COLUMBUS, Ohio - Summer is nearly half over; gardeners and farmers will soon be reaping the benefits of all their hard work. The public is invited on August 8 to see the hard work that has been done at the Ohio State University Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Lab with a field day and open house of a new lab facility.
The Waterman Headquarters Building, a $750,000 facility funded by Ohio State's Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC), will be dedicated at 3 p.m. A tour of the Waterman lab, including the new building, will follow from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. The field day is free and open to the public.
Mark Schmittgen, a manager in the horticulture and crop science department at the Waterman lab, said the new headquarters building will allow Ohio State faculty and researchers to conduct public seminars and hold conferences, as well as give students access to research labs and equipment.
"The new facility is a dramatic upgrade of what we could offer before," said Schmittgen. "It increases the opportunity for us to offer the general public and our faculty and students programs and research labs. It makes Waterman that much more useful to a broader range of people."
The Waterman Headquarters Building includes offices, conference rooms, break rooms, lab spaces and an equipment repair shop. The OARDC soybean breeding lab will also occupy part of the building.
In addition to touring the Waterman Headquarters Building, visitors will also be able to tour the south end of the Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Lab.
"That's where most of our research is conducted," said Schmittgen. "So the public will be able to take a walking tour and see research in horticulture, agronomy, landscaping, animal sciences - all in one area."
Though there will not be a formal question and answer session, researchers and specialists will be available to answer questions visitors may have. Topics of interest to gardeners and farmers include insect and disease control strategies, vermicompost application, an organic soil primarily made up of worm casting, vegetable and landscape crops, small fruit cultivars, pumpkin insecticide trials, and agricultural uses of industrial waste.
A Plant Diagnostic Clinic will also be available for visitors to have their own plant samples diagnosed for any problems they may be having. Those who would like to have a plant diagnosed are asked to bring a representative sample of the problem. In addition, the public can check out the Master Gardeners plant sale.
The Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Lab is located on the northwest corner of Lane Avenue and Kenny Road near the Columbus campus of Ohio State University.
Visitors are advised not to attend if they have been traveling outside of the continental United States within 10 days of August 8. For more information, contact Mark Schmittgen at (614) 292-7234 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The event is sponsored by the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center and Ohio State University Extension, both part of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.