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News From 2002

May 24, 2002 - Filed Under: Poultry

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's final poultry value numbers for 2001 reveal a much better year than originally predicted in December.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's poultry production and value summary for 2001 released in April showed the industry's value was $1.66 billion, about $120 million more than economists predicted at year's end for Mississippi. The final figures are well ahead of the previous year's $1.38 billion value.

May 20, 2002 - Filed Under: Insects-Crop Pests

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Production costs are up and prices are down, but Mississippi cotton growers have one reason to celebrate this year; 2002 is on course to be the third consecutive year boll weevils will not steal from the state's yields.

Jeannine Smith, executive director of the Mississippi Boll Weevil Management Corp., said the first week of trapping boll weevils from May 2 through 8 revealed weevil-free fields in 95 percent of Mississippi's cotton.

The small-flowered French Marigolds and blue-flowered lobelia create a dazzling landscape display when planted together.
May 20, 2002 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

If there was a poster child, or in this case poster plant, for the most taken-for-granted plants, the recognition would have to fall to the marigold. Incredibly, we can plant marigolds from spring until fall. If mass planted, they will give some of the showiest color in the landscape.

May 20, 2002 - Filed Under: Remote Sensing Technology

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- What was once possible only in movies is now a reality to the average Mississippian who can visit an online map of the state and find a picture of their own neighborhood and home.

May 17, 2002 - Filed Under: Cotton

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's cotton is facing another year of weather challenges as U.S. Highway 82 divides northern counties with plenty of rain from southern counties in need of additional moisture.

Mississippi State University Extension cotton specialist Will McCarty said the cooler temperatures in mid-May haven't helped the crop that was already off to a slow start. Most growers try to have cotton planted by May 25, but the first of June is the absolute latest growers usually plant.

The native Virginia sweetspire with its long white blossoms looks like a natural in all Mississippi landscapes and especially along this dry creek bed.
May 13, 2002 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

The past couple of weeks have been awesome at our office thanks to a group of native plants that has everyone inquiring about them. They are Virginia sweetspires, and we have them growing along a natural-looking creek bed lined with rocks.

May 13, 2002 - Filed Under: Farm Safety

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- People trying to refill their propane tanks for summer grilling may encounter an extra expense as they find they must buy a new safety valve.

As of April 1, all four- to 40-pound propane tanks must be equipped with an Overfill Protection Device. This is a new valve that replaces the one on existing tanks. The new valves are marked with "OPD" to designate their compliance with the state law and have three-lobed valve handles, rather than the five-lobe type found on older propane tanks.

May 10, 2002 - Filed Under: Soybeans

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Many Mississippi fields are proof that "hope springs eternal" as soybean growers are planting early, aiming for strong yields in a year when prices offer little incentive.

Alan Blaine, soybean specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said about 60 percent of the crop was planted by May 1. While growers are running slightly behind last year's planting schedule, they are still ahead of the five-year average.

May 6, 2002 - Filed Under: Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- School and health personnel face many challenges in improving health among Mississippi's school children, and a June 6 through 8 conference in Biloxi will offer guidance.

This pink french hydrangea combines beautifully with the Mississippi Medallion award-winning, native oakleaf hydrangea.
May 6, 2002 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

May 6, 2002 - Filed Under: Rural Health

By Jeanie Davidson

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's increasing need for doctors has spurred an opportunity for local students to prepare themselves for careers in the medical field.

"With one out of five doctors in Mississippi approaching retirement age, the state's need for doctors will only escalate," said Bonnie Carew, rural health policy coordinator for Mississippi State University's Extension Service.

May 3, 2002 - Filed Under: Crops

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Prices that reached some historic lows couldn't prevent Mississippi farmers from posting a farm value in 2001 that surpassed the previous year's by just over 3 percent.

Final agriculture production figures were recently calculated and show the state's largest industry had a value of $4.39 billion. Farm production value in 2000 was $4.25 billion.

The burgundy and pink foliage of the Mississippi Summer sun coleus works well with many plants including this bright pink bougainvillea.
April 29, 2002 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

The phrase "Mississippi summer" brings visions of torrid heat and humidity to the minds of most gardeners, but that will not be the case after the spring of 2002.

April 29, 2002 - Filed Under: Health

By Ashley Crawford

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi public schools are discovering the many benefits of health programs with the help of an organization dedicated to improving the lives of youth.

April 26, 2002 - Filed Under: Beef

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Last fall, Mississippi cattle producers had every reason to be optimistic about 2002 prices, but skittish markets have taken every opportunity to go the wrong direction in recent months.

"In spite of Sept. 11, beef demand held up well in the fall," said John Anderson, agricultural economist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service. "We saw declining cattle numbers in the feedlots and a small calf crop last fall. We certainly expected a very good spring, since April is usually the month when the market peaks."

April 25, 2002 - Filed Under: Corn

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Spring storms have dampened corn growers fields, but not their hopes for the 2003 crop.

While heavy rains are not unusual during planting season, some growers had to evaluate replanting decisions to make sure whatever they do is money well spent. They know lost time reduces yield potential and profit, and every pass across the field is going to be expensive with fuel prices at their current levels.

April 22, 2002 - Filed Under: Cotton

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Two Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station researchers helped compile a reference book series on various aspects of cotton production.

April 22, 2002 - Filed Under: 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Mississippi man considered by many to be one of the founders of 4-H was inducted in early April into the National 4-H Hall of Fame.

William Hall "Corn Club" Smith established the first boys and girls clubs in Holmes County, Mississippi in 1907. He was the first person to receive federal funds to work with youth and is considered a founder of 4-H.

April 22, 2002 - Filed Under: Beef

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A recent Mississippi State University study suggests that Americans don't mind eating beef treated with growth hormones or fed genetically engineered corn nearly as much as do European consumers.

Jayson Lusk, assistant professor in MSU's Department of Agricultural Economics, helped conduct a survey of consumers in France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. He worked with Jutta Rossen from the Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium and John Fox of Kansas State University.

The yellow, trumpet-shaped flowers of the Night Jasmine give an enticing fragrance during several bloom cycles from spring until frost. Here it is grown with Petunia integrifolia.
April 22, 2002 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

If someone told me I could only grow one plant, I would probably choose several night blooming jasmine, but not because of their beauty. It is their fragrance that makes them a must-have in every landscape.