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DAVIS: Extension office responds to COVID-19

Coronavirus is having a major impact.

Regardless of any further outcome, the next few weeks will already be remembered in the history books.

COVID-19 is resulting in minor inconveniences in our programming efforts.

We have canceled many of our spring horticulture programs.

All scheduled programs, meetings or events (including non-Extension related community events) that were to take place through April 6 at the Clark County Extension office have been canceled or suspended.

This includes the two sessions of the fruit tree grafting workshop, and the pruning class that was scheduled for later this month.

We will continue to monitor this situation before making further cancellations beyond April 6.

If you would like to stay informed about future activities at the Clark County Extension Service, as well as receive information to help in dealing with COVID-19, I would like to remind you about our “Clark County Extension, Ky” Facebook page.

The realization hit me that these cancellations or suspended programs are definitely “minor” inconveniences.

When I dropped my son off at day care earlier this week, I ran into someone who told me about their job situation. This individual shared with me that they will soon have to rely on assistance since they are unable to work because of closers in the wake of COVID-19.

It hit me how serious the situation is for them since they also have young children to care for. Despite their situation, this individual was completely on board with the decision to close their place of employment as they have parents and grandparents they wish to protect.

I hope this encounter is a reminder for you, as much as it was for me.

The situation is somewhat uncertain as we are facing the unknown over the next few weeks. However, I hope you will do your part to support others in our community.

This is a time to look out for your neighbors; make sure they have what they need and share whenever you have the opportunity to help someone else who may have a need.

Let’s all make sure we practice social distancing and practice good hygiene as our leaders have been reminding us over and over again. Practice washing hands even more than on a regular basis and be mindful of exposing sickness to others.

If you are at home because you are unable to report to work, I would like to encourage you to get outdoors. On the days that it isn’t raining, COVID-19 shouldn’t stop you from working in your lawn, preparing the garden, pruning the orchard or brambles, working in the landscape, spreading mulch or even possibly doing some spring cleaning. Outdoor activities are great for the entire family.

We are still open at the Clark County Extension Service offering our regular services to the community, but please limit walk-in office visits as much as possible.

We are available to answer questions by phone, or by email. You can call us at 859-744-4682, or you can email any of our staff.

I can be reached by emailing david.davis@uky.edu for general home or commercial horticulture-related questions. We are still offering soil testing services, plant diagnostic services and insect ID.

If you are sick, we ask that you please refrain from visiting the office.

We want you to know that we are here to support our community even in this difficult time.

David Davis is a Clark County Cooperative Extension Service agent for agriculture and natural resources. He can be reached at david.davis@uky.edu.