Upcoming Events

What’s Up – August and September in Lawrence Co

4-H & Youth Programming

Marsha Terry, 4-H Program Assistant, will be going into area schools soon. Also, Horse Club planning the Fall Rodeo.

We are happy to report that Robert Norwood is a new 4-H volunteer. He will be volunteering in the Shooting Sports area.

Did you know a 4-H Club has to meet only 5 times per year to be considered a club? Don’t you have the time to help our Lawrence County youth?

Volunteers have to register online and go through a background check. Visit https://www.4honline.com/ and register. Contact the office or Kenneth Gamble for more information.

Fishing Derby September 15th, Oakville Mounds – in partnership with Oakville Mounds and Lawrence County Schools

AG & Natural Resources

Irrigation research continues at the Posey Farm in Lawrence County. Farmers have been invited to focus group meeting August 31st in Town Creek.

Susan Hill, Regional Food Safety Agent is planning a Canning Class September 6 at 5:00 pm at Town Creek Community Center. Contact the office for more information at 256-974-2464. No fee.

Spenser Bradley, Regional Forestry & Wildlife Agent is having a Lunch & Learn meeting Tuesday September 18th. Contact the office for more information.

Families and Communities

SNAP-ED educator Jennifer Palmer will be going into the classrooms in Hazelwood this fall. Palmer will be out after the end of September on maternity leave.

Elaine Softley is offering a diabetes education program -Right Bite – at Town Creek Library starting September 6, from 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm and continuing for 4 weeks. Contact the office for more information. No fee.

Home & Grounds

Allyson Shabel, Regional Urban Agent is offering a class August 23 from 12:00 to 1:00 pm on Water Wise Gardening and Rainwater Harvesting.

Taylor Reeder, Regional Agent Home & Grounds is offering a class August 29th on Native Pollinators from 10:00 am to 2:00pm

Both classes are offered in the Conference Room of the Agriculture Center at 13075 Hwy 157, Moulton. The classes are $5 each.

A 4-part series on Environmental Health is a being offered to schools in the area. Allyson Shabel, Regional Urban Agent, offers the class to 4th graders. Contact Allyson for more information.

Beef Excellence

Paul Vining, Mitchell Henry, Adam Daniels, Bill Rutherford, and Donna Shanklin are working together to organize a Beef Excellence Program for youth in Lawrence County.

Plans are to have a meeting in November that will be the first class, with additional classes in the Spring. The series of classes will offer youth hands-on opportunities to learn about handling cattle, providing healthy nutrition to their cattle through feed and forage; and how to manage their cattle’s health through vaccinations and other methods.

Registrations forms will be available soon!

General Update

Planning for the Pizza Farm has begun. The event is tentatively scheduled for November 1st and 2nd.

A USFS forestry education grant was awarded to Lawrence County ACES. If a high school student wants to learn about nature and careers in it –  participating in the program should be on their list of goals for 2018-2019.

Livestock Barn Update

The Moulton Lions Club developed plans for a Livestock Barn. They are accepting bids through August 15th.

We will keep you informed on its development, but are hopeful that it will be completed before the end of 2018 if funding is secured.


Link to PDF of this newsletter

Pasture to Rail Program Continues in Alabama



Pasture to Rail, a beef improvement program, continues in Alabama with a June shipment to a feedlot in Kansas.

The Pasture to Rail program allows consigners to receive animal performance and carcass data for each calf consigned.

The Pasture to Rail program is a retained ownership program that allows Alabama beef producers the opportunity to send calves to a feedlot to be fed until finished. After slaughter the carcass will be graded and the consignor will be provided carcass data. Consignors will receive payment once the calves have been harvested. Carcasses that grade well may receive a premium.

Carcass data is an important selection tool that will allow for the genetic improvement of a beef cattle herd.

The process to have your calves be in a Pasture to Rail shipment:

  1. Contact an ACES Livestock and Forages Regional Extension Agent
  2. Be ready to consign up to 3 steers or heifers for a $75/head consignment

Because of the 21 day sign up ACES can not accept more calves for the June shipment. But if a beef producer is interested in consigning calves to future shipments contact Alex Tigue (Regional Extension Agent in Livestock & Forages). To contact Alex call 256-309-9496 or email him at dat0002@aces.edu

Link to Pasture to Rail Rules

Lawrence County Youth Participate in Regional Pig Squeal Show & Auction

Nine 4-H’ers from Lawrence County participated in the Northwest Alabama4-H Pig Squeal
Show and Auction, April 21, 2018 at the North Alabama State Fairgrounds.


