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Research-based information and education from UAF Extension specialists in areas such as energy, community development, home economics, agriculture, and more.

(This group currently has 3 experts available to answer questions)

Questions asked to this group

What have I found here?

Greetings, I found this rock specimen on a 8,000 foot elevation mountain near Midwest, Wyoming. These rocks of all sizes were everywhere. It appears that this is lava on the top with limestone under the lava. I would like to explain what this is and how it developed to my grand daughter. Thank you for your time, Gene Anderson

Wyoming Posted 2 days ago

Re-canning salmon

Hello. I pressure cooked salmon today. After finishing I realized I made a mistake - it's supposed to go for 110 minutes at 10#, I set 1:10 on the oven timer without thinking instead of 1:50. After the fact I realized it. The jars have now cooled off. Do I have to throw all my precious salmon away? Can I start them all over in the pressure cooker? What effect will that have on the final product? Thanks!

Haines Borough Alaska home food preservation salmon pressure canning Posted 17 days ago

Wintering Begonias

What is the correct method of wintering over Begonias in AK? Thank you

Matanuska-Susitna Borough Alaska begonias overwintering Posted 21 days ago

Fuzzy Caterpillar

What kind of caterpillar is this?

Anchorage Alaska Posted 27 days ago

Insulating flat roof joist cavities with blown insulation after pitched roof addition.

I have a 1970 house with an original flat roof that has been covered with a pitched roof. The original roof has 2x8 joists spaced at 24" covered with 1/2" sheathing and topped with tar/gravel (about 60% of the tar/gravel has been removed). The original roof/joist cavities have 2" of rock wool batting (R7.4), poorly installed. I can open 12"-16" slots perpendicular to the joists every 10 feet (40 ft house length) to provide access to the joist cavities for insulation installation and to allow for ventilation into the new roof.

I would like to blow fiberglass (as opposed to cellulose due to weight on the underlying sheetrock) into the joist cavities to fill the 5+" void between the existing rock wool and the top sheathing. The blower hose would be run through the slots cut out of the sheathing and pushed back into the joist cavity, pulling the hose back as the cavity fills with insulation, repeating this for each joist cavity and each access slot. (Either blown in or batt insulation would then be added above the original roof sheathing to increase total R value.)

My questions: 1) does this make sense, 2) will three 1-foot wide slots cut perpendicular to the ceiling joists spaced about 10 feet apart be adequate to avoid any moisture buildup in the joist cavities that might migrate from the living space below (allowing that the Salt Lake City climate is pretty dry), 3) can I try to blow the insulation fairly densely to ensure thorough fill, since it is not possible to observe how well the insulation is blowing into the cavities, 4) any other potential problems.


Salt Lake County Utah Posted 29 days ago

Shotgun fungus

How to get rid of the fungus?

Anchorage Alaska Posted about 1 month ago

lawn spots

The attached photos show reddish/brown spots in our front lawn. They appeared about half way through the summer. Throughout the summer, my husband used fertilizer sparingly and watered aggressively. The spots did not show up in the back yard which received similar treatment. Can you suggest a treatment?

Thank you very much.

Anchorage Alaska Posted about 1 month ago

Winter Cover

I live in Anchorage AK. Zone 3-4. Today Fall came and blew all the leaves onto the grass. It is wet. I plan on mowing first break and I would like to use this mulch to cover my plants to protect them from the cold. Will this type mix decompose or will the grass just turn to goo? Should I just stick with leaves only?

Anchorage Alaska Posted about 1 month ago

uplimbing spruce trees

i asked this question earlier this summer. the trees on our campus were severely uplimbed. now the spruce trees look awful the remaining limbs are turning brown and the needles are falling out. also one tree has "slime flux". can these trees be saved?

Fairbanks North Star Borough Alaska trees and shrubs Posted about 1 month ago

Greenhouse & planter soil over winter conditioning

Hello UAF Edu Expert. I've gathered all soil from greenhouse growing containers and outside flower pots from previous summer gardening season. My hope is to reenergize the soil organically as a poly tarp covered compost pile. The soil consists mainly of root systems and some above ground plant material, i.e. stems and leaves. A portion of the soils gathered is from flower pots originally bagged "potting" soil again with a variety of roots left behind after dead stems and leaves cutoff at surface. Our usual spring planting routine is to add some garden center, bagged composted steer manure and refill utilize soil as needed in greenhouse growing containers and flower pots for outside display. Is there a method of soil remediation to restore or super charge the growing potential for next summers growing season (2020). Thanks for any advice and guidance you may have. Best Regards.

Anchorage Alaska Posted about 1 month ago