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach provide answers to questions that will increase gardeners’ success with transplants.

February 6, 2014

Many Iowans get inspired to follow a heart-healthy diet during February -- American Heart Month -- since heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. However, the heart isn’t the only organ that benefits from following a heart-healthy diet.

February 3, 2014

With the recent spike in propane prices, it’s never too soon to start conserving heating energy. Pork producers may have propane contracted at a reasonable rate but managing heating costs should always be a priority, especially when expenses are rising.

January 29, 2014

Onions, one of the most productive of garden vegetables, is a cool-season crop that takes more than 95 days to mature. Planting should be done as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring. If grown from seed, onions should be started indoors well in advance of outdoor planting. Horticulturists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach answer questions about growing onions. To have additional questions answered, contact Hortline or 515-294-3108.

January 23, 2014

Emerging science is telling us much about the links between environmental exposures, such as chemicals inside a home or child care center, and a child's health and ability to learn.

January 23, 2014

Workshops intended for local early childhood professionals!

January 20, 2014

If planning for next year’s garden includes finding new plants for shady areas, consider the recommendations of Iowa State University Extension and Outreach horticulturists while paging through and ordering from garden catalogs this winter. The horticulturists also answer questions that come to Hortline, Iowa State’s horticulture hotline. Reach Hortline by calling 515-294-3108 or emailing

January 14, 2014

The extension team recently released three Web-based training modules covering key aspects of grain drying and storage. 

January 13, 2014

Check out the 2013 ISU Farm Report.
2013 ISU Farm Research Report

January 10, 2014

 Amaryllis are popular flowering bulbs grown indoors during the winter months. Single-flowering, double flowering, and miniature amaryllis varieties (cultivars) are available. The spectacular, trumpet-shaped blooms are available in many colors including red, pink, orange, salmon, white and bicolors. To find answers to other houseplant questions visit the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Yard and Garden FAQ webpage at or contact Hortline at 515-294-3108 or

January 8, 2014

This dark leafy green vegetable is considered to be a “nutritional powerhouse” and is high on the list of nutrition trends for the new year, said Sarah Francis, an Iowa State University assistant professor and ISU Extension and Outreach nutrition specialist.

January 8, 2014

A two day training to that will include topics such as communications and relationship building, packaging, labels, supply and delivery, post-harvest handling for produce, grading, insurance, regulatory and marketing.

January 6, 2014

Fighting in front of the children creates a family life where conflict is the norm – and this conflict can negatively impact the kids. Learn about the complex issue of parental conflict and its effect on children in the Science of Parenting blog from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

January 2, 2014

According to Margaret Murphy, Horticulture Educator, Lyon‐O’Brien‐Osceola‐Sioux Counties ISU Extension & Outreach, starting seeds indoors is a way to stretch the growing season. This is useful with certain vegetables that originate from tropical areas and need soil temperatures of 65 degrees or more in order to germinate. The need for warm soil coupled with northern Iowa’s limited growing season makes it impractical to directly seed them outdoors. So for those plants that need a head start such as tomatoes and peppers, we can either buy seedlings ready for transplant or grow our own. The benefit of growing your own from seed is that seeds are cheaper to purchase than seedlings. Plus with seeds you usually have more varieties to choose from.

Share |