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Providing for a global sustainable future through scientific discovery innovation and community engagement. Highlightsof Extension tying research to real lif e College of Ag riculture Health and Natural Resou rces Acknowledgments Contact UConn Extension 1376 Storrs Road U-4036 Storrs CT 06269-4036 Email extensionuconn.edu Phone 860-486-9228 Website extension.uconn.edu Administration Gregory Weidemann Dean and Director College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources UConn 860-486-2917 Michael ONeill Associate Dean for Outreach Education and Public Service Associate Director UConn Extension 860-486-6270 Bonnie Burr Assistant Director Department Head UConn Extension 860-486-8944 Edited by Stacey Stearns Agriculture Program Coordinator UConn Extension Graphic Design by Kara Bonsack Graphic Designer and Web Development UConn CLEAR and Extension Photography by UConn Extension faculty and staff unless other- wise noted. Kara Bonsack cover 7 9 13 18 21 22 back David Dickson cover 19 Jiff Martin cover back German Cutz cover 10 11 Juliana Barrett cover 23 Gail Reynolds 6 24 25 Stacey Stearns 6 Joel Stocker 8 Cathy Love 12 Linda Castro 15 Donna Ellis 24 back Jude Boucher 26 27 Chester Arnold back Contents 3 Message from the Dean 3 Strategic Values 4 2014 by the Numbers 5 Easy Ways to Give to UConn Extension 6 Celebrating 100 Years 8 Highlights 8 Preserving Crucial Tern Habitat in Long Island Sound TOOLS TRAINING Mapping Great Gull Island with an Unmanned Aircraft 10 Urban Agriculture Class Learns Grows Sells TOOLS TRAINING Learning in the Field and Classroom 12 People Empowering People Helps Build Communities 13 CLIR Forever Learning 14 Teaching Fitness and Nutrition with Fun TOOLS TRAINING 4-H FANs IM Success Stories 16 States Aquaculture Industry Netting Benefits TOOLS TRAINING Mapping the Industry 18 Leading the Way on Campus Green Infrastructure TOOLS TRAINING Bringing Rain Gardens to Urban Areas 20 Hartfords Burgdorf Clinic Rooted in the Community TOOLS TRAINING Growing Community Across the State 22 Climate Adaptation Academy for Communities TOOLS TRAINING Coastal Landscaping Guide for Long Island Sound 24 Parasitic Wasps Battle the Lily Leaf Beetle TOOLS TRAINING A Sustainable and Viable Non-Pesticide Alternative 26 Local vs. Organic Products 20 26 8 16 10 2 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources There are 629 public four-year institutions in the United States. There are another 1845 private four-year institutions and 1666 public and private two-year institutions that totals 4140 two-year and four-year degree-granting institutions in the U.S. All of these institutions have a teaching mission. Most have a research mission as well. However only 107 of the 4140 institutions have land grant statuswhere teaching research and Extension work together to solve our nations critical food health and environmental issues. UConn Extensionin the College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources provides the critical third leg of the land grant mission public engagement. This document presents highlights of UConn Extension programs from across the state of Connecticut. These highlights are drawn from the work of Extension faculty and staff collaborating with our many and valued volunteers and stakeholders. The highlights reflect our focus on food health and environmental issues that affect citizens families communities and businesses across the state. These programs create solutions to our most challenging societal issues using the best available science and technologycreated through our College and University research programs. The College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources will provide for a global sustainable future through scientific discovery innovation and community engagement. Our accomplishments will result in safe sustainable and secure plant and animal production systems healthier individuals and communities greater protection and conservation of our envi- ronment and natural resources balanced growth of the economy and resilient local and global communities. Ensuring a sustainable global future through research teaching and public engagement utilizing agricultural health and environmental sciences. Gregory Weidemann Dean and Director College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources UConn Vision Mission Messagefrom the Dean Director Strategic Values 2014 Highlights of Extension 3 4.9 million in external grants 280 formal outreach programs 3916 downloads of the Rain Garden App 411 articles publications 20180 youth participated in 4-H programs 1214 people received financial education training 31350 hours of community service donated by our Master Gardener volunteers in communities across the state 154 municipalities in the state have attended our Land Use Academy 1093 shellfish industry members and regulatory staff have received HACCP training 1191 4-H volunteers 13400 Connecticut citizens educated about invasive insects 253 members of the Center for Learning in Retirement The College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources CAHNR is committed to its status as a land grant institution serving Connecticut and the global economy through research education and public engagement. Extension fulfills the land grant universitys third mission of outreach and public engagement. Over 100 UConn Extension specialists work in the 169 local communities across Connecticut as educators problem solvers catalysts collaborators and stewards. To many Connecticut residents these specialists are the face of UConn see large map. Our eight regional Extension Centers the Sea Grant program at Avery Point the 4-H Education Center at Auerfarm the Home and Garden Education Center and the UConn Extension office in Storrs are strategically located throughout the state see small map to meet local needs. UConn Extensions off campus classrooms include high-tech greenhouses and computer labs coastal estuaries elementary school gardens community centers for high risk teens and municipal town halls. We use an interdisciplinary approach and take knowledge directly to the public. UConn Extension enhances small businesses the economic and physical well- being of families and offers opportunities to improve the decision-making capacity of community leaders. To accomplish this Extension focuses on CAHNRs four core values learning discovery engagement and global citizenship. 2014 by the Numbers UConn Extension Ties Research to Real Life Number of Active UConn Extension Programs in Towns Under 10 none 11 - 14 15 - 18 19 - 22 23 - 26 Over 27 Based on 2013 Active Programs UConn Extension Locations Litchfield County Hartford County Tolland County Windham County Fairfield County New Haven County Middlesex County New London County 4 2014 Highlights of Extension Online Visit https.uconn.eduextension to make a donation online. Text 1. Text 50555 the following UConn Extension your name. For example UConn Extension Jonathan Husky. Unless you specify an area of support by including Extension in the text the donation will go to the Fund for UConn. 2. Youll get a response confirming the donation. Respond YES. A 10.00 donation will then be made to the mGive Foundation to support the University of Connecticut Foundation Inc. Charges will appear on your wireless bill or be deducted from your pre- paid balance. All purchases must be authorized by account holder. Must be 18 years of age or have parental permission to participate. Message and data rates may apply. Text STOP to 50555 to STOP. Text HELP to 50555 for HELP. Call or Mail It Call 800-269-9965 to make a donation to UConn Extension or mail it to The University of Connecticut Foundation Inc. Attn. Data Services 2390 Alumni Drive Unit 3206 Storrs CT 06269-3206 Please make your check payable to the University of Connecticut Foundation Inc. and include Fund 23078 - Cooperative Extension Fund 30978 - 4-H Centennial Account or Fund 31108 - Nancy H. and David E. Bull CES Innovative Programming in the memo line of your check. Volunteer Give back to UConn Extension by volunteering in one of our programs. Email extensionuconn.edu or call 860-486-9228 for more information. Your gift will be received by The University of Connecticut Foundation Inc. a Connecticut non-profit and a 501c3 tax exempt organization that exclusively benefits UConn. All contributions are subject to certain administrative fees that support Foundation operating expenses and other priorities determined by the University unit receiving the gift. Donors have the right to request that gifts remain anonymous. You may contact us or obtain a copy of our financial report at 2390 Alumni Drive U-3206 Storrs CT 06269 800-269-9965 or www.foundation.uconn.edu. 5 Easy Ways to Give to UConn Extension Community Outreach Through our outreach program efforts 115519 clientele contacts were achieved during the past year. FoodCorps Connecticut reached 13793 people. FoodCorps members focus on improving school food environments. Operation Military Kids OMK is a national effort to support children of service members before during and after deployment. OMK reached 7319 kids. Connecticut 4-H helps youth make good decisions and develop leadership and citizenship skills while improving self-confidence. 