Winter Oldham County Events

The following calendar originally printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

winter extension events

Upcoming Extension Events

All activities are held at the Oldham County Extension office unless otherwise noted. Please call to RSVP for classes held at Extension offices.

December Extension Events

6 District Board, 9am
6 Leaders of the Pack, 7pm
7 Oldham County Beekeepers, 6:30pm
8 Oldham County Cattlemen’s Association, 9am
9 4-H Teen Club
10 Green Thumbs Garden Club
11 Cloverbuds
12 4-H Woodworkers
13-14 District 3 Middle School Retreat
14-18 Office Closed During Relocation
17 Delicious Delights
18 4-H Poultry Club
20 Busy 4-H’ers of Oldham County

December 22 through January 1, the Extension Office is closed for winter break.

January Extension Events

3 Leaders of the Pack, 7pm
7 All About Wildflowers, 10am
7-8 Kentucky Fruit/Vegetable Conference, Lexington
8 4-H Photography Club
9 4-H Woodworkers, 6pm
10 Private Pesticide Applicator Training, 6pm
11 Private Pesticide Applicator Training, 9am
11 Oldham County Beekeepers, 7:30pm
14 Green Thumbs Garden Club, 9:30am
14 Delicious Delights, 6:30pm
15 Cloverbuds, 6:30pm
17 Extension Council, 9am
17 District Board, 10am
17 4-H Council, 7pm
17-18 Kentucky Cattlemen’s Convention, Owensboro
21 Office closed
23 4-H Woodworkers, 6pm
23-24 Kentucky Nursery & Landscape Conference, Louisville
24 Cooking Under Pressure, 10am
24 Busy 4-H’ers of Oldham County, 6:30pm
25-26 University of Kentucky Equine Showcase & Breeders Short Course, Lexington
28 Come Sew With Us, 10am – 3pm
29 Extension Foundation, 9am
29 4-H Poultry Club, 6:30pm
30 Master Gardeners, Yew Dell, 10am
31 Shooting Sports Coaches Meeting, 6:30pm

February Extension Events

5 4-H Photography Club
6 4-H Woodworkers, 6pm
7 Leaders of the Pack, 7pm
8 Small Fruits, Advanced Master Gardener Class, 9am
8 Oldham County Beekeepers, 7:30pm
11 Green Thumbs Garden Club
11 Delicious Delights, 6:30pm
12 Cloverbuds, 6:30pm
15 Oldham County Homemakers Cultural Arts, John Black Center
20 4-H Woodworkers, 6pm
21 Alfalfa & Stored Forage Conference, Lexington
21 Busy 4-H’ers of Oldham County, 6:30pm
22 Plant Propagation, Advanced Master Gardener Class, 9am
21-22 Kentucky Arborists Conference, Boone County Extension
25 Come Sew With Us, 10am – 3pm
26 4-H Poultry Club, 6:30pm
27 Master Gardener Greenhouse Tour, Churchill Downs, 10am
28 Stay Happy, Stay Healthy, 10am
28 Oldham County Homemakers Executive Board, noon
28 E-Squared 4-H Club, 6pm

March Extension Events

1 Louisville Area Homemakers Cultural Arts, Bullitt County Extension
1-2 Organic Association of Kentucky Conference, Lexington
8 Weed ID, Advanced Master Gardener Class, 10am
18 Seed Saving, 10am

Nurturing a Healthier Oldham County

The following Family and Consumer Sciences articles printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter and the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

Collaborating for Community Health

Extension creates partnerships to increase productivity, consolidate resources, and eliminate duplication of services that share the common goal of improving community health. The Oldham County Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) agent brought nutrition, food safety, and cooking classes to existing programs at the LaGrange YMCA, local food pantries, farmers markets, and health clinics. These combined efforts fight the growing rate of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and foodborne illness.

kids cooking camp

In June, Kids Cooking Camp provided an opportunity for youth to explore healthy eating habits and practice food safety. The participants took home recipes and prepared meals for their families.

