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Wednesday, 25 November 2015 00:00

News for gardeners

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Farmers markets to feature food prep education

A $248,000 grant will help low-income families in five North Carolina counties — including Haywood and Jackson — learn how to make farmers market produce into affordable, nutritious meals. 

Given to the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service through the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — formerly known as food stamps — the grant will fund the extension’s “More in My Basket at the Market” program. 

“We want to make it a simpler and more inviting process to use SNAP benefits at a farmers market,” said Carolyn Bird, a principal investigator on the project. 

In each of the counties selected, extension agents will offer tours of the market and provide education and food demonstrations. Anyone attending a demonstration will receive a cookbook containing recipes for healthy meals that cost less than $4 per person. 

The grant is part of a USDA-wide effort to strengthen local and regional food systems, which are already on the rise with a 75 percent increase in American farmers markets since 2009.


Future Haywood Master Gardeners sought

The application period is open for those who would like to join the 2016 class of Haywood County Master Gardeners. 

Held Tuesday mornings Jan. 5 through April 19, training session topics will include lawns; ornamental trees and shrubs; insect, disease and weed management; soils and fertilizers; vegetable gardening; plant propagation; home fruit production; flowering plants; composting; and landscape design principles.

In exchange for the training, participants volunteer at least 40 hours over the following year in various activities. 

Offered through Haywood County Cooperative Extension, 828.456.3575 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Produce safety workshop planned for farmers

A workshop for farmers on reducing food safety risks and legal requirements for marketing will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, at the Jackson County Extension Center in Sylva. 

The Good Agricultural Practices workshop will cover fresh produce safety, on-farm hazard assessment and how to create a produce farm safety plan. 

$25 for lunch and materials. Register with Christine Bredenkamp, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 828.586.4009. 


Season extended for Haywood plant clinic

Originally slated to close at the end of September, the Haywood County Plant Clinic has been extended to last through Dec. 30. 

Staffed by Master Gardeners on Wednesdays, generally 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., the clinic gives the public a place to go for answers on everything from plant pests to fertilizers to identification. 

Located at the Haywood County Extension Center on Raccoon Road in Waynesville. 828.456.3575.

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