4-H reached 21371 youth and volunteers. Collectively Extension had 393 published works in both print or online formats. Food Corps 13793 Operation Military Kids 7319 4-H Youth 21371 STEM 16770 Citizenship 7319 Healthy Lifestyles 2627 Number of Youth Involved in 4-H Programs The Power of 4-H The Connecticut 4-H program prepares youth to meet the needs of a global economy while learning new skills meeting new friends and discovering more about themselves and the world through UConn Extensions research-driven programs. 4-H programs offer youth fun hands- on learning activities that foster skills and character development in science citizenship and healthy living. Citizens Engaged NumberofGrants Grants Funding UConn Extension brought in 180 grants totalling 4.9 million dollars in 2014. The graph compares total grants awarded and the amount of funding received in the department of Extension for the four focus areas within Extension 4-H youth development land use and water agriculture and food systems and family and community development. Papers Abstracts Posters 225 Manuals Fact Sheets 52 Peer Review Articles 46 Extension Bulletins 36 Technical Reports 32 Other 18 Published Works 1000000 4-HYouth Development LandUseWaterAgriculture FoodSystems FamilyCommunity Development 200000 400000 600000 800000 1200000 25 5 10 15 20 30 7 12 11 0 0 3 TotalFundingAmount 2014 Highlights of Extension 5 UConn Extension Celebrates 100th Anniversary of Smith-Lever Act The Smith-Lever Act of 1914 established the Cooperative Extension Service as an educational part- nership between the countrys land-grant universities and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. A state-by- state network of Extension educators throughout the country stimulates innovative research and delivers vital education programs to adults and youth. On September 19 2014 over 300 guests gathered to celebrate a century of leadership and service by UConn Extension. Jennifer Riggsa dedicated Extension volunteerand Gregory Weidemann Dean of the College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources CAHNR co-hosted the evenings events. Guests were treated to dinner featuring locally sourced wine cheese vegetables seafood and poultry. Congressman Joe Courtney and Senator Richard Blumenthal provided remarks prior to dinner. Videographer G. Morty Ortegason of CAHNR faculty member I. Morty Ortegacreated a short documentary highlighting UConn Extensions contributions around the state. The evening also included a congratulatory video from U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and a Proclamation from Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy. Dinner concluded with Centennial Caramel Crunch ice cream an award-winning flavor created specifically for the centennial celebration and made by the UConn Creamery. Celebrating 100 Years 1 2 3 5 24 2326 25 28 27 30 29 6 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources From top left clockwise 1. Early 4-H leaders at a training session 2. A group of 4-H girls in 1914 3. Meadow Lake Dairy Club members learn to evaluate a calf 4. A group from the Dutch Point Colony in Hartford work on clothing projects 5. A poultry presentation 6. A honeybee project 7. Bruce Wilbur program managereducational outreach right looks at a greenhouse 8. Professor Rudy Favretti far right and plant science students study a home land- scape model 9. Jim Gibbons Extension Educator for Community Development and Land Use Planning 10. An in-store consumer nutrition information lesson 11. A youth gardening project 12. CLEAR has been documenting land use change in Connecticut since 1985 13. Associate Extension Educator Candace Bartholomew studying a specimen 14. The Middlesex County Extension Center in Haddam 15. 4-H FANs IM youth learn about MyPlate at an afterschool activity 16. Hartford County 4-H members with a poster they made 17. Using GPS technology 18. 4-H youth members at the Hartford County 4-H Fair dairy show 19. Assistant Extension Educator Emily Wilson answers questions for a student on a mapping tool 20. Extension Educator Tessa Getchis working on a boat in Long Island Sound 21. Assistant Extension Educator David Dickson creates a video using an ipad 22. Associate Extension Educator Tom Worthley and a forestry group 23. Senior Extension Educator Donna Ellis releasing biological controls 24. Middlesex County Master Gardener Coordinator Gail Reynolds Carol Youell and Russ Bidwell 25. Locally sourced cheese vegetables seafood and poultry were featured 26. Mickey and Tuula Fitzgerald with Sue Chartier 27. Over 300 guests attended the Centennial dinner 28. Dr. Robert and Mary Leonard 29. Associate Dean Cameron Faustman Associate Dean Mike ONeill and John Volin Department Head of Natural Resources and the Environment 30. Gregory Weidemann Dean of the College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources and Rineicha Otero Program Administrator pose with Smith and Lever at the Centennial Dinner. Photos 24 - 29 courtesy of Dean Batteson. 4 6 7 8 9 11 10 12 13 14 16 15 1719 1820 22 21 2014 Highlights of Extension 7 Article by Sheila Foran Originally published 92214 UConn Today Contact Juliana Barrett Associate Extension Educator Connecticut Sea Grant Groton CT juliana.barrettuconn.edu 860-405-9106 www.seagrant.uconn.edu www.greatgullisland.org Great Gull Island is home to one of the most important nesting habitats for Roseate and Common terns in the world. The estimated 1300 pairs of Roseate terns that summer on the 17-acre island at the eastern end of Long Island Sound represent the largest nesting concentra- tion in the Western Hemisphere and the 9500 pairs of Common terns are the largest concentra- tion of this species in the world. But while the terns are currently thriving their environment is being overrun by nuisance and invasive plant species such as the wild radish Black Swallow-wort and Asiatic Bittersweet that threaten to destroy their nesting sites. That is why Juliana Barrett associate extension educator with Connecticut Sea Grant and UConn Extension has partnered with Helen Hays the long- time director of the Great Gull Island Project and others to stem the tide of unwanted vegetation even if it means hand-pulling the invaders one pesky plant at a time. Good tern nesting habitat requires flat sparsely vegetated surfaces that are close to water such as the beaches that line Long Island Sound according to Margaret Rubega associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology who is also Connecticuts State Ornithologist. The problem she says is that as humans started building houses waterside restaurants marinas and other structures the coastline became a place that was no longer hospitable to the nesting birds. Prior to all this development there was enough land suitable for nesting so that if a predator discovered a colony of terns the birds could just get up and move Rubega says. But now there just isnt much open beach any more and what little is left is disturbed by people and their pets and the type of predators that tend to associate with human habitation. This makes it all the more important that the nesting habitat on Great Gull Island is preserved. When Barrett received a grant from the Environmental Protection Agencys Long Island Sound Study she partnered with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to develop a habitat management Preserving Crucial Tern Habitat in Long Island Sound 8 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources plan for the island which is owned by the American Museum of Natural History. Adding the expertise of UConn Extensions invasive species expert Donna Ellis and that of Joel Stocker at UConns Center for Land Use Education and Research CLEAR who agreed to map vegetation changes using a quadcopter or drone see box right an initial plan was developed with the primary purpose of reinforcing tern habitat. The project also received help from the National Guard. Because Hurricane Sandy had destroyed the islands only dock we had no way of getting the 14 tons of supplies we needed to build observational bird blinds and terraced nesting boxes out to the island says Barrett. So the Fish and Wildlife Service asked the Connecticut Army National Guard for help and they agreed to use their Chinook helicopters to deliver the material we needed to the island last April. Plans for the coming nesting season which begins in the spring include hand-pulling Bittersweet and Black Swallow-wort as well as culling some of the Phragmites a common reed found in wetlands. Because the invasive species are growing at the same time the terns are nesting this labor-intensive work which is provided by both student and adult volunteers will be carefully orchestrated to assure that the nesting and rearing practices of the birds will continue largely undisturbed. In addition to hands-on efforts to preserve this valuable habitat Connecticut educators can use the project to help meet the objectives in their Next Generation Science Standards which are designed to provide a foundation in science literacy for students in the states K-12 classrooms. With background material provided by Extension and Sea Grant the work