Overton Pesticide Applicator trainings set Nov. 29 and Dec. 6

Neches white clover

The new release of Neches, a white clover variety, will be one of the topics at pesticide applicator trainings set Nov. 29 and Dec. 6 in Overton. (Texas AgriLife Research photo by Dr. Ray Smith)

OVERTON — Pesticide applicators can earn 5.5 continuing education units toward the renewal of their licenses at trainings held on Nov. 29 and Dec. 6 at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Overton.

Programming is nearly identical for the two events with one exception, said Dr. Billy Higginbotham, AgriLife Extension wildlife and fisheries specialist and program coordinator. The November training will feature an 8:30 a.m. session titled “Critter Control Around the Home, Farm and Ranch” by a wildlife control expert. On the Dec. 6 training, the 8:30 a.m. session will be “Aquatic Weed Control in Farm and Ranch Ponds.”

The rest of the programming for both events will include: Research updates on maintaining Bermuda grass stands without commercial nitrogen; the release of a new white clover variety by the legume breeding program at the Overton center; an update on feral-hog control by Higginbotham; current information on the control of Giant Salvinia in private and public lakes and ponds; recovering drought-damaged pastures; and the control of pests in home lawns and gardens.

Presenters will include AgriLife Extension and Texas AgriLife Research faculty.

As in past trainings, the programming goes beyond the routine that applicators need just to renew their licenses, Higginbotham said.

“We want to give attendees interesting and relevant information they can put to practical use,” he said.

For example, Dr. Ray Smith, AgriLife Research legume breeder, will talk about Neches white clover, a newly released variety.

Six years in development, Neches blooms early enough to produce in East Texas and the southern region of the U.S. Most white clover varieties will not bloom early enough in East Texas to produce seed and self-propagate, Smith explained.

AgriLife Research has released and licensed Neches, but seed is unlikely to be available until the fall of 2012, Smith said.

In his presentations on pasture-cattle interactions, Dr. Monte Rouquette, AgriLife Research, will talk about a continuing study started in 1985 that shows it’s possible to maintain stands of either coastal or common Bermuda grass without applying commercial nitrogen fertilizer with low- to moderate-stocking rates. The no-nitrogen study did utilize legumes to supply some nitrogen, but no commercial nitrogen.

“On the coastal, the low-stocking rates were never less than one cow/calf unit per acre during the grazing season,” Rouquette noted. “At high stocking rates, it’s a different story.”

Both training sessions will begin with registration from 7:30-8:30 a.m. at the Overton center’s classroom. The presentations will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end at about 2:15 p.m., with an hour break for lunch at noon.

By state rules, participants may attend both the Nov. 29 and Dec. 6 sessions and earn 11 continuing education units, Higginbotham said. Three of the units will be in the general category, one in laws and regulations, and 1.5 in integrated pest management.

Registration for either training will be $30 per person and includes lunch and refreshments. Registration will be at the door only.

To reduce costs to participants, no credit-card payments or telephone registrations will be taken, Higginbotham said. Payments may be made either by check, money order or cash. To receive continuing education units, participants will need to present either their driver’s license or a copy of their applicator’s license at registration.

The Overton center is located 1 mile north of downtown Overton on State Highway 3053.

Maps and more detailed driving instructions can be found on the Internet at http://overton.tamu.edu/about/maps/ .

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