Participating 4-Hers included:

Hunter Drane
Caden Norwood
Wyatt Pace
Cora Crosslin
Jillian Fretwell
Kolby Starks
Mary Kate Turner
Ruby Shelton
Audrey Dutton

All the participants had raised up two pigs since February and were ready to show one of the pigs at the Fairgrounds and then have it auctioned off to the highest bidder.

4Her’s arrived early to prepare their pig for the show. The showmanship judge was very patient with the youth and asked them questions about their pig – questions from the pigs weight, to the weight gain per day. Because record-keeping is part of the project the 4Her had a ready answer.

The following are just a few of the Lawrence County participants in the show ring. For many this was not the first time in the show ring – while for others it was a new experience.

At the end of the day the 4Hers had auctioned off their pig and the pig was en-route to a processing facility or heading back to the barn. Many will go on to show more pigs, while for others it was an experience,  and they are on to another 4H project.



Gramoxone-based treatment evaluation in dryland peanut – Steve Li

Gramoxone (paraquat) is a commonly used herbicide in peanut for weed control. It can be tank mixed with Storm, Basagran, Ultra Blazer, 2,4-DB and other residual herbicides to apply over the top of small peanuts. Tank mixing herbicides with Gramoxone increase weed control spectrum and efficacy, however, peanut injury has always been a concern for some growers who plan to use Gramoxone. Currently, we do not have enough information regarding the tolerance of newer peanut varieties to Gramoxone-based tank mixes in dryland. Therefore, research trials were conducted in 2016 and 2017 at Shorter, Fairhope and Headland, AL, to evaluate the tolerance of four common peanut variety to Gramoxone-based treatments.

At each location, GA-06G, GA-14N, GA-12Y and TUF-511were planted in May to early June and sprayed with different treatments at 21-28 days after planting with backpack sprayers. Non-ionic surfactant at 0.25% v/v was used with all these treatments. Experimental design was RCBD with 4 replications. All trials were maintained weed free during the season. Peanut height, width and final yield were measured at each location. Data was analyzed in SAS 9.4.

Results of this study show that peanut width was more sensitive than peanut height. No peanut variety showed greater sensitivity to Gramoxone-based treatments than the other varieties. Gramoxone + 24DB + Dual Magnum or Warrant produced most of the visual injury as compared to other treatments. Adding Storm or Basagran with Gramoxone reduced peanut injury by 10-15%. However, final yield was not affect by any of these Gramoxone-based treatments except for Gramoxone 24 oz/A at Fairhope and Headland in 2016 (this rate is over the label rate and included for research purpose only). The use rates of each herbicide for the 2017 trial was the highest label rate and I would not recommend growers using these much of products. These highest label rates were used only to test crop tolerance. At the end of season, all four varieties showed similar tolerance to these treatments and no yield loss was found after statistical analysis at p=0.05 level. This means all the Gramoxone-based treatments produced statistically equivalent amount of yield compared to non-treated check.

Peanut varieties evaluated showed very good tolerance to Gramoxone tank mixes. Temporary leaf burn should be expected but peanut will soon recover from injury under normal growing conditions. Considering the dry weather we have been having this spring, Gramoxone based treatments are good options if residual herbicides applied behind the planter were not properly activated due to lack of rain in dryland fields. Dual Magnum, Zidua, Warrant or Outlook should be tank mixed with Gramoxone to provide extended residual weed control and this is important to ensure a successful season long weed control.

Questions? Please contact:

Dr. Steve Li,
Extension Weed Scientist, Assistant Professor
Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences
Auburn University
334-707-7370; steveli@auburn.edu

Farm families are learning to manage stress differently

Many farm families are stressed — emotionally strained or tense due to the demanding circumstances of getting a crop out in the field. Farming is stressful because because they are dependent on the weather. Wet fields keep farmers out of the field, and if they want to harvest a full-season crop (maximum yield = maximum $ return) –  they need to have it planted withing a specific time frame. Due to the cool, wet spring North Alabama farmers are putting long hours in – getting equipment ready before daylight and often planting after dark with tractor lights.

Managing stress is hard for everyone – farmers especially need to effective ways to manage their stress. The following is a 5 Step Approach to Managing Stress

5 Step Approach to Managing Stress

(Adapted from SDSU http://igrow.org/up/resources/04-1004-2017.pdf )

1. Assess Needs and Impacts

This helps to give you perspective — things that are in your control versus things that are out of your control.

