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KCARD is working with the Kentucky Farm Bureau Education Foundation and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture to develop the Kentucky Agriculture Disaster Relief Program. This program will help farmers in Kentucky access needed farm supplies from local farm retailers following the disasters experienced in many areas of Kentucky on December 10 and 11, and on January 1. Farm retailers in the program will receive funds to offset the costs of such supplies for farmers.
How does the program work? The participating retailer will set up an account in their sales system to record sales of eligible supplies to eligible farmers up to $1,500 per farmer. They will provide records of those sales to the program and receive reimbursement (up to $30,000/store, subject to change) for those sales.
What supplies are eligible under the program?
- Fencing supplies- wire, staples, fence chargers, testers, etc.
- T-posts and wooden posts
- Tools, such as hammers, rakes, and shovels
- Rope and bungee cords
- Livestock mineral and mineral feeders
- Hay and livestock feed
- Work gloves
- Chain saws, bar oil, and sharpeners
- Hay rings
What farmers are eligible? Farmers will have to certify that they have farm property in one of the following counties and experienced farm damage from the storms on December 10 and 11, 2021, and on January 1, 2022: Barren, Caldwell, Calloway, Christian, Fulton, Graves, Hart, Hickman, Hopkins, Logan, Lyon, Marion, Marshall, Muhlenberg, Ohio, Taylor, and Warren. Farmers will sign a form at the retailer and provide their contact information. How do I become a Participating Retailer? Participating retailers must be located in or near the affected area, be locally owned and operated, have the necessary inventory on hand or be able to secure it, and agree to maintain the necessary records for the program. If you meet these criteria and are interested in the program, you can contact KCARD staff member, Mattea Mitchell at 270-681-0163 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our first priority is to get at least one store in or near affected counties. Additional stores will be added as funds are available.
What Retailers are currently participating?
55 Wyatt Street, Fredonia, KY 42411
1428 Cuba Road, Mayfield, KY 42066
1406 Hedgepeth Road, Canmer, KY 42722
515 Nebo Road, Madisonville, KY 42431
209 North Bethel Street, Russellville, KY 42276
836 West Main Street, Lebanon, KY 40033
501 Popular Street, Benton, KY 42025
599 Arnold Road, Campbellsville, KY 42718
640 Plum Springs Loop, Bowling Green, KY 42101
Don’t put that trowel and rake away just yet! This year’s gardening season may be over, but it can also be a great opportunity to start preparations for next year’s gardening season. Taking care of a few garden clean-up chores now means fewer pests and disease problems which leads to a more productive garden for next spring!
To help shine the light on garden clean-up, I contacted Kim Leonberger, our UK Agriculture Extension Associate to get the checklist needed to help take the guesswork out of garden clean-up. To hear the full episode, make sure to stay right here for Episode 20 of the Sunshine Gardening Podcast!
- Why do we clean up?
- Plant pathogens such as fungi, bacteria, and viruses can survive in plant debris and on items in the garden.
- Cleaning-up helps to remove these pathogen structures so that they do not survive winter and come back to cause issues next year.
- Failure to clean-up can result in more disease next year.
- What gardening activities should we consider to help clean-up our gardens for the winter?
- Remove plants and plant debris.
- Turn soil when possible.
- Clean tools, stakes, cages, decorations, pots and other items from the garden.
- Do not compost diseased plant material.
- Diseased plant material should be burned, buried, or taken off-site.
- Home compost bins do not get hot enough to kill these plant pathogens.
- Large-scale, commercial compost piles do get hot enough to kill pathogens.
- Some communities have yard waste pick-up, which go to a large compost pile. It is ok to put diseased material here.
- Cleaning tools
- Cleaning products (soaps and detergents) remove loose organic matter. Products include dish soap, hand soap, some household cleaners.
- Disinfection products (disinfectants/sanitizers) have anti-microbial activity and can kill disease-causing micro-organisms. Products include rubbing alcohol (70%), 10% bleach (9 parts water and 1 part bleach), hand sanitizer, some household cleaners.
- Steps to cleaning tools
- Clean and scrub to remove organic matter.
- Rinse to remove any residues.
- Disinfect – Follow product directions. Most require a dip, soak, or spray. Be sure to note exposure time. A lot of products it is between 3 and 5 minutes. Bleach is the most effective and requires 30-45 seconds. However, bleach is corrosive so a rinse is need to limit effects. Make sure to never mix bleach with other cleaning products as a toxic gas can form.
