This bug's for you. And this one, too. And that one over there! When UC Davis employees and their offspring visited the Bohart Museum of Entomology during the recent "Take Your Daughters and Sons to Work" Day, reactions ranged from awe to "wow!" They...
UC Davis entomology student and Bohart associate Lohit Garikipati shows butterfly specimens to Olivia Bingen, 4, and her father, Steve Bingen of the UC Davis Department of Music. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
It tickles! Camilla Fuerte, 7, reacts to a tarantula as her brother Joel Fuerte, 10, takes it all in stride. They are the children of Gabby Sanchez Fuerte of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, College of Engineering. In the foreground is senior museum scientist Steve Heydon of the Bohart Museum of Entomology. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ilyssa Boco, first-year entomology student at UC Davis, shows stick insects to Camellia Aranda, 8, and her sister, Isabella, 4. Their mother, Laura Aranda, works with the administrative Orange Cluster, which serves the Department of Political Science, and Department of Communication and Linguistics. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ximena Aranda, 6, and her sister, Isabella, 3, check out the insect specimens at the Bohart Museum of Entomology. Their mother, Laura Aranda, works with the administrative Orange Cluster, which serves the UC Davis Department of Political Science and the Department of Communication and Linguistics. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Bohart associate and UC Davis graduate Emma Cluff shows tomato hornworms (Manduca quinquemaculata) to Isabella Aranda, 3, and her sister Ximena Aranda, 6. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Katie Eting, 6, wearing a shirt, "Girls Are Heroes" and her sister, Lily Eting, wearing "Every Day is Caturday," check out stick insects with their mother and UC Davis employee, Jennifer Eting (center) and Ilyssa Boco (far left), first-year entomology student. In back is Tabatha Yang, the Bohart Museum's education and outreach coordinator. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
McKenzie Kennedy, 8, granddaughter of UC Davis employee Sherly Blackshire, proudly holds a stick insect. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Katie Eting, 6, and her mother Jennifer Eting learn about the insect specimens at the Bohart Museum of Entomology. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
C. J. Babowal (center), 5, delights in seeing a stick insect on the arm of his brother, Roger Babowal, 9. At left is Katie Eting,6. The boys' mother, Crystal Babowal, works in UC Davis Continuing Education. Katie's mother, Jennifer Eting, works in Finance Operations and Administration. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Camellia Aranda (foreground) likes a Madagascar hissing cockroach. In the background, Julianna “Ju Ju” Smith, 4, isn't so sure, as she hides behind the her father, Justin Smith of Animal Science. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Simon Dvorak, who works with UC Davis Academic Technology Services, visited the Bohart Museum of Entomology with his son Max, 7. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Reposted from UC Berkeley News
For UC Berkeley students graduating with a degree in conservation and resource studies, a paper diploma just won't do.
At a special alternative graduation ceremony held in Tilden Regional Park on Sunday, graduates of the Conservation and Resource Studies program instead each received a plant — an oak sapling, a strawberry plant, a pot of buckwheat grass or even a succulent — lovingly collected and cultivated by younger students.
These “living diplomas,” part of a nearly 50-year-old tradition in the program, symbolize the graduates' ongoing growth as they explore the world beyond Berkeley.
“This is our form of love and remembrance and connection to our cohort, to past cohorts and to the future,” said graduating senior Tanya Hanson during a speech on Sunday.
“We hope that they take the diplomas and plant them or take care of them,” added Leah Jones, another new graduate. “The vision is that they will grow with the plant.”
The tradition harkens back to the founding of the conservation and resource studies major in 1970. At the time, deforestation was a major issue facing California and the rest of the world, and students graduating from the new program were irked by the idea of having a paper diploma as a final symbol of their time at Berkeley.
“People were very aware of the role that the paper industry had in [deforestation], especially locally, so they said, ‘We're not going to support that — we want not to have a dead tree, but a living plant,'” said Ignacio Chapela, a faculty adviser for the program and an associate professor of environmental science, policy and management at Berkeley.
Organized in its entirety by students, the graduation event embodies the freedom and inclusivity of the major itself: There is no cost, no dress code and no limit on the number of guests each graduate can invite. Anyone is free to speak and perform, and food and decorations are either donated by, or sourced from, local sustainable businesses.
The event “embodies the emphasis that CRS (conservation and resource studies) puts on building a cohort and establishing a community,” said Skye Michel, a junior who is president of the Conservation and Resource Studies Student Organization (CRSSO), which runs the event each year. “It's meant to be a way to celebrate everyone that's been involved in the educational and personal growth of the CRS individuals.”
This year, the alternative graduation ceremony drew around 200 people to a muddy meadow at Tilden Park, part of the East Bay Regional Park District. Friends and family danced barefoot to Inspector Gadje Balkan Brass, a horn and percussion ensemble from San Francisco, and feasted on local food and drink from Trader Joe's, Acme Bread, House Kombucha, Lagunitas Brewing Company and Mixing Bowl Catering, all while dodging intermittent downpours.
Following the picnic and dancing, the crowd gathered for the ceremony, which comprised speeches from and performances by students and faculty, followed by the awarding of the living diplomas.
“[Living diplomas] very much represent the ethos of the students in the major, in that their work in the world is alive and vibrant and is something tender that needs to be cultivated,” said Erica Bree Rosenblum, an associate professor of environmental studies, policy and management and a faculty adviser in the Conservation and Resource Studies program. “To me, it's a much more apt symbol for college graduation than a piece of paper.”
With a limited budget, the students sometimes have to get scrappy to gather enough living diplomas to go around. This year's crop included California buckwheat donated by a student who grew it as part of a research project, strawberry plants originally cultivated for an unrelated fundraiser, and succulents, given to Jones by a friend.