In your control – making sure gasoline is in the tractor

Out of your control  – the drying rate of your bottom-land field

Assess Needs & Impacts

2. Identify and Access Resources

Do you have a spouse, children, employees, or extended family that can help out?

3. Pursue Good-Quality Decisions

Think about your decisions when you are stressed. Don’t communicate in anger.

4. Connect with Sources of Support

Talk to your spouse. Go out into nature – take a few minutes to focus outside of the things that cause you stress. Are there individuals you know that seem to manage their stress? – find out how they do it.

Connect with Sources of Support

5. Use Effective Coping Strategies

Are you relieving your stress in healthy ways – by eating healthy and exercising ? Not by overeating, alcohol or prescription drug abuse.

Eat Healthy

Do you laugh enough? Try to find humor

Go out into nature

Are you getting enough sleep? A person needs 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night. Take a power nap during the day if possible.

Link to eXtension article on Farming and Stress http://articles.extension.org/pages/70313/production-agriculture-and-stress

Herbicide applications in dryland cotton and peanut under hot and dry conditions – Steve Li

In recent a few weeks, most of the south Alabama was warm and dry, mostly dry. We have not had any rainfall for over two weeks in a row and this is taking a toll on row crops. Many people cannot plant their dryland fields and the crops planted are suffering drought stress. I have received several calls and texts regarding the concerns of soil herbicides sprayed behind the planter may not get activated. So, I am writing this timely information sheet to further discuss this issue.

1. No chance of rain in forecast for the next 10-14 days. Should I still spray soil herbicides behind planter after I plant my dryland field?

I am a big advocate of using soil herbicides for weed control. However, in this case, I would suggest only spraying Gramoxone or Liberty behind the planter to smoke the weeds and start clean. We all know a fact for soil herbicides: it does not matter if it does not rain. They will not do you much good if there is no rain to activate them.

2. If I did not spray soil herbicides behind the planter, what do I need to do next?

My first thought is I hope you sprayed a good residual herbicide treatment in your preplant burndown application, so you may still have some herbicide residues in soil. If you did not spray any soil herbicide behind the planter, I would do postemergence treatment very timely when you know you will have a high chance of rainfall. Weeds will not germinate or grow much in a very dry situation, so spraying a residual herbicide such as Warrant, Dual Magnum, or Outlook with Roundup, Liberty, Enlist Duo or One, or Roundup + Dicamba within 3 days before you get a rainfall is very important. In peanut, you can spray either Warrant, Dual Magnum, Outlook or Zidua with a postemergence herbicide such as Cadre, Blazer or Cobra. Weeds always make a flush after the rain if it has been dry for a while. Therefore, I suggest growers spray residual and foliar herbicide before the rain and hammer them hard with a follow up treatment 14-21 days later if escaped weeds start to grow fast after the rain.

3. What do I need to do when I burn off emerged weeds behind planter and it is dry?

It is likely that these weeds are in a drought stress too, so they may not respond to herbicides super well. They also can grow thick leaf cuticle and wax layer so herbicide absorption will be lower than normal. I would suggest growers using crop oil concentrate or methylated seed oil instead of non-ionic surfactant (NIS) because oil-based surfactant may dissolve cuticle wax better and allow more herbicide to get into weed foliage. Adding liquid  ammonium sulfate may increase control of certain weeds. If you happen to get a shower,  although it may be a very small one, it can still help you burndown weeds better after a little bit of moisture, and I would take advantage of that before it gets very dry again.

4. How much rain do I need to activate my soil herbicides?

Not a lot, 0.5 inch of rain can usually do it. For some soil herbicides, they can be activated with as little as 0.25 inch of rainfall. In a previous study, 0.5 inch of simulated rainfall was able to activate Brake, Reflex, Diuron, Cotoran and Warrant for pigweed control. However, with only 0.25 inch of rainfall, Brake + Reflex was the only treatment that provided over 90% pigweed control. Brake + Warrant provided 73% of control which is better than Brake (43%), Brake + Cotoran (32%) and Brake + Diuron (40%). See pictures below (pictures credit to SePro).

5. Which soil herbicide last longer on soil surface when there is no rain?

I probably have been asked this question a hundred times so far, so I decided to run a large  study to evaluate persistence of common cotton and peanut residual herbicides on soil surface  before they can see a rainfall. More results will be available later in the fall.

Questions? Please contact:
Dr. Steve Li,
Extension Weed Scientist, Assistant Professor
Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences
Auburn University
334-707-7370; steveli@auburn.edu