- Rinse and Dry.
- Example of cleaning a tool – Wash with dish soap to remove soil and other organic matter. Rinse and dry. Dip in 10% bleach solution for 30-45 seconds. Rinse in clean water (not the same as before). Dry with a paper towel.
I hope that you enjoyed our discussion today on garden clean-up! A big thank you to Kim Leonberger for being our guest on the Sunshine Gardening Podcast! To view the show notes for Episode 20, make sure to visit me on the blog at Warren County Agriculture! You can find us at warrencountyagriculture.com.
- Additional information
- Extension publications available at https://plantpathology.ca.uky.edu/extension/publications
- Specifically have publications on sanitation and cleaning garden tools.
- Kentucky Pest News is a weekly newsletter that comes directly to your inbox and provides information from specialists about diseases, insects, weeds, and other problems. https://kentuckypestnews.wordpress.com/
- Subscribe to Kentucky Pest News – https://uky.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=9dec271e3ce221c39a07750cc&id=bee884adb8
Last night many areas of Kentucky experienced their first frost. Prussic acid (hydrogen cyanide) poisoning can occur when the sorghum species (forage sorghum, sorghum-sudangrass, sudangrass, and Johnsongrass) are frosted. Freezing causes plant cells to rupture and the precursors for prussic acid formation (cyanogenic glycosides) are released. Please find below some frequently ask questions about prussic poisoning, a note from the UK Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, and a link to Dr. Arnold’s prussic acid publication.
Frequently Ask Questions:
Can I cut the sorghum species for dry hay after frost?
YES. Make sure the hay is properly cured before baling.
Can I make baleage from frost sorghum species?
In most cases the answer is YES. Hydrogen cyanide concentrations are reduced during the ensiling process. However, as noted below, if toxin levels are excessively high at ensiling, forage should be tested prior to feeding.
How long do I need to wait to graze freshly frosted sorghum species?
Freshly frosted sorghum species should NOT be grazed until the affected tissue has dried down. This usually occurs 5-7 days after frost. Since fields are often not uniformly frosted and several frost events can occur over several days, make sure and wait until 5-7 days after the last frost event.
Drs. Arnold and Gaskill also has an excellent publication on prussic acid poisoning that can be found at http://www2.ca.uky.edu/agcomm/pubs/ID/ID220/ID220.pdf.
Note from UK Veterinary Diagnostic Lab:
This note can be found at http://ruminant.ca.uky.edu/content/beware-prussic-acid.
BEWARE OF PRUSSIC ACID
Prussic acid, hydrogen cyanide or hydrocyanic acid all are terms describing the same toxin or “poison”. A number of common plants, including sudangrass, johnsongrass, sorghums and sorghum-sudangrass hybrids easily accumulate the “cyanogenic glycosides” in the epidermal or outer cells of the plant. Further inside the leaf tissue in the mesophyll cells are the enzymes needed to convert these compounds to the actual poison. When the plant undergoes a stressful event such as cutting, wilting, freezing, drought, crushing, trampling, chewing or chopping, the plant cells rupture which allows the cyanogenic compounds and the enzymes to combine and produce prussic acid. Once consumed, the toxin goes immediately to the bloodstream and blocks a necessary step in the release of oxygen from hemoglobin in the blood to the cells. The animal essentially suffocates from lack of oxygen. Ruminants are much more susceptible to prussic acid poisoning because they have enzymes in the rumen capable of converting the cyanogenic compounds in the plant into hydrogen cyanide.
Clinical signs of cyanide poisoning can occur in as quickly as 15-20 minutes and up to a few hours after consuming the toxic forage. Usually the affected animals are found dead but, if observed early, may show rapid, difficult breathing, frothing at the mouth, muscle tremors, staggering then collapse. The mucous membranes (for example-the gums) are bright pink and the blood will be a bright cherry red color. A definitive diagnosis is usually made by testing the suspect forage for high levels of cyanide. This test can be performed at a diagnostic laboratory (the UKVDL in Lexington and Breathitt Lab in Hopkinsville both offer this) and forage samples should be immediately frozen and shipped frozen. It is difficult to diagnose from blood, animal tissues or rumen contents because it disappears rapidly after death. If prussic acid poisoning is suspected in a live animal, a veterinarian has treatments available that can re-establish oxygen transport at the cellular level.