“Last year, we had this grass that had yellow flowers, and it was really pretty, but this year, I like the diversity of the different plants,” said Hanson, CRSSO co-vice president.
Some students who participated in CRSSO's “Adopt-a-Senior” program, in which a younger student forms a mentorship relationship with an older student, grew their own plants from seeds. Junior Chris McCarron grew type of shrub called a snowdrop bush for his senior and a five-fingered fern for a friend's senior.
“I grow a lot of California natives, and it's very important to me that people (are) given plants that fit them,” McCarron said.
Chapela also chipped in by growing 12 oak saplings from acorns that he collected in Sonoma County and the Sierra Nevada — six of which he cultivated outside his office in a corrugated metal box, built to protect them against a local squirrel.
At the ceremony, Chapela read off the graduates' names, while younger students eagerly lined up with plants in hand to pass on to the seniors.
Hanson, a first-generation college graduate who plans to apply to law school, received one of Chapela's oak saplings — and she knows exactly what she's going to do with it.
“My mom's house has a 300-year-old oak tree,” Hanson said. “I want to plant mine next to it.”
Long-time UC Cooperative Extension ag assistant Michael Yang broadcasts a weekly "Hmong Agriculture Radio Show," providing a crucial connection for immigrant farmers with ag information and services, reported Jessica Kutz in High Country News.
“His voice is really important,” said Ruth Dahlquist-Willard, UCCE advisor to small-scale farmers in Fresno and Tulare counties.
During his one-hour broadcast on KBIF radio, Yang plays traditional Hmong folk music, reads through market prices for Asian vegetables, provides timely farming advice, pesticide safety and labor information, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration updates. He started the program about 30 years ago.
“A lot of farmers said we need to be aware of what is going on,” he said. “So I talked to my boss and we were able to get some grants to help the radio announce agriculture (information) to the small farm community.”
The article said Yang first tried to connect with the Hmong community by going door-to-door, but farmers were distrustful of government meddling. With their radios turned to programming in their native language, farmers listen openly.
Hear that buzz? Today is World Bee Day! We celebrate honey bees every day, but they are especially celebrated on May 20, World Bee Day. It's an annual day to raise awareness about the importance of bees and beekeeping. It's a day to acknowledge the...
Beekeeper Adelaide Grandia smiles through a pollinator cut-out board. Her grandfather is teaching her beekeeping. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Adelaide Grandia and her grandfather, Dwight Grandia of Gulf Shores, Ala., confer on a bee vacuum device. He is teaching her how to keep bees and recently set up a hive for her. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ariel Cormier, who works in the chancellor and provost offices as manager of Budget and Financial Analyis, guides her twin daughters Casey and Gabrielle, 8, in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven. The garden, located on Bee Biology Road, was installed in the fall of 2009. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ariel Cormier shows her daughter, Gabrielle, how to use the bee vacuum device, a catch-and-release activity. At right is daughter Casey. The 8-year-old girls are twins. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Ariel Cormier with eight-year-old twin daughters Casey (left) and Gabrielle at the Miss Bee Haven sculpture. It's a six-foot-long mosaic and ceramic sculpture of a worker bee. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
UC Davis employee David Hernandez (left) with sons Aayden, 10 (center) and Evan, 8, pose behind the pollinator cut-out board. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
UC Davis employee Chunying Xu with her son, Andy, look for bees in the bee garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Try topping your salads with some tasty garbanzo beans this summer. Not only are they a healthful source of protein, vitamins and minerals, but the ‘green' legumes are produced in California with a small environmental footprint!
California farmers grow about 10,000 acres of garbanzo beans, mostly for the canning market.
“We have the right growing conditions, including cool, wet winters and hot, dry summers, to produce high-quality, large, creamy-white garbanzo beans for high-end markets, like salad bars,” says Rachael Long, UC Cooperative Extension farm advisor for Sacramento, Solano and Yolo counties. “Other areas, such as Washington State, grow a smaller garbanzo bean destined for processing, like hummus, a creamy vegetable spread.”
Garbanzos, also called chickpeas, are originally from the Middle East, where they have been farmed since ancient times. In California, their heritage dates back to the Spanish Mission era. California garbanzo beans are grown in the winter time, minimizing water use. The nitrogen-fixing legumes supply their own nitrogen and require few pesticides for production as the plants secrete acids that ward off insect pests.
To assist farmers in production practices, Long led a team of researchers to produce a new 2019 Garbanzo (chickpea) production manual for the dry bean industry in California.
“This is a great resource for farmers and the industry,” says Nathan Sano, manager for the California Dry Bean Advisory Board, about the publication, which covers garbanzo production from seed selection to harvesting and markets.
The manual identifies garbanzo varieties that have pest and disease resistance. Nutrient management information helps growers comply with regulations for protecting groundwater from nitrate. The irrigation section provides tables on water needs for crops grown in different areas of California, helping to conserve water.
“Our UC ANR Grain-Legume workgroup started this production manual back in 1992,” Long said. “I'm thankful for a strong team and grower and industry input and support. I also appreciate the incredible mentoring and reviews of this manual by Roland Meyer, UC Cooperative Extension emeritus soil specialist, and a fantastic editor, UC Cooperative Extension agronomy specialist Dan Putnam, to make this publication a reality. This was a big group effort, and I appreciate everyone's contributions to make this a valuable resource for the California dry bean industry.”
The California garbanzo bean production manual is available for free online at https://anrcatalog.ucanr.edu/Details.aspx?itemNo=8634.
In addition to Long and Meyer, co-authors include UC Cooperative Extension farm advisors Michelle Leinfelder-Miles, Konrad Mathesius, Sarah Light, Mariano Galla, Shannon Mueller, Allan Fulton and Nick Clark, and UC Cooperative Extension irrigation specialist Khaled Bali.