August 25, 2020
Edition Topics

  1. Message from Dr. Silvertooth
  2. The Garden Kitchen Online Cooking Classes
  3. Nominations for the Shirley O'Brien Diversity and Inclusion Award
  4. Tucson Village Farm Cooking Classes
  5. Native Plant Materials for Restoration
  6. WRRC Brown Bag Webinars
  7. Small-scale farmers colloquium, 2020
  8. 25th Arizona Pecan Growers Conference 
  9. Greenstripping and Grazing for Cheatgrass
  10. Septic Tank Health Webinar
  11. From Dissemination to Impact: Using Peer to Peer Learning in Natural Resource Extension

Message from the Associate Dean and Extension Director

As we begin to move the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension System (CES)  through the phases of transition, we will be working with CES unit heads to make assessments and decisions based on public health data and an interpretation of the local nuances associated with management at the unit level.

A general explanation of this phased gating process can be found at this link:


In addition, a detailed version, which includes internal protocols for CES personnel, is available here.  Because this is an internal document, you must log in to access the portal.

We are working directly with the University of Arizona Public Health Advisory Team that is providing updates and reports of relevant public health information to President Robbins and the Incident Command System led by Dr. Richard Carmona.

All CES units are currently operating in Phase 0 and we are considering the advancement of units to the next phase on a weekly basis.  This process involves the review of all county-based public health parameters and County Extension Director assessments of local conditions.  Very importantly this includes compliance to best public health practices such as the use of face coverings, social distancing, and frequent hand washing.

Your compliance to best public health practices along with your patience and cooperation are very much appreciated. 

The Garden Kitchen Online Hands-on Cooking Classes

Online Culinary Classes

Culinary Classes are hands-on opportunities to expand your kitchen skills while creating delicious and healthy recipes. All proceeds from these classes help support our free community programming that empowers Pima County residents to make healthier choices through food, fitness, and gardening education.

Surprise someone special with a culinary class gift certificate! Purchase a gift certificate here!

Culinary Classes are currently set up as live online zoom classes. Invite your friends and family from all around the country to join!

Knife Skills 
August 27 @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Fresh Pasta from Scratch 
September 5 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

September 12 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Cheese Board & Tapas 
September 25 @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Nominations for the Shirley O'Brien Diversity and Inclusion Award due Sept. 1, 2020 

Current faculty and staff in ALVSCE are eligible for nomination and can be nominated for two awards to honor Shirley O'Brien for her exemplary work in promoting diversity and an inclusive environment within ALVSCE and across campus. :

- Legacy Diversity and Inclusion Champion for an individual who has demonstrated exemplary leadership for 5 or more years.

- Emerging Diversity and Inclusion Champion for an individual who has shown exemplary leadership by initiating a new program or effort in the past 4 years or less.

Selection criteria, the nomination form, and how to submit nominations are at:


Tucson Village Farm Cooking Classes

Tucson Village Farm has yet another great series of guest chefs taking over our brand-new kitchen space! We love working with expert cooks from the Tucson area, and for these two classes we've partnered with Don Guerra of Barrio Bread and Jackie Sharma of Bombolé to teach you a range of diverse culinary skills.

Sourdough Baking Class with Don Guerra of Barrio Bread:
Don Guerra is back at TVF for his highly-requested sourdough class! Zoom with the founder, owner, and lead baker of Tucson’s own Barrio Bread as he teaches us how to make one of his famous sourdough loaves. Learn the science behind the dough, how to keep your starter alive and happy, and the secrets of artisanal bread making. You'll need to swing by Tucson Village Farm's new kitchen, the Angel Charity for Children Culinary Education Center, to pick up Don's Bread Kit, which contains all of the ingredients you'll need to make your own loaf at home.

September 21st, 2020
2-3:30 pm
Registration Fee: $40

Fusion Cuisine with Jackie Sharma of Bombolé:
Join Jackie Sharma of Bombolé as she teaches you some of her Latin-Indian fusion signature dishes. These healthy and delicious dishes are easy to learn and adaptable to your family’s tastes! You’ll learn to how to incorporate spices, make dishes healthier with the addition of tasty vegetables all while creating dishes that are sure to become some of your family's favorites! You’ll need to pick up a kit containing some of Jackie’s favorite spices from Tucson Village Farm’s new Angel Charity for Children Culinary Education Center at 2201 E. Roger on the day of the class.

September 30th, 2020
4-5:30 pm
Registration Fee: $40

Native Plant Materials for Restoration 

Save the Date! 

The Arizona Cross Watershed Network is hosting a virtual workshop on 'Native plant materials for restoration' on Friday, September 18, 2020, from noon to 1:00 pm. The zoom link is below.

The goal of the workshop is to identify native plant material resources in Arizona and connect the growers/producers to the restoration practitioners. Upon completion of the workshop, we will create a comprehensive inventory and summary of native plant materials programs and vendors for Arizona and hope to identify gaps in obtaining native plant materials and opportunities for improvement.