on Great Gull Island can be used to study such diverse topics as ecosystem dynamics social interaction and group behavior and even the engineering challenges presented by the delivery of supplies to the island says Barrett. She also hopes high school students from Ocean Classroom will come out to the island and learn by doing. Theres nothing quite like hands-on experience to drive home the point that conserving our natural resources is really important she says. Rubega who has been visiting Great Gull Island since she was in high school describes the location as a living laboratory for studying habitat management and bird conservation. What UConn Extension Sea Grant and CLEAR are contributing both in the way of funding through grants and by helping to recruit the labor to go out and attack the vegetation is crucial to the continued success of the project she says. We have a national treasure right here in the Long Island Sound and we just cant afford to let it slip away. We have a national treasure right here in the Long Island Sound and we just cant afford to let it slip away. Mapping Great Gull Island with an Unmanned Aircraft Assistant Extension Educator Joel Stocker spends a lot of his work and personal time documenting changes to the shoreline. In 2010 he contacted Helen Hays asking if he could capture photographs over Great Gull Island with his homemade drone. She agreed. While on the island Helen told him about the problem with invasive plants and he connected her with Juliana Barrett. Recognizing high-resolution aerials could be used to monitor vegetation management Juliana included experiments with aerial drone flights as part of a Connecticut Sea Grant proposal. In April 2013 the official ExtensionSea Grant flights took place fully sanctioned by the FAA Federal Aviation Administration. Over 370 photographs were captured from a small four prop mul- tirotor quadcopter later processed using two different software systems AgiSoft Photoscan and Pix4Dmapper. The result is a full high-resolution orthomosaic image of the entire islanda detailed tool for the habitat management plan. In addition the Pix4D software produced a full 3D topo- graphic map great potential for measuring erosion and the before and after effects of natural disasters like Superstorm Sandy. Photo above Joel Stocker and his quad- copter get ready to take aerial photos of a controlled field burn at the Middlesex County Extension Center. 2014 Highlights of Extension 9 TOOLS TRAINING Aerial photo by Joel Stocker using an unmanned quadcopter. Tern photo courtesy of Sheila Foran UConn Communications. Article by Patsy Evans Originally published 8114 NaturallyUConn Contact German Cutz Associate Extension Educator Fairfield County Extension Center german.cutzuconn.edu 203-207-3267 extension.uconn.edu Most people do not realize that there is a desert in Connecticut. According to German Cutz sustain- able families and communities extension educator there is one in Fairfield County and he is trying to eliminate it. It is a food desert. The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service defines food deserts as urban neighborhoods and rural towns without ready access to fresh healthy and affordable food. Cutz identified several food desert areas in Danbury Bridgeport and Norwalk and noted that such conditions are common in urban cities. A 2012 community food security report by the College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Adam Rabinowitz and Jiff Martin highlighted this issue. Often two factors are at work. They lack transport which limits access to food and the quantity of fresh food supplied said Cutz. Connecting Urban People and Agriculture Cutz is addressing food deserts while connecting urban people with agriculture. He wants to teach people to grow food give them a hands-on agricultural experience and encourage local entrepreneurship. His new Extension program called Urban Agriculture and IPM Training works with Hispanic adults who are living in the urban cities of Fairfield County. The specific objective of the training is to produce fresh food locally and to sell it in the food desert areas of Fairfield County. In order to reach that goal those receiving the training have access to one acre of land at Candlelight Farms a partner in New Milford Connecticut. In addition Cutz will register the class as a Danbury farmers market vendor so that students can sell the produce they grow and gain a hands-on entrepreneurial experience. Cutz has plans to expand the farmers market effort to other cities later. We know that urban agriculture is a good venue to provide entrepreneurship opportunities to urban residents while at the same time allowing them to supply fresh food to their own neighborhoods. Cutz said. Urban Agriculture Class Learns Grows Sells 10 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Gaining Scientific Knowledge The adult students gain scientific knowledge through four 10-week training modules taught in Spanish. The first module botany started without funding and had 14 students enrolled. Twelve of those people completed the rigorous module that included testing on 200 plants. For the test participants learned the scientific names of plants and how to identify the plants by their leaves seeds and shapes. This included trees flowers fruits and veg- etables representing 50 families of plants. The training uses sections of the existing UConn Master Gardener curriculum which Cutz has customized and translated into Spanish. Next the participants will go through the remaining vegetable production Integrated Pest Management IPM and entomology modules with Ana Legrand an assistant extension professor in entomology and member of the UConn IPM team. The IPM module emphasizes lower-risk pest management techniques and organic production methods. Partnering with Supporters Cutz obtained outside funding for those three modules from the Northeastern IPM Center that promotes and funds integrated pest management for environmental human health and economic benefits. Financial support from the Crop Insurance and Risk Management Education Program for Connecticut Agricultural Producers goes toward translation of the curriculum into Spanish. Further assistance is provided by Nuestras Races Our Roots in English which will host the participants and interact with them about organic farming. According to their website Nuestras Races is a grassroots organization that promotes human economic and community development in Western Massachusetts through projects relating to food agriculture and the environment. Cutz plans to continue offering the urban agriculture program and expand it after the success of this class. Photo page 10 Mayor Mark Boughton of Danbury with the urban agriculture students at the Danbury Farmers Market. Above Vegetables in a UConn Extension program garden. Learning in the Field and the Classroom Students in the Urban Agriculture and IPM Training program completed 180 hours of classroom instruction and volunteered 1603 hours. Volunteer time was spent working on the farm preparing the land building raised garden beds planting and maintaining an acre of organic vegetables and selling produce at the Danbury Farmers Market. We have learned to work as a team and to grow organic vegetables. We learned to cultivate vegetables the right way says Juan Guallpa a student in the urban agri- culture class of 2014. From April through October students produced more than 10 different vegetables and herbs including spinach cilantro dill basil carrots beets tomatoes peppers eggplants zucchini squash radishes and cabbage. Through the program more than 4000 pounds of locally produced organic vegetables were distributed among 150 low-income families. The group of students is creating a non-profit organization to continue promoting urban agriculture among Hispanics. Photo above Urban agriculture students review seed packets during class. We know that urban agriculture is a good venue to provide entrepreneurship opportunities to urban residents while at the same time allowing them to supply fresh food to their own neighborhoods. 