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Local Programs

Soil Sample Testing: Tests are performed to evaluate the soil's nutrient potential and to determine the most beneficial application rates of fertilizer and lime for optimum plant growth. Accurate soil analysis with subsequent recommendations provide a tool for making economical and ecological landuse decisions. Maximum economic yeilds are realized through careful management of nutrient availability. Over-fertilization is costly and may be damaging to the environment. Soil test boxes and forms for both lawn/garden and farms are available at the Powhatan Extension office or behind the building at the "Demonstration Garden" sign post. If you need a large amount please contact our office ahead of time.
Hay Forage Testing: This is the only way to determine the actual nutrient content of the hay you are feeding your animals or those of your clients. It is important to know this so that you can be sure your animals are consuming an adequate diet and what supplements may or may not be needed.The Powhatan Extension office has a gas drill and hay probe to assist you in pulling these samples. Please contact Rachel Henley (804) 598-5640 for more details and assistance using this resource.
Digital Livestock Scale:  Weighing cattle can have many benefits for accurate administration of medicine and treatments as well as understanding weight gains and production of your beef cattle, sheep or goats.  Contact the Powhatan Extension office at (804)598-5640 to schedule to utilize the digital livestock scales.
Plant Disease Clinic:  The Virginia Tech Plant Disease Clinic provides plant disease diagnostic services to Virginia Cooperative Extension agents. Physical or digital samples with problems caused by pathogens, including fungi, bacteria, viruses, and nematodes, in addition to plant samples with environmental or other abiotic problems may be submitted to the Plant Disease Clinic.  Diagnosis is provided for any type of plant. Other services provided by the Plant Disease Clinic include mushroom identification and identification of non-weedy plants.   To insure the long-term sustainability of our diagnostic laboratories, effective October 1, 2021, each sample sent to the Virginia Tech Plant Disease Clinic for diagnosis will incur a $35 charge.  The Plant Disease Clinic is a member of the National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN) within the region of the Southern Plant Diagnostic Network. The mission of the NPDN is to enhance national agricultural security by quickly detecting introduced pests and pathogens.  Many plant diseases can be identified and recommendations provided by your local Extension office.
See Plant Disease Clinic for more information.
Contact: Your local Virginia Cooperative Extension agent
Annual Well Water Testing:  Drinking water clinics are organized by your local Extension Agent and Virginia Tech faculty in the Biological Systems Engineering Department. Participation is voluntary and all information is kept strictly confidential. Anyone with a private water supply system (including wells, springs, and cisterns) may participate.  Contact your extension office for this year's scheduled date.

Goochland Powhatan Master Gardener Class

Goochland Powhatan Master Gardener training classes are taught by Virginia Tech Extension specialists, agents, and local experts.  The program offers a minimum of 50 hours of instruction that covers topics including garden flowers; ornamental trees and shrubs, insect/plant disease identification, weed management; soils and plant nutrition, vegetable gardening; home fruit production; lawn care; and water conservation.
In exchange for training, participants are asked to volunteer time to their County Extension program.  At least 50 hours of volunteer service within one year following the training is required to earn the title of "Master Gardener".
The type of service done by Master Gardeners varies according to community needs, and the abilities and interests of the Master Gardeners.  Some Master Gardeners answer telphone requests for information related to gardening.  Others staff plant clinics or displays at community events.  Master Gardeners may speak to local groups and conduct workshops.  They may help establish community garden projects, work with 4-H youth, or assist their agent with news or radio releases related to gardening.  The Master Gardener Coordinator in the County Extension office decides how volunteer time can be utilized.  Participants become certified Master Gardeners after they have completed the training course and fulfilled their volunteer commitment. 
Goochland Powhatan Master Gardener training classes typically begin in January.  For more information visit or contact your local extension office.
Powhatan: 3910 Old Buckingham Road, Powhatan, VA 23139    (804) 598-5640
Goochland: 2748 Dogtown Road, Goochland, VA 23063    (804) 556-5841 


Huguenot Beekeepers Association is a group of experienced and beginner beekeepers that are dedicated to promoting beekeeping in our communities and supporting follow beekeepers. Trained community leaders also work with residents to increase knowledge and understanding through an annual Beginning Beekeeping Course and many community events. They meet on the first Thursday of each month in the Powhatan Village Building Auditorium from 7-9pm.

Visit the Huguenot Beekeepers Association’s website for details:

Click below to view some helpful beekeeping information.

Forestry and Natural Resources

Visit the Central District Forestry and Natural Resources page.

Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) educators help improve the quality of life for individuals and families by providing programs to help people increase knowledge and make informed decisions. Educational workshops support economic self-sufficiency and family stability. FCS programs also emphasize best practices in nutrition choices, encourage physical activity, and improve health literacy.

Financial Education

Budgeting and debt management workshops

Classes help participants create effective spending plans, understand how to access and read their credit reports, rebuild and maintain a good credit record, and establish savings. Financial programs can be presented to public, civic and church groups at the Powhatan Village Building, Powhatan Public Library, senior centers, house of worship and other sites. Programs are free of charge. For more information on financial workshops contact Jane Henderson at or call the Powhatan Extension Office at 804-561-2481.