This workshop will feature lightning round presentations by: 

·      Steve Plath, Gila Watershed Partnership 
·      Maria Mullins, Institute for Applied Ecology 
·      Carianne Campbell, Strategic Habitats CAZCA 
·      Francesca Claverie, Borderlands Restoration Network 
·      Molly McCormick, RAMPS USGS 
·      Berni Jilka, Nighthawk Natives 
·      Gary Muskarinec at Wildlands Restoration
·      Elise Gornish, UA Extension Specialist in Restoration 
·      Spadefoot Nursery 
·      Kris Gade, AZ Department of Transportation
·      Lisa Thornley,  BLM AZ State Office 
·      Jeff Carter,  Tucson NRCS Plant Materials Center
We look forward to seeing you then!

This meeting is being co-hosted by Melissa McMaster, Tahnee Robertson, and Willie Sommers

If you have any questions please contact either:
Willie Somers -
Melissa McMaster-
Please forward this invitation to anyone who may be interested. The workshop will also be recorded.
Passcode: AZPLANTS
Join by phone: 408-638-0968 or 669-900-6833
Passcode for phone only: 63267110

WRRC Brown Bag Webinars

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Speaker: Daryl Vigil, Co-facilitator, Water and Tribes Initiative
Daryl Vigil will provide an overview of Toward a Sense of the Basin: Designing a Collaborative Process to Develop the Next Set of Guidelines for the Colorado River System, a report from the Water and Tribes Initiative, which since 2017 has pursued two complementary objectives: 1) to enhance tribal capacity to participate in basin-wide policy decisions and 2) to advance sustainable water management in the basin through collaborative decision-making.

Daryl Vigil is an enrolled member of the Jicarilla Apache Nation and serves as the Nation’s Water Administrator. He is also of Jemez Pueblo and Zia Pueblo. Vigil is the Co-facilitator of the Water Tribes Initiative, an effort to enhance the capacity of tribes and to advance sustainable water management through collaborative decision-making. In addition, he serves as Chairman of Water is Life a Tribal Partnership, Interim Executive Director for the Colorado River Ten Tribes Partnership, and past Chairman of the Colorado River Ten Tribes Partnership, past Chairman of the Board of the Jicarilla Apache Utility Authority, and past President/CEO of the Apache Nugget Corporation, the Jicarilla Apache Nation’s Gaming Enterprise. He also is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Colorado River Water Users Association and serves as its Secretary/Treasurer.
To request an alternate format of this content for disability-related access, please contact (520) 621-9591

Location: Webinar Only

Remote Attendance via Zoom:
The WRRC offers remote access to Brown Bag Seminars via Zoom. For details on joining this Brown Bag remotely (10 minutes prior to the event, to allow download time), visit

Small-scale farmers colloquium, 2020

This is a monthly meeting for commercial horticulture and small-scale farmers to share science-based information on diverse topics (soil, water, pests, diseases, weeds, farm management, marketing, food safety, etc.) that will help improve farm productivity, profitability, sustainability, food safety and food security.

Dates of monthly sessions: July 20th, August 17th, September 14th, October 19th, and November 16th. 

All sessions are 4:00pm to 5:00pm.

Location: Zoom
To register, email your name, gender (optional), and location (county) to

To view the agenda and list of speakers for this series, visit our website at 

Dr. Isaac Mpanga
Area Associate Extension Agent Comm. Hort. and Small Acreage


2020 Arizona Pecan Growers Conference

25th Arizona Pecan Growers Conference – Virtual and Live August 27th & 28th 

General Admission and other ticket options available. Register at

Organized by Educational Chair, Joshua Sherman, includes an engaging experience with both University of Arizona and New Mexico State University specialists in various disciplines, as well as the Director of The American Pecan Council.

Topics include: 
      Environmental Stress and Effects on Development
      Diseases & Pests Updates
      Measuring Water Stress
      Climate Outlook
      AZ Industry Economic Report
      Phosphorus Nutrition
      Genetic Tools Emerging for Producers
      American Pecan Council Update, and more. 

Less than 3 days left! See you there.

Greenstripping and Grazing for Cheatgrass

Dr Lauren Porensky 
August 27, 2020 11:00am to 12:00pm 

Featured Topic: Greenstripping and Grazing for Cheatgrass

Featured Speaker: Dr Lauren M. Porensky, Research Ecologist, Rangeland Resources and Systems Research Unit USDA Agricultural Research Service, Fort Collins, CO. Dr. Porensky is an ecologist interested in plant communities, herbivores, and spatial complexity. Her research focuses on balancing livestock production with conservation and restoration in semi-arid rangelands. Porensky got her PhD at UC Davis working on livestock management and wildlife conservation in central Kenya. She currently investigates the interactive effects of grazing, fire, prairie dogs, and variable weather on plants, livestock, and humans in the northern Great Plains.