Prussic acid is most often associated with sorghums (forage and grain) and sudangrass but many plants can be cyanogenic including:
Plants with Cyanogenic Potential
Apricot Lima bean
Arrow Grass Peach
Birdsfoot trefoil Poison suckleya
Bahia Service berry
Cherry Sudangrass hybrids
Elderberry Sorghum-sudangrass hybrids
Forage Sorghums Velvet grass
Grain Sorghums Vetch seed
Hydrangea White Clover
Important Points to Remember:
- Leaves produce much more prussic acid than stems, especially young upper leaves. New shoots often contain high concentrations of prussic acid.
- Never graze sorghums less than 18” in height (“knee high”) to significantly reduce the potential for poisoning.
- Feed hungry cattle hay or grain before allowing them to graze forages which may contain high levels of prussic acid therefore reducing the amount of cyanide consumed.
- Drought increases the chance for prussic acid because slowed growth and the inability of the plant to mature favors the formation of cyanogenic compounds in the leaves.
- Frost/Freezing is especially dangerous because the plant cells actually rupture allowing prussic acid to be released. Do not graze until well after the entire plant and new shoots are killed and have turned brown.
- ** NEW FORAGE GROWTH FOLLOWING DROUGHT OR FROST IS DANGEROUSLY HIGH IN CYANIDE. WAIT AT LEAST 7 DAYS TO GRAZE AFTER A KILLING FROST TO ALLOW CYANIDE TO DISSIPATE. **
- Plants grown in high nitrogen soil (and low in phosphorus and potassium) tend to have more prussic acid potential. Splitting nitrogen applications will reduce the risk of toxicity. Herbicides such as 2,4 D can also increase prussic acid for several weeks following application.
- Chopping or ensiling plants high in prussic acid will reduce toxin levels if properly cured. However dangerous levels of prussic acid may remain if extremely high before cutting. If in doubt, analyze suspect forages before feeding.
- Johnsongrass and sorghum-sudangrass hybrids also have the potential for nitrate accumulation, especially during drought conditions. Nitrate tends to accumulate in the lower stem, so cutting hay very short, or overgrazing so that cattle have to eat the lower stem bases ( the “stubble”) can cause more intake of nitrate and signs similar to prussic acid poisoning.
by: Lee Townsend, Extension Entomologist
University of Kentucky College of Agriculture
Horse flies and deer flies are bloodsucking insects that can be serious pests of cattle, horses, and humans. Horse flies range in size from 3/4 to 1-1/4 inches long and usually have clear or solidly colored wings and brightly colored eyes. Deer flies, which commonly bite humans, are smaller with dark bands across the wings and colored eyes similar to those of horse flies. Attack by a few of these persistent flies can make outdoor work and recreation miserable. The numbers of flies and the intensity of their attack vary from year to year.
Numerous painful bites from large populations of these flies can reduce milk production from dairy and beef cattle and interfere with grazing of cattle and horses because animals under attack will bunch together. Animals may even injure themselves as they run to escape these flies. Blood loss can be significant. In a USDA Bulletin 1218, Webb and Wells estimated that horse flies would consume 1 cc of blood for their meal, and they calculated that 20 to 30 flies feeding for 6 hours would take 20 teaspoons. This would amount to one quart of blood in 10 days.
Female horse flies and deer flies are active during the day. These flies apparently are attracted to such things as movement, shiny surfaces, carbon dioxide, and warmth. Once on a host, they use their knife-like mouthparts to slice the skin and feed on the blood pool that is created. Bites can be very painful and there may be an allergic reaction to the salivary secretions released by the insects as they feed. The irritation and swelling from bites usually disappears in a day or so. However, secondary infections may occur when bites are scratched. General first aid-type skin creams may help to relieve the pain from bites. In rare instances, there may be allergic reactions involving hives and wheezing. Male flies feed on nectar and are of no consequence as animal pests.
Horse flies and deer flies are intermittent feeders. Their painful bites generally elicit a response from the victim so the fly is forced to move to another host. Consequently, they may be mechanical vectors of some animal and human diseases.
The larvae of horse fly and deer fly species develop in the mud along pond edges or stream banks, wetlands, or seepage areas. Some are aquatic and a few develop in relatively dry soil. Females lay batches of 25 to 1,000 eggs on vegetation that stand over water or wet sites. The larvae that hatch from these eggs fall to the ground and feed upon decaying organic matter or small organisms in the soil or water. The larvae, stage usually lasts from one to three years, depending on the species. Mature larvae crawl to drier areas to pupate and ultimately emerge as adults.