During the summer, a partnership with Dare to Care Food Bank brought the Cooking Matters program to youth in La Grange.

In the fall, 4-H Cooking Academy reached youth at East Oldham Middle School.

healthy oldham county

Healthier Lifestyles for Substance Abusers

Although ranked highest for health and wealth in Kentucky, Oldham County suffers from a high rate of substance abuse. Binge drinking and opioid usage have greatly increased in the past few years. Currently, Oldham County’s alarming rate for binge drinking is 3% above the state average.

Moreover, the U. S. Department of Justice has found that 76.9% of drug offenders are rearrested. A judge supervised substance abuse program, Drug Court seeks to rehabilitate substance abusers, helping prevent participants from relapsing into criminal behavior to instead become productive members of society.

In May 2018, Oldham County Extension partnered with the chief circuit court judge to bring food safety and nutrition to the Drug Court substance abuse program. The Oldham County FCS agent encourages healthy eating and cooking as well as daily exercise. The Expanded Food and Nutrition Program (EFNEP) assistant helped demonstrate easy, economical recipes that emphasize “MyPlate” recommendations. Participants received pedometers and educational materials for meal planning, food security, and cooking skills. This program was offered in both the morning and evening to accommodate work schedules.

The participants in the court-ordered program all planned to reduce their serving sizes, cook and eat at home more often, and exercise daily. The program supervisor also reported that several participants indicated using the recipes the day after the programs.

Since the May program, the EFNEP assistant has taught ongoing monthly classes to help reinforce the important issues of food safety, budgeting, and basic cooking skills.

healthy veggie lasagna recipe

Written by Chris Duncan, Oldham County Family and Consumer Sciences Agent; Sherry Ragsdale, Oldham County Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program Assistant; and Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

Raising Poultry for Family & Markets

The following 4-H Youth Development and Agriculture and Natural Resources article printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter and the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

oldham county chickens

Raising Poultry for Family and Markets

In Oldham County, the sourcing and purchasing of local foods is a continuing trend. This has also spurred a growing number of people to seek information about raising their own food, and keeping poultry flocks is a very popular enterprise. Oldham County poultry and egg sales have continued to increase over the last two decades, according to the U.S. Census of Agriculture.

To meet the growing need for poultry production knowledge, the Oldham County Agriculture and 4-H Agents and the Shelby County Horticulture Assistant planned a two-part ‘Chickens 101’ program. The program was geared to both adults and youth interested in egg and meat chicken production.

This March 2018 program featured both classroom presentations and live poultry demonstrations. Sixty-six adults and youth attended one or both sessions of Chickens 101. Participants learned about breed selection, chick care, housing, predator control, flock health, and nutrition.

A post evaluation revealed that:

  • 100% of respondents learned new information relevant to raising chickens
  • 100% of respondents reported they would use information learned to raise chickens to produce eggs for their families
  • 36% reported that new knowledge would help them raise meat chickens for their families
  • 45% reported they will sell eggs to others
  • 23% reported they will sell processed/finished meat chickens to others

Based on evaluation response, classes on selling eggs and meat chickens – plus other production-oriented topics – are in demand and needed. The Oldham County Extension Service plans to host future poultry programs to provide continuing education to both youth and adults.

The success of the Chickens 101 series also led to the establishment of the Oldham County 4-H Poultry Club in the fall of 2018.

oldham county chickens

Written by Traci Missun, Oldham County Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent, and Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

Master Gardeners Break Records

The following Agriculture and Natural Resources article printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter and the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

oldham county master gardeners

Master Gardeners Break Community Service Record Again

Oldham County’s population is just over 65,000, and residential areas make up about one-half of the county. Extension Master Gardener volunteers help address the need for information about growing food and landscaping through a variety of service work in Oldham County.