Webinar Overview: Millions of hectares in western North America have been negatively impacted by cheatgrass invasion. Post-wildfire restoration generally involves spreading limited resources over extensive areas, and this approach often fails to meet restoration objectives. We investigated an alternative approach that may be able to weaken cheatgrass-fire feedbacks, protect remnant and restored sites, and reduce further invasion by focusing restoration resources in small, spatially strategic locations. We tested multiple methods for creating native greenstrips (fuelbreaks made of native plants), subjected experimental greenstrips to targeted grazing treatments, and monitored seedling densities over two years. At a highly invaded Great Basin site, we found that planting and grazing treatments had strong effects on seedling densities. Plots planted with a doubled seed rate had 50% more seedlings than those planted with an average seed rate. Ungrazed plots had 40% and 90% more seedlings than spring- and fall-grazed plots, respectively. However, results were primarily driven by one planted species (Elymus trachycaulus) which was both highly successful and susceptible to grazing. At a minimally invaded Colorado Plateau site, planted seedling densities were much lower (1-2 per m2) and planting techniques had weaker effects, though seed rate was still an important driver of results. At this site, targeted spring grazing tended to enhance seeded species densities and reduce cheatgrass biomass. Early results suggest that high rate native grass seedings and short-duration spring grazing should be further evaluated as potential tools for addressing cheatgrass invasion, though results may strongly depend on ecosystem context.

Webinar Facilitator: Chris Jones, Extension Agent, University of Arizona Gila County Cooperative Extension

Zoom Link:
Please log in up to 10 minutes prior to the webinar.
Cost: Free 
Registration: Not required

Septic Tank Health Webinar

September 03, 2020 11:00am to 12:00pm

Online event link:

Featured Speaker: Jake Garrett, PE, is the manager of the Gila County, Arizona Wastewater Program. He has been active in the onsite industry for the last 25 years, first in the private sector as a percolation tester, conventional and alternative system designer, and installation planning and execution under Bulletin 12 and then the 2001 Rules. Since joining Gila County in 2002 he has managed the environmental programs delegated to Gila County from both ADEQ and ADHS. In 2007 the wastewater program moved to the Building Department where he has worked to implement “one-stop-shop” for Gila County residents. He was an active participant in the 2005 rule revision process and has continued to participate in industry growth and education activities including various leadership roles.

Webinar Overview: Many homes in Gila County and rural areas use a septic tank. Jake discusses several importance aspects of septic tanks including legal and environmental concerns. You will learn how to care for your septic tank: if you keep your tank happy, you will be happy too!

Webinar Facilitator: Chris Jones, Extension Agent, University of Arizona Gila County Cooperative Extension

Zoom Link:
Please log in up to 10 minutes prior to the webinar.
Cost: Free 
Registration: Not required 

From Dissemination to Impact: Using Peer to Peer Learning in Natural Resource Extension

Please join us for our fourth (in a series of nine) webinar!
September 17th at 1:00 pm Eastern Daylight Savings Time.
This webinar is open to all! 
Webinar Summary:  
We, as Extension educators, know that information dissemination is not the same as education. But how do we move beyond “dissemination” to encourage stakeholders to reflect and integrate natural resource-based information for actual impact? With more than half of the forests and rangelands in the US under private ownership, and most others managed through local, state or federal entities, how do we work with land managers and owners in order to support complex natural resource decisions for resource health?
Join us as our three speakers share experiences in using innovative approaches with peer-to-peer learning to benefit natural resource management.

This webinar will highlight: 

Dr. Sanford “Sandy” Smith, Teaching Professor in Forest Resources and Natural Resources & Youth Extension Specialist, Penn State University, Peers and Pros 360

Dr. Eli Sagor, Extension Specialist, University of Minnesota, The Great Lakes Silviculture Library

Retta Bruegger, Western Region Specialist in Range Management, Colorado State University Extension, Peer-to-Peer Learning in Drought 

This webinar series is funded through the Renewable Resource Extension Act under the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture as Award number 2018-46401-288801. The USDA is an equal opportunity employer and service provider. 

The project team consists of natural resource professionals from across the U.S. These webinars are focused on the critical issues identified in the past two RREA strategic plans. The purpose is to feature creative, innovative, and effective Extension programs. The webinars will be an opportunity for renewable resource extension professionals to share, learn, and connect with their colleagues across land-grant institutions and disciplines. It is our hope that the webinars will bring increased public awareness of the RREA program and result in more informed, better served stakeholders.

You will be sent a Zoom link for the webinar after your registration has been submitted.  You will also receive reminders for the webinar.  All webinars are recorded and posted on our website.  If you have questions about this webinar please contact: Mark Thorne, State Range Specialist, University of Hawaii. 


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