Deer flies are usually active for specific periods of time during the summer. When outside, repellents such as Deet and Off (N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) can provide several hours of protection. Follow label instructions because some people can develop allergies with repeated use, look for age restrictions.
Permethrin-based repellents are for application to clothing only but typically provide a longer period of protection. Repellents can prevent flies from landing or cause them to leave before feeding but the factors that attract them (movement, carbon dioxide, etc.) are still present. These flies will continue to swarm around even after a treatment is applied.
Light colored clothing and protective mesh outdoor wear may be of some value in reducing annoyance from biting flies. In extreme cases, hats with mesh face and neck veils and neckerchiefs may add some protection.
Horse flies and deer flies can be serious nuisances around swimming pools. They may be attracted by the shiny surface of the water or by movement of the swimmers. There are no effective recommendations to reduce this problem.
Permethrin-based sprays are labeled for application to livestock and horses. These insecticides are very irritating to the flies and cause them to leave almost immediately after landing. Often, the flies are not in contact with the insecticide long enough to be killed so they continue to be an annoyance. These flies will swarm persistently around animals and feed where the spray coverage was not complete (underbelly or legs) or where it has worn off. Repeated applications may be needed. Check the label about minimum retreatment intervals. Pyrethrin sprays also are effective but do not last as long as permethrin.
Horse flies and deer flies like sunny areas and usually will not enter barns or deep shade. If animals have access to protection during the day, they can escape the constant attack of these annoying pests. They can graze at night when the flies are not active.
It is difficult to impossible to locate and/or eliminate breeding site of horse flies and deer flies. They breed in environmentally sensitive wetlands so effects of drainage or insecticide application on non-target organisms or water supplies is a concern. Also, these insects are strong fliers that can move in from some distance away. Breeding sites may be very extensive or some distance away from where problems are occurring.
Fortunately, horse flies and deer flies are sporadic problems for specific times of the year. Some adaptation in behavior or use of repellents can allow enjoyment of the outdoors.
CAUTION! Pesticide recommendations in this publication are registered for use in Kentucky, USA ONLY! The use of some products may not be legal in your state or country. Please check with your local county agent or regulatory official before using any pesticide mentioned in this publication.
Of course, ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS FOR SAFE USE OF ANY PESTICIDE!
Source: Jimmy Henning, Chris Teutsch, Ray Smith, UK Extension Forage Specialists and Tim Phillips, UK Plant Breeding and Genetics
It may surprise you that producers use as much as 25% of Kentucky’s wheat crop for forage or cover crops rather than harvesting it for grain. Wheat is a very attractive option to forage and livestock producers because it is winter hardy, planted later in the fall and adapted to most soils in Kentucky.
Livestock can graze wheat as forage in the fall and spring. The crop performs best as a forage on ground that is limed to a pH of at least 6.4 or higher and fertilized according to soil test recommendations. If you plan to graze the wheat, splitting the nitrogen application between fall and spring will increase total forage production. Make the fall application before seeding and a late winter/early spring application to stimulate early spring growth.
If you plan to harvest wheat for a stored forage such as hay, baleage or silage, soil test each year and fertilize based on test results. Wheat harvest will remove nutrients from the soil.
If you plan to have livestock graze wheat in the fall, plant it in September or as early as your crop rotation and soil moisture allow. Be aware that this early planted wheat is at a greater risk for aphids, which can transmit barley yellow dwarf virus. Since the wheat is grazed by livestock when it is in a vegetative state, it should be protected from Hessian fly damage if only used for grazing.
Plant wheat used for stored forages after the Hessian fly free date in October. This date varies each year but most often occurs by Oct. 15. Plant wheat two to 2.5 bushels per acre and 1 to 2 inches deep using a no-till drill into crop stubble or by broadcasting seed and lightly discing the ground to get the seeds at the proper soil depth.
Wait to turn livestock into wheat pastures until the plants are well established and at least 6 to 8 inches tall. Monitor fields for wetness and trampling of plants by the livestock. This is especially a concern during spring grazing. Only allow livestock to graze plants to 3 to 4 inches and allow the forage to recover to 6 to 8 inches long before grazing again. Small grains fit well into rotational grazing systems as they recover and increase production similar to pasture grasses.
