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News From 2015

February 12, 2015 - Filed Under: Green Industry, Greenhouse Tomatoes

RAYMOND, Miss. -- Greenhouse tomato growers and other interested individuals can learn all aspects of production during the 25th annual Greenhouse Tomato Short Course March 3 and 4 in Raymond.

Experts from the tomato industry, the Mississippi State University Extension Service, the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, and Auburn University will present the latest production information.

The workshop will be held at the Eagle Ridge Conference Center at 1500 Raymond Lake Road in Raymond.

Millie Thompson of Starkville grooms her horse, Snip, before riding on Feb. 11, 2015. Thompson is preparing for the 2015 Mississippi 4-H Equine Shadow Program taking place in conjunction with the Dixie National Quarter Horse Show Feb. 16-22 in Jackson. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kevin Hudson)
February 11, 2015 - Filed Under: 4-H, Youth Projects, Family

JACKSON, Miss. -- When the Dixie National Quarter Horse Show kicks off during the 2015 Dixie National Rodeo Feb. 16, a group of young horse enthusiasts will have already made it through a round of competition to participate in an unusual career development program.

The Mississippi 4-H Dixie National Equine Shadow Program connects 4-H’ers from across the Southeast with a variety of horse show professionals who convene at the State Fairgrounds for several days of competition and exhibition.

February 11, 2015 - Filed Under: Crops, Commercial Horticulture, Fruit

HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Growers across 13 counties in southeast Mississippi have an upcoming opportunity to learn about the challenges and benefits of fruit and vegetable enterprises.

The informational meeting will take place from 8:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. Feb. 21 at the Forrest County Extension Office, located at 952 Sullivan Drive.

Reed Noss
February 11, 2015 - Filed Under: Natural Resources

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Noted conservationist Reed Noss will present a lecture at Mississippi State University on Feb. 17.

Noss is a provost’s distinguished research professor at the University of Central Florida and president of the Florida Institute for Conservation Science.

The public lecture begins at 3 p.m. in the Tully Auditorium of Thompson Hall.

Noss will speak on concepts and themes of modern conservation with examples from his recent book, “Forgotten Grasslands of the South: Natural History and Conservation.”

February 10, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Farming, Natural Resources

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Two critical 2014 farm bill deadlines are approaching fast, and Mississippi State University experts encourage producers to take action now.

Landowners must update yield history and reallocate base acres by Feb. 27. By March 31, producers must decide between two new programs designed to help manage risk: Agricultural Risk Coverage, known as ARC, and Price Loss Coverage, known as PLC.

The buds and blooms of the saucer magnolia are fairly reliable early indicators of spring in Mississippi. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman)
February 9, 2015 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

There are a lot of different traditions and customs when it comes to predicting the weather. Just last week, we looked to that venerable weather creature, the ground hog Punxsutawney Phil, to tell us how many more weeks of winter before we can expect spring to arrive.

Winter is one of the easiest times of the year to identify cogongrass, which many researchers have classified among the worst weeds in the world. Herbicide treatments applied in the early spring are instrumental in eliminating the noxious weed. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kevin Hudson)
February 6, 2015 - Filed Under: Weed Control for Crops, Invasive Plants

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Cogongrass will not be in bloom for at least another two months, but now is the time for people who suspect they may have this weed on their property to find out for sure.

Contrary to what many people think, a prescribed, controlled burn performed by a registered professional actually improves habitat quality for many of Mississippi's wildlife species. (MSU Ag Communications/File Photo)
February 6, 2015 - Filed Under: Environment, Natural Resources

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Although it may sound contradictory, burning the landscape actually improves habitat quality for many of Mississippi’s wildlife species.

I’m often asked, “How can destroying the habitat with fire help wildlife?” Another common question is, “Where will the wildlife go if you’re burning down their homes?”

Mike Phillips, center, head of the Mississippi State University Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, joins faculty members and students from his department displaying awards received during a recent meeting of the Southern Branch of the American Society of Agronomy. Pictured are (from left to right) Jesse Morrison, doctoral student; Chathurika Wijewardana, master's student; Phillips (holding awards for Normie Buehring and Christian Baldwin); Firas Alsajri, doctoral student; and Ethan Norvell, undergraduat
February 6, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi State University faculty members and students received top honors at the Southern Branch of the American Society of Agronomy meeting in Atlanta earlier this month.

Normie Buehring and Christian Baldwin, faculty members in the MSU Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, were awarded for research and teaching, respectively.

February 6, 2015 - Filed Under: Crops, Soybeans

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi State University experts will share the latest research on managing unseen soybean yield killers at five seminars across the state in February.