2014 Highlights of Extension 11 TOOLS TRAINING The People Empowering People PEP program is a personal and family development program with a strong community focus. Provided by UConn Extension PEP builds upon individual life experi- ences and strengths to encourage growth in communication and problem solving skills parent and family relationships and community involvement. The PEP program was created by retired Extension Educator Cheryl Czuba and is coordinated by Cathleen Love professor at UConn Extension. Over 1000 people have graduated from the PEP program in the past 15 years. UConn PEP offers participants the opportunity to set goals develop relationships and make connections. Participants share their stories and find their voice and they begin to believe they can make a difference. In the words of one of the UConn PEP graduates I learned so much from my participation in the UConn Extension PEP program. I learned from every UConn PEP participant in my wonderful group. I learned or rather re-learned things like trust in groups. I came to appreciate different lifestyles and different ways of thinking living caring sharing and teaching. The UConn Extension PEP program helped me renew my faith in how wonderful people are. It has reopened my eyes to how important differences are in people in every aspect but yet in the end how we really are the same and that we each one of us can make a difference. Another participant tells us I enjoyed every moment of our classes ... I loved the stories we shared the tears we shed the laughter the trust within the group and the comfort we felt in sharing and speaking with one another. Our PEP talks empowered us to accom- plish or obtain something. Every moment every word every tear every laugh and every lesson will be a permanent tattoo not only in my mind but in my heart. During the UConn PEP program one woman set a personal goal to go to college. She is now working on her bachelors degree. She believed she could do it set her goal and her passion and commitment gave her the courage to follow through on her dream to go to college. The student says The opportunity to participate in UConn Extension PEP changed my life ... This program built and renewed my confidence in myself. For that I am so appreciative. PEP participants realize their leadership potential and take action to invest in themselves in their families and in their communities. People Empowering People Helps Build Communities Article by Robin Drago and Cathleen Love Contact Cathleen Love Professor of Extension Storrs CT cathleen.loveuconn.edu 860-486-9081 pep.extension.uconn.edu 12 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Article by Cathleen Love and Betty Heiss Contact Cathleen Love Professor of Extension Storrs CT cathleen.loveuconn.edu 860-486-9081 clir.uconn.edu The Center for Learning in Retirement CLIR became a UConn Extension program in 2013. CLIRs mission is to provide meaningful intel- lectual activities for adults from all walks of life which closely matches with Extensions mission to provide the knowledge and expertise of the uni- versity through outreach and public engagement. The Center for Learning in Retirement was created in 1991 based on a need identified in the community to offer educational programming for retired adults. UConns Board of Trustees approved it as part of the then Division of Extended and Continuing Education. The positive response of the community confirmed the appropriateness of this outreach effort. Historical documents show that from a mailing to 600 residents within a 15-mile radius of Storrs 200 people attended the first meeting and another 150 were inter- ested in learning more. The program clearly tapped a nerve and opened an opportunity for the University to serve a population we have ignored in the past. There are currently over 280 participants in CLIR and new members are always welcome. CLIR members are engaged in meaningful and stimulating classes taught by university faculty community members government and nonprofit agencies legislators clergy and experts from business and industry. Members of CLIR meet in a relaxed comfortable atmosphere on the UConn Depot Campus. Ample parking is available and the cottages are handicapped accessible. There are no academic requirements to participate in CLIR and no tests term papers or age limitations. CLIR staffing and teachers are volunteers. All of the classes meet during the day Monday through Friday from 1015 am to 1145 am or 115 pm to 245 pm. CLIR operates on a three-session schedule fall winter and spring. Each session offers up to a dozen single classes and approximately eight courses. A course may be as short as two weeks or as long as eight. The program offers a buffet of topics. Classes have been offered on current events like Global Climate Change and School Reform or topics related to history literature and the arts science and religion. For those who enjoy writing each session has a Memoir Club that meets every Thursday morning for nine weeks. Recent speakers have included the Presidents and several Deans from both Eastern Connecticut State University and UConn. Membership in CLIR enriches the minds and broadens the horizons of all who participate. It also affords an opportunity to meet new people and form friendships. Participants in CLIR have the opportunity to discuss issues and concerns in a safe environment where everyone is welcome. This happens in the classroom and during the social time that is organized at each session. CLIR Forever Learning Photos below Members at the Being a FirefighterEMT CLIR class James York Career firefighter in Mansfield CT leads the discussion and students fill the Vernon Cottage on the UConn Depot Campus where many of the CLIR classes are held photo courtesy of Anthony Philpotts. 2014 Highlights of Extension 13 Article by Kim Markesich Originally published 92414 NaturallyUConn Contact Umekia Taylor Associate Extension Educator New Haven County Extension Center umekia.tayloruconn.edu 203-407-3169 www.4-hfans.uconn.edu The Connecticut Fitness And Nutrition Clubs In Motion CT FANs IM is a 4-H STEM after-school and summer program and integrated research project educating third and fourth graders in nutrition fitness and gardening. The program is presented in collaboration with area 4-H clubs. CT FANs IM is supported by a five-year 2.5 million grant from USDAs National Institute of Food and Agriculture NIFA and is an offshoot of the original 4-H FANS program which also focused on fitness and nutrition for school-aged children and their families. Were bridging community connections with Extension by serving youth and families in under- served areas says Umekia Taylor associate educator and project director. With the startling statistics on obesity in our country I find it exciting to promote healthy lifestyles by combining nutrition and fitness in programs that engage our youth. Taylor has assembled a team that includes German Cutz extension educator in sustainable families and communities Nancy Rodriguez professor in the department of Nutritional Sciences NS Shawn Mogensen NS graduate assistant program administrator Rineicha Otero and program assistant Linda Castro. 4-H Healthy Living Liaison Wanda Hamilton retired this year after fifteen years in the UConn 4-H program. She was instrumental during the 4-H FANs program development. Ms. Wanda was an inspiration to me and to other 4-H youth says Rineicha Otero CT FANs IM program administrator. She was always supportive and dedicated by encouraging us to step out of our comfort zones to reach our goals. Otero joined 4-H as a teen mentor and then became a supervisor while pursuing her degree at UConn. She graduated in 2012. The CT FANs IM program kicked off at Meridens Roger Sherman Elementary School in October 2012 and has since expanded to include several additional schools in Meriden and Danbury. 4-H teen mentors Teaching Fitness and Nutrition with Fun 14 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Photo page 14 Rineicha Otero and Linda Castro far right with two 4-H FANs participants at a family night. Photo page 14 inset Fitness games are an integral part of the 4-H FANs curriculum teaching youth to make fitness a part of their daily lives. Photo left A chef prepares healthy snacks at a 4-H FANs event. Tools Training image Youth from Connecticut FANs IM at the 2015 state 4-H Citizenship Day in Hartford. work with students to engage them in fun activities that promote heath including fitness games healthy meal preparation and gardening. Special guests such as chefs fitness experts and master gardeners are brought in to work with the children and their families. Children prepare healthy snacks and learn how to make fitness part of their daily lives. During the original 4-H FANs program parents requested an opportunity to join in on program activities. They wanted to bring those healthy lifestyle changes to their entire family. In response monthly 4-H family nights were created where families spend an evening together exercising and creating healthy meals and snacks. The youth in the program absorb the material and are very receptive to the information and activities presented says Castro. Parents are happy to see their children excited and motivated. The gardening program provides expe- riential learning where students engage in practical skills while applying their lessons in nutrition and fitness. Several school gardens serve as an outdoor laboratory for the students. The youth maintain their gardens during the summer program. Produce is harvested and used in food demonstrations or taken home by students to cook for meals. Gardening gives them an opportunity to work together as a team while providing fresh produce exercise and lessons in healthy meal planning. The program is promoting positive social change in the community by educating young children on essential skills says Otero. 