Experience Oregon Agriculture

I am thankful to live in the beautiful state of Oregon, where I can explore the outdoors, enjoy the beautiful scenery, and appreciate the variety of food we have available. Although I never grew up on a farm, I had the opportunity to live a country lifestyle, raising animals and working on farms during the summer months. I was surrounded by agriculture in our small town and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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Bulb Forcing

My mother loves tulips. She is as faithful to this bloom as the pickiest of pollinators. Even in spring, when tulips are plentiful at the farmers market and grocery store, she will drive the extra 45 minutes to a tulip farm—just for the added choice. Only yesterday over dinner, I noticed a bouquet of deep purple tulips on her windowsill, set against the backdrop of a rainy January evening. I love tulips because my mother loves tulips, and because of the the color they bring to an otherwise typical gray Portland day. In winter, these flowers bring with them a foreshadowing of spring, and can warm the people sitting around a kitchen table. Tulips, and other bulbs, can do the same thing for a classroom.

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The 6 F’s of Oregon Agriculture

When you hear the word agriculture, what comes to mind? Is it an older man in a straw hat and overalls? Is it a big red barn amidst a sweeping rural landscape? Or is it the Ram Truck commercial commemorating Paul Harvey’s “So God Made a Farmer” poem that aired during the fourth quarter of the 2013 Super Bowl?

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Why Choose Agriculture?

Imagine a man in his late fifties with tired eyes and calloused hands. His 4:30a.m. alarm clock just went off as it does seven days a week, 365 days a year.

His daily tasks involve the expertise of a veterinarian, a water conservationist, an economist, a meteorologist, a mechanic, and a business owner. He was up all last night talking care of newborn calves but could not sleep in this morning because he has to get the hay crop in before it rains tomorrow. It’s also his birthday.

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Stepping on an Essential Resource

You’ve heard that soil is the root of all life. And physically, soil does hold all the roots and provide a substrate to support roots for plants and trees, but what else does it do?  Isn’t it just an inert substrate beneath our feet, and the stuff we put in flower pots, meant to provide structure for our plants?

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Eggcellent Education

Omelets, scrambles, and quiche… OH MY! There are so many amazing ways to prepare eggs for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Not only are they a tasty treat, they are jam-packed with educational opportunities. The egg laying process, the properties of the shell and contents, and the art of preparing egg dishes can all lead to a wide variety of lessons for students and adults!

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Why Teach Ag?

The fundamentals of producing our food, clothing, and shelter are great applications for hands-on math and science, problem solving, as well as creativity and the arts.

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Bringing the Outside In: Winter Activities that Connect with the Outdoors

Winter is beginning, which makes us think of staying indoors and keeping out of the wind and weather. Many children and even adults begin to miss being outside in nature during these short days. Regardless of religion or background, everyone can appreciate the ancient practice of bringing a tree or bough inside the house this time of year to remind us of the springtime to come.

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