Valentine’s Day is a time for people around the world to profess their love for someone or, like most of us, our love for our gardens!
JACKSON, Miss. -- Since the age of 7, Smith County 4-H’er Chase Boone has been showing mostly Simmental cattle in the Dixie National Junior Round-Up each year.
He is now a high school senior who will soon be moving on to college but not before a final appearance in one of his favorite livestock show events. He ended up exhibiting two supreme champion livestock -- the supreme beef female and the supreme beef bull -- and was named one of six premier exhibitors.
It was a successful send-off, if not a bittersweet one.
January can feel like a long month for me. The holiday bustle is over, cold temperatures settle in, and the sky turns grey for days on end. But it doesn’t stay that way for long.
Horses have been part of Mississippi State University programs for years in teaching, research and the student equestrian team, but breeding has not been a significant aspect until recently. In the eight years he has been with MSU, Clay Cavinder, Extension equine specialist, has made equine breeding and sales a priority. The average price for yearling and 2-year-old horses has increased steadily over the years to $8,600 in 2022.
BILOXI, Miss. -- Gardening and floral design enthusiasts and professionals can enjoy a public lecture by Martha Whitney Butler, a Bay St. Louis floral designer. Butler will deliver a floral design demonstration that includes techniques based on sustainable floral design practices, as well as her experience in art history and the use of antique and vintage floral containers.
Exceptionally low temperatures this winter caused more cold damage than our typical, milder winters. But try not to panic and prune as soon as you see damage. It is best to let the plant heal and recover what healthy tissue it still has, and then prune the dead parts a little later.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Members of the second class of the Thad Cochran Agricultural Leadership Program have completed the curriculum and assembled one last time Jan. 23 to receive their graduation certificates.
Known also as TCALP, the program provides 22 months of training for emerging leaders in Mississippi agriculture.
POPLARVILLE, Miss. -- Current and prospective market vendors can learn valuable marketing skills in a Feb. 9 workshop in Poplarville. Farmers Market Vendor Workshop: Boosting Your Revenue will teach participants valuable skills to help them increase sales. The workshop is open to vendors who sell at festivals, farmers markets and other similar venues.
As you walk around the landscape in January and look forward to the joy of starting a flower or vegetable garden, don’t overlook what you are stepping on. Healthy, productive plants require healthy soil. While soil may not be as eye-catching as narcissus or redbud flowers, it does require your attention.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Delta-based agricultural producers in a four-state region are invited to participate in a survey designed to gauge opinions and identify current practices related to water use.
The online “Delta Region Irrigation Producers’ Survey,” or DRIPS, also includes questions related to how producers prefer to receive educational information, which will help the Mississippi State University Extension Service design future programs. Survey results are confidential, and participants remain anonymous.
RAYMOND, Miss. -- Producers in Mississippi can provide feedback and input on the agricultural research and educational programs offered by Mississippi State University during the upcoming producer advisory council meetings. Hosted by MSU Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station personnel, the Producer Advisory Council meetings will be held in February. These meetings allow producers to learn about current research and educational opportunities, as well as to communicate their needs in these areas.
All of us gardeners are super eager to get things moving in our landscape. And who wouldn’t be, with sunny, 70-degree January days? Of course, everything looks horrible from the “freezemageddon” that we experienced just a few weeks ago. It is still too early to start pruning and cleaning up our plants, but I must confess that I don’t always follow the rules. There may be a few plants that I just could not look at anymore.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A water sampling program conducted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service has encouraging initial data about lead levels in drinking water collected at child care centers around the state.
Preliminary data gathered as part of the SipSafe program paint a reassuring picture for most of the faucets sampled.
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service will host two free educational workshops for blueberry growers in January -- one in person and another online.
The in-person workshop will be held Jan. 24 at the MSU Extension Forrest County office at 952 Sullivan Drive in Hattiesburg from 1-4 p.m. The virtual workshop will be Jan. 26 from 2-4 p.m.
I don’t know about you, but I have been bombarded with seed catalogs this winter. Since about age 12, one of my favorite hobbies has been looking through catalogs at all the new plants.
Some new plants have forever changed the horticulture industry, while others disappear after just one season.
Plants across the state that suffered from the unusually cold weather just days before Christmas will need some help recovering from damage they suffered in the deep freeze. Mike Brown, state climatologist and Mississippi State University meteorologist, said Mississippi’s average late December temperature is 44 degrees on the coast, 38 degrees in central Mississippi and 34 degrees in north Mississippi.
What started out in 2012 as a small volunteer project to make two accessible gardens for use by residents of a Hattiesburg nursing home grew and multiplied until the group recently completed its 1,000th one. The Pine Belt Master Gardeners offer a service of making what are known as “salad tables” -- small, wooden-framed gardens raised about 3 feet off the ground. They make about 12-14 tables per month.
I usually write the Southern Gardening column about how the different seasons change the look of our landscapes and gardens, what seasonal plants look great and when it’s time to transition with new plants for the next season. Just like in the garden, a career has a season for everything, and there comes a point when you realize it’s time for a change.
Most gardeners start planning their flower and vegetable gardens after the first of the year. This makes sense, as cabin fever from the winter months is compounded by a case of gardening fever due to the appearance of garden catalogs.
Mississippi agricultural producers shattered previous records in 2022 with an estimated $9.7 billion in production value based on high market prices that almost kept pace with higher production costs.
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