News From 2016
New Guinea impatiens and SunPatiens are similar in appearance and impressive with their ability to brighten any landscape, but SunPatiens have a much higher tolerance for Mississippi’s summer heat.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Added sugar found in soda is not as sweet as it sounds.
David Buys, health specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and researcher with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, said a 12-ounce can of soda may contain as much as 10 to 12 teaspoons of sugar.
by Sarah Buckleitner
MSU Forest and Wildlife Research Center
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Each spring the woods are littered with antlers as deer shed their old racks to make way for new sets, and these “sheds” may reveal hidden health problems in the bucks that drop them.
To learn more about these lucky finds, many people bring shed antlers to the Mississippi State University Deer Lab, which specializes in deer biology and antler formation.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Families can celebrate the joy of early learning experiences during the annual celebration of the Week of the Young Child from April 11 to 15.
The Early Years Network, a program of the Mississippi State University Extension Service, will host daily activities at each of its 17 resource and referral sites across the state. From making musical instruments to crafts and dramatic play, Early Years Network staff members have planned hands-on fun for children, families and child care providers.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Crop decisions made in January based on markets and profit potential may be cloudy memories for growers waiting on fields to dry out enough to allow spring plantings.
Brian Williams, an agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said growers have purchased seed and locked in their planting intentions, unless rains prevent timely plantings. Few changes will be based on the market’s response to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Prospective Plantings Report released March 31.
RAYMOND, Miss. -- One of the key elements of creating a wildlife-friendly yard is providing areas for animals to nest.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Even in a state that averages more than 50 inches of rainfall a year, water conservation is important, and some water recycling has true value to homeowners.
The term “gray water” applies to water that has come in contact with humans, such as from sinks, washing machines, dishwashers, showers and bathtubs. It can be filtered and reused for irrigation and other purposes. Blackwater goes down the toilet and is typically treated commercially.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Good health begins at home, and Mississippians can learn more about hidden dangers lurking in their household environments through workshops available from the Mississippi State University Extension Service.
David Buys, Extension health specialist, said agents across the state are ready to deliver workshops on 12 different topics as part of the Healthy Homes Initiative.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Many people are conditioned to think that any fire in the forest is a bad thing, but controlled burns prevent wildfires from being a problem in the woods.
Humans are the primary cause of forest fires in Mississippi. In 2015, there were about 1,800 wildfires in the state; lightning caused only eight of them. These fires affected an average area of 13 acres, for a total of about 23,000 acres burned. February and March face the highest risk of forest fire in Mississippi.
I have to admit most of my gardening life can be summed up by this saying that someone shared with me on social media: “Real gardeners buy at least 10,000 plants in the course of a lifetime without having the least idea where they’ll put any of them when they get home.”
I guess I’m a real gardener. To tell you the truth, I can’t help it when I go to the garden and see all the annual color each season, along with the perennials promising to return to the landscape.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- While a good bargain is always thrilling, safety is the most important thing to consider when shopping online.
Jamie Varner, an instructor for the Mississippi State University Extension Center for Technology Outreach, said it is better to be safe than sorry when shopping on websites.
“Safety is a concern whether we are driving our car or making purchases online,” she said. “Keeping your information secure online requires you to take more time and care, but what you lose in moments, you will make up for with peace of mind.”
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- With spring comes turkey season and the countless hours spent listening for that chill-inducing gobble.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Wild game processors can learn the best food safety practices at a free workshop offered in three different locations.
“Sanitation, Safety and Risk Reduction Practices for Wild Game Processors” will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m.:
PICAYUNE, Miss. -- South Mississippi students will learn details about daily wood use when they visit the Mississippi State University Wood Magic Science Fair on March 31.
MSU Wood Magic will be an attraction at the Crosby Arboretum’s Wildlife Day, a one-day event that draws 200 to 300 participants annually.
Students from kindergarten to the eighth grade will learn all about the significance of wood in their lives. Teachers will receive resource materials and contact information for useful teaching aids.
This past weekend the Garden Extravaganza was held in Jackson, and I have to say I’m feeling really inspired.
There were literally thousands of brightly colored flowering plants all begging to be taken home. Of course, I bought a few flats of calibrachoas (mainly Holy Moly!, which I described in last week’s column) and some new Supertunias.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- As the movement toward buying local food continues to grow, consumers may wonder if this trend is actually benefiting the environment.
A 2011 U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends Survey reported that consumers were motivated to buy local food for a variety of reasons, including freshness, taste, support of the local economy, knowledge of food sources and concern for the environment.
RAYMOND, Miss. -- Beekeeping is hot right now, with numbers of producers steadily increasing in Mississippi and across the U.S.
“Beekeeping continues to grow in astonishing numbers across the country,” said Jeff Harris, bee specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “Most of that growth is from people who want to do it as a hobby.”
Johnny Thompson, a Philadelphia, Mississippi, beekeeper who raises queens and nucleus colonies, said about half of his customers are new to beekeeping.
CANTON, Miss. -- Canton area residents now have access to an expanded resource and referral center for child care and early education.
Early care and education providers, parents and other residents will be able to use lending library materials, such as books, toys and puzzles, die-cut machines and other instructional resources, while also having access to early child care professionals at the downtown center.
BILOXI, Miss. -- Agricultural producers met with Mississippi State University experts on Feb. 23 at the Coastal Research and Extension Center Commodity Advisory Council meeting.
The meeting is an annual event that brings coastal area producers, industry professionals and MSU personnel together to discuss research and educational priorities for the coming year. Producers converged on the center despite severe weather threats to provide essential input.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Asian lady beetles are known for inviting themselves into houses and other structures during winter to hibernate, but they can be just as much of a nuisance in the spring when they are trying to go back outside.
Soffit and gable vents in home attics are common entry points for the beetles, but they will come in any way they can. Any crack in windows, walls or the sides of doors is a welcome mat.
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