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Garden plastic recycling
Written by Press Staff Writer   
Wednesday, 21 April 2010 14:31

Sandusky/Ottawa County Master Gardeners are organizing and promoting a plastic recycling program for gardeners, growers and agricultural businesses.

Participating businesses will collect recyclable plastic during regular business hours May 1 through Oct. 31. Collection sites include:

• Bench’s Greenhouse, 18063 W. SR 105, Elmore.
• Bench Farms, 91159 Jerusalem Rd. (SR 2), Curtice.
• Sullivan Gardens, 2370 W. McPherson Highway, Route 20, Fremont.
• Stoney Acres Farm, 4543 CR 41, Helena.

Clearly marked recycling bins will be available at each business. Items that will be accepted include horticultural and agricultural plastic with soil removed, plastic sheeting, shrink wrap, household plastic, beverage bottles and jugs, securely bundled plastic bags, plastic toys and outdoor play equipment. Bottles and containers should be crushed. Medical supplies, agricultural and horticultural chemical containers and any plastic with metal components will not be accepted.

Purpose Green, LLC, of Norwalk, Ohio, will collect the plastic from the drop-off locations. The non-profit recycling organization will then process the plastic and sell it throughout the U.S. to companies that will remanufacture it into other products.

Individuals or businesses with large-volume plastic waste can call Purpose Green at 419-677-3910 for a direct pickup.

Plant the Seed Day
Ohio State University Master Gardeners will hold a “Plant the Seed Day” May 8 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, North Central Agricultural Research Station, located at the corner of SR 53 and CR 43, Fremont.

The program is free and open to children ages 5 to 9 accompanied by parent or guardian. Participants will have the opportunity to plant vegetable and flower seeds.

Pre-registration is required. Twenty children will be registered per various one-hour sessions. Call OSU Extension at 419-334-6340 to register.

Ottawa Co. throws available
Mother’s Day is approaching and the Ottawa Soil and Water Conservation District is offering a full-color, 60 x 70 cotton throw featuring several county sites/images including Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, Marblehead Lighthouse, Ottawa County Bicentennial Barn, a bald eagle and an agricultural scene.

The throws are $50 and are available at the district office at 240 W. Lake St., Oak Harbor. Call 419-898-1595 for more information. Funds raised from the sale of the throws will go support various district programs.

Farmers Market grants
Written by Press Staff Writer   
Wednesday, 14 April 2010 15:38

The Ohio Department of Agriculture is providing grants to farmers markets through the Farmers Market Access Project to help fund new infrastructure to accept Electronic Benefits Transfer.

The technology would allow the electronic processing of food assistance through the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services’ Direction Card.

“This program is one more effort by the state to increase access to healthy food for all Ohioans,” said Department of Agriculture Director Robert Boggs. “The department continues work to further strengthen the logistical supply line between the state’s farmers who grow nutritious local foods and its consumers, which is underscored by Gov. Strickland’s Ohio Neighborhood Harvest initiative.”

The Ohio Neighborhood Harvest initiative is a statewide effort to ensure that Ohioans in every neighborhood have access to locally grown, affordable and healthy food.

Funds for the Farmers Market Access Project were made available by congressional appropriation, with $26,000 available for 2010. Grants will be awarded on a first-come-first-serve basis and are subject to available funding. Awarded grants will range from $500 to $1,000.

A farmers market is a location where several producers congregate to offer fruits, vegetables, flowers, plants and other agricultural products. These markets are often located in a public parking lot or at a local fairground. During the harvest season, most markets are open once or twice a week. For a listing of Ohio’s farmers markets, visit For more information about the Farmers Market Access Project, or to apply, visit

The real dirt on dirt
Written by Press Staff Writer   
Thursday, 08 April 2010 12:27

It is hard to imagine that dirt is tracked so far and wide across the United States, but detailed information on soil across more than 95 percent of the nation’s counties are contained within an online system to help landowners make wise land use and management decisions.

Yet very few tap into this resource, which can help landowners better manage and conserve soil resources. Operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, a Web Soil Survey (WSS) provides soil data from the largest natural resource online information system in the world.

Lara Burkett, district program administrator with the Lucas Soil and Water Conservation District, will explain how to utilize a WSS to benefit landowners, local government, schools, teachers and more Apr. 15 from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at the monthly Northwest Ohio Ag-Business Breakfast Forum.

The program begins at 8 a.m. with informal networking, hosted by the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) at the Agricultural Incubator Foundation, 13737 Middleton Pike (SR 582), Bowling Green.  The cost is $10 per person (cash or check at the door), which includes breakfast. Walk-ins are welcome, but guests are encouraged to reserve a seat in advance by contacting Paula Ray at 419-823-3099 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

The Northwest Ohio Ag-Business Breakfast Forum is an educational networking opportunity for sharing information on current issues, trends and programs available to the agricultural community. Farmers, agribusiness owners and supporters of Ohio’s agricultural economy are encouraged to join CIFT on the third Thursday every month for this forum.


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