Educational programs in Agriculture and Natural Resources help sustain the profitability of agriculture and forest production while protecting and enhancing land and water resources.
Programming efforts address a broad range of issues from traditional agricultural management and production in livestock and crops, to farm business management, soil and water conservation, alternative agriculture, land and water quality, pesticide safety, forestry and wildlife, and commercial and consumer horticulture.
Soil Testing & Fertilization Recommendations
Evaluate your soil resources before you fertilize! Our office provides the soil sample boxes and forms which must be submitted to the Virginia Tech soils lab. The results are reliable and will help you improve your farm or garden soil fertility and reduce costly, unnecessary fertilizer applications. The procedure for correctly collecting a soil sample correctly can be found here.
Pesticide Safety Training
There are three main pesticide license designations in Virginia: private, commercial, and registered technician. Private applicator permits are those needed by agricultural applicators who wish to apply restricted-use chemicals (those you can only buy if you have earned your private pesticide applicators license) on their own property. Commercial applicators are those persons who have studied the laws and regulations, been adequately trained in pesticide safety, mixing, and education, and have passed their certified applicators exam, allowing them to apply pesticides to public places and community lands (ranging from schools, to right-of-ways, to golf courses, etc. ) or are hired to apply pesticides to private or commercial property (exterminators, etc.). Registered technicians are commercial applicators in training. They must first undergo training and pass the registered technician exam, and then they must work under the supervision of a certified commercial applicator for one year before they can take the test for commercial applicator. There are many different types of commercial applicators and additional information and resource materials can be found at the Virginia Tech Pesticide Programs site. Additional information on pesticide regulations and programs in Virginia can be found at the Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services site.
Virginia Cooperative Extension offers certification and recertification courses throughout the year for both private pesticide applicators and commercial/RT applicators. Private applicator recertification courses are generally offered in the winter months, while commercial and RT courses are generally offered in the summer months. A general list of events for this area can be found at the Southern Piedmont Ag Connection blog under Upcoming Programs. For more information, please contact the office.
We welcome your questions about unidentified insects, plants (or weeds), diseases, and nutrient deficiencies. If you have a question, please call the office to determine the best way to have it identified. Samples can generally be dropped by the extension office (although we ask you to exercise caution when bringing in household pests for identification). Photos are always welcome and they can be emailed to Lindy Tucker at email@example.com.
You can also visit our Weed ID Guide or our Insect Identification Lab for help. If you are an avid internet user, please be wary of online resources and recommendations. Make sure your information comes from a reputable source that has jurisdiction in this area. Keep in mind, there are a great deal of regulations on pesticide usage. If you are unsure of a pesticide’s usage or requirements, please give the office a call.
If we are unable to identify your pest (insect, disease, or weed), we will send it to the appropriate Virginia Tech lab for identification and recommendations.
We are always happy to perform site visits to your yard, garden, or farm to help you evaluate your agricultural resources, identify plants and pests, discuss management or budget decisions, and help you succeed in your crop, livestock, vegetable, or garden plant enterprise. Call, visit, or email our office for assistance. For additional factsheets or information on any agricultural topic, use the search bar on the Virginia Cooperative Extension webpage.
We are always looking for sites for on-farm research. If you have land, a crop, or an idea that you would like to offer, please contact us. In recent years, most of research in Lunenburg County has focused on corn, soybean, and tobacco variety trials, but we are open to all kinds of agricultural commodities and enterprises. Just give us a call!
Virginia Cooperative Extension staff strive to meet your needs by providing educational programs on a variety of topics. The best way to stay up-to-date on upcoming programs is to call or email our staff and make a request to be added to our mailing list. The Agriculture & Natural Resources Program provides 3-4 newsletters per year on upcoming programs, agricultural news, and updates from other agricultural organizations. In order to receive this newsletter via mail or email, please contact the extension office and request to be added to one of the lists.
Additionally, the ag program works closely with 4-H, FCS, the Virginia Department of Forestry, Southside Soil & Water Conservation District, and the local schools and community college to offer youth and young adult programs on agriculture and natural resources topics. For pictures and information on some of our annual events, check out the Southern Piedmont Agricultural Research & Extension Center site (and Facebook page) as well as the newsletters which can be found in the right hand column of this page.
We have a million other things going on from the four-county Southside Master Gardener program (Mecklenburg, Nottoway, Brunswick, and Lunenburg) to calf marketing through the Fed-Together Program, so do not hesitate to get on our mailing or emailing lists and get involved.
Also, we are always open to new program ideas and recommendations, so please feel free to share your ideas with us.
For additional information on programs and offerings, follow Lunenburg County Agriculture on Facebook and keep up with events happening in Southside on the Southern Piedmont Ag Connection blog! If you are curious about the different types of farms and producers in the area, follow Amelia agent, Laura Siegle’s nationally awarded blog: Central Virginia Ag Spotlight.
And don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions.
The VCE-Master Gardener program is made up of more than 4,000 active and certified Master Gardener volunteers.