Master Gardeners must complete a training program and background check in order to begin volunteering. Training consists of 11 classes, each based on Extension curriculum; homework assignments; and a final comprehensive exam. The Master Gardener program is a partnership among the Oldham County Agriculture Agent and Horticulture Assistant, UK Extension Specialists, and local plant experts who teach — plus the participants themselves who agree to learn and contribute volunteer hours.

Oldham County Master Gardeners had another record-breaking volunteer year in 2017-2018. Forty-one Master Gardeners contributed 2,156 volunteer hours to the community, a 17% increase in service hours since last year. This work is valued at over $45,000 based on the Independent Sector’s value of volunteer time in Kentucky.

Highlights of their service include:

  • Master Gardeners provide activities and community gardening areas at Friendship Health & Rehab, a facility that offers short-term rehabilitation and long term care of residents.
  • Many Master Gardeners volunteer at Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve and Yew Dell Botanical Gardens. Their work enhances the beauty and success of these sites and supports tourism dollars spent in Oldham County. Activities include gardening, greenhouse work, evaluating All-America Selection plant variety trials, leading tours, and assisting with special events.
  • Master Gardeners take care of gardens and plant new ones at local churches. They also help their families, friends, and neighbors to become better gardeners. This provides self-reliance skills in growing food and taking care of landscapes.
  • Seven Master Gardeners taught programs or helped lead activities to educate adults and youth.
  • Master Gardeners maintain the Demonstration Rain Garden, located at the Extension Office. This garden helps demonstrate how a planned rain garden can reduce stormwater runoff.
  • Master Gardeners volunteer at numerous other Oldham County locations, including Brownsboro Alliance Trails, used by both hikers and horseback riders.

Master Gardener volunteer activities are ongoing. Each year, the Oldham County Master Gardener Association develops continuing education and volunteer opportunities to inspire continued learning, leadership, and service.

Written by Traci Missun, Oldham County Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent. Edited by Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

Oldham County Extension Leader of the Year

The following article printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter and the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

extension leader of the year

Extension Leader of the Year

Karen Horton is our Extension Leader of the Year! A Kentucky 4-H alumni herself, she has volunteered with Oldham County 4-H since 2012.

For five years, Karen led the Oldham County 4-H Cloverbuds Club which is geared towards youth ages six through eight. Her caring nature and fun attitude helped transform a loosely thrown-together program into a well-organized learning experience for all involved. Graduated Cloverbuds return as volunteers, sharing their hands-on skills and serving as role models for current members. Parents who used to simply drop off their children for club meetings now stay to learn and help. This special dynamic builds 4-H families.

Karen continues to support Oldham County’s youth in a variety of ways, including volunteering at 4-H summer camp, 4-H Reality Store, and 4-H Communications. She is also starting a new 4-H Photography Club in 2019.

Written by Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant, and Sherry DeCuir, Oldham County 4-H volunteer.

Winter FCS Classes: Cooking, Sewing & More

The following Family and Consumer Sciences articles printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

free fcs classes

Homemakers Host Classes

Free and open to the public, lessons sponsored by Extension Homemakers focus on life skills such as cooking, sewing, and budgeting as well as health and wellness topics. Please call the Oldham County Extension office at (502) 222-9453 or email to reserve your seat at a lesson.

At 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 24, Oldham County FCS Agent Chris Duncan discusses Cooking Under Pressure. Electric pressure cooking pots are popular with many cooks today. Taste delicious recipes while learning what you can do with these cooking tools and how you can do it!

Ever notice a connection between staying happy and laughing? Having a sense of humor aids us in having a better quality of life. Come learn more about the connection between health and humor at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 28: Stay Happy, Stay Healthy.

free sewing classes

Come Sew With Us

Sewing classes are free and open to the public! All skill levels and ages are welcome, although youth must be accompanied by an adult. The project of the day is not mandatory; you are encouraged to bring your own project to work on during our sit and sew workshops. Visit for project supply lists. Please call (502) 222-9453 to reserve your seat.