If you still want to get a grain crop from the wheat, only allow livestock to graze it lightly in the early spring. Do not graze wheat after plants reach the Feekes 6 growth stage, which is when the first node is visible above the soil surface and at the beginning of stem elongation. Grazing after this stage removes the growing point and prevents the seed heads from developing.
For the best quality stored forages, harvest the crop at the boot to early head stage. Early cut wheat will ensile easier because it contains higher amounts of fermentable carbohydrates and forms denser bales. Feed early cut wheat to livestock with high nutrient needs like calves or lactating cows.
Nitrate poisoning is very unlikely under normal plant growth and weather conditions. However, periods of cool, cloudy weather, hail damage, frost and drought can cause nitrates to accumulate in wheat. The ensiling process removes about 50% of nitrates and reduces toxicity risk.
More information on using wheat for forage is available in the University of Kentucky publication AGR 263: Growing Wheat for Forage. It is available online at https://bit.ly/3eK5Z9x or by contacting the Warren County office of the UK Cooperative Extension Service.
Educational programs of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.
Local foods tastes better. Fruits and vegetables grown locally and sold at the farmer’s market spend more time maturing in the field, and less time on the road. They aren’t picked green and sprayed with hormones to ripen. They are naturally at their peak flavor and nutrition, and ready for your family to enjoy.
Tips for shopping at the farmers’ market
· Mind your budget. Before you go, decide how much you have to spend. Bring along a calculator or paper and pencil to track spending. Don’t buy more that you can store safely and eat or preserve before it spoils.
· Bring the kids and let them help pick out some of the fruits and vegetables. They will learn how to shop wisely and might even get excited about trying new foods.
· Arrive early for best selection. Popular items may sell out fast.
· Shop late for best prices. Some farmers will sell items at a lower price, rather than taking them home. Don’t be afraid to bargain.
· Make a lap around the market before making purchases. This will allow you to see which booths have the best quality food for the lowest prices, which vendors accept EBT or nutrition program benefits, or offer promotions such as Double Dollars.
· Keep an open mind. Produce sold at the farmers’ market is usually grown for taste, not appearance. It may look imperfect, but taste great.
· Ask for seconds. Sometimes farmers have good produce that didn’t look good enough to display. Ask if they have seconds that they will sell at a reduced rate.
· Buy fruits and vegetables in season. That’s when they’re at the height of quality and lowest price. See below for information for when produce is in season.
· Ask questions. Farmers are usually happy to answer questions about their produce, and they often have good cooking and serving suggestions.
· Take notes to help you remember which vendors have good prices on high quality food. Next time you visit the market, refer to your notes.
· Buy now, enjoy later. If possible, buy large amounts of produce in season and freeze, can or dry it for the winter. Contact your county Extension office for classes in food preservation.
Bowling Green Farmers’ Markets
Summer Produce Items
Other Available Items
By Ric Bessin and Jonathan L. Larson; UK Entomology Extension Specialists
Face flies are annoying pests for cattle that can impact the animal’s welfare by just constantly molesting the eyes of our animals. These flies are looking to feed on tears but will also feed on saliva, blood, and nasal discharges. They do this by using their unique mouthparts, which resemble sponges and help them consume their liquid foods. Recently, county Extension agents informed us that they have received a large influx of questions regarding the connection between these pests and their transmission of pink eye.
Identification & Life cycle
Face flies look very similar to house flies in shape and coloration but are slightly larger than their close relative. They are dark grey with four black stripes that run down their back. As with a lot of flies, the maggots develop in fecal material. Specifically, face fly maggots develop in freshly deposited cattle manure. The maggots will hatch from eggs and then go through four stages of development over 15 to 25 days, depending on the weather. During the summer, face flies are not often found in structures, but the adults do overwinter in barns or attics and will become active again in the spring to start the next generation of flies.
Pink Eye Transmission
High numbers of face flies are associated with higher rates of pink eye issues. The feeding style of the flies causes more avenues of introduction by scratching the eyes, and the flies have been demonstrated to carry the causative agent of pink eye as well. Some estimates put the cost of pink eye in cattle at about $150 million annually.
Management Must Be Multifaceted
Fly control is essential, but can be difficult as face flies are only on the animal for a small percentage of the time. Therefore, addressing the egg and larval stages of the fly, as well as the adults, is most effective. A moderate to heavy fly infestation is when there are 10 to 20 flies per animal during the middle of the day. A single fly-control program will not work on every farm, so it often takes multiple tactics of control to achieve good results.
