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Feature Story from 2013

Clyde Brown, an agricultural technician with Mississippi State University's Forest and Wildlife Research Center, stands on a fire lane to monitor a prescribed fire on a cut-over in Oktibbeha County. After the site was clear cut and an aerial application of herbicide was applied, it was burned and replanted in pines. (Photo by MSU Forest and Wildlife Research Center)
September 25, 2013 - Filed Under: Environment, Timber Harvest

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Landowners interested in maximizing the value of their investment need to plan for proper site preparation when replanting trees after harvesting timber.

John Kushla, a forestry specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and MSU’s Forest and Wildlife Research Center, said this preparation involves manipulating the site to increase the survival and growth of seedlings. Proper site preparation also makes tree planting or seeding more efficient.

Mallory Ritter, a West Hancock Elementary School second-grader, takes a closer look at an ant hill at Mississippi State University's Crosby Arboretum in Picayune during Bugfest on Sept. 27. Experts and volunteers introduced children and adults to the correct methods for insect collection during the two-day event. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 1, 2013 - Filed Under: Environment, Insects

PICAYUNE – “Endangered,” “nocturnal” and “habitat” might not be words that appear on every second-grader’s vocabulary test. But West Hancock Elementary School teacher Teri Borne said insects help her teach everything from science to language arts.

That is why Borne, an avid insect collector and nature lover, takes her class to Bugfest at Mississippi State University’s Crosby Arboretum every year.

Charles Freeman, assistant professor in the Mississippi State University Apparel, Textiles and Merchandising program, looks at a sketch of a garment with Sarah Ashley Bealor, left, a senior from Tampa, and Rachel Buchanan, a senior from Pontotoc. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kat Lawrence)
October 3, 2013 - Filed Under: Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE – An apparel designer for a prominent national retailer told Mississippi State University students that the clothing industry is a good career choice since about 25 percent of the global economy is involved in it.

Ellen Sheppard is the lead apparel developer for Recreational Equipment Inc., commonly known as REI, and oversees its sportswear collections. She was on campus Oct. 2 and 3 telling students in the MSU School of Human Sciences what it takes to create a successful career in this field.

Small bats, such as this Eastern pipistrelle or tricolored bat, prefer to roost in caves and large trees but find their way into buildings in search of protection from temperature changes. Fall and winter are ideal times to install exclusion devices on buildings to remove bats safely. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Keri Collins Lewis)
October 3, 2013 - Filed Under: Urban and Backyard Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- As summer ends and fall begins, homeowners who don’t want host neighbors from the natural world should begin preparing their houses for cooler weather.

Most people think of certain insects and mice as the critters looking for a cozy spot to spend the winter. But as natural habitats decline, bats are also looking for suitable homes.

Bats are nocturnal and prefer to roost in dark places during the day. While they like caves and big, hollow trees, those natural roosts can be hard to find.

Water for farming and drinking has always been a plentiful resource in Mississippi, and Mississippi State University is taking steps to keep it that way. (File photo/MSU Delta Research and Extension Center)
October 3, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Water, Water Quality

MISSISSIPPI STATE – When water runs clear and fast from a tap, it’s often hard to believe there could be a challenge for individuals, farmers and communities to keep it clean and plentiful.

Joe Street, associate director of the Mississippi State University Extension Service, warned that water supplies could be depleted, even in the South, where rainfall, rivers, streams and lakes are plentiful. This problem can already be seen in the Mississippi Delta, where producers must drill deeper to tap the Mississippi River Valley’s alluvial aquifer.

October 4, 2013 - Filed Under: Commercial Horticulture, Fruit

CHOCTAW – Fruit and vegetable growers can learn the latest tips and techniques at an upcoming conference near Philadelphia.

The Mississippi Fruit and Vegetable Growers Conference and Trade Show will be Nov. 13-15 at the Silver Star Conference Center in Choctaw.

The conference is open to new and experienced growers and other interested individuals. Experts from the Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will deliver many of the sessions.

October 4, 2013 - Filed Under: Farming, Wildlife, White-Tailed Deer

By Kaitlyn Byrne
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While hunters may see Mississippi’s 1.75 million white-tailed deer as potential antlers on their walls, many farmers see reduced crop yields instead.

Bronson Strickland, associate Extension professor in the Mississippi State University Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Aquaculture, said the impact of Mississippi’s deer population varies depending on who is asked.

Mississippi State University weed scientists are leading the fight against glyphosate-resistant Italian ryegrass, such as this growing in a production corn field in Washington County in early spring 2013. (Photo by MSU Delta Research and Extension Center/Jason Bond)
October 7, 2013 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Weed Control for Crops, Invasive Plants

STONEVILLE -- Mississippi State University scientists are leading the charge in the fight against glyphosate-resistant Italian ryegrass with a research-based plan of attack.

Jason Bond, a weed scientist at the MSU Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, said Mississippi was the first state to discover Italian ryegrass that cannot be controlled with glyphosate, a common herbicide originally known as Round-up, in a crop situation. The weed has spread quickly since it arrived.

Renee Anderson, a member of a DeSoto County 4-H robotics club, prepares to test her robot's ability to chase an infrared ball, a task she programmed it to do. She took part in a five-day 4-H Robotics Academy hosted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service's Center for Technology Outreach. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Scott Corey)
October 9, 2013 - Filed Under: 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi 4-H provides a year-round youth development activity in Mississippi, but it gets an extra share of the spotlight with fall activities that include National 4-H Week Oct. 6-12.

The 4-H Youth Development Program is part of the Mississippi State University Extension Service. This year, it has more than 103,500 members ages 8 to 18 in 1,731 clubs across the state. These groups range from specialized clubs for robotics, horses, shooting sports or outdoor activities, to general interest clubs and after-school programs.

Farmweek, the state's oldest and locally produced agricultural television news show, has moved to Saturdays at 6 p.m. and Mondays at 6 a.m. on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. From left, Leighton Spann, Artis Ford and Amy Taylor launched the show's 37th season this month. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Scott Corey)
October 9, 2013 - Filed Under: About Extension, Agriculture

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippians interested in the state’s latest agricultural news will need to tune in or set their digital video recorders to a different time.

Farmweek, the state’s oldest and only locally produced agricultural television news show, has moved to Saturdays at 6 p.m. and Mondays at 6 a.m. on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. The show also can be seen on the nationwide satellite and cable TV network RFD-TV Fridays at 5 p.m. and on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 3 a.m., or online.

October 11, 2013 - Filed Under: Wood Products

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- About 4,000 fourth-graders, teachers and parents from across the state will be at Mississippi State University Oct. 14-18 for the annual Wood Magic Science Fair.   

Activities and exhibits illustrating everything from papermaking to the strength of a toothpick-sized piece of wood are part of the annual event at the Forest Products Lab complex during the week. 

Sponsored by the university’s College of Forest Resources, the event is designed to illustrate the importance of natural resources throughout the state. 

October 14, 2013 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting, Health

By Mary Grace Eppes
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE - With the school year well underway, families