The goal is to heighten awareness of soybean-management issues that often go unseen but can severely impact yield. These issues include nematodes, soil fertility and fertilizer management, and soil crusting and irrigation-infiltration problems. The seminars are sponsored by the MSU Extension Service, Mississippi Soybean Promotion Board and Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation.

Lee Hathcock, a researcher and doctoral student at Mississippi State University, launches a Robota Triton unmanned aerial vehicle. (Photo by MSU Media Affairs/Beth Wynn)
February 5, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Weed Control for Crops

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi State University researchers are preparing for the day when unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly known as drones, can be used commercially in agriculture.

Their size, cost and capabilities make UAVs useful for a wide range of jobs. Some MSU researchers are already using these vehicles, and many others are examining their potential applications.

February 4, 2015 - Filed Under: Community, Family Financial Management

RAYMOND, Miss. -- Small-business owners and entrepreneurs can participate in an upcoming workshop to help them establish, develop and grow their businesses.

The Mississippi Small Business Forum will be March 17 at the Mississippi State University Central Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Raymond.

The MSU Extension Service, Alcorn State University Extension Program and Hinds Community College Entrepreneurship Business Development Program will deliver 12 educational sessions and help business owners understand the resources available from these colleges.

February 4, 2015 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi State University Extension Service agricultural economists will hold a series of workshops related to the Agricultural Act of 2014 in February.

“Farm Bill Summary, Analysis and Decision Aids” will address six topics related to the new farm bill. Workshops will cover the fine points of the legislation and how the state’s crop producers will be affected. Topics include agricultural risk coverage, price-loss coverage, supplemental coverage option, stacked-income protection plan, farm bill analysis and decision aids.

February 3, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A unique, annual competition at Mississippi State University is designed to match graduate students in applied production agriculture with industries seeking to hire new employees.

The third annual Future of Agriculture Graduate Student Competition will be Feb. 5 at the Bost Extension Center. Nearly 40 masters and doctoral degree students working in production agriculture will present the results of their research to a panel of farmers, consultants, industry personnel and academic professionals.

The Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station hosts small-plot research on the Mississippi State University campus so researchers can evaluate residual control of glyphosate-resistant Italian ryegrass to determine the best practices for combating the weed. (Photo submitted)
February 2, 2015 - Filed Under: Weed Control for Crops, Invasive Plants

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- With spring right around the corner, experts say now is the time for producers to control weeds that have developed resistance to commonly used herbicides.

Jason Bond, associate research and Extension professor at the Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, said glyphosate-resistant Italian ryegrass is a problem weed for producers in Mississippi.

Nandinas are good-looking, hardy bushes with glossy, green leaves that shine in the winter with a fiery array of reds and burgundies. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Gary Bachman)
February 2, 2015 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

Cold winter weather causes changes in the foliage of many evergreen plants, including making them express new colors.

For instance, Japanese cleyera produces rich, velvety burgundy foliage along with bright red petioles. I really like the way the boxwoods in my landscape develop a warm, orangey-bronze, but if I had to pick my favorite evergreen for cold weather color, it would have to be nandina.

February 2, 2015 - Filed Under: Family Financial Management

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi Saves will launch its second America Saves Week campaign on Feb. 23 to promote financial responsibility throughout the state.

This squirrel enjoys the fruits of his labor after digging up a nearby cache. (Photo by Marina Denny)
January 30, 2015 - Filed Under: Environment, Nuisance Wildlife and Damage Management

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Bare trees in the winter provide clear views of squirrels chasing each other up, down and every which way.

Mid-December through January is a common mating period for eastern gray squirrels, which explains the heightened activity. Baby squirrels are born about six weeks after mating occurs.

Typically, squirrels will build nests for these babies in the forks of tree branches or in the hollows of tree trunks. Their simple nests are fashioned mostly out of dry leaves and twigs.

January 30, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Animal Health

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine invites visitors of all ages to attend its 30th annual Open House on April 10 and 11.

The college will open its doors from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Wise Center in Starkville. The April 10 program is for preregistered school groups. Everyone is welcome to attend on April 11.

Alexis Pickens, center, maneuvers a hog in the Clarke County Special Needs Livestock Show under the watchful eyes of 4-H member Brittany Conner on Jan. 23, 2015. U.S. Congressman Gregg Harper is reporting observations as he serves as the celebrity judge for the annual event in Quitman, Mississippi. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Linda Breazeale)
January 28, 2015 - Filed Under: Youth Livestock, Community

QUITMAN, Miss. -- Livestock exhibitors work hard for trophies and blue ribbons, but they occasionally earn intangible rewards that will never collect dust.

Christy King, an agent with the Mississippi State University Extension Service in Clarke County since 2010, knows what typical 4-H members learn through livestock projects.