Fly tags (mid- to late May, through mid-September-October)(one ear tag or session or two sessions; be sure to use the number of tags required by the manufacturer), insecticide pour-ons, back rubbers (no 2 diesel), dust bags and knock-down sprays (Bachpack or ATV) are helpful in reducing the number of adult face flies on your animals. Fly traps in barns can also be helpful in reducing the number of flies. Feed additives with insect growth regulators are available that target the maggots that are laid in the manure. Encouraging dung beetles, which break down the manure pat, will also decrease egg survival.
Face flies can develop resistance to pesticides over time, so switching the drug mode of action of pesticides used every year is important. For example, if pyrethrins are used one year, then organophosphates should be used the following year. Waiting until the start of fly season to apply fly tags and removing the old fly tags in the fall also decreases the development of resistance. It is also extremely important to follow the safety precautions recommended by the manufacturer, as these insecticides can be toxic to people if handled improperly.
Appropriate grazing, along with clipping pastures will prevent seed-head development, reducing the irritation to the eyes of cattle, as well as reducing the resting areas for the flies. Clipping pastures to a low stubble height in May just after the seed heads emerge and again in mid-summer when weeds appear is recommended. Shaded areas need to be available to decrease the ultraviolet (UV) exposure and, in Herefords, breeding for pigmented eyelids has been successful, as this is a heritable trait. A good management program, including an appropriate vaccination program [especially infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR) and bovine viral diarrhea (BVD)] and having good quality nutrition and minerals available at all times, will improve the overall condition of the cattle and decrease the incidence of this disease. Overhead hay feeders should be lowered and round bales should be rolled out. Ensuring adequate bunk space will decrease direct contact between the animals. Animals that develop pinkeye should be isolated if possible.
Source: Jimmy Henning, Extension Forage Specialist
The period from late summer into early fall is the best time to establish common cool-season grasses such as orchardgrass, tall fescue, timothy and bluegrass for pasture or hay in Kentucky. These four grasses make up 95 percent of our pasture acreage.
Many years of research have shown this period provides the best chance for successful establishment. Mother Nature has a hand in this because seed produced in late spring remains dormant until late summer, and early fall rainfall provides the moisture necessary for the seed to germinate. To increase your success rate, remember these four points:
First, address soil fertility needs by applying lime and fertilizer based on a current soil test. Inadequate levels of phosphorous, potassium or limestone will limit the success of late-summer seedings. For pure grass stands, apply nitrogen at the rate of 40 to 60 pounds per acre.
Second, control competition. Late-summer seedings most often fail from competition and lack of water. When you control existing vegetation with herbicides or tillage, the emerging seedlings will have access to whatever water and nutrients are present without having to compete with weeds.
To maximize the success of seedings, use a burn-down herbicide ahead of planting to kill annual weeds. Translocated herbicides can be used where labeled to kill or suppress perennials such as johnsongrass.
Remember to wait two to three weeks after spraying translocated herbicides before you plant in no-till situations. This will allow time for killed weeds to dry out and for residual effects of the herbicide to decay.
Third, select high quality seed of an adapted variety. Planting high quality seed is an essential step toward establishment and longevity of a pasture. These seeds have high percentages of germination, low percentages of weed seed and freedom from noxious weed seed.
Use varieties that have a proven track record of performance in Kentucky. The University of Kentucky conducts extensive research on varietal performance, which can be found on the UK Forages website, https://forages.ca.uky.edu/variety_trials. Here you will find all of the current results for the major forage crops in Kentucky, including cool-season grasses.
Look for varieties that have performed well across several test years and locations. These varieties will have improved yield, quality, persistence, disease resistance or other positive traits.
If you’re uncertain about a variety’s adaptation and performance, you can obtain information on the leading performers in the UK forage variety tests by contacting me at the Warren County Cooperative Extension Service.
Fourth, seed at the proper time and depth. Seed legumes and grasses before mid-September. Grasses are less sensitive to later seeding than legumes. The major cool-season grasses will not do well if you simply broadcast them onto existing overgrazed or mowed pastures. Forages should be seeded no deeper than one-fourth to one-half inch.
Late-summer alfalfa seedings are susceptible to sclerotinia stem and crown rot. If sclerotinia has been active in your area or farm, strongly consider waiting until next spring to seed.
