Mark Schmitt, Chemist, USDA Agricultural Research Service, introduces how malting varieties are developed and offers an overview of what happens in the malting quality lab to provide the malting barley breeders with information they can use to select quality varieties of barley. Schmitt also discusses results of recent research projects at the lab.
Noel Valdes, the owner of CobraHead LLC, demonstrates how to make and maintain an open raised-bed garden using simple tools and minimal inputs, including bed preparation, planting, crop rotation, composting and crop-protection techniques.
Erika Marín-Spiotta, an assistant professor in the Department of Geography at UW-Madison, applies interdisciplinary methods to examine the effects of human-driven changes in land cover and land use on biodiversity and the cycling of biologically active elements through the environment.
Jerry Apps, Author
"Old Farm: A History" is Jerry Apps' recent book describing Roshara, the farmstead where he and his family have spent more than 40 years forging a close relationship to the land. In this 2008 Wisconsin Book Festival presentation, Apps unearths the history of his acreage--from the last glacier to Menominee Indian residents to early European settlers to the present.
Gary Radloff, the director of Midwest Energy Policy Analysis, and Carol Barford, a research scientist in Global Ecosystems, both at SAGE, UW-Madison, discuss the important aspects of sustainable bioenergy production in Wisconsin, and highlight the balance points between environmental quality, farm management, and economic feasibility.
Laura Helft, a Ph.D. student studying Cellular and Molecular Biology at UW-Madison, provides a whirlwind tour of plant pathology--how we know plants are sick, what we know about plant diseases, what we know about the plant immune system, and how microbes are able to attack plants.
Brian Hudelson, outreach specialist in Plant Pathology at the UW-Extension, talks about common (and bizarre) plant problems that arrive daily at the UW-Madison/Extension Plant Disease Diagnostics Clinic. The Clinic serves farmers, greenhouse owners, gardeners and homeowners from all over Wisconsin and helps track the ebb and flow of plant diseases across the state.
Ella Braden, a Physicist at the Wonders of Physics, UW-Madison, explores the process of home brewing beer from both historic and scientific viewpoints. Some of the earliest writing contains recipes for beer and although the process of making beer is simple, the variations that lead to the many styles of beer are fascinating.
Mariette Nowak, the president of the Kettle Moraine Chapter of Wild Ones, discusses how to increase the number and variety of birds in your yard by growing native plants offering natural habitat and a yearlong smorgasbord of berries, nuts and seeds. Gardeners can play a vital role by preserving and restoring native communities, which can support birds and other wildlife.
Lisa Johnson, a horticulture educator for the Dane County UW-Extension, introduces some newer varieties of hostas and the annual, perennials, shrubs and trees that compliment them.