  • Beach Wraps & Kimonos – Monday, January 28, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • Bed Pockets – Monday, February 25, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

homemakers cultural arts

Homemakers Cultural Arts

The 2019 Oldham County Cultural Arts Competition is Friday, February 15. Entries will be accepted from 9:00 until 10:00 a.m. with viewing to begin at noon. Homemakers can check out their entries at 1:00 p.m. Entry categories are found on page 28 of the Oldham County Extension Homemaker Handbook as well as on the KEHA website. Questions can be directed to Chris Duncan, Oldham County FCS Agent, via or (502) 222-9453. The new online entry registration ( opens on February 1st!

Blue ribbon winners at the county level advance to the Louisville Area Cultural Arts Competition on Friday, February 22. The 2019 Area Competition takes place at the Bullitt County Extension Office, located at 384 Halls Lane in Shepherdsville. More details will be available after the first of the year.

homemakers cultural arts

Written by Chris Duncan, Oldham County Family and Consumer Sciences Agent, and Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

How to Control Weeds

The following Agriculture and Natural Resources article printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

healthy pasture

Get a Handle on Controlling Weeds

Producers of everything from vegetables to pastures to wildlife plots all deal with weeds. Weeds were an even bigger problem this year with above-average rainfall. Managing weeds requires multiple strategies and planned effort. And it may require changing management practices.

Not every crop lends itself to all of these, but here are some ideas for getting a handle on weeds.

1. Know the enemy. If you don’t know for sure what the weed is, dig it up and bring it in for identification. In the case of multiple weeds, call and schedule a farm visit. Correct identification provides clues for best management strategies and timing of these.

2. Don’t allow weeds to produce seeds. Mow, pull them out, do what you can to prevent seed formation. Allowing weeds to grow unchecked every year means the weed population will continue building.

Weed seeds can lay dormant in soil for years, waiting for the right opportunity to germinate. Allowing desired forages to thin in pastures and hay fields gives weeds space to grow. Tilling may bring weed seeds to the surface to germinate and outcompete whatever you plant. Bare ground is an invitation for weed growth. Whether soil is exposed by tillage, overgrazing, or use of a total-kill herbicide, the longer it is bare the more likely it is to produce weeds.

Some weeds are biennials or perennials and have the ability to regrow from roots next season. Even then, preventing seed production is still important to reduce spread.

johnsongrass pasture weed

3. Think of weeds in terms of their life cycles. For example, weeds like ragweed and pigweed are warm season annuals. Their exact time of emergence varies with temperatures each spring. In some years, warmer spring temperatures allow warm season weeds to germinate earlier than usual. And in other years, cooler temps may delay their emergence until late May.

In cooler springs, one strategy is to consider delaying herbicide (weed killer) applications to ensure the targeted weed is actually present. Waiting to spray may also mean that planting the desired crop must be delayed.

Conversely, waiting to spray warm season annual weeds in July means they are already big and harder to control. Scout your plantings to know what’s there, and remember that timing is everything.

4. Crop rotation can be a good tool to reduce weed problems. Some crops have greater ability to outcompete weeds. In vegetable plantings, vining crops with large leaves can be rotated to areas where finer leafed plants (carrots, onions) were grown the previous season. Plants that produce a thicker canopy or a thicker stand can help suppress weeds.

Some producers rotate weedy, thinned out pastures into an annual crop like sorghum sudangrass or millet to break the weed cycle. In many cases, herbicide use is still warranted to get a handle on weeds before planting back into pasture.

waterhemp crop field weed

5. When using herbicides, make sure you understand the products and manage to make best use of these. For many products, there is a time lapse required after spraying before mowing or tilling is recommended. Allow time for the herbicide to do the job.

Instructions for use are always outlined on the product label. It’s important to understand these before making spray applications. Many herbicides require a time lapse after application before it’s safe to plant desired crop.

6. Keep good records. Document weed problems, plus management strategies that worked and didn’t work to help with future planning.

