Ranch Profitability Workshop Series starts January 7 in Cut Bank

Kari Lewis, MSU Extension – Glacier County

As margins continue to tighten in the cattle businesses, its critical to analyze each component of the ranch enterprise to identify each enterprise’s profitability.  Overall ranch profitability is the sum of various ranch activities and knowing the contribution of each ranch enterprise, whether cow/calf, hay production, heifer development, land, etc. is essential to determining overall profitability.  Ranchers will have the opportunity to work through a series of exercises to discover production costs of their ranch enterprise through the Ranch Profitability workshop series January 7, January 21, and February 11. 

Ranch Profitability workshops will be held at the Glacier County Extension Office, 1210 E. Main, Cut Bank, MT, from 1 – 4 p.m.  There is a $15 registration fee that includes all three classes and refreshments.  Checks should be made to Glacier County Extension and mailed to 1210 E. Main, Cut Bank, MT 59427 by January 3, 2020.

Through the series, instructors will work with individual participants to isolate and understand how costs and depreciation impact the ranch’s cash flow and balance sheet.  Participants should plan to attend all three sessions as each session builds on the previous lessons. 

Tris Munsick, of the Plank Stewardship Imitative, will be sharing a combination of academic and real-world knowledge from his experiences on both small land large ranches in the West.  Tris has earned a master’s degree in Applied and Agricultural Economics from the University of Wyoming and a Range Science degree from Montana State University and works extensively with ranchers across Montana and Wyoming. 

For more information or to register, please contact the Glacier County Extension Office at (406) 873-2239 or kari.lewis@montana.edu

Ranch Profitablility Workshop Flyer

Farm and Ranch Ready - January 11, 2020 in Shelby, MT

Kari Lewis, MSU Extension – Glacier County

MSU Extension in Glacier, Toole, and Pondera counties is teaming up to host ‘Farm and Ranch Ready’ January 11, 2020.  The event will be held at the St. Luke’s Lutheran Parish Hall in Shelby (222 2nd St S).  The event will run from 9 to 3:30 p.m., and pesticide points will be available.  ‘Farm and Ranch Ready’ will provide participants with a broad background in topics relevant to farm, ranch, and rural living.

With many operations being miles from medical facilities, basic first aid training will be presented by Robyn Kimmet of the Toole County Health Department.  The Toole County Rural Fire Department will be providing basic fire safety and hands-on fire extinguisher training.  Kim Woodring and Adriane Good, MSU Extension Agents for Toole and Pondera counties, respectively, will focus on how to safely launder pesticide contaminated clothing and additional farm safety measures.  Kari Lewis, Glacier County MSU Extension agent, will walk participants through ways to cut family living expenses and financial considerations for the farm or ranch family.  Additional topics will include Power 101, basic electrical safety on the farm or ranch, and winter preparedness. 

Cost for the event is $15 per person which will include lunch, refreshments, and door prizes.  Registration is available online at http://pondera.msuextension.org/, by calling the Pondera County Extension Office at (406) 271-4054 or e-mailing pondera@montana.edu.  Checks should be made to Pondera County Extension and mailed to Pondera County Extension, 20 4th Ave SW, Conrad, MT 59425, by January 3, 2020. 

Farm and Ranch Ready Flyer

Montana's Next Generation Conference

January 31 – February 1, 2020
(Please note if attending for FSA Borrower Training, the Saturday, February session is required)

Individual: $25/day (or $50 for whole weekend)
Couple: $40/day (or $80 for whole weekend)
Childcare: $15/day

All meals are included with the cost of registration.

For paper registration, download  this form 

For online registration, register at: https://events.ticketprinting.com/event/Montanas-Next-Generation-Conference-2020-35665

For registration or sponsorship questions, to contact Glacier County Extension Office – 873-2239, glacier@montana.edu.

Hosted by the Glacier and Toole County Farm Service Agency,  local MSU Extension, Marias River Livestock Association, Native American Community Development Corporation and the Front Range Counties Farm  Bureau, this comprehensive conference of succession planning and  production workshops is one not to miss.
Shelby, MT is just an hour and a half from both Great Falls and Havre, and has Amtrak service as well. Located at the crossroads of Highway 2 and I-15, Shelby makes a great host site!