The VCE-MG program has an economic impact of more than $5.65 million. Also, almost 1,000 new volunteers are trained annually.
VCE-MGs work specifically towards these goals:
- Enhancing the environment through sustainable landscape practices
- Using horticulture and landscaping to positively impact youth
- Using horticulture and landscaping to promote community development and economic growth
- Producing food in public and private gardens to improve human nutrition and food security
- Using horticulture to improve the overall quality of life for Virginia's citizens
Requirements to Become a VCE-Master Gardener
- Must attend at least 50 hours of classroom instruction
- Must contribute at least 50 hours of volunteer service conducting horticultural education programs
(These 100 hours must be completed in one year. Then you earn the title of VCE-Master Gardener)
- Must contribute at least 20 hours of volunteer service each year to remain active
- Must participate in at least 8 hours of recertification training
For more information on the Virginia Cooperative Extension Master Gardener program, please visit their website (Virginia Master Gardener Program) or contact Katie Baker, ANR extension agent in the Lunenburg County Extension office.
Today’s families find themselves wanting to keep up with changes in their world; changes that happen at a faster and faster pace. Whatever your stage of life, Virginia Cooperative Extension’s Family and Consumer Sciences programs bring you knowledge you can use to make better decisions and improve your life. We offer reliable, non-biased information to help you with raising kids, eating right, spending smart, and living well.
Financial Management, Housing, and Consumer Education Program
Financial management, housing, and consumer education programs are some of the programs offered to teach youth, individuals, and families life-long resource management skills to help them manage money more effectively, improve their indoor air quality, save energy, and make better consumer decisions.
Food, Nutrition and Health Program
Food, nutrition and health programs offered in Lunenburg County are programs designed to help youth, adults and families make wise nutritional choices, prepare food safely, prevent chronic disease, and make the necessary lifestyle changes for optimal wellness.
Family Nutrition Program is sponsored by the USDA Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and provides nutrition education to eligible individuals and families in Planning District 14. Contact person is Christine Kimbrel, and Barbara Rather.
Child Development and Parenting Programs
Early Childhood Development Programs are offered in Spring and Fall of each year. Participants attending will receive up to four hours of professional development toward recertification for licensing.
Court Order Parenting Programs are offered monthly. Living Apart-Parenting Together is a four-hour class designed to educate parents about the effects of divorce and separation on both children and parents. It provides strategies that help parents living apart work out parenting decisions without putting their children in the middle. This class meets the parent education guidelines established by the Supreme Court of Virginia.
Who We Serve
- Youth, grades K-12
- Volunteers, parents, teachers, community leaders, and other adults who work with youth.
How We Reach Our Audiences
- 4-H offers youth fun, safe, and inclusive learning environments to meet their need for belonging, such as: 4-H In-School Enrichment Programs, 4-H Clubs, Special Interest & Short-Term Programs, After School 4-H programs and camping.
Methods We Use
- Experiential Learning(learn by doing)
- Youth-Adult Partnerships
- Fun curriculum materials and activities such as contests & events
- Service learning
- Collaborations with other youth serving agencies & organizations
Major Programs We Emphasize
- 4-H provides youth the opportunity to explore a variety of topics and to master the knowledge and skills they learn. Program focus areas include: Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Environmental
- Science, Technology, & Engineering
- Healthy Lifestyles
- Leadership, Personal Development and Citizenship
The Difference We Make
- Youth develop important life skills and gain workforce preparation and developmental assets such as: Communication skills, organizational abilities, wise decision-making skills, independence & self-confidence and respect and caring for others & the community.
What We Offer
- In-School 4-H
- 4-H Jr. Camp
- 4-H Day Camp
- BLT-Teen Club (Building Leaders for Tomorrow)
- Special Interest Clubs(Giddy Up Horse Club, A Jump Ahead 4-H Rabbit Club, "Sew"Much Fun 4-H Sewing, Poultry 4-H Club, Horseless Horse 4-H Club)
- Cloverbuds (5-8 yrs old)
- ALIVE By the James (Watershed Camp for Teens)
- State 4-H Congress
- Jr. Livestock Show
- Summer 4-H Programs (Day Camps, Workshops, etc.....)
Engaging with Communities
Virginia Cooperative Extension specialists in community viability work with Extension agents, campus-based faculty, organizational partners, communities, and individuals to further opportunity and build capacity in five program areas:
- Leadership & Planning
- Community Enterprise and Resiliency
- Community Food System and Enterprises
- Community Planning
- Emerging Community Issues
Examples of our work include training county elected officials, educating entrepreneurs, facilitating collaborative projects, supporting the growth of community food systems and local economies, enhancing agent skills and community capacity in facilitation and leadership, conducting problem-driven research, and creating publications and tools that address critical community needs.
Do you have a question about Community Viability?
Perhaps one of the Community Viability specialists below can help you. Contact a Community Viability specialist or direct a question to them using our Ask an Expertsystem.