Welcome to the
Howard County, Arkansas
Cooperative Extension Service
We are part of the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service’s statewide network and the University of Arkansas System’s Division of Agriculture. Our mission is to provide research-based information through non-formal education to help all Arkansans improve their economic well-being and the quality of their lives. Whether it is agriculture, 4-H, health and living, or community development, the Howard County Extension Office is at your service!
Extension Get Fit
The weather is turning colder and sometimes it is difficult to get out and exercise like we should. Extension Get Fit is a program where people come together and exercise using low weights. The 12 week program will meet on Monday and Thursday beginning January 23 at 9:00 a.m. at the EH Center in Nashville. We will exercise for about one hour each time. A registration fee of $12.00 will be charged to cover program costs. Participants will learn and participate in exercises that will help improve balance, flexibility and strength. The exercises are easy to do and almost anyone can participate. For more information or to register, call the Howard County Extension Office at 870-845-7517.
Interested in more? Our Facebook page will inform you on programs and activities offered in the Family and Consumer Sciences area.
A soil report is the best guide for determining soil fertility. How do you know what to fertilize if you do not know what is needed? Soil sampling is the answer. A soil report shows an estimate of the availability of plant nutrients in the soil and if the soil is in the correct pH range (acidic or alkaline) for future production. Obtaining a soil sample from a home garden less than 1000 square feet is just as important as sampling a 300 acre field used for grazing. The directions for how to obtain a soil sample vary only slightly based on the crop being tested and the size of the area, but the idea is the same (as well as the goal).
For areas smaller than 1 acre, at least 10 sub-samples need to be taken and mixed together for accurate soil report results. For large areas greater than 20 acres, the area should be divided into 20-acre units and have samples taken and tested for each of those 20 acre units. Within the 20 acre unit, 20 composite samples should be taken and mixed in a clean bucket, for one composite sample to be tested. Depending on the terrain and shape of the 20-acre unit and even the less-than-1-acre unit, the samples should be taken at a “star” or “zigzag” pattern to insure the entire area is well represented. Let’s say this field is approximately 20 acres or less. I would suggest taking 15-20 sub-samples to be mixed together to make one composite sample to send off for testing. The left graphic above shows two examples of the right ways to take a soil sample for this scenario. No, it is not exactly a “star” but the circular idea is the same, as long as the middle is also represented, as it is here.
If the 20 acre unit is in multiple types of terrain, perhaps a low lying area prone to flooding and then ground that is higher and dryer- think about dividing this area into multiple sampling units, just to insure accuracy of test results. The right graphic above shows an area of land that could be 1 acre or 100 acres, no matter the size- it definitely needs to be divided into 3 separate soil tests for accuracy of results due to the different terrain. Let’s say this was only 20 acres of land, I would take 15-20 sub samples in each, area 1, area 2, area 3 and have 3 total soil samples to send in to have tested. It’s more work for the producer, but remember, the report is only as accurate and precise as the samples are!
See our Agriculture and Natural Resources Facebook page for more information.
4-H Day at the Capitol
Recently, over 400 Arkansas 4-H members filled the halls of the state Capitol learning about leadership from members of the Legislature, Lt. Governor Tim Griffin, and Governor Asa Hutchinson. Hutchinson proclaimed Feb. 16, 2017 to be Arkansas 4-H Day. Work done by the 4-H Youth Development program was recognized in the House and Senate. After a guided tour of the Capitol and Supreme Court Building, Howard County 4-H’ers took part in a Q and A session with Chief Justice Shawn Womack. Members also enjoyed a surprise greeting by Senator Larry Teague outside the Senate Chamber. Ten Howard County 4-H members were in attendance.
Currently Howard County has 10 very active 4-H clubs: Nature Seekers, Sharp Shooters, Show-n-Shine, Teen Leaders, Show Stoppers, Super 4-H’ers, Sew Much Fun, Food Explorers, Umpire and the STEM Club. If you would like to learn more about 4-H and all it has to offer, please call the Howard County Extension office at 845-7517.
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay.
Check out the Howard County 4-H Facebook Page
Volunteers are Important!
Leadership and community service are huge components of the Extension Homemaker organization. Members are encouraged to keep up with service hours, education hours and self- improvement hours throughout the year. They are awarded different levels according to amount of hours donated. Awards were presented at the annual Howard County EHC Fall Council Meeting.
Photos: (top) 2016 Award Recipients
(bottom) New Horizon EHC - Club of the Year