Managing weeds reminds me of a saying a farmer here once shared – ‘When you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got’. Solving a problem, no matter what it is, often requires stepping out of the box and getting a different perspective. What are some of your successes in controlling weeds?

Written by Traci Missun, Oldham County Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent.

2018 & 2019 Oldham County 4-H Camps

The following 4-H Youth Development articles printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter. “Setting 4-H Camp Records” also printed in the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

Don’t Miss Out On 4-H Camp!

Oldham County is booked for July 22-26 at Lake Cumberland 4-H Camp. Mark your calendars now! Pre-registration will be available in February.

oc 4-h summer camp

Setting 4-H Camp Records

Having broken the county’s attendance record in 2017, Oldham County 4-H’s dream to have its own camp week became a reality in 2018.

The Oldham County 4-H Council raised over $12,510 to help support camp expenses, roughly twice the amount of donations received in 2017.

The 319 attendees included nine participants who have grown up in the program, experiencing life as a camper, teen leader, and now as an adult leader. In addition, the state employed three Oldham County 4-H alumni in 2018 as paid camp interns.

oc 4-h camp teen leaders

Written by Kelly Woods, Oldham County 4-H Agent, and Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

Oldham County 4-H Award Winners

The following 4-H Youth Development articles printed in the 2018 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter. “Oldham County 4-H Excels at State Level” also printed in the 2018 Oldham County Extension Report to the People.

oc 4-h award winners

Achievement Award Winners Recognized

The 4-H Achievement Program recognizes members beginning in the sixth grade. The application is a detailed resume of the member’s 4-H and community involvement. Members compete at the state level upon reaching Clover Level 3. Scholarships are available at each state level achieved. Congratulations to the following Oldham County 4-H members who have completed a Clover Achievement Level:

Clover Level 1
Kendall Kennedy

Clover Level 2
Claire Combs
Ryan Hawkins
Bailey Johnson
Riely Johnson
Sean Johnson

Clover Level 3
Maggie Jones
Adelle Minor
Andrew Myers
Caroline Olds
Izzy Perez

Clover Level 4
Hunter Fackler
Emmett King
Ella Olds

Clover Level 5
Maggie Anderson
Keirstin Kennedy
Ruby Mason

Submitting for Emerald Interview
Beth Huffman

2018 State Shoot Results

On September 8 and 9, more than one thousand 4-H’ers from 77 counties participated in the 2018 Kentucky State 4-H Shooting Sports Competition. A special congratulations to the 28 Oldham County 4-H members who brought home 29 trophies and two medals for high overall scores.

Archery Bowhunter

Age 15-18 Individual
1st & High Overall Score: Justin Ensor

Archery Compound Bare

Age 12-14 Team
3rd: Andrew Myers, Izzy Perez, Savannah Wieland, Tyler Zahradnicek

