Monday, October 23, 2017

Emergency Preparedness Night

Ashley Svaty, Nutrition, Food Safety and Health Agent

If your home or office was affected by a disaster, would you be prepared? Would you have a supply kit available and a plan of action to keep you and your family safe? If not, now is the time to prepare.

Join us this Saturday, October 28th from 4-7pm for Zombie Preparedness Night at The Vesper Community Center. Post Rock District will join other area preparedness agencies to help you prepare for unexpected events. Our agents will provide resources to build your own financial grab-and-go kit and emergency food supply kit. Other booths will provide various emergency preparation information and resources to assist your family develop a plan. Three bicycles and a fire safe will be given away during this event.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


Cassie Homan, Horticulture Agent

Who doesn’t love stepping outside on a crisp spring morning and seeing the first signs of green life after a long winter. Bulbs are often the first plants to make an appearance in the spring and add a beautiful pop of color to the landscape. Enjoying these spring beauties means a little extra work planting them in the fall, then forgetting about them until spring.

The avid gardener knows that sweater weather means it’s probably time to start cleaning up the garden. It’s also the perfect time to plant spring flowering bulbs. For north central Kansas, late September through early October is an ideal time for our Zone 6, climate hardiness zone. If you want to add a minimal care, showy plant, into your landscape follow these tips for mastering bulbs.

Choosing your bulbs:
In the fall bulbs show up everywhere, they can be found in garden stores, ordered from catalogs, or picked up in local supermarkets. When choosing bulbs, you want to examine each one for quality. It should be firm with a papery covering and free from mold. Look for bulbs that are large, the larger the bulb the bigger and more beautiful the bloom will be. You could choose a diverse number of varieties to bloom throughout the spring and summer or stick to a few fun, colorful, blooms. If deer or wildlife are a problem in your garden, you should choose bulbs such as allium, crocus, iris, and daffodil. Have fun when picking bulbs by choosing new cultivars or even trading with neighbors.

Fall is a great time to plant bulbs because they need to develop their roots and must meet a chilling requirement over the winter in order to bloom in the spring. Pick a site where the bulbs will receive full sun to partial shade. The soil needs to have good aeration and adequate drainage. A sandy loam is preferred but you can always amend your soil type by adding peat moss, compost, or aged bark. The depth of planting varies by the size and variety of bulb. A general rule is 2-3 times deep as the bulb is tall. For example, if you are planting a tulip or hyacinth bulb set them about 6 inches into the soil. Always remember to place the bulb with the point up, so the roots are in the right position. Space the bulbs using the same general measurement. For an attractive design, plant bulbs in clumps or informal masses, rather than singly. When planting it is best to add a fertilizer such as bone meal that is high in phosphorus in the bottom of each planting hole.

Bulbs are relatively low maintenance, you can practically plant them in the fall and forget about them until they pop up in the spring. Check once in a while to make sure the soil is moist but not soggy. Small bulbs will also benefit from adding a layer of mulch to prevent being heaved out of soil by alternate freezing and thawing. In the spring cut off flowers that have faded but don’t cut the leaves until they have turned yellow and withered. This allows more energy to be transferred and stored in the bulb.

Bulbs are fun and easy to work with. They require minimal care once properly planted, they will reward you every spring with a wonderful show of color. For further information on planting bulbs, contact Cassie at any Post Rock Extension District Office in Beloit, Lincoln, Mankato, Osborne or Smith Center, or email

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

How to Support Youth After Traumatic Events

Nora Rhoades, Family and Youth Development Agent.

Children can face emotional strains after traumatic events, such as accidents, disasters, and witnessing and/or being victims of violence. Understanding how children and youth may react and caring for them in an age appropriate way are critical to their healing and future well-being, but it can be difficult to know what to do. Below are some resources you may find helpful as you support children and youth after traumatic events.
  • Parenting a Child Who Has Experienced Trauma: This factsheet discusses the nature of trauma, especially abuse or neglect, the effects of trauma on children and youth, and ways to help a child who has experienced trauma. Parents or foster parents who do not understand the effects of trauma may misinterpret their child’s behavior, and attempts to address troubling behavior may be ineffective or, in some cases, even harmful. By understanding trauma, parents and foster parents can help support a child’s healing, the parent-child relationship, and their family as a whole. (Source: Child Welfare Information Gateway)
Information for this blog article has been adapted from the National Resource Center for Healthy Marriage and Families, Newsletter, Issue 57, October 2017. The Post Rock District of K-State Research and Extension serves Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Osborne, and Smith Counties. Nora Rhoades, Family and Youth Development Agent, may be contacted at or by calling the office in Osborne 346-2521, Beloit 738-3597, Lincoln 524-4432, Mankato 378-3174, or Smith Center 282-6823. Stay connected with “Post Rock Extension” on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Our website is

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Creating a Financial Grab-and-Go Kit

Nora Rhoades, Family and Youth Development Agent

The content in this article was published on 9-18-17 in the K-State Research and Extension Prepare Kansas blog by Family Resource Management Specialist, Elizabeth Kiss.

If you had a few precious minutes to leave your home or office, what would you take?

It’s a good idea to have an updated financial grab-and-go kit.

Why is this important? If you have your most important documents and information at hand in a grab-and-go kit, it can help to get you back on firm financial footing more quickly.

Your kit should be a waterproof, fireproof container that can be taken with you at a moment’s notice. Be sure to keep it in a secure place in your home.

What should you include in your kit? At a minimum you’ll want to have some cash and the financial information and personal identification needed to conduct your day-to-day financial life.

Other information to include in your grab-and-go kit:
  • Personal information such as copies of driver’s licenses, passport, and social security cards and key documents that may be needed to restore your financial records
  • Account information such as financial account numbers; copies of ATM, debit, and credit cards; insurance cards, policies, or other proof of insurance coverage; and contact information for all financial service and insurance providers
  • Household inventory
  • Safe deposit key
  • Information about prescription medication
  • Contact information (phone, email, or web site) for family members, doctors, veterinarians
  • Pocket notebook and pen or pencil
  • Family records, such as birth, marriage, or death certificates may be kept in a safe deposit box. If they are, consider making copies for your grab-and-go box. Other items that may be in safe deposit box include wills, contracts, deeds, stocks, and bond as well as titles to vehicles. Again, if the original is in a safe deposit box, you still may want to make copies for your grab-and-go box.
Want to learn more? Download this fact sheet from the K-State Research and Extension bookstore