Madelyn Zimmerman, Milford, Ind., began her 4-H story in the third grade with a limited agriculture background. Now, 12 years later, Zimmerman is the 2021 4-H Youth in Action Pillar Award for Agriculture winner, Indiana’s first, and a passionate advocate for agriculture education and inclusion.READ MORE
Community development is just one area where Purdue Extension provides research-based education in all 92 Indiana counties. As a signature program for Community Development, the Community Leadership Program strengthens individuals’ skills and confidence to assume leadership roles in their communities. Program graduates are serving on local boards, in local government positions and leading in a variety of volunteer efforts.READ MORE
Farming is a stressful occupation. Farmers own and operate private small businesses that rely on unpredictable markets influenced by government trade policies, unreliable and extreme weather conditions and ever-changing input costs. Since 2013, net farm income has declined by 50% nationally and, like other industries, the farmers have been burdened by the stress of the past year. Add in traditional negative stigmas associated with seeking help and lack of health insurance or mental health resources, farmers and other agriculture workers need more support and education than ever before.READ MORE
During MLK Jr. Celebration Week, the Colleges of Agriculture and Health and Human Sciences, in conjunction with the Center for the Environment, hosted a Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) in Sustainable Farming panel discussion.READ MORE
“2020 was a year unlike any other, with numerous challenges, opportunities and accomplishments across our college,” said Karen Plaut, the Glenn W. Sample Dean of the College of Agriculture. “Through it all we were proud to share Purdue Agriculture’s stories with the incredible community of faculty, staff, students, alumni, donors and so many other supporters.”READ MORE
The hemp plant often thought to be native to North America, originated in the Tibetan Plateau, the world’s largest and highest plateau located in southwestern China. The multi-use plant predominantly harvested for its oil and fiber is gaining popularity with Hoosier growers as regulations change and the hemp byproduct industry grows.READ MORE
As retiring professor of agricultural economics Chris Hurt reflects on his 40-year career at Purdue, he talked about the people for whom he has worked through Extension and as a professor.
“Growing up on the farm, my neighbors and our community, they were wonderful people. I think of the people I have worked for in my job to be just like those neighbors—strong family people, hardworking and appreciative people. To think that I could bring the information to them to make better decisions, that’s been my contribution to society.”READ MORE
Crises often leave families feeling helpless and out of control. The COVID-19 pandemic is no exception as Hoosiers face the loss of jobs, resources, life experiences and social contacts. With the help of Purdue Extension, Purdue’s College of Health and Human Sciences is helping families cope with change and even find positivity during the pandemic.READ MORE
Jones’ family began dairy farming in Star City, Ind., in 1942. Four generations later, the family is still milking cows along with growing corn, soybeans and alfalfa, mainly used to feed back into the dairy herd. They were the first dairy farm in Indiana and the tenth in the nation to adopt robotic milking practices. Jones’ parents, Sammy and Pam, manage the day-to-day operations with her brother, Josh, who is a Purdue Agriculture and Biological Engineering graduate. Amy helps on the farm each month along with her sister, Christy, a Purdue Animal Sciences alumna, and her brother, a Purdue Liberal Arts alumnus.READ MORE
The COVID-19 pandemic guaranteed this year to be like no other. The pandemic affects people of all ages, but it has been especially challenging for children as schools went virtual and youth organizations were forced to cancel activities and trips. Knowing it is critical for youth to engage in hands-on learning experiences to build life skills, Indiana 4-H was determined to continue reaching youth statewide.READ MORE
Leaves are changing, the air is cooler and Hoosiers are still looking for fun and safe things to do while we follow pandemic health and safety standards. From picking apples and pumpkins to firing apple cannons and getting lost in a corn maze, Indiana’s orchards provide fun activities for all ages to enjoy, even if they do look slightly different than past years.
In addition to changes due to COVID-19 precautions, farm visitors will notice that there are fewer apples to pick this year. A late frost blanketed the state this past April and had a devastating effect on the apple crop.READ MORE
“Several years ago, I organized a soybean field day at the Agronomy Center for Research and Education (ACRE),” recalled Marshall Martin, professor of agricultural economics, the senior associate director of agricultural research and graduate education and assistant dean in the College of Agriculture.
“There were funny-looking plants growing in one of the soybean plots that I didn’t recognize. It looked like some kind of weed or vine on the ground— something that you’d plant as a ground cover around the front of your house. The plants had small pods with only one or two flat, black seeds each. They were soybeans.”READ MORE
Fall harvest, one of the busiest and most stressful seasons for farmers, is quickly approaching, which is why the third week in September has historically been recognized as National Farm Safety and Health Week since 1944. This year’s theme, “Every Farmer Counts,” celebrates America’s farmers and ranchers while acknowledging the need to prioritize their safety and health.
Mental health and stress are the areas that the Purdue Extension Farm Stress Team is tackling alongside Indiana farmers.READ MORE
Located within an Indianapolis food desert, 25 volunteers gathered on a hot July day to build six raised garden beds and plant cool-season vegetable crops in a community garden on the campus of HealthNet Martindale-Brightwood Health Center. The volunteers made a vision for quality food access a reality sought by determined HealthNet employees, Martindale-Brightwood residents and the help of Purdue Extension.READ MORE
In April 2020, Purdue University’s International Programs in Agriculture (IPIA) and Purdue Cooperative Extension announced the USAID John Ogonowski and Doug Bereuter Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) program to be implemented by Purdue University in Trinidad and Tobago over the next three years. A United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funded program, F2F provides technical assistance from U.S. volunteers to farmers, farm groups, agribusinesses, and other agriculture sector institutions in developing and transitional countries.READ MORE
From juicy red strawberries to sweet apples and melons, Indiana is home to many fruit growers. While each year presents its challenges in the field, this year Indiana faced an unfortunate late frost event, causing crop damage during a crucial point in the growing period. Outside of the fields, growers faced another challenge, creating a safe and healthy environment for employees and customers.READ MORE
Each year, youth from Indiana’s 92 counties learn and fulfill the 4-H pledge, vowing their hands to larger service and their health to better living from their club to their community. They participate in club meetings, community service activities, leadership events and more while completing a project of their choice. Each project is a collection of hard work and hands-on learning experiences, resulting in new skills that prepare youth to be leaders in their communities.READ MORE
Hundreds of green industry professionals gather every summer for Purdue’s Turf and Landscape Field Day. As COVID-19 spread, so did the realization that 2020’s event would look different.READ MORE