Archery Recurve

Age 12-14 Individual
1st & High Overall Score: Izzy Perez

Age 15-18 Individual
2nd: Spencer Wieland

Archery Target

Age 9-11 Individual
3rd: Nick Sauer

Age 15-18 Individual
3rd: Justin Ensor

.22 Pistol

Age 12-14 Individual
1st: Andrew Myers
3rd: Erik Benvie

Age 12-14 Team
1st: Erik Benvie, Andrew Myers, Bobby Nelson, Ava Spellman

Age 15-18 Individual
1st: Shane Bickett

Age 15-18 Team
1st: Shane Bickett, John Clore, Logan Roberts, Audra Spellman

.22 Rifle

Age 15-18 Individual
3rd: Dain MacDonald

Age 15-18 Team
1st: Brian Ball, John Clore, Dain MacDonald, Meridian Myers

Air Pistol

Age 15-18 Team
2nd: Brian Ball, Shane Bickett, Dain MacDonald, Kaitlyn Snyder

oc 4-H award winners

Oldham County 4-H Excels at State Level

  • As top scorers at the State Shooting Sports Competition, three Oldham County 4-H members received green jackets: Justin Ensor, Andrew Myers, and Izzy Perez.
  • Leaders of the Pack Junior Dog Bowl Team (Chloe Hardesty, Caecilia Isenhart, Freya Isenhart, and Carrie Olds) won the State Junior Dog Bowl.
  • At the State Horse Bowl, Ballardsville High Riders 4-H club members placed first in two events. Emily Altsman, Harper Ash, Peyton Ash, and Carrie Olds made up the Junior Horse Bowl team. The Junior Hippology team was Harper Ash, Peyton Ash, Sydney Cobb, and Carrie Olds.
  • Three Oldham County 4-H members achieved the State 4-H Gold Award: Hannah Anderson, Beth Huffman, and Olivia Minor.
  • Coach Paul Harjes received the State 4-H Certified Shooting Sports Achievement Award.
  • Horse Club Leader Jean Jenkins received the State Conrad Feltner Leadership Award.
  • Senior 4-H’er Hannah Anderson received the 4-H State Community Service Award.

“When I first joined [4-H], I was a shy kid who did not talk to anyone. Eleven years later, and I am comfortable speaking in front of groups of people…a place I never thought I would be…4-H took a 7-year-old girl who didn’t talk and has turned me into a strong and independent woman.”
-Senior 4-H Member

Written by Kelly Woods, Oldham County 4-H Agent, and Lauren Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Assistant.

Managing Accidental Invaders

The following Agriculture and Natural Resources article originally published in the Kentucky Pest News on November 7, 2017.

Winter is an inhospitable season for cold-blooded arthropods that survive year-round in Kentucky. Most accomplish this in an innocuous fashion–out-of-sight and out-of-mind. Unfortunately, several species of these “accidental invaders” enter structures seeking shelter from the elements. While they come from distinctly different sources, all seem to recognize their good fortune and remain indoors until lengthening daylight prompts them to leave in spring to resume their normal activities. Unwilling landlords may not see their free-loading tenants again until fall.

Household Pest Management Strategies

There is no magic solution to vanquish these interlopers. The same set of marginally effective strategies is available to those faced with these unwanted guests.


Insects moving to shelters are attracted to contrasting light and dark areas (window frames, columns, etc.) on vertical surfaces. Large numbers may accumulate on sunny south or west walls of houses and buildings where they may be sprayed directly with an appropriately labeled insecticide before they have a chance to enter.


Exclusion is the next tactic. Seal as many obvious openings as practical. In spite of the best efforts, some persistent individuals will find a way inside. For further information, refer to How To Pest-Proof/Winter-Proof Your Home (EntFact-641).

Collect & Discard

Use a vacuum to collect and discard as many invaders as possible. Once outdoor temperatures consistently remain below 50 degrees F, the influx should stop, or at least be greatly reduced. Also, these invaders do not reproduce indoors, so numbers do not increase.

Avoid Insecticides Indoors

Avoid the temptation to use insecticides indoors. “Bug foggers” or insect foggers have significant limitations and pose some significant risks. Refer to Limitations of Home Insect Foggers (“Bug Bombs”) (EntFact-643). In addition to potential exposure problems, indoor accumulations of dead insects can result in problems with carpet beetles and other scavengers.

Examples of Accidental Invaders

Below are pictured some of the accidental invaders that have been observed in Kentucky.

insect invaders

Figure 1. A brown marmorated stink bug rests on a shutter that contrasts strongly with a brick wall (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK).

Figure 2. Multicolored Asian lady beetles are especially common in areas where trees are abundant (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK).

insect invaders

Figure 3. Immature and adult boxelder bugs accumulate prior to moving to shelter. Boxelder and maples are common hosts (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK).

insect invaders

Figure 4. Face flies commonly move to shelter from nearby cattle (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK).

Figure 5. Ground beetles are common in turf and around foundations. Worn door sweeps provide a place for them to gain entry (Photo: Lee Townsend, UK)

Written by Lee Townsend, Extension Entomologist.