One-on-one financial counseling

The Powhatan County Extension office has a limited number of one-on–one financial counseling sessions available to Powhatan residents. Individuals and families can receive assistance with the creation of a spending and savings plan, reconciling debt, setting and achieving financial goals and other financial issues and concerns. Contact the Powhatan County Extension office to arrange an appointment.

Virginia Cooperative Extension--Financial Management Publications

Publications on a variety of issues including:

  1. Credit
  2. Families
  3. Taking Charge of Finances
  4. Health Care
  5. Home Business Management
  6. Insurance
  7. Loss of Income
  8. Managing Prosperity: Estate and Retirement Planning.


Use these helpful links to increase your knowledge of money management issues:

Go here to get your FREE annual credit report!

Education is a key tool to prevent consumer injury. This website offers publications with advice on avoiding scams and rip-offs, as well as tips on other consumer topics.
This website is a one-stop national resource to learn about the crime of identity theft. It provides detailed information to help protect individuals from identity theft, as well as steps to take if it occurs. It is also a comprehensive reference center – for consumers, businesses, law enforcement, and the media – with access to specific laws, contact information, and resources from state and federal government agencies.
The Federal Government’s website dedicated to helping Americans understand more about their money – how to save it, invest it, and manage it to meet your personal goals.

Nutrition Education

Nutrition education classes assist participants learn and adopt good food and nutrition practices that promote optimal health. Programs emphasize sound nutrition choices, encourage healthy lifestyles, support the prevention of chronic disease, and encourage safe methods of food preservation.

Virginia Cooperative Extension - Food and Nutrition Publications

Publications on a variety of issues including:

  1. Health & Nutrition: Cancer Prevention, Heart Disease, Childhood Nutrition, Cooking & Meal Planning, High Blood Pressure (Hypertension), Shopping, Health & Exercise, Adult and Childhood Weight Management.
  2. Food Safety: Food Borne Pathogens, Safe Food Handling and Food Allergies.
  3. Food Preservation: Canning Methods, Freezing and Dehydrating. 
  4. Recalls and Alerts
  5. Understanding and Managing Food Allergies  
  6. When the Power Goes Out

Use these helpful links to increase your knowledge of topics regarding health, nutrition and home food preservation:

The Federal Government’s dietary guidelines offers information on the five major food groups, and a site where individuals can create personalized eating plans. MyPlate also has interactive tools to help assess your food choices based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
Iowa State Extension’s Spend Smart Eat Smart website has a wealth of resources including money saving tips for meal planning and grocery shopping, interactive activities, recipe videos and blogs hosted by ISU Extension nutrition specialists. 
The National Center for Home Food Preservation is your source for current research-based recommendations for most methods of home food preservation. The Center was established with funding from the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture (CSREES-USDA) to address food safety concerns for those who practice and teach home food preservation and processing methods.


Powhatan County Extension also offers free Pressure Canner Gauge Testing: The dial gauge on your pressure canner lid should be checked at least every 2 years, preferably every year. Schedule an appointment to bring your canner lid with the dial gauge by the local extension office to have the gauge tested. There is no fee for this service.  
Powhatan 4-H has a wide variety of programs that focus on hands-on, experiential learning.  We rely on our knowledgeable volunteers to lead 4-H clubs and programs so that we can reach as many youth in Powhatan County as possible.  Check out Powhatan's 4-H Clubs.  Along with the 4-H Clubs, we also provide a variety of short-term opportunities.  If you don't see something that fits your child, we'll be glad to help you start a new 4-H club or afterschool program.  Contact the Powhatan Extension Office at (804) 598-5640, or email Cathy Howland at for details on Powhatan's 4-H program.   

4-H Summer Camp

Powhatan County 4-H sponsors a fun-filled week-long residential summer camp each year for youth between the ages of 9-13 years at Jamestown 4-H Center in Williamsburg. Camp fees cover lodging, meals, class supplies, and daily snacks. Campers will participate in a variety of classes and free recreation activities, including marine science, fishing, woodworking, camp crafts and more. Jamestown 4-H Camp is situated on 16 wooded and open acres, located outside of Williamsburg along the banks of the James River. The facilities include air-conditioned cabins and lodges, swimming pool with diving board, air rifle and archery ranges, amphitheater for campfire programs and picnic pavilions. The recreation hall and dining facility are also air conditioned. Jamestown 4-H Camp maintains a rustic, country atmosphere. The camp is accredited by the American Camp Association, to ensure your child will have a safe and quality camping experience with 4-H. 

Volunteer Opportunities

Inspire the next generation - become a 4-H volunteer!  4-H programs look to volunteers to help young people learn the skills they need to prepare for their futures while also having fun.  There are many adult volunteer opportunities in 4-H!
4-H SPIN Volunteers

Engaging with Communities

Virginia Cooperative Extension specialists in community viability work with Extension agents, campus-based faculty, organizational partners, communities, and individuals to further opportunity and build capacity in five program areas:   
Examples of our work include training county elected officials, educating entrepreneurs, facilitating collaborative projects, supporting the growth of community food systems and local economies, enhancing agent skills and community capacity in facilitation and leadership, conducting problem-driven research, and creating publications and tools that address critical community needs.

Do you have a question about Community Viability?

Perhaps one of the Community Viability specialists below can help you. Contact a Community Viability specialist or direct a question to them using our Ask an Expertsystem. 

Community Viability Specialists