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Who We Are

Purdue Diversified Food and Farming Systems is an Extension program made up of an interdisciplinary group of faculty, staff, extension educators, students, practitioners and partners. We work to connect programming, research and learning focused on urban agriculture, community wellness, local food, beginning armers, small farms, organic agriculture, and the Purdue student farm.

Our Mission

Increase scientific and public understanding of the diversification of locally grown foods and farming systems to improve the health of people, create economic opportunities for families and communities, and promote environmental stewardship.

Our Vision

Create a long-standing, vital resource for Purdue University and facilitate collaborations across academic disciplines. Practitioners, researchers, students and Educators will be able to engage in interdisciplinary activities around the core topics of urban agriculture, local foods, small farms, beginning farmers, student farmers and organic agriculture.

Periodical Cicadas

Plan Ahead to Protect Young Fruit Trees From 17-Year Periodical Cicadas Emerging in May

KEY CICADA FACTS

  • Cicadas won’t hurt you or your pets. But if you’re concerned, consult a doctor or a vet.
  • Cicadas aren’t a “Plague of Locusts.” In some areas people call cicadas locusts, but cicadas can’t eat crops like locusts. They only drink trees.
  • Most trees will be fine. Smaller trees are more vulnerable, but they can be easily protected with netting.
  • If you don’t like bugs, don’t worry. It’ll be over in a month and a half.
  • If you do like bugs, get out there and enjoy it! They’ll be gone in a month and a half!
  • How do I identify a cicada?

    The first signs of cicadas are often their shells (exuvia). When cicada nymphs come up out of the ground, they climb up the nearest tree or other tall surface, and shed their shells. These shells are perfect copies of the nymphal cicadas. You can even sometimes find little white strands coming out of the shells. These are their lungs (tracheal tubes)! Insect’s respiratory system is made out of tubes and little holes (spiracles) in the outside of their body. When they shed their skin, they shed the whole thing, respiratory system and all!

    Where is it happening?

    17-year cicadas can be found throughout Indiana but the biggest populations will be in southern Indiana. According to Cicada Mania, these cicadas were reported to be more abundant in the following areas during their last emergence in 2004: “Bloomington, Brookville, Clinton Falls, Dillsboro, Fishers, French Lick, Indianapolis, Lawrenceburg, Lexington, Martinsville, McCormick’s Creek State Park, Nashville, North Vernon, Skiles Test Park, Spencer."

    Damage

  • The good news is periodical cicadas do not bite or sting people, or pets.
  • The bad news is females lay eggs in 200+ woody tree species and can cause severe damage to young trees (Figure 5). (See Periodical Cicada in Indiana to learn more about landscape and ornamental plants that are attacked by periodical cicada).
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    Recent Videos

    M & G Farms Virtual Tour

    Part of the 2021 Small Farms Conference

    Victory Acres Farm Virtual Tour

    Part of the 2021 Small Farms Conference

    Free Folk Farm Virtual Tour

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    Maple Hill Farm Virtual Tour

    Part of the 2021 Small Farms Conference

    Four Flags Farm Virtual Tour

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    Freedom Valley Farm Virtual Tour

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    Local Farm's Experience During COVID-19

    Part of the 2021 Small Farms Conference

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    Newsletter

    We release a monthly newsletter that includes events, surveys, opportunities, and news about our community. You can also subscribe to our email list by clicking below.

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    Urban Agriculture Tour photos from March 7,2017.

    Partners

    Purdue Extension's Diversified Farming and Food Systems program partners with many agencies across Indiana to support you as a diversified or beginning farmer, help you connect with other locals, and more.

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    NCR-SARE Grants

    North Central Region SARE administers several grant programs for a variety of audiences and programs that focus on research and education. Access their website and the application by clicking the link below.

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    Hydroponics Workshop - Photos shot 9/5 at the 4th annual Greenhouse and Indoor Hydroponics Workshop sponsored by Purdue Extension.

    Our Team

    Purdue Diversified Food and Farming Systems works to connect programming, research and learning focused on urban agriculture, community wellness, local food, beginning armers, small farms, organic agriculture, and the Purdue student farm.

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    Contact Us

    Mailing Address

    Dr. Tamara J Benjamin

    Assistant Program Leader
    Diversified Farming and Food Systems

    615 W State Street
    West Lafayette
    IN  47907

    AVAILABLE AT 8AM TO 5PM

    (775) 496-1930

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