4-H FANs IM Success Stories Aaron is a Nutritional Sciences major at the UConn College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources. In 2014 Aaron was an intern with the Danbury 4-H FANs IM program mentoring high school students to become 4-H FANs IM teen mentors. He says 4-H FANs IM gives a holistic view to health by showing the students how to balance healthy eating with exercise. Cheyanne was a 4-H FANs IM teen mentor in 2013 and 2014. She says Being a teen mentor helped prepare me for college. This job has given me a good sense of the work- ing world. Najeia served as a 4-H FANs teen mentor for two summers beginning in 2010. Najeia says It provided a real world experience and allowed me to take a leadership role while learning many new skills. Angies two sons as well as her nephew and niece participated in the 4-H FANs program. She soon began implementing many of the lessons in her family life. She says We started making little changes. I stopped riding the bus and began walking. We bought a blender and started making smoothies. We switched from whole milk to one percent. Angie replaced sugary snacks with fruits and vegetables. She took her family to the park to play games or walk around the grounds. These little changes made a big difference. With the startling statistics on obesity in our country I find it exciting to promote healthy lifestyles by combining nutrition and fitness in programs that engage our youth. 2014 Highlights of Extension 15 TOOLS TRAININGPhotos courtesy of the UConn 4-H FANs IM program. Article by Sheila Foran Originally published 1615 UConn Today Contact Tessa Getchis Extension Educator Connecticut Sea Grant Groton CT tessa.getchisuconn.edu 860-405-9104 shellfish.uconn.edu Commercial shellfish farmers who use the ocean to grow their crops off the nations coastline now have the same kind of protection against crop losses as do people who farm on land due to a recent change in federal policy. The new language providing coverage was added to the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program NAP as part of a recent Farm Bill and is a big deal for Connecticuts 30 million aquaculture industry. We were thrilled to learn that after years of discussion with the United States Department of Agriculture USDA crops that have traditionally not been eligible for federal crop insurance have now been granted coverage under the NAP program said Tessa Getchis a UConn aquaculture extension educator who was instrumental in the policy change. Thats a huge step forward for the aquaculture industry now that the program will cover losses due to named tropical storms and hurricanes. The program provides financial assistance to producers of what are normally considered non-insurable crops to protect against natural disasters resulting in crop losses or the prevention of crop planting. Before the new language the law stated that commercial shellfish crops could be insured only if they were grown in containers or bags but thats not how its done in Long Island Sound. Instead the majority of local farmers seed their clams and oysters directly on the ocean floor and conduct their transplanting and harvest by dredging. Seaweed farmers grow their crops on ropes not in containers. Today the cultivation of clams oysters and kelp provides more than 300 local maritime jobs. During a press conference held at UConns Avery Point campus on December 30 2014 to announce the expansion of the program to include Connecticuts aquaculture crops Connecticut Sea Grant director Sylvain DeGuise thanked the states congressional delegation for their support and staff in UConn Extension and Sea GrantGetchis in particularfor their long-term efforts to achieve this goal. States Aquaculture Industry Netting Benefits 16 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Tessa proved to be a gentle pit bull he said. She bit hard on this issue and wouldnt let go until the right thing had been done for commercial shellfish farmers. Sea Grant provides science-based infor- mation to individuals and organizations that can benefit from programs that support the nations marine resources just as land grant programs support land-based agriculture. In his remarks U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal praised the cooperative efforts of Sea Grant federal and state government officials and various industry sources for their perseverance in getting coverage for non-traditional crops included in NAP. Weather disasters have become the new normal whether they are hurricanes or tropical storms or Noreasters Blumenthal said. The farmers who use the Sound to grow their crops deserve the same kind of protection against crop losses as do people who farm on land. Shellfish farmers are no less courageous and entrepreneurial than farmers who till the soil. Blumenthal noted that there is still work to do to expand the coverage but said NAP is a step in the right direction. Noreasters which can damage shellfish beds are another peril the industry hopes to eventually have covered. Connecticut has a long history of shellfish farming. Town records of early colonists in Groton mention experimentation with cultivation of oysters and artificial beds in the Sound date from the 1820s. By the late 19th century oyster cultivation had developed into a major industry. Robert Rheault executive director of the East Coast Shellfish Growers Association which represents shellfish farmers from Maine to Florida said he appreciates the decade-long effort it took to get insurance protection. Shellfish farming is inherently a very risky business. Like land farmers we suffer losses from predators diseases theft and storms Rheault said. While NAP insurance only covers a portion of weather-related crop loss it could mean the difference between a farms bankruptcy and survival after a hurricane has wiped out someones crop. I sometimes think that we here in Connecticut overlook our locally produced shellfish Getchis said while to oyster enthusiasts Connecticuts product is world renowned. We have an aquaculture industry to be proud of and the role of Sea Grant is to help our constituents keep important issues like crop insurance in front of local state and federal lawmakers. Crop protection has been a long time coming she added but the effort has definitely been worth it. Mapping the Industry Shellfish aquaculture is a large and growing part of Connecticuts agriculture sector but site selection is a major challenge. Farmers cultivate oysters clams and scallops in designated areas of Long Island Sound. Those sites are considered public property and are leased from the state. Farmers need to identify growing areas that are biologically productive for their crop while also considering the potential use conflicts or environmental interactions with their activity on those sites. To help improve site selection for aqua- culture the Aquaculture Mapping Atlas was developed by Assistant Extension Educator Cary Chadwick in collaboration with Extension Educator Tessa Getchis and the Connecticut Department of Agriculture Bureau of Aquaculture. The latest version of this interactive map viewer includes new data layers and functions. The viewer has updated commercial and recreational harvest areas natural beds and shellfish classification areas as well as a plethora of navigation environmental condition and natural resource data. Users can overlay map lay- ers draw new lease areas and print professional-looking maps. Access the mapping atlas at https.uconn.edushellmap. The farmers who use the Sound to grow their crops deserve the same kind of protection against crop losses as do people who farm on land. 2014 Highlights of Extension 17 TOOLS TRAINING Boat photo and boat on cover by Peter Massini of Copp Island Oysters. Photo inset by Sea Grant. Article by Michael Dietz Chester Arnold Contact Michael Dietz Associate Extension Educator Middlesex County Extension Center michael.dietzuconn.edu 860-345-5225 clear.uconn.edu In recent years the UConn main campus has become a showcase for green infrastructure stormwater management practices that use a variety of techniques to reduce runoff in an environmentally friendly way. Stormwater runoff is the nations leading source of water pollution according to the Environmental Protection Agency EPA. In urban areas like much of Connecticut runoff from extensive paved areas creates flooding and pollution problems. Although situated in a relatively rural area the UConn campus is densely populated and developed. As a result there has been a history of water quality issues focused on campus and the university is currently subject to a number of regulatory programs including a Total Maximum Daily Load TMDL for Eagleville Brook a tributary of the Willimantic River that drains about two-thirds of the campus. The Fenton River to the east which supplies public drinking water to campus and surrounding communities is also a concern. The challenge presented to UConn which mirrors that of many Connecticut communities is to protect local water resources while making use of new low impact development LID or green infrastructure GI practices. Quantifying the actual impact of these practices on local receiving waters is an important element of this initiative. Since 2008 UConn Extensions Center for Land Use Education and Research CLEAR has been leading efforts to reduce the impacts of stormwater runoff on campus. Green infrastructure practices like bioretention green roofs and pervious pavements have been installed around campus to help restore a more natural hydrologic balance. Extension outreach efforts like the national award-winning NEMO Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials program increasingly use the campus as a demonstration