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Up close view of a brown marmorated stink bug on a green leaf.

New online agriculture course grows skills in identifying corn, soybean field insects

URBANA, Ill. — One thing is for sure, if there is a farm field, insects will visit it. Having the skills to identify insects inhabiting crop fields across the Midwest improves one’s ability to identify and effectively manage insect pests while avoiding unnecessary interventions that may…

Wind farm over a field of soybeans

Illinois clean energy transition excludes key constituents in energy justice equation

URBANA, Ill. — Illinois has made transitioning to clean energy a major priority in recent years with the passage of the Future Energy Jobs Act in 2016 and the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act in 2021. Both pieces of legislation prioritize an equitable transition, aiming to avoid and address…

Overhead view of farmland filled with solar panels.

Attend field day to learn how agrivoltaics boosts energy, resiliency in food production

URBANA, Ill. — Continuing to feed a growing world is the agriculture industry's future, and the demand for sustainability is here. One avenue of exploration includes agrivoltaics or solar energy within production agriculture.

“The relatively recent idea combines solar panels for…

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A woman with her back to the camera faces a dumpster full of pumpkins as she smashes them with a bat
Have a smashing good time composting Halloween pumpkins
CHICAGO, Ill. — Jack-o’-lanterns live a short, scary life. That is unless they are catapulted, hurled, or whacked into a compost pile after spooky season is over. Green your Halloween by recycling pumpkins after the holiday at one of more than a dozen University of Illinois...
Far view of the scene of a farm fire.
Stay alert, be prepared for increased risk of farm fires during harvest
URBANA, Ill. — Severe drought and current environmental conditions have the Midwest on alert as fire risks are higher than usual during equipment rollout for corn and soybean harvest. From lack of precipitation to low soil moisture and dry vegetation, these conditions, when paired with hot,...
multiple hands reaching for the center
New committee to drive inclusivity and equity initiatives in Illinois 4-H
Champaign, IL – Illinois 4-H is marking the establishment of a Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) Implementation Committee. This newly formed committee will advise and collaborate in the implementation of DEIA priorities recently identified through a strategic planning...
An older woman smiling
Learn essential tips for a better aging life experience
URBANA, Ill. — As people age, they face many changes and challenges, from losing loved ones to declining health and independence. That's why it's essential to give them the meaning they need to live this stage of life with dignity. University of Illinois...
Yellow rake sitting against large tree with fall leaves on the ground
Consider pollinators during fall garden cleanup
URBANA, Ill. — Pollinators are important to the global food supply and local ecosystems. About 35% of food crops rely on pollinators for production, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Meaning without pollinators, there would be no food. If you have enjoyed an apple this fall or a...
youth winners pose
Competition builds camaraderie, sense of friendly competition
BUNKER HILL, Ill. — The best teenage 4-H shotgun shooters from Illinois gathered to shoot a full 100 rounds of trap shooting at Brittany Shooting Park near Bunker Hill on Sept. 23. A crowd of nearly 250 gathered for this event. Seventy shooters were on hand for this year’s competition....
winning team poses
Youth put archery skill mastery to the test
PEKIN, Ill. — Illinois youth gathered at a statewide competition on Sept. 16 to put their skill mastery in archery to the test. In addition to skill levels, the competitions focus on building teamwork abilities, camaraderie, and of course fun. “I know at first it appears odd to have...
avani rai and youth in action logo
McLean County youth named national award winner
WASHINGTON, DC  — National 4-H Council today announced the winners of the 2024 Youth In Action Awards, a national program sponsored by Bayer that recognizes four diverse young leaders who have made a positive impact in their communities. McLean County 4-H youth, Avani Rai, 17, was named a...
4-H Leaders
Illinois youth program offers a place where kids can belong, lead, learn
URBANA, Ill. — 4-H members in Illinois will join the six million youth across the country in celebrating National 4-H Week Oct. 1-7. Clubs around Illinois celebrate this week by highlighting the remarkable 4‑H youth in their communities and showcasing the incredible experiences that 4‑H offers...
vegetables on a display crate
What is needed to create a long-term sustainable food system for Illinois?
URBANA, Ill. — Illinois food growers, distributors and activists voiced solutions for creating a more resilient and equitable food system in Illinois: support for growers and producers of all experience levels, investment in education and marketing strategies, and advocacy engagement to secure...
People exercising
Take steps to build a strong foundation for diabetes care
URBANA, Ill. — Over 37.3 million Americans live with diabetes, and another 38% of adults have prediabetes. Raising awareness and learning as much as possible about preventing and treating diabetes is essential. University of Illinois Extension offers...
Two row tunnels protecting plants in a garden
Tips for extending the garden’s growing season
URBANA, Ill. — Harvest season in a vegetable garden doesn’t have to end so soon. Stretch growth with techniques that extend the typical growing season past the point where crops would normally be grown outdoors. Protection from frosts can happen at either end of the growing season. A...
green acorns on an oak branch
Tree identification workshop highlights importance of Illinois' native oaks
URBANA, Ill. — Illinois is home to 21 different native oak species whose populations provide habitat and food for wildlife, support biodiverse ecosystems, contribute to improved air and water quality, and provide residential shade benefits that help to reduce energy use. Gain a better...
ylt members pose with donations
Youth-led initiative creates local action, statewide change
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. ­– Counties across Illinois were tasked with gathering non-perishable food and care items as part of the annual, statewide 4-H Can Make a Difference Food Drive held in conjunction with the Illinois State Fair Aug. 11-13. “In Illinois, over a million people face hunger,...
Group of yellow and purple perennial plants.
Four Seasons Gardening series ushers in the fall season with care
URBANA, Ill. — As seasons shift, take care and fall into gardening with ease. Find healing, growth, and how adding a little planning keeps the mind going and growing. Explore how to keep the season alive with tips for dividing perennials, continuing self-growth, and healing with time...

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