Danelle Cutting: Pruning class Feb. 5; hay help available

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 22, 2016

It is hard to believe that the first month of the New Year is almost over. Time never seems to slow down. With that being said, pruning season is just around the corner.

Since we have had some pretty chilly temperatures, questions have been pouring in. I also have some pretty exciting news to announce.

Question: When should I prune my blueberries? Do you ever have any classes that teach how to prune blueberries properly?

Answer: February is typically when I prune my blueberries. All ages of blueberries need to be pruned for optimum fruit production. Of course if you have never pruned before, it can seem scary.

I receive many calls about pruning and how concerned homeowners are before they make the first cut. I always suggest contacting Cooperative Extension first.

Luckily for everyone this year, Rowan and Davie counties will be hosting a blueberry pruning demonstration on Feb. 5 from 10 a.m. -12:30 p.m. We will start the demonstration on older blueberry bushes at Pinetop Blueberry Farm (830 Majolica Road, Salisbury) at 10 a.m. We will stay there for about an hour and a half and then travel a short way to a Davie County blueberry farm owned by the Picketts at 268 Seaford Road, Advance, to finish up the demonstration on young blueberry bushes. If you are interested in attending, please RSVP by calling our office at 704-216-8970.

Question: I need some hay for my cows this winter. Do you know where I can purchase some?

Answer: This summer definitely took a toll on our hay supply, due to the drought. In some areas, we got lucky with the late rains so that some of our producers were able to get enough supply to have a little extra hay to sell.

Our office is assisting growers who need hay by helping them find local farms that have some for sale. We are also working with Iredell County on compiling a list of growers that are providing hay for sale. If you are in either situation, please give us a call so that we can put you on our list as a hay seller or someone that needs hay to get through the winter.

Question: When will the Salisbury Farmers’ Market start accepting vendor applications?

Answer: The Salisbury Farmers’ Market Association met this week to discuss the rules, regulations and application forms for the 2016 year. The updated rules should be posted on the Salisbury Farmers’ Market website by the end of next week.

There are a few changes to the rules. One of the changes is that Wednesday market vendor fees will only be $8. Applications must be received by April 1 if a vendor wishes to attend the annual opening on April 16. Stay updated on the progress of the Salisbury Farmers’ Market at www.salisburyfarmersmarket.com.

If you would like to RSVP to the blueberry pruning demo, have questions about hay, or would like more information on the Salisbury Farmers’ Market, call your local agent, Danelle Cutting, at 704-216-8970.