#5MinuteNatureChallenge

Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
The Cut-Leaved Toothwort is awake now. This little gem is a flower native to Ohio and blooms in March and April and is an important source of early nectar for native pollinators and both long tongued and short tongued bees. It’s also a good source for the Falcate Orange-tip and the West Virginia White butterflies. It grows as a true Spring ephemeral (which means it appears for a brief time above the ground to reproduce and then goes dormant for the season), showing its beautiful face to the world for less than a month. It grows in rich moist woodlands and needs a thick leaf litter and lots of organic matter to grow. It won’t accept disturbed or compacted areas well and is found mainly in undisturbed areas. The native toothworts have a long history as medicinal plants for Ohio’s Native Americans and were used to relieve tooth pain as a poultice.
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Individual Acts of Conservation

There is a renewed interest in gardening for many folks during our current stay at home lifestyles. The ability to help ourselves and our neighbors by growing our own food is very reminiscent of the Victory Gardens many Americans grew during the days of World War II. Did you know that parsley, thyme and oregano are all herbs that you can overwinter outdoors in your gardens? Ours (planted last spring) have beautiful new growth and are already rewarding us with delicious flavor in our home cooking and saving us money in groceries. Another way we can all do our part, separate but together.
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Looking for a reason to get outside (in a responsible, socially distanced way) in Muskingum County?

For a number of years now, the MSWCD has sponsored a Big Tree Contest in Muskingum County. The purpose of the contest, in addition to locating, measuring and documenting our county’s big trees, is to provide an opportunity to remind us of the importance of trees and their role in our quality of life.

Trees nominated for this contest may be on your own property, or on other privately owned or public land in Muskingum County. Trees are scored using a format utilized by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources-Division of Forestry in determining Ohio’s big trees, many of which remain National Big Tree Champions. The tree’s height, average crown spread, and Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) are factored in this measurement, earning specific points or values.

When you nominate a tree, we ask that you approximate these dimensions. SWCD staff will measure each nominated tree for points. Also, it is very important to be specific as to the location of the nominated tree. It is equally important that the nominator or owner be available for the measurement by the staff during the field visit.

An award will be presented to the owner of the largest tree in Muskingum County, regardless of species. A custom made plaque and recognition in the District Newsletter will be awarded to the owners of the “Big Tree 2020”.

Last year, a White Oak owned by Carl and Linda Vernon, scored 323.5 points. This points total was calculated by adding the circumference in inches (210 inches or 5.57 feet in diameter), the height (90 feet) and the crown spread average times .25 (94 ft x .25).
Each tree entered is in the contest for two years. Previous big tree winners can enter again, but a different tree must be submitted for consideration. If you would like to submit a tree for consideration, complete the form found at the link below and return by May 1, 2020.

http://muskingumswcd.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Spring-2020.pdf
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Individual Acts of Conservation

For several years now, we’ve kept a compost pile. Ours isn’t anything fancy, we call it Madame Trash Heap. Instead of using trash bags and landfills for our food scraps and our garden debris, we cart it here. We turn the pile occasionally to keep the compost processes going and it rewards us with beautiful nutritious compost for our raised vegetable beds. Just another thing that we can do to work toward the conservation of our natural resources... separate but together.
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
After great deliberation, it has been decided to cancel this year’s tree sale. It is our upmost concern to do our part to protect our community during this Covid-19 pandemic. A refund for your order will be forthcoming. Please accept our apologies and be sure to watch for our sale next year. We look forward to your continued support.
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Individual Acts of Conservation

Our Urban Ag specialist Kristen shows us how she is starting seeds this year. Planting your own garden is an amazing way to make sure you have healthy nutritious foods and save the energy consumption required to ship our foods long distances. And what an awesome idea to reuse some of old containers to grow our foods!
Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District
Urban Greens
I thought it would be fun to share some videos and pictures to get you in the mood for gardening this spring. Won't it be fun to plant our own "Victory Gardens" this year?! Here is a video I made about a seed starting method that I tried for the first time this year called "Winter Sowing." I'm afraid I'm no actress, so please excuse all of the "umms."

The Cut-Leaved Toothwort is awake now. This little gem is a native Ohio flower and blooms in March and April and is an important source of early nectar for native pollinators and both long tongued and short tongued… https://t.co/V7aPWijmcO

Individual Acts of Conservation

There is a renewed interest in gardening for many folks during our current stay at home lifestyles. The ability to help ourselves and our neighbors by growing our own food is very… https://t.co/9E5VOEwQmB

Looking for a reason to get outside in Muskingum County?
For a number of years now, the MSWCD has sponsored a Big Tree Contest in Muskingum County. The purpose of the contest, in addition to locating, measuring and… https://t.co/LR1C8SCdLV

Individual Acts of Conservation

For several years now, we’ve kept a compost pile. Ours isn’t anything fancy, we call it Madame Trash Heap. Instead of using trash bags and landfills for our food scraps and our… https://t.co/ReBDrpFRQA

The beautiful native Spicebush is currently blooming in a woods near you. This native deciduous shrub grows 6-12 feet tall in our Ohio lowland woods. These blossoms will become a beautiful red fruit in the fall that… https://t.co/IfzkDFtka2

Individual Acts of Conservation

Our Forestry Technician, Robert Boehle, wants to remind us about the important if installing and maintaining gutters around our homes and that today might be a great time to clean… https://t.co/HuH0Zx5FSd