site for community leaders publics works professionals engineers and environmental nonprofits. Extension is also taking advantage of the GI practices to conduct applied research. With all of the changes taking place on campus keeping track of the Leading the Way on Campus Green Infrastructure 18 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Bringing Rain Gardens to Urban Areas Green infrastructure practices like bioretention green roofs and pervious pavements have been installed around campus to help restore a more natural hydrologic balance. actual impacts of the green infrastructure implementation is not an easy task. Traditional water monitoring could be done but this is very expensive and time consuming. UConn Extension Educator Michael Dietz at CLEAR created a unique system to estimate the benefits of the green infrastructure on campus. This tracking system uses real precipita- tion data from UConn and estimates the amount of stormwater treated by each practice installed given how big the practice is when it was installed and the condition of the practice. This allows for a running total of the volume of stormwater treated. Through 2014 more than 45 million gallons of stormwater have been treated. To put this in perspective this is enough to fill more than 63 Olympic sized swimming pools This was accomplished through the 444000 square feet or over 10 acres of impervious surface that was disconnected from the stormwater system. That is about the equivalent of 7.6 football fields. Dietz also has an online sampling station in the area of Eagleville Brook immediately below campus to investigate long term trends in water quality and how if they relate to the continuing GI emphasis. Real-time data can be found at clear.uconn.eduprojectseagleville. This information is being used to track progress on the TMDL along with other regulatory obligations between UConn and DEEP. And beyond the immediate practical use of the data this type of long term tracking information is uncommon in the GI field and will be of interest and use to efforts around the country. Recent efforts of the UConn Extension Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials NEMO program are helping to make Connecticut cities a little bit greener. In June 2014 NEMO partnered with Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven and Community Solutions of Hartford to perform rain garden trainings at each location. These trainings were targeted at local landscape contractors and community residents and consisted of a morning classroom session paired with an afternoon hands-on rain garden installation. As a result of the rain gardens installed at these two workshops 61000 gallons of runoff from 1920 square feet of urban roof- tops will be kept out of the sewer system annually. Since the goal is to train others to install more gardens this effect should grow as more rain gardens are installed around the state. Build a Rain Garden Yourself The UConn Extension NEMO team has created a website and a smartphone app to help create your own rain garden. Learn more about both on the NEMO Rain Garden website at nemo.uconn.eduraingardens. Graph Cumulative area square feet of impervious cover treated with LID practices - UConn Storrs from 2003 - 2014 100000 200000 300000 400000 500000 50000 150000 250000 350000 450000 1012003 812009 712010 712011 712012 812012 512013 812014 2014 Highlights of Extension 19 TOOLS TRAINING Article by Chris DeFrancesco Originally published 82714 UConn Today Contact Sarah Bailey Master Gardener Coordinator Hartford County Extension Center sarah.baileyuconn.edu 860-570-9023 mastergardener.uconn.edu Patients at the BurgdorfBank of America Health Center a community clinic for the underserved in Hartfords North End can get a side of fresh vegetables with their health care. Its possible because of a community garden planted on the Burgdorf grounds in 2011 that continues to thrive. The Burgdorf located at 131 Coventry St. is a col- laboration between UConn Health and Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center staffed by UConn and Saint Francis clinicians as well as UConn medical dental and pharmacy students. The produce is pro- vided to patients through the medicine and pediatric clinics the Burgdorfs emergency food bank and through the Women Infants and Children program WIC at the Hartford Department of Health and Human Services. Weve put roots down in the community and weve been nurturing and strengthening those roots for four years now says Dr. Bruce Gould associate dean for primary care at the UConn School of Medicine and medical director of the Burgdorf and Hartford DHHS. Its a metaphor for our presence here. Were on the leading edge of community nutrition. What we have here is an opportunity to produce food for our patients and to teach them about healthy eating. Its all part of primary care and community health. If healthy eating is a preventive medicine tool communities like Hartfords North End are at a disadvantage by being in a food desert a term used to describe neighborhoods where access to healthy food choices is lacking. The expense of fresh and unprocessed foods tends to steer consumers toward cheaper processed foods and local supermarkets are scarce compared to the suburbs. This garden helps me feed my family and other families in the neighborhood says local resident Robert Harris. Saint Francis dietitian Jessica Sutton who helps harvest and distribute the produce to patients says the concept of fresh produce isnt always familiar to a low-income population. Hartfords Burgdorf Clinic Rooted in the Community 20 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Some people have never seen these vegetables Sutton says. A lot of our patients dont have yards or gardens so to see them growing its a learning experi- ence. Fruits and vegetables are expensive and our patients are more prone to buying junk food because its cheap. Its nice to provide them with fresh produce that they normally couldnt afford. Last years garden yielded about 350 pounds of produce. The gardens caretakers expect to surpass that this year perhaps tallying 500 pounds or more. They also have handed out potted tomato eggplant and pepper plants for patients to bring home and watch them grow. Volunteers from the UConn Extension Master Gardener Program provide expertise and labor to keep the garden thriving. UConn undergraduates and medical dental and pharmacy students in the Urban Service Track also are pitching in as well as participants in the UConn campus-community partnership Husky Sport. We can use this as a teaching space for the neighborhood says Sarah Bailey the UConn Extension Master Gardener coordinator for Hartford County. Were planning to have tours where folks can walk through the garden and learn more about vegetables. Gould says a majority of the produce comes by way of seedlings donated by Pickn Patch a farm in Avon. The program has also received support from the Hartford Department of Health and Human Services CIGNA the Knox Park Foundation the Hartford Food System and Ecological Landscape Designs of West Hartford. The Burgdorf was founded in 1970 as the outpatient service for what was then known as the UConn Health Center which initially occupied the old McCook State Hospital on the corner of Coventry and Holcomb streets a block away. UConn Master Gardener Sarah Bailey offers guidance to local resident Robert Harris as he harvests green beans from the Burgdorf Community Garden. Growing Community Across the State UConn Extension Master Gardeners work in communities across the state on gardening projects. Through the Gardening Initiative in Vegetable Education GIVE program there are 19 schools with vegetable gardens in Stamford. The model community garden at Middlesex County Extension Center delivers fresh produce to community food banks and soup kitchens. New London County Master Gardeners work with adults with disabilities at Camp Harkness in Waterford. Master Gardeners in Tolland County are teaching students to garden at Natchaug Hospital. Windham County Master Gardeners work with Peoples Harvest of Pomfret to donate produce from the garden to local soup kitchens. Six master gardeners helped create the new Burgdorf Clinic community garden working in new soil and weeding. A total of 31350 hours were donated by Master Gardener volunteers in 2014 in com- munities across the state. Many other community gardening projects are enhanced by UConn Extension Master Gardeners. To learn more about the program visit mastergardener.uconn.edu. Photo Master Gardener Coordinator for Middlesex County Gail Reynolds and Master Gardener volunteer Craig DePaolo tend to the Middlesex County Extension Center model community garden. What we have here is an opportunity to produce food for our patients and to teach them about healthy eating. Its all part of primary care and community health. 