Educational programs of the Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expressions, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.
Author: Jerry Pierce
On May 28th the Biden Administration released a general explanation of its proposed tax changes. This includes an explanation of proposed changes in the American Families Plan that would tax transfers of appreciated property by gift or upon death, tax capital income for high-income earners at ordinary rates, increase the top marginal income tax rate, and apply the 3.8-percent Medicare tax to all trade or business income of high-income taxpayers, including transfer of assets.
Transfers of appreciated property by gift or at death will be treated as “realization events” which require recognition of gain. That is, the transfer will be taxed like a sale. The gain is taxable to the one making the gift or to the estate of the one who dies (decedent). The proposal would apply to gifts and deaths beginning in 2022.
There would be no adjustment or step-up in basis to fair market value at death when calculating the transfer tax. The purpose is to tax the appreciation or gain in value of assets that have not been taxed before. Gain is calculated by subtracting the adjusted basis from fair market value at the time of gift or death as if the property were sold. Adjusted basis is the original cost plus improvements minus depreciation. See the article Proposed Gift and Estate Tax Changes by Laura Powers in last month’s Economic and Policy Update.
The transfer tax is not an estate tax, but a new tax on the unrealized gain at the time of death or gifting. Both transfer tax and estate/gift tax will apply to property passed by death or gifting.
Current state and Federal estate taxes continue to apply and would not be changed by the proposal. Basis in assets would continue to be automatically adjusted or “stepped-up” to fair market value at death before estate taxes are calculated. The transfer tax would be deductible on the decedent’s estate tax return.
Exclusions Under the Proposal
Property transferred by a decedent to a U.S. spouse or to charity would not be subject to the transfer tax, but it would not receive step-up in basis. The basis of the decedent would be gifted or “carried over” to the one receiving the property. Charitable deductions would not be valued at fair market value but at the decedent’s basis in the property.
There is a $1 million per person exclusion from recognition of gains on property transferred by gift or held at death. The exclusion is portable to a surviving spouse. Any portion not used by one spouse can be used by the surviving spouse, making the exclusion effectively up to $2 million per married couple.
The current $250,000 per person exclusion for gain on a principal residence still applies to all residences. The exclusion remains portable to the decedent’s surviving spouse, effectively making it $500,000 per couple.
Gains on tangible personal property such as household furnishings and personal effects (excluding collectibles) are exempt.
Farmer and spouse die in 2022. Fair market value of the estate is determined to be $5 million. Basis in assets totals $2 million. Gain is $3 million. Gain on the residence is under $500,000. After subtracting the couple’s $2 million personal exclusion the amount subject to transfer tax is $1 million.
Same circumstances except that the farmer and spouse gift the property in 2022. The amount subject to transfer tax is the same: $1 million.
Basis for the Person Receiving the Property
The recipient receives a step-up to fair market basis in property received by inheritance. In Example 1 the recipient basis in the property is $5 million.
The total basis of property acquired by gift would have two components. The recipient would receive the donor’s basis for the property covered by the $1 million per person exclusion. The amount of property not covered by the personal exclusion would receive a step-up to fair market basis. In other words, the amount of the gift that is taxable to the donor gets the stepped-up in basis for the recipient. The recipient basis in property gifted in Example 2 would be $3 million: fair market value in the amount taxed ($1 million) plus mom and dad’s original basis in the amount not covered by their personal exclusion ($2 million).
Payment of the Tax
The proposal does not provide instructions for tax calculations, but it does give some clues. The following example, based on the examples above, provides a rough estimate of the tax due on the transfer tax based on the information given in the proposal. In both examples above, the taxpayers are assumed to file as married filing jointly because 1) both spouses in Example 1 died in the same year or 2) spouses were assumed to be living at the time of the gift in Example 2. No other income is included in the calculations.
The first $1 million of the gift would be taxed at capital gains rates, resulting in about $163,170 in Federal tax, plus $38,000 in additional Medicare tax. The remaining $2 million would be subject to ordinary tax rates with the changes in top rate and bracket and the additional Medicare tax. The total tax due on the $3 million would be about $840,595.
Payment of the tax for certain family-owned and operated farms and businesses would not be due until the business is sold or ceases to be family-owned and operated. No definition of family has been given. The authors’ original definition of family is those related by lineal descent: from grandparent to parent to children.
