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Great Recognition for Their Innovative Research

Research highlights in the impact statement include the work of UC Davis Entomology and Nematology faculty members Rick Karban and Rachel Vannette.

It's good to see the innovative research of two UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology faculty members, community ecologists Richard...

Research highlights in the impact statement include the work of UC Davis Entomology and Nematology faculty members Rick Karban and Rachel Vannette.
Research highlights in the impact statement include the work of UC Davis Entomology and Nematology faculty members Rick Karban and Rachel Vannette.

Research highlights in the impact statement include the work of UC Davis Entomology and Nematology faculty members Rick Karban and Rachel Vannette.

Posted on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 at 12:28 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Innovation, Natural Resources

For the Record: Congress Honors Bruce Hammock

UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock in his Briggs Hall office. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

You may have missed it during the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the U.S. House of Representatives paid tribute last January to UC Davis...

UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock in his Briggs Hall office. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock in his Briggs Hall office. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock in his Briggs Hall office. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Gotcha! UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock gets doused at a water balloon battle. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Gotcha! UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock gets doused at a water balloon battle. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Gotcha! UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock gets doused at a water balloon battle. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 1:33 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Family, Innovation, Natural Resources

High Honor for Cornell Professor Anurag Agrawal, UC Davis Alumnus

Cornell University Professor Anurag Agrawal collecting data in Ithaca. He is a newly elected member of the National Academy of Sciences. (Courtesy Photo)

Congratulations to UC Davis doctoral alumnus Anurag Agrawal of Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.,  a newly elected member of...

Cornell University Professor Anurag Agrawal collecting data in Ithaca. He is a newly elected member of the National Academy of Sciences. (Courtesy Photo)
Cornell University Professor Anurag Agrawal collecting data in Ithaca. He is a newly elected member of the National Academy of Sciences. (Courtesy Photo)

Cornell University Professor Anurag Agrawal collecting data in Ithaca. He is a newly elected member of the National Academy of Sciences. (Courtesy Photo)

A monarch, Danaus plexippus, foraging on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifola, in Vacaville, Calif. The declining population of monarchs is troubling. Art Shapiro, UC Davis distinguished professor of evolution and ecology, says monarchs are on life support. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A monarch, Danaus plexippus, foraging on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifola, in Vacaville, Calif. The declining population of monarchs is troubling. Art Shapiro, UC Davis distinguished professor of evolution and ecology, says monarchs are on life support. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch, Danaus plexippus, foraging on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifola, in Vacaville, Calif. The declining population of monarchs is troubling. Art Shapiro, UC Davis distinguished professor of evolution and ecology, says monarchs are on life support. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch caterpillar chewing on a stem of narrowleaf milkweed, Asclepias fascicularis, in a Vacaville pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A monarch caterpillar chewing on a stem of narrowleaf milkweed, Asclepias fascicularis, in a Vacaville pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch caterpillar chewing on a stem of narrowleaf milkweed, Asclepias fascicularis, in a Vacaville pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Monday, May 3, 2021 at 4:27 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Innovation, Natural Resources

Seeds, Seeds and Seeds

I love perennial vegetables. I have a few of them that I planted once and harvest from year after year - artichokes, asparagus, tree Kale ‘Pentland Brig,' tree collards. I also have Swiss chard, pepper plants, and one eggplant that over-wintered or did not die in the winter. I also have blue potatoes that pop up everywhere due to re-planting them in several places over the years and not digging up all the pieces. I consider them my friendly weeds. 

But like a lot of gardeners, I like to try and challenge myself to grow new plants, or I have plain garden envy. I also like to eat a variety of vegetables. I really can only eat so much kale and collards every day. But I found out that, like last year, a lot of seed companies are behind in their shipments. The seed companies have been doing well because more people are gardening during the lockdown. I searched around and came upon an Oakland-based seed company that will deliver in a few days. How awesome! They specialize in Asian vegetables.

photo by Tina Saravia

Meanwhile, my brother asked me if I could sow some okra (Abelmoschus escutentus) seeds for him. They had bought a packet of ‘Red Burgundy.' I couldn't say no to my little brother who makes the best gumbo. A few days later, my neighbor down the street brought me a bag of freshly picked cilantro that he planted in the perimeter of his backyard. He also brought a packet of seeds and asked me if I could sow okra ‘Clemson Spineless.” How could I say no? His wife makes the best dal in Solano County, maybe California. 

While waiting for my shipment, I decided to inventory my seed collection. I noticed I still have ‘Star of David' okra from last year. So I sowed them also. I soaked the seeds overnight and planted them in little paper pots - 3 in each pot. I have enough seeds to spare. 

Here's a link from UC California Garden Web https://vric.ucdavis.edu/pdf/okra.pdf.

It's a really good resource. The seed packets have instructions for when and how to plant. But none of them says anything about soaking the seeds before planting. 

My new seeds came in the mail a couple of days later. I enthusiastically opened the envelope, and there it was, in the midst of all my Asian vegetables —  a packet of okra. I am declaring this year in my garden the ‘Year of the Okra.' 

Nothing will be wasted, there's a new seed library at the JFK Library in Vallejo. I can donate my excess seeds to them. 

The Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano takes garden produce donations at their warehouse in Fairfield. So far, I've dropped off 22 lbs of collard greens this year. 

The okra seeds are sown, time to move on to the next ones.

Posted on Monday, May 3, 2021 at 2:08 PM

Happy 'World Robber Fly Day!'

UC Davis doctoral candidate  Charlotte Herbert Alberts reads to her son, Griffin, born in April of 2020.

Do you know that today is "World Robber Fly Day?" "World Robber Day?" you ask. No, "World Robber Fly Day." Among those celebrating this special...

UC Davis doctoral candidate  Charlotte Herbert Alberts reads to her son, Griffin, born in April of 2020.
UC Davis doctoral candidate Charlotte Herbert Alberts reads to her son, Griffin, born in April of 2020.

UC Davis doctoral candidate Charlotte Herbert Alberts reads to her son, Griffin, born in April of 2020.

This family photo, taken in June 2020, shows George and Charlotte Alberts and their son, Griffin.
This family photo, taken in June 2020, shows George and Charlotte Alberts and their son, Griffin.

This family photo, taken in June 2020, shows George and Charlotte Alberts and their son, Griffin.

Posted on Friday, April 30, 2021 at 3:14 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Family, Innovation, Natural Resources

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