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2020 Clemson Extension Advisory Committee Meeting

The Colleton Clemson Extension Advisory Committee on Feb. 4.

The members of the Colleton Clemson Extension staff invite their Advisory Committee for a planning meeting at the beginning of each calendar year. The Committee members are made up of folks in our community that advocate for gardening, forestry, water quality, and healthy living practices. Alta Mae Marvin will have been with the Extension for 20 years in July, and she asks the committee members to bring forth any ideas about how the Clemson Extension can better serve the community in 2020.
Ellen Comeau, with the Water Resources Program Team from the Beaufort County Clemson Extension Office, spoke about a renewed focus on water conservation in 2020. “I’m always on the lookout for things that make a negative impact on water quality,” said Comeau. “Stormwater runoff strategies are important, but something simple like always picking up after your pet can make an impact too. Members of the public call me with questions about ponds they see, erosion issues, even about alligators and geese.” Comeau also introduced Rebecca Davis from Bamberg, who is a new Water Resources extension agent that will cover Colleton County.
“When we use water in pursuit of energy, or to water the crops, we’re not always able to leave the water as pure as it was originally,” said Comeau. “For example, water is used to make the blue jeans that everyone loves to wear, but exposing water to dye may alter it over time. Raising awareness about how to conserve and preserve water quality is important to the Clemson Extension in South Carolina. A good tool to view online is the hydrology page on the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources website. Some good news is that SCDNR recently declared the drought over in every county of the state at the beginning of 2020.”
Karissa Ulmer is the Lowcountry District Clemson Extension Director, and she thanked the committee members for coming out on Monday night, Feb. 4, to join them for a chicken supper catered by the Old House. “The Clemson Extension has some high-quality events coming up with the 4-H Livestock Day in Orangeburg and the Forestry workshop coming up in Charleston,” said Ulmer. “My kids are involved in 4-H, so I know from experience that this program provides life skills beyond the farm. Local agent Marion Barnes was shaped by 4-H livestock activities when he was a youth. The interactive livestock clinic will be held February 22 from 10 – 1 at the Orangeburg County Fairgrounds.”
Janet Steele is the Clemson Extension forestry and wildlife agent for the Lowcountry, and she will be at the Sustainable Forestry Workshop on Saturday, February 22, from 10 – 2 in Charleston. The meeting will be held at the Zucker Graduate Education Center at 1240 Supply Street and is sponsored by the Center for Heirs Property Preservation. Topics like financial assistance available to forest landowners and best management practices will be addressed, and lunch is provided for free. Coming to the Blue Heron Nature Center in Ridgeland on March 7 is a workshop for ladies called Women Owning Woodlands.
During the needs assessment discussion among committee members concerning how to engage the public in the realm of natural resources, a meeting about how to construct a rain barrel received broad support. On the agribusiness front, a clear planning process for farm transference among family members is to be addressed. Regarding the timber industry, the practice of clear-cutting tracts without planting them back in pine trees is concerning to rural residents. The popular Master Gardener class from Clemson Extension is now available online, and the extension pollinator team will hold a brown bag lunch in Walterboro on President’s Day to discuss growing roses.
Don’t forget to visit the ‘Clemson Extension - Colleton County’ page on FaceBook for the latest updates on everything from planting early spring vegetables in your garden, to tips on healthy habits, and even cooking recipes. For youth activities visit ‘Colleton & Hampton County 4H’ on Facebook, or contact Dawn Stuckey about how to bring the 2020 Embryology project to a classroom at your school. Outreach efforts like these fulfill Clemson’s land-grant mission of research, teaching, and extension to improve the well-being of all South Carolinians.
Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at LowcountryOutdoors.com

Jeff Dennis
Jeff Dennis, Contributor (388 Posts)

Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at www.LowcountryOutdoors.com