Local Interest

Results of the 2021 variety trials for dry edible beans conducted by the University of Nebraska Panhandle Research and Extension Center have been posted on the Nebraska Extension CropWatch website.

The direct link for variety trial results for dry beans (as well as other crops such as field pea, millet, sunflowers and oats) is http://cropwatch.unl.edu/varietytest/othercrops. Or, navigate to the Other Crops Variety Trials page from the main CropWatch page (http://cropwatch.unl.edu ) by clicking on these links: management > variety testing > other crops.

Anybody with an interest in lawns, landscape, or gardening, as well as sharing their knowledge, is invited to take part in Nebraska Extension’s Master Gardener Program, which is seeking volunteers and offering Master Gardener training in the Panhandle beginning in late January.

The Nebraska Extension Master Gardener program has been part of Nebraska Extension since 1976. Master Gardener volunteers are trained by Nebraska Extension faculty and staff in many horticulture-related topics. They then contribute time as volunteers, working through their local extension office, to provide horticulture-related information to their community.

The challenges that we have all faced since the onset of COVID-19 are still present. The holiday season is upon us and for some us the holiday season adds to one’s stress level. As individuals and families plan holiday gatherings, many are wondering how topics about politics, health, wealth, or a favorite sport team will come up in conversation. Additionally, children and young people may experience a variety of emotions during the holidays and have a difficult time expressing themselves in words which can lead to misguided behaviors and hurt feelings. Whether it is an adult chat after a holiday meal or a conversation with children after opening presents, using good communication skills can prevent misunderstandings and avoid heart ache. Below are some strategies to help youth (and adults) communicate throughout the holidays.

David Lott Horticulture Extension Educator with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension in North Platte, Nebraska.

It's that time of year again to select fresh cut Christmas trees to enjoy for the holiday season. Here are some simple tips to follow on selecting and keeping a tree in good condition in a home or office.

The holidays are often a time filled with joy as many reunite with family or friends not seen on a regular basis. Holiday gatherings are time to share special traditions such as favorite recipes, playing games, watching movies or just “catching up”. This year might be particularly special since families may have been unable to gather last year due to COVID-19. Holiday gatherings help children, youth, and adults create social connection whether meeting face to face or virtually. Intentionally building connections can make gatherings with family or friends more impactful.

Tammie Ostdiek, Extension Educator - Food, Nutrition and Health 

Healthy eating is important throughout the year, but the holidays create unique challenges. 

The holidays can be notorious for rich foods and overeating. But with a commitment to stick to nutrition goals, New Year’s resolutions can focus on something other than weight loss. 

Here are a few sensible tips for maintaining healthy practices through the holiday season. 

Plan meals using MyPlate guidelines from USDA. Fill half the plate with colorful vegetables and fruits, one-fourth with protein, and one-fourth with grain. Choose whole grain whenever possible. Add low fat dairy options. 

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