Private Applicator Training in Great Falls - March 11, 2020

MSU Cascade County Extension office will be offering a private pesticide applicator initial training in Great Falls on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. The training will be at the Montana ExpoPark’s Paddock Club and begin at 8:30 a.m. with registration. The training will end with the Montana Private Applicator Certification exam around 5:30 p.m.

Cost for the training is $35 per person that includes training materials and a roast beef lunch. The fee is $60 for the private applicator license after the training for those producers living in district 3. Licensing fees are based upon a five-year recertification period. To find out more about the private pesticide applicator program, go to www.pesticides.montana.edu.

Individuals interested in the training need to register by Wednesday, March 4, 2020 to the MSU Cascade County Extension office or contact Rose at (406) 454-6980 for more information.

Pesticide Applicator Training Program

The Pesticide Applicator Training (PAT) Program is for individuals and/or their employees who wish to apply Restricted Use Pesticides (RUPs) to land they own, rent or lease for the purpose of growing an agricultural commodity.  For complete information on the PAT Program, please visit their website.

To Become Licensed as a Private Applicator

Private applicators must be licensed prior to purchasing and using restricted use pesticides. To become certified an applicator has two options: (1) take an exam or (2) attend an Initial Private Applicator Training. 

Montana Private Applicator Certification Exam

The Montana Private Applicator Certification Exam can be taken here at the Glacier County MSU Extension office. The exam has 50-questions and must be passed with a 70% or better. The exam is open book and not timed.  Please contact our office to set up a time to take your exam.

Initial Private Applicator Training

An Initial Private Applicator Training is a seven-hour program covering the basics of pesticide use. Upon completion of the program applicators must take an ungraded 50-question exam. Initial Private Applicator Trainings must adhere to criteria set forth for initial programs.  Contact our office for information about trainings.

License Fees

Private applicators must pay $12 for each year of the cycle for a total of $60 per each 5-year recertification cycle to the Montana Department of Agriculture. This fee is to be paid at the time of licensing and when the license is renewed. Glacier County is currently in the 4th year of the recertification cycle. 

Recertification Cycle by District

Glacier County is in District 3.  The current cycle ends on December 31, 2020.  The fee for obtaining your license in the current cycle would be $24.  The next cycle will run from January 1, 2021 - December 31, 2025.

Paraquat Training For Pesticide Applicators

An online paraquat training is available, created by pesticide manufacturers and approved by the EPA. This training provides information about paraquat’s toxicity, personal protective equipment, new label requirements, restrictions, and the consequences of misuse. Applicators must print out certificates online and retain for their own records. In addition, the National Pesticide Safety Education Center (NPSEC) will retain certification records as well.  In order to take this training you will need an email address to set up a guest account.

Pesticide Disposal Program

If you have unused pesticides that need to be disposed of, please visit the State of Montana website for the Pesticide Waste Disposal Program for more information on the free disposal program and state guidelines.

Palmer Amaranth

Montana, watch out for Palmer Amaranth! 
Palmer amaranth is a competitive and aggressive weed that can grow 2 to 3 inches per day in optimum conditions. Palmer amaranth can easily reach 6 to 8 feet tall, has tremendously thick stalks, and produces up to 1 million seeds per plant! It emerges throughout the growing season and is very prone to herbicide resistance. Palmer amaranth has been reported to reduce yields up to 91 percent in corn and 79 percent in soybeans.  Check out this NDSU guide for pictures and identification tips - https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/palmeramaranth/documents/PalmerAmaranth8.5x11.pdf.  If you suspect Palmer Amaranth, please contact the Extension Office.
woman holding large noxious weed 
Stutsman County Extension agent Alicia Harstad with a
Palmer Amaranth plant (NDSU Photo)

Knapweed Biocontrols 

Please see the order form for details on purchasing biocontrols.

spotted knapweed    Knapweed Root Weavil

Herbicide-Resistant Kochia

For recommendations on controlling herbicide-resistant Kochia, please see this MontGuide.

Herb Resistant Kochia

Helpful Links

Services Offered

  • Forage nitrate testing
  • Disease identification and management
  • Pest identification and management
  • Pesticide Applicator Training
  • Seed testing
  • Soil testing
  • Water testing
  • Knapweed Biocontrols
  • Tree seedling orders

Items Available for Check-Out

  • Hay probes
  • Soil probes
  • Well-water testing kits
  • Live animal traps