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September 2, 2009 > University of California offers free publications

University of California offers free publications

Submitted By Jeannette Warnert

Hundreds of free publications on topics ranging from gardening to agriculture, nutrition to food safety are available for download from a new University of California Web site, http://ucanr.org/freepubs.

The publications are written by UC academics and meet the scholarly standard necessary to be considered "peer-reviewed." The most frequently downloaded titles are featured and regularly updated. Currently, Asian citrus psyllid, strawberry preservation and controlling common lice and mites of poultry are popular topics among readers.

Web site visitors can browse titles by subject or search by keyword. The publications are available as PDF files for printing or online reading. The site also provides links to related for-sale publications and the complete UC Agriculture and Natural Resources catalog of publications.

Some of the free publications included on the new Web site are:

Asian citrus psyllid -- The eight-page publication written by UC citrus entomologist Beth Grafton-Cardwell and other scientists, includes numerous color photographs and details about the pest that was first discovered in California last year. Readers will learn how to detect the pest on their own backyard trees, the psyllid life cycle, the serious plant disease the pest can transmit and control options.

Tomatoes: Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy -- The 15-page publication, written by researcher Tracy Parnell and two UC Davis food safety faculty, provides history and nutrition facts for the most commonly grown garden vegetable, tomatoes. Readers learn about harvesting, safe storage and handling and a variety of home preservation methods, with detailed instructions for freezing, drying and canning.

Facts about fat -- With the nation's obesity crisis a great concern to families and professionals alike, UC provides factual information about the types of fat found on nutrition labels, such as saturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and trans fats. Written by Nadine Kirkpatrick of the UC Davis Department of Nutrition and other nutrition scientists, the six-page publication answers such questions as: How much fat should be in a healthy diet? and When does too much fat become a problem?

Compost in a hurry -- A growing national interest in gardening and recycling are both addressed in this four-page publication that instructs gardeners on quickly turning their yard and food waste into a rich garden amendment. Written by UC's statewide Master Gardener academic coordinator, Pam Geisel, the publication provides a variety of suggestions for speeding up the composting process, such as using small-sized plant materials, finessing the carbon to nitrogen ratio and maintaining appropriate moisture levels.

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