Kevin Folta, chairman of the Horticultural Sciences Department at the University of Florida, said more researchers, farmers and students need to be using social media to promote themselves, their research and their industries.
Are you using social media to promote your brand, your industry?
Kevin Folta, professor and chairman of the Horticultural Sciences Department at the University of Florida, has been writing online blogs since the late 1990s.
“Initially it was a way for me to communicate funny ideas and comedy,” Folta said. “I did a lot of blogs that covered critical thinking and skepticism, especially for topics like UFOs, quack medical claims and the anti-vaccine movement. It was kind of over-the-top criticism.”
Folta said he found having his own website was a great way to get his name out to the scientific community as well as to the public. He quickly learned that social media was also a good way to disseminate science communication. He began to use social media to promote his own research.
As the temperature in your greenhouses heat up it’s a good time to look at cooling equipment from Hort Americas. The Schaefer Wet Wall Evaporative Cooling System can provide up to 30°F of cooling using water evaporation. Water that does not evaporate is recycled through the pads, so no water is wasted.
The snap-together, leak-proof PVC system includes a supply line, spray line and reservoir. Pads are available in standard wet wall lengths and heights. Custom lengths and heights are also available. The system comes with single- or multi-stage automatic controls and center-feed and end-feed water supply lines.
Dosatron fertilizer injectors are water-powered requiring no electricity to operate. Available from Hort Americas, these easy-to-maintain injectors are simple to use and are adjustable to allow for flexible dosage rates.
The injectors work with various growing substrates and irrigation methods. The injectors can be used to inject a variety of products including fertilizers, insecticides, fungicides, organic supplements and sanitizers.
All of the units come with a mounting bracket, suction hose, weighted strainer and operating manual.
Video game encourages kids to eat more fruits and vegetables
A study of children who were asked to create action or coping plans while playing a video game promoting fruit and vegetable consumption found that children ate more fruits and vegetables. The 10-episode video game, Squire’s Quest II: Saving the Kingdom of Fivealot, was designed to both entertain and promote behavior change.
The fourth- and fifth-grade children were divided into four groups based on the type of implementation intention, specific plans, created during goal setting. Researchers found that those children in the action and coping groups reported higher vegetable consumption at dinner, and all groups had significant increases in fruit consumption at breakfast, lunch and snack times.
“Few children eat enough servings of fruit and vegetables each day,” said Dr. Karen Cullen, professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and the USDA-Agricultural Research Service Children’s Nutrition Research Center. “These foods are part of a healthy diet, and may reduce the risk of some chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease and certain cancers. So interventions to help children choose and eat more fruit and vegetables are important.”
We’re counting down to Cultivate’16, July 9-12, in Columbus, Ohio. Stop by the Hort Americas’ Booth #946 while visiting the trade show. Click here for more info!
Read Urban Ag News Issue 13
There are great articles in Urban Ag News Issue 13 including the conversion of a recreation center into an indoor urban farm near Richmond, Va. Also, find out how one U.S. company is looking to expand its vertical farm operations both domestically and internationally. It will even take you out of this world with an article about growing food in outer space.