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News From 2009

January 15, 2009 - Filed Under: Family

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Out-of-town wedding guests travelling with children should add “child care” to the list of arrangements they have to make when planning the trip.

Caring for children on the big day can add stress to the enjoyable event, especially when the guests are unfamiliar with the place they are visiting. Many people avoid the issue entirely by either bringing someone to care for their child while they are at the wedding or leaving the child at home with a caregiver.

January 15, 2009 - Filed Under: Food

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Friends and family can help young newlyweds begin their lives together by stocking their kitchens with quality basics.

Marlana Walters, owner of The Everyday Gourmet on County Line Road in Jackson, said when the economy is hurting, quality becomes increasingly important, even if it costs more.

“Brides are becoming more selective and value-conscious. Quality items will last forever, and couples will be less likely to need to replace them,” Walters said. “Just remember that you do not have to have everything at once. Get the basics first.”

January 15, 2009 - Filed Under: Family

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Some wedding traditions are okay to break, while others are best left alone.

If Emily Post is not available, the next best person to ask is someone with considerable knowledge and skill in wedding productions. This person can be a member of a church assigned to this task, a mother of the bride or a professional wedding planner. It is a safe bet that one of these individuals has the experience to offer good advice.

January 15, 2009 - Filed Under: Family, Family Financial Management

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Newlyweds believe their future is rosy, but before they know it, the bloom can wither and dissatisfaction can dominate the relationship.

Problems often arise unexpectedly because couples do not prepare well for marriage. Some have not invested enough time in getting to know the person they are marrying or have not explored their individual philosophies about family, fidelity, finances and fighting.

Wine and Cheese is a new blend that offers red, burgundy and peach in a most enticing arrangement.
January 15, 2009 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Flames are dancing in the fireplace and I know an arctic blast is on its way, but I am looking at photos of Cotton Candy, Wine and Cheese, and Roccoco, which sounds like a delightful chocolate. These tasty-sounding names are all new selections of verbenas.

While we're stuck inside waiting for warmer weather to arrive and the rain to stop, this is a great time to plan which plants you will use this year in your landscape and mixed containers.

Fiona McCarthy, a biocuration specialist with the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine, examines protein expression data that may indicate how the immune system develops in chickens. (Photo by Tom Thompson)
January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Animal Health

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- When Australia native Fiona McCarthy arrived three years ago to begin work at Mississippi State University as a biocuration specialist for the College of Veterinary Medicine, she felt an innate connection with home.

McCarthy grew up in Queensland, a state in Australia that is located in the northwest corner of the country close to the equator. The area is known for its hot climate, rural lifestyle and reverence for sports. Aussies refer to it as part of the Deep South.

Sally Tipton of Starkville cares for a 26-year-old thoroughbred retired race horse named, Teak. Teak's gray patch of hair on his forehead is a typical sign of aging.
January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Equine

By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Gray hair, stiff joints, poor teeth and weight changes are not just signs of aging in humans; they afflict horses as well.

Molly Nicodemus, an associate professor of animal and dairy sciences at Mississippi State University, said horses often display noticeable signs of aging. Although they vary from horse to horse, these indicators can appear as early as 15 years of age.

Nicodemus said owners may notice graying hair, loss of muscle tone and stiffness in their horses.

Winter landscapes look good when they include bones, berries and bark. This scene has all three, with American holly and its plentiful red berries in the foreground, the smooth, shiny bark of crape myrtles, and the deep, dark greens of the bushes, which serve as the "bones," or structural foundation, of the garden.
January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

A lot of people dread winter because the landscape starts looking a little like Siberia, but it doesn't have to be that way if you remember the “three Bs”: bones, berries and bark.

January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Soils

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Extensive, lingering rains have turned much of the state into a soggy mess while replenishing rivers and lakes and recharging groundwater stores.

Charles Wax, state climatologist at Mississippi State University, said 2007 was the worst year of the recent, multi-year drought the state experienced. The end came in 2008 when above-average rainfall came in August and heavy rains began in late November.

An unidentified horse and rider.
January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: 4-H, Equine Assisted Therapy Programs

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Volunteers, instructors, therapists and an ideal facility came together in 2008 to earn reaccreditation for Mississippi State University’s 4-H therapeutic riding program.

Now in its eighth year, the 4-H Therapeutic Equestrian Activity Member program offers horseback riding to children and adults who have challenges ranging from autism to spinal injuries.

January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Feb. 11-13 workshop hosted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service will help restore the whistle of the bobwhite to properties throughout the Southeast.

Designed for landowners, the intensive workshop includes detailed information on bobwhite biology and management. The on-campus workshop in Tully Auditorium at MSU’s Thompson Hall will give landowners the tools to manage their property for bobwhite quail.

January 8, 2009 - Filed Under: Health, Colon Cancer Screening

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service is recruiting people interested in becoming trained Smart Aging: Healthy Futures volunteers to help promote well-being among seniors in their communities.

Training sessions have been set up in Oxford and Natchez. Those in the northern half of the state can receive this training Jan. 29 from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. in Oxford at the Lafayette County Extension Office at 101 Veterans Drive. The registration deadline is Jan. 27.

The widely varying Acanthus family of plants has many terrific varieties for the landscape. Here Persian Shield shows off its iridescent purple and silver foliage. (Photo by Norman Winter)
January 1, 2009 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

I've decided to go where no garden writer I know of has gone before and give a “Family of the Year” award for 2008. Time magazine recognizes people of the year and Barbara Walters lists her 10 most interesting. I want to recognize the Acanthus family as my “Family of the Year.”

I was inspired to give this award this fall when a couple from Brookhaven sent me a photo of a 4- to 5-foot-tall plant with the most amazing blooms I have ever seen. They wanted me to identify it.