Blogs

Highlight Blog Posts
two cups of hot cocoa

Make your own convenient hot cocoa mix

As the weather turns cooler, you may find yourself reaching for a warm mug of hot cocoa. While it’s convenient to grab a packet out of the box, making your own only takes three simple ingredients: sugar, cocoa powder and milk. This is a far cry from the hot cocoa mix you buy at the store, which generally has corn syrup, hydrogenated oil, natural flavor, and other preservatives added. Not to...
hydroponic strawberries growing in high tunnel

Hydroponic day-neutral strawberry production observations

Hydroponic production allows for different configurations or growing systems that can include gutters, rails, troughs, buckets, slabs, and bags, as well as different substrates or growing media including perlite, coconut coir, rockwool, and more. Couple production system versatility with controlled environmental conditions, it becomes easy to see how a hydroponic system could be a fit for off-...
Recent Blog Articles
A lilac bloom emerging during a snowfall

How Does Warm Winter Weather Affect Plants?

So far, the month of February 2024 has been mild. As I write it is currently 75 degrees Fahrenheit (F) outside and I am using all my willpower to stay inside and type out this article. In addition to fighting the urge to clean up the garden, some people have been concerned about how the warm winter...
Finish this story
Cancer awareness ribbons

Cancer awareness

February is National Cancer Prevention Month. In the United States, cancer is the second leading cause of death. Illinois saw nearly 66,000 new cases among adults in 2020 for all cancer types. Let's learn about what cancer is, symptoms, risk factors, and prevention. What is cancer? It is a...
Finish this story
Slow cooker with kidney beans

Kidney Beans and Slow Cookers

Slow cookers, commonly known by one of the brand names Crock-pot®, are a popular kitchen appliance used to make a variety of soups, stews, desserts, or one-pot meals. One common ingredient in soups and stews is kidney beans. Purchasing dry beans and soaking them at home is an excellent way to save...
Finish this story

We Have Blogs on Many Different Topics

Personal Finances

Illinois Extension can guide your family through all of life's stages.
couple sitting on patio

Great retirements don't happen by accident. Tips for saving and investing your money.

Plan Well. Retire Well.

university of illinois graduate

Money talk by college students, for college students.

Be Centsible

man helping couple with money issues

Develop and maintain thoughtful and effective financial behaviors using these trusted methods.

Fearless Financial Future

cardboard people standing on money

Find the financial balance that fits your personal budget and financial planning goals.

Finding Financial Balance

Family

In today's hectic lives, families find themselves raising children, caring for elders, and working.
family

Read these timely resources for wellness across the lifespan.

Family Files

Health

Living well means taking time for ourselves so we can be healthy for others who need us. 
woman doing yoga stretches in the park

Take steps to living a healthier life.

To Your Health

person sitting on couch with cup of coffee

Genuine, sustained self-care is an art.

Refill Your Cup with Self-Care

person walking road

A journey of wellness dedicated to awareness and the power of knowledge to help you on your health and wellness journey.

Walking the Line to Wellness

person sitting on couch holding someone's hands

Empowering people to make healthy, respectful and responsible choices.

Community Health: Empowering People

young black girl being treated by black doctor

Working together to address social and structural health inequities

Health Insights Illinois

Nutrition and Wellness

Eating healthy shouldn't be this hard.
healthy foods on table

Healthy information for better living

Live Well. Eat Well.

healthy food on table

Nutrition information you can use.

Be Smart, Eat Well, Get Healthy

person chopping banana for smoothie

Highlighting food, recipes, and ideas for a healthy lifestyle.

Healthy Eats and Repeat

healthy food on table

Helpful tips to make meals easy, healthy and tasty!

Simply Nutritious, Quick and Delicious

Community and Economic Development

Illinois Extension helps communities develop strategies to thrive.
young adult standing with other professionals seated

Strategies for strengthening local economies.

Building Entrepreneurial Communities

government building

Participants in Illinois Extension Illini Science Scholars Program share their experiences in this unique opportunity. 

Scholars Speak

Natural Resources

We have one planet. Let's work together to ensure its future and ours.
grass

Dig deep into the types of grasses and their uses in our world.

Grasses at a Glance

world globe made of paper

Read the latest news in natural resources.

Naturalist News

field buffer

The Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy guides efforts to improve water quality at home and downstream.

Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy

tornado

Weather impacts food production, transportation, homes, and lives.

All About Weather

Horticulture

From the flowers you enjoy to the produce you eat to the plants that add value to our life, we offer help for growing strong.
mums

Keeping you (and your garden) growing with good ideas.

Good Growing

garden shed

Gardening in Illinois including everything from vegetable gardening to native plants.

The Garden Scoop

garden path

Where northern Illinois gardeners come to find out what's happening out in the yard.

Over the Garden Fence

flower

Local and statewide information on a variety of current topics for home gardeners and market growers.

Flowers, Fruits, and Frass

garden path

Helping new and experienced gardeners develop their skills and knowledge while encouraging everyone to enjoy the outdoors.

Illinois River Horticulture

flower

Archive of the most popular blog articles from Illinois Extension

Our Greatest Horticulture Hit Blogs

Local Food Systems and Specialty Crops

Growers are diverse, from urban agriculture and beginning small farmers to farmers markets and organic agriculture.
farmers market

Learn new resources for urban growers.

Local Foods | Local Farms | Local People

strawberries

The "Jungle" refers to Elizabeth Wahle's personal St. Louis Metro East garden and it provides the backdrop for her writings about building and sustaining viable food webs and ecosystems within the home landscape.

Welcome to My Jungle

squash soup

A blog for growers, consumers, and backyard gardeners to grow, eat, and connect in the local food system.

Raise, Grow, Harvest, Eat, Repeat

man holding onion

Connecting you with your food, farmers and community.

Know How. Know More. Connecting Food, Farmers, and Community

carrots in the ground

Ramping up local food production in the second-most populous county in the US.

Cultivate Cook County

vegetables in basket for sale

Conditions can change quickly. As a commercial fruit and vegetable grower, get the latest information as it is available.

Commercial Fruit and Vegetable Growers

 

Agriculture

angus bull

The cattlemen's connection to timely topics, current research, and profitable management strategies.

The Cattle Connection

wheat field

Whether you're a farmer or landowner, trust the advice from Extension's farm coach.

Farm Coach

tractor spraying insecticide and pesticide

Emerging news and best practices for pesticide use and testing.

Pesticide News

corn

All issues concerning Small Farms, Agriculture, Local Food Systems, and the Natural Resources.

Acres of Knowledge

crops

Current topics about crop production in Western Illinois, including field crops research at the NWIARDC in Monmouth.

Hill and Furrow

Youth Development

We're the friend you've been looking for.
children wearing rainboots

4-H’s learning opportunities are intentionally designed around four essential concepts necessary for positive youth development: a sense of belonging with a positive group, independence and self-determination, a spirit of generosity toward others, and a wide variety of opportunities to master life challenges.

Our Stories from Illinois 4-H

family standing on beach

Timely information, activities, and resources to help you stay connected to loved ones, the world around you, and yourself.

Connection Corner: Activities for Families