The proposal provides for a 15-year fixed-rate payment plan for the tax on appreciated assets transferred at death, other than liquid assets. Family-owned and operated farms and businesses electing to defer payment do not qualify.
The Internal Revenue Service is authorized to require security when reasonable. That is, the IRS may take out a lien on the property to secure the tax-deferred or the 15-year tax payment.
Other Provisions that may Affect Estate Transfer
The top marginal individual ordinary income tax rate increases from 37 to 39.6 percent.
The income threshold for reaching the top income tax bracket is lowered. For example, the top bracket for married filing jointly would drop from the current $628,300 to $509,300. For those filing as single, the top bracket falls from $523,600 to $452,700.
Long-term capital gains and qualified dividends of taxpayers with adjusted gross income of more than $1 million would be taxed at ordinary income tax rates for the amount that exceeds $1 million. Current capital gains rates range from zero to 20 percent. This would include the tax on transfer of assets by death or gift. Effective April 28, 2021.
Apply the additional 3.8 percent Medicare tax to all trade or business income of high-income taxpayers with adjusted gross income of $400,000 or more, including transfer of assets.
Repeal the deferral of gain from like-kind exchanges (Section 1031) for amounts exceeding $500,000. Applies to exchanges completed in tax years beginning after December 31, 2021.
Effects on Kentucky Farms
Farm data from farms participating in the Kentucky Farm Business Management program were examined to identify balance sheets with basis in assets, especially basis in land. A total of 320 farms in the program were identified. Of those, 160 (50%) appear to have a taxable amount after the exclusion. That is, subtracting adjusted basis from fair market value listed on the balance sheet resulted in a gain greater than the $1 million personal exclusion for the owner or the $2 million exclusion for the owner and spouse. Fair market value averaged $8.4 million. The taxable amount ranged from $14,000 to nearly $28 million. The average amount subject to the transfer tax was about $3.08 million.
These are commercial-sized, family-operated Kentucky crop and livestock farms. The average farm operates 2,044 acres. The farmer owns 418 acres (20 percent) and rents the other 1,626. The average Schedule F Income reported was $65,514.
The typical Kentucky family farm uses a large portion of rented farmland. The average KFBM farm owns 27% of the land used for production and rents the other 73%. The transfer tax will apply to individual landlords as well. The family farming operation will be adversely affected if it is unable to retain use of this rented land because the transfer tax prompts its sale.
Some landlords are family members that are no longer actively involved in the farm. Depending on how broadly family-owned and family-operated are defined the family farm exclusion may not apply to these landowners at their deaths.
There are other specific provisions in the American Families Plan that will impact gift and estate transfers and will change or limit the way estate planning may be carried out. For more information see:
“Green Book” Details President’s Tax Reform Proposals by Kristine A. Tidgren
Source: Phil Craft, Kentucky State Beekeepers Association
Bees are an important part of agriculture, because they provide the pollination required to produce many crops. Beekeeping not only helps ensure that your crops get pollinated, but it can be a very rewarding experience, not to mention producing some very tasty honey. The Kentucky State Beekeepers Association has many upcoming educational programs to help you learn more about beekeeping and improve the health of your hives.
With funding from Kentucky State University, Phil Craft is offering an online series called Intermediate Beekeeping. Craft is a retired Kentucky state apiarist and former beekeeping specialist for the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.
This series is designed to help beekeepers better manage their honeybee colonies. The program consists of eight live virtual classes and a Q&A session. Sessions occur on various Tuesday nights throughout 2021 at 7 p.m. ET.
Upcoming sessions include:
June 1: Controlling varroa
June 22: Mid-summer hive management, honey dearth issues, robbing precautions, waxing moths and varroa summer treatment
July 6: Removing honey from the hive, processing the honey and selling it in Kentucky
July 27: Developing and following a varroa management plan
Aug. 24: Fall hive management, helping your bees prepare for winter
Sept. 21: Other IPM techniques to control varroa mites
Oct. 12: Phil Craft and other guest panelists TBA
To participate in the series, you must be a member of the Kentucky State Beekeepers Association. The cost to join is $15 per year, and you do not have to reside in Kentucky to be a member of the organization.
More information about these educational programs of the Kentucky State Beekeepers Association is available online at https://bit.ly/2QoJ4qE. More information on ways bees can improve your agricultural operation is available at the Warren County Office of the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service.
Educational programs of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.