News From 2018
MISSISSIPPI STATE, Miss. -- Turfgrass professionals and others can learn about the latest research during the 2018 Turfgrass Research Field Day and Expo Aug. 21.
The event will be held at the Mississippi State University R. R. Foil Plant Science Research Facility in Starkville.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Just summarizing the drastic increase in activities held at the Mississippi Horse Park over its 19-year history does not do justice to the uniqueness of this facility and the challenges it has faced.
The Mississippi Horse Park, which grew from 23 events in 1999 to 100 in 2017, is a Mississippi State University facility operated in partnership with the city of Starkville and Oktibbeha County. It generates all the funds needed to support its operations.
Bricklee Miller, horse park director, said the facility recently received its first grant from the Mississippi Development Authority to advance its activities.
Healthy eating is important at every age, but older adults should pay special attention to their diets.
As adults age, several physical changes can affect how the body digests food and absorbs nutrients, said Pamela Redwine, Mississippi State University Extension agent in Yalobusha County.
As we continue to plow through this hot and humid summer, keeping our plants -- and ourselves -- hydrated is critical to maintaining the summer garden and landscape. As I write this column, it's 96 degrees with a heat index of 108. Whew!
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- It's that time of year when many parts of the state really need a good rain. Afternoon pop-up storms often bring torrential downpours that drop a couple of inches of rain in less than an hour, instead of the perfect, slow showers we need.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi’s roadsides are seeing more farmers markets, produce stands and pickup trucks filled with fruits and vegetables.
Commercial horticultural crops, commonly called truck crops in the agricultural industry, include berries, fruits, melons, nuts, potatoes and vegetables. Last year, they combined with other horticultural crops -- flowers, sod and Christmas trees – for a total production value of $107 million, according to statistics gathered by the Mississippi State University Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine.
Like most gardeners, I love watching the various butterflies that visit my garden.
One I really like is the giant swallowtail, with its black body and vivid, yellow stripes. This creature loves my citrus, where she lays her eggs. The developing caterpillars have a unique defense mechanism; they look like bird poop on the citrus leaves.
STONEVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi's wheat yields were the silver lining in an otherwise depressing season with reduced acreage and a weak market.
Until recent years, growers averaged 200,000 acres of wheat in the state. This year, growers planted about 50,000 acres, and estimated yields have averaged 62 bushels per acre, a 4-bushel increase from last year.
Larry Falconer, agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said prices are up about 6 cents per bushel compared to this same point last year.
Common Diseases of TomatoesCRYSTAL SPRINGS, Miss. -- Conditions have been ideal this summer for a disease outbreak that makes tomatoes wilt and look like they are just too dry.
Southern blight is a fungal disease of tomatoes commonly characterized by white, thread-like growth and brown or tan, round structures known as sclerotia at the base of the stem.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Oxygen-related fish kills can completely wipe out otherwise healthy ponds, but there is a strategy pond owners can use to control this problem.
Anoxia -- the lack of oxygen -- can form in deeper water layers of a pond during warmer months. Deeper water is heavier and denser, which prevents it from mixing with warm surface water where air and oxygen-producing microorganisms are found. As deeper water becomes isolated, its oxygen levels are depleted, reducing fish habitat and increasing the risk of fish kills.
I am a committed container gardener for both flowers and vegetables, but today I’m focusing on flowering plants. I firmly believe growing in containers is a fantastic way to enjoy a beautiful landscape and garden.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippians love their air conditioners, but an over-reliance could leave people at greater risks during power outages triggered by heat waves.
The hottest days of summer can tax power grids and individual air conditioning units. Backup plans can ease the discomfort and even save lives if brownouts occur or air conditioners break. Brownouts are drop in voltage in an electrical power supply system. They can be intentionally arranged by the power company to reduce the load on the overall power system, or they can be unintentionally caused by overloads or overuse of power.
BILOXI, Miss. -- Marine debris, largely composed of discarded plastic products, is one of the most alarming issues facing the world’s seas today.
Plastics have the advantages of being cheap, lightweight, durable and easy to make. Unfortunately, single-use plastics often serve their intended purposes in a matter of seconds before they enter the endless stream of waste humans generate.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service has launched an Internet microsite that delivers information on each facet of the state’s local foods industry.
TAYLORSVILLE, Miss. -- Before the first batch was picked on June 22, two fields at Ford Farms were covered with red and yellow watermelons. That wasn’t the case a year ago.
Any kind of melon crop at the Smith County farm is an improvement over 2017.
CLARKSDALE, Miss. -- Growers who planted cover crops for the first time last year will share their experiences with other producers at a cover crop field day.
SAUCIER, Miss. -- Producers and gardeners looking for tips on growing herbs and improving their soil can attend a July 20 field day.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Caring for someone with dementia can be overwhelming, but establishing routines is one way to make the process easier.
Judy Breland, county coordinator with the Mississippi State University Extension Service office in Stone County, said planning set times for meals, baths, regular outings and even restroom breaks, helps to lessen the stress on caregivers and their loved ones. Breland is a caregiver for her mother, who suffers from Alzheimer's disease.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service is offering its annual Forage Field Day July 17 to interested producers and agricultural agents.
Since we celebrated the first day of summer last week, I think this is the perfect time to talk about one my favorite color plants, the coleus.
Coleus used to be that colorful plant that would grow only in the shadows, never exposed to the sun. One of my favorites of this kind is the sun-bashful coleus group, Kong.