2014 Highlights of Extension 21 TOOLS TRAININGPhotos left by Chris DeFancesco UConn Health. Article by Nancy Weiss Originally published 41415 NaturallyUConn Contact Bruce Hyde Associate Extension Educator Middlesex County Extension bruce.hydeuconn.edu 860-345-5229 Juliana Barrett Associate Extension Educator Connecticut Sea Grant Groton CT juliana.barrettuconn.edu 860-405-9106 clear.uconn.educlimate The extension system model has historically been to assess the needs and concerns of the citizenry and tailor programs to meet their concerns. What once worked effectively for rural farm families is now being applied to help com- munities deal with climate-related issues. The Climate Adaptation Academy is an innovative approach to studying the impact of climate change that is also firmly rooted in tradition. A partnership of Connecticut Sea Grant NOAA CLEAR Center for Land Use Education and Research and the College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources the Climate Adaptation Academy was originally seen as a way to connect municipal officials and land use commissioners with Extension educators in the field and specialists at UConn and beyond. Over time it became clear that the model needed to be more flexible and inclusive and that input would be most useful when it came from a variety of sources. The Academy was first suggested by Juliana Barrett Associate Extension Educator with Connecticut Sea Grant head of the Climate Adaptation Academy as a way to apply the model developed in the Land Use Academy to the Connecticut coast. She and Bruce Hyde Director of the Land Use Academy talked with municipal officials and community leaders and asked what were the impacts of climate change on their communities. The feedback was not just flooding and storm surge but issues including longer-term budget impacts and the need for planning. This is such a new and ever-evolving area that we need to identify and define all the impacts on both coastal and inland communities. says Hyde. The Climate Adaptation Academy uses a peer-to- peer system to exchange information and reaches out to municipal officials non-profits and individuals involved in and concerned about climate change. From Julianas and my perspectives what we do is talk to local people and ask them how we can help them find solutions to their issues says Hyde. Climate Adaptation Academy for Communities 22 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources Hyde and Barrett use peer exchanges geographic information systems and emergency response systems from disasters such as Hurricane Sandy. Last November they held a session to demonstrate how to use technology to create a record of where things have happened such as flooding and fallen trees that can be used by police and fire departments. At a program entitled Living Shorelines 70 Connecticut residents all people working on the front lines of their communities responses to climate impacts met to listen to experts and share their own experiences. The Academy addresses legal issues related to climate adaptation and the impact of climate change on agriculture. Hyde noted that one of the biggest chal- lenges for municipalities is flooding from inadequate storm water systems which were built based on standards developed 50-60 years ago. Hyde noted that now there are rain bombs such as one in the summer of 2014 that dropped 13 inches of rain in 24 hours on Islip Long Island while Central Park 50 miles away received less than an inch. This type of weather event requires new ways of looking at how municipalities respond. Among possible solutions is the creation of green infrastructures through the use of green roofs and green swales. Michael Dietz program director for Connecticut NEMO is one of the leading experts in green infrastructure in the country see page 18. Dietz brings his skills to the Climate Adaptation Academy roster. The Climate Adaptation Academy web site clear.uconn.educlimate emphasizes flexibility and collaboration. We dont know all the answers. In some cases we dont even know the questions the site states. Bruce Hyde uses a Greek proverb at the end of his presentations on climate adapta- tion to emphasize the need for immediate action even though some of the impacts from climate change will be felt only by future generations A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they will never sit in. For the Climate Adaptation Academy change connection to more resources and people idea exchanges and linking the knowledge base of the university to the needs of municipalities communities and individuals is the core organizing principle. Its leaders are deter- mined that it will be as dynamic as the topics it addresses. Coastal Landscaping Guide for Long Island Sound Riparian corridors or buffers are the seg- ments of land along our rivers streams and wetlands including plants and soil. These areas can provide multiple benefits par- ticularly as the first line of defense against the impacts of surrounding land uses. Corridors slow runoff from precipitation aid in flood control and filter or trap pollutants. These areas can also provide habitat and corridors for wildlife as well as scenic value and privacy. Within coastal areas vegetated corridors can also be of significance in reducing the impacts of waves and overwash on proper- ties. Juliana Barrett Mark Brand UConn Dept. of Plant Science and Julissa Mendez former grad student in Landscape Architecture developed an online tool to help coastal residents think about how to plant their coastal properties in ways that will help prevent erosion as well as reduce damage and loss of plantings due to salt spray from storm events by using native plants. Check out the Coastal Landscaping Guide for Long Island Sound at clear.uconn.educrlg. This is such a new and ever-evolving area that we need to identify and define all the impacts on both coastal and inland communities. Beach photo left courtesy of Liz RollFEMA. 2014 Highlights of Extension 23 TOOLS TRAINING Article by Nancy Weiss Originally published 81214 NaturallyUConn Contact Donna Ellis Senior Extension Educator Storrs CT donna.ellisuconn.edu 860-486-6448 ipm.uconn.edu Let ones imagination go and the work of UConn Integrated Pest Management Coordinator and Senior Extension Educator Donna Ellis sounds like a script for a horror movie. Ellis is using the tools of science to encourage parasitic wasps to lay their eggs in the larvae of the lily leaf beetle. As the wasps develop they eat the bodies of their hosts from the inside out. All the tiny drama is conducted inside the larvae which are covered in the slimy ooze of the excrement they carry on their backs as they devour the leaves and stems of once-beautiful Asiatic lilies. Ellis and her colleagues are working with a program funded by the USDA to use insect biological controls to thwart the decimation of lilies and other species of ornamental plants in the lily family by the lily leaf beetle Lilioceris lilii. The insect which is native to Europe was first introduced in Canada in 1945. By 1992 they were confirmed in the Boston area. Former staff member Ed Marrotte and Ellis recorded the first beetles in Connecticut in Fairfield County in 1999. Now the insects are widespread and can be found across the state. The beetles are particular in their requirements and choose Lilium and Fritillaria as host plants. They may also feed on other ornamentals including Solomons seal bittersweet nightshade hosta and potatoes but cannot reproduce on them. They overwinter in the soil as larvae and reproduce on their hosts emerging in the spring as adult beetles to begin gorging themselves on the emerging Asiatic lilies that grace many gardens and are important crops for nurseries and garden centers. In 2012 Ellis began a program to fight back without the use of pesticides. Through a collaborative effort with the University of Rhode Island URI Ellis obtained two different species of parasitic wasps that target lily leaf beetle larvae. The wasps came from the URI Biological Control Lab where they are raised under the direction of manager Lisa Tewksbury. Parasitic Wasps Battle the Lily Leaf Beetle 24 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources The adult wasps are shipped overnight in small vials. By the second year of the project in 2013 Ellis obtained 915 wasps that were released at 16 sites. In 2014 there were 21 sites in all of Connecticuts eight counties. Timing is important as the wasps are raised and released under specific condi- tions. Middlesex County Master Gardener Coordinator Gail Reynolds who is working on the project and did five releases in the summer of 2014 often gets short notice as to when the wasps are available. They need to dispense them to gardeners who are willing to do their best to help the tiny insects survive. The gardeners also assist Reynolds with finding the lily leaf larvae that the wasps deposit eggs on who collects them and mails them to URI for analysis. Its a great natural control. As people choose to use less pesticide they are interested in biological control. If there is an insect that can reduce depredation of their plants they want to learn about it. It is another tool in the IPM Integrated Pest Management tool box Ellis says. So far Ellis indicates that one parasitized lily leaf beetle was retrieved from a garden in Waterbury in 2013 and she awaits lab results from URI for the larvae that Reynolds collected this year. She and coordinators in five New England states have data to show that the process is working through site visits. Master Gardeners are eager to spread information