Extension Office Friday: Fall Lawn Care & Water Testing Clinics
18 September 2020
We pre-recorded today’s conversation via Zoom with Mark Sutphin, Horticulture Agent with Virginia Cooperative Extension. Mark works out of the VCE-Frederick County office but also serves Clarke, Page, Shenandoah, and Warren Counties and is the lead agent working with Extension Master Gardener volunteers in the Northern Shenandoah Valley.
Our topic was fall lawn care which included discussion about soil sampling for nutrient analysis, lawn fertilization (despite what big marketers want us to believe, fall is better than spring), lawn renovation/over seeding, etc. For more information about fall lawn care, below are the resources we referenced during the first half of the show.
- Lots of great lawn care resources found on this website under ‘Lawn & Garden’ and sub-tab ‘Lawns’: https://www.pubs.ext.vt.edu/
- Soil Testing (nutrient analysis): https://frederick.ext.vt.edu/programs/home-horticulture/soil-testing.html
- If you have additional home lawn questions, reach out to Extension Master Gardener volunteers: https://frederick.ext.vt.edu/programs/home-horticulture/local-master-gardener-program-in-the-northern-shenandoah-valley.html
In the second segment of the show, Mark told us about the water testing clinics that will be offered to residents of the five surrounding counties. He explained that private water supplies like wells and springs are unregulated and that it’s the responsibility of the homeowner to regularly test water quality, maintain the water system, and address any problems. This is why water testing clinics are offered through Virginia Cooperative Extension Offices in Clarke, Frederick, Page, Shenandoah, and Warren Counties. Participation is voluntary and confidential.
Water samples are collected by participating homeowners and analyzed for 14 parameters, including bacteria, metals, nitrate, and hardness at a cost of $60 per sample kit. A limited number of scholarships are available upon request. Please contact the Virginia Cooperative Extension Frederick County Office to inquire: (540) 665-5699.
A live kick-off presentation will be available to explain the proper way to collect water samples and to answer any questions participants may have. Results and water system care and maintenance information will be sent to each participant either by email or mail. A results meeting for all counties will be held on Monday, December 7, 2020 at 6:30pm (via Zoom) to help explain the summary results and the recommendations to address problems. All information is kept strictly confidential. Pre-registration/pre-payment is required by October 14, 2020 and can be done online or by mail. To see the dates for picking up your water testing kit, get the details for how the water testing process works and/or to register online, go to https://tinyurl.com/NorthernShenandoahWelltest2020.
Download the packet of information: 2020 NSV Drinking Water Testing Clinics
To hear more of this conversation that includes an in-depth explanation of why these tests are important, what they will test for and learn how and when you can pick up your sample kit, click here: https://theriver953.com/podcast/water-testing-clinics/
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