Hancock County Agriculture & Natural Resources
Lawn, Gardening & Pests
Get a yard that feels and looks like home. Get a bountiful harvest. Grow your own and sow something beautiful. WVU Extension has lawn, gardening and pests information you can use.
Are you a home gardener? Lett-uce see your work by entering the first annual Hancock County Home Gardening Contest!
Here’s how to enter the Hancock County Garden Contest:
Master Gardener Program
Call the Hancock County office for information about our local Master Gardener Program and watch for meetings in your area.
This Month in the Garden Calendar
Growing Irish potatoes ( Solanum tuberosum) is a family tradition here in the Mountain State. Potatoes are a staple food across the world due to their adaptability, yield, nutritional value and storage quality. Irish potatoes are not roots, but specialized underground storage stems called “tubers.”
Plan ahead for your potato patch. One pound of seed potatoes will yield 10 pounds of usable potatoes. Purchase certified seed potatoes. Do not buy potatoes from a grocery store for planting – most have been chemically treated so they do not sprout.
Lawn, Gardening & Pests News for Hancock County
Boxwood blight is a fungal disease that affects one of West Virginia's most popular landscape shrubs.
Boxwood blights are a fungal disease that can be fatal if no measures are taken to manage the disease at the early stage of infection and symptom appearance. There are two different fungal pathogens involved with blights – Volutella buxi and Calonectria pseudonaviculata.
WVU Extension Master Gardener training, which used to be offered through in-person courses organized by WVU Extension offices around the state, will once again be available online via Zoom sessions.
WVU Extension will continue offering online Master Gardener training classes for late winter/spring 2024 term, beginning on January 11 through May 2. Classes will be held every Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m.
Compost has traditionally been used by growers not only for supplying nutrients to the soil and plant but also due to its multiple beneficial attributes, such as balancing pH, enhancing water holding capacity, and boosting soil structure and beneficial microbial populations to improve overall soil quality for plant growth and development. Compost can hold nutrients for a longer time and deliver to plants when needed. Nutrients found in compost are released slowly as the compost decomposes, reducing nutrient loss through prevention of off-site movement. Despite all these benefits, herbicide contaminated composts can do lots of harm to plants, especially to those belonging to the family Solanaceae, which includes tomatoes, peppers and eggplants. Plant distortion due to growth regulator type herbicide is shown in Figure 1.
Weirton Farmers Market
Baked goods and fresh produce, locally grown by the farmers that sell it. That’s what you’ll experience at the Weirton Farmers Market. All produce is grown within 50 miles of the market location and is often picked that very morning, coming straight from the garden to you! You’re sure to find everything you want for healthier living while supporting the local growers of our community.
Another plus, marketers love talking about the food they produce and will be happy to share with you their favorite ways of preparing whatever you’re buying. Just try that at a big, impersonal store! Fresh air and sunshine, plus a relaxed, easy-going atmosphere are some of the reasons people look forward to our open-air market each year.
The Weirton Farmers Market is located in the Goodwill Parking Lot at 306-308 Penco Road. There will be one market day per week, Monday from 3 – 6 p.m., starting July 10 and running through October 30. After stocking up on garden-fresh produce, don't forget to visit our baked goods vendors to pick up dessert!
Farmers Market Vendors are required to participate in training courses. These training courses are available throughout the northern panhandle counties, as well as one training session being offered at WVU in Morgantown. Training includes farm and harvesting safety, West Virginia Department of Agriculture special programs, high tunnels and extending the season, value-added crops, marketing and advertising, customer service and much more.
The Market Vendors would like to thank all the patrons of the Weirton Farmers Markets. Your support is very much appreciated!
Contact the Hancock County Office to learn about local agriculture opportunities.
Agriculture News for Hancock County
Ben Goff, WVU Extension Agent in Mason and Putnam counties, offers recommendations for landowners and tenants who want to prepare for the upcoming farming season and work to minimize their respective risks.
Goff covers a variety of tips for farmers and landowners regarding farm leases, including:
The Pasture Management Certificate Training is offered as part of Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College Agricultural Innovation Workforce Trainings & Certifications.
Instructed by Kevin Shaffer, Ed Rayburn and Ben Goff from WVU Extension, this certification will teach farmers how they can improve sustainability to their operation by improving their pasture management so there is more available forage year-round.
Join us and our special guests every Friday at 10 a.m., for Mountaineer Farm Talk! Learn, share, laugh and enjoy a cup of cowboy coffee (or herbal tea for non-coffee drinkers). We encourage audience participation so have your questions ready.
Meeting ID: 989 9130 7779O or call 888-475-4499 and 877-853-5257 US Toll-free.
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Land you can take pride in. Nature you can appreciate. Keep wild and wonderful just that. WVU Extension has natural resources information from trusted experts.
Soil Testing in Hancock County
One of the most popular services we offer here at Hancock County Extension is free soil testing, via the WVU Soil Testing Laboratory. Whether you are growing food for your family or hay and corn for your livestock, this is a great way to ensure your soil is producing at the highest possible level.
Natural Resources News for Hancock County
Join us as we dive into the opportunities and challenges related to sustaining and harvesting white oak trees in West Virginia.
Tuesday, February 2
Join us as we dive into a variety of educational topics and learn more about how we can be better stewards of West Virginia's woodlands.
Tuesday, February 9