and outreach about biological controls and devote many hours beyond what is needed for certification to learn about new approaches to pest management says Ellis a gardener herself who has worked in plant biological control for 24 years beginning her career with a project to control white flies in greenhouses and later heading up the effort to reduce populations of purple loosestrife an invasive plant. We are talking to USDA to urge continuation of the funding for this program. We would like to have at least five years of funding to get results. Biological control is a process that takes patience. Every aspect is at the mercy of the elements but I take comfort that northern New England states are having success using parasitic wasps to combat lily leaf beetles. The wasps are surviving north of us so that gives Connecticut more of a chance that they can live here she adds ready to imagine the triumph of the wasps over the larvae in a struggle a horror movie director might embrace. A Sustainable and Viable Non-Pesticide Alternative Release and monitoring of two distinct biological control agents the parasitoid wasps Tetrastichus setifer and Diaparsis jucunda for biological control of lily leaf beetle began in Connecticut in 2012. These beneficial insects have also been released in Massachusetts Maine New Hampshire and Rhode Island. In 2014 there were 15 new research sites. Five were release sites and eight served as control sites. A total of 1257 wasps were re- leased during an eight-day period in June in the towns of Haddam Portland Branford New Haven and Middletown. In the three years of the project control and release groups have been located in all eight counties. Plans for 2015 include ad- ditional release sites and continued sampling. Gail Reynolds developed a presentation on the Lily Leaf Beetle research that has been given to an advanced Master Gardener class a local garden club and others. A fact sheet an info-graphic on lily leaf beetles and other educational materials are available at www.ipm.uconn.edu. Beetle image courtesy of M.E. Smirnov. Its a great natural control. As people choose to use less pesticide they are interested in biological control ... It is another tool in the IPM tool box. 2014 Highlights of Extension 25 TOOLS TRAINING Article by Ben Campbell Versions of this article were published by Garden Center Magazine and Produce Grower Contact Ben Campbell Assistant Professor and Extension Economist Storrs CT ben.campbelluconn.edu 860-486-1925 are.uconn.edu During the last couple decades the terms organic and local have gone mainstream. The power of these words on the marketplace is undeniable. A walk-through most grocery stores and supermarkets show the appeal of products sold under these labels. Whole sections of stores are set aside for organic and local products with stores competing to be seen as the most organic and local. However these terms elicit a plethora of both positive and negative reactions from consumers. Our starting point to understanding these terms is the dictionary. Organic is defined as grown or made without the use of artificial chemicals. This definition is specific in nature. The true nature of organic is often more complex than this simple dictionary definition given the requirements to be certified organic. But as has been noted in prior studies consumers generally recognize the broad issues about organic but routinely do not put forth the energy to understand the com- plexities of producing organically. On the other hand local is defined as relating to or occurring in a particular area city or town. The specific geographic boundaries are laid out by particular states and the federal government. Connecticut General Statutes Section 22-38 defines that a product advertised as locally grown must be produced within Connecticut or within a 10-mile radius of the point of sale. Local Perception Perception is reality and perception often does not align with what occurs on the farm or is regulated by state and federal governments. Case in point is the geographic boundaries consumers place on locally pro- duced. When a business advertises produce as locally grown the question must be asked does the retailer definition align with the consumer definition. With respect to perceptions of production consumers have both accurate and inaccurate perceptions of these terms. In a study that came out of collaboration from UConn Ben Campbell Texas AM University Charlie Hall Michigan State University Bridget Behe University of Florida Hayk Khachatryan and Purdue University Jennifer Dennis using a Local vs. Organic Products 26 2014 Highlights of Extension Highlightsof Extension tyi ng research to real li f e College of Agriculture Health and Natural Resources sample of consumers from the U.S. and Canada researchers found consumers have both accurate and inaccurate views of local and organic terminology. Within a Connecticut context Connecticut con- sumers share these accurate and inaccurate views of local and organic at nearly the same rate as the U.S. as a whole. The underlying theme is that consumers understand the dictionary definition of local and organic but often assign incorrect production practices to characterize the terms. Importantly there seems to be a blurring of the line between local and organic with around 20 percent of con- sumers linking the terms as the same. There tends to be an evolution occurring with respect to how people view local and organic. Since the inception of organic as a mainstream item organic has been marketed to a large extent as helping the world through less pesticide use and more environmentally friendly production practices while local has been viewed as helping the community and providing fresher product. Research from UConn Lingqiao Qi Ben Campbell and Yizao Liu shows that consumers that are altruistic e.g. care about others and biospheric e.g. care about the environment are more likely to purchase local over organic. This transformation seems to indicate that local seems to be expanding to fill the role of environmental stewardship while also helping the community. The continued evolution of local and organic will be interesting over the next couple of years. Impact on Purchasing When we look at how the terms local and organic impact the purchasing decision there is clear evidence that these terms do two things. First they increase the likelihood of purchasing by the average consumer. Second the average consumer is willing to pay a price-premium to purchase a local or organic product. Based on the previous studies mentioned above produce retailers whether on-farm farmers market or larger retailer need to realize that the terms local and organic are powerful words that can and do influence a consumers purchase decision. Normally when talking about who buys local and organic product we talk about the average consumer. In reality the market is made up of many different consumers but they generally coalesce into a couple of market seg- ments such as price sensitive environmentally conscious locality of production quality and the fuzzy group. The price sensitive and environmentally conscious segments are also where the highest willingness to pay occurs. However within these seg- ments is where the highest potential for consumers to substitute between local and organic occurs. For instance there are core purchasers of local and organic that will purchase no matter the price however there is a more moderate group within each segment that will switch from local to organic and vice versa depending on price. So exorbitant premiums may not cause consumers to switch out of the local organic category but may cause substitu- tion between local and organic. A common theme heard throughout the business and academic world is that consumers can and should be educated on the subtle points of local and organic. However in order to educate we need to know what the consumer knows and does not know along with what are the motiva- tions behind the purchase decision. Even after gathering this information success- fully educating or changing behavior can be challenging given consumers are bombarded with information from various outlets. Perhaps a more efficient mechanism is to recognize that consumers are different but by in large fall into one of several market segments. Then by understanding which market segment shops at a particular retail location marketing strategies and even educational strategies can be implemented to address issues consumers have on a more personal level. ... produce retailers ... need to realize that the terms local and organic are powerful words that can and do influence a consumers purchase decision. Photo left inset courtesy of Buy CT Grown. 2014 Highlights of Extension 27 This report is printed with vegetable oil-based inks containing 70 bio renewable content on 100 postconsumer recycled process-chloriine-free paper. This paper is certified by Green Seal. 2015 University of Connecticut. UConn supports all state and federal laws that promote equal opportunity and prohibit discrimination. Planet Earth image courtesy of NASA. Contact UConn Extension 1376 Storrs Road U-4036 Storrs CT 06269-4036 Email extensionuconn.edu Phone 860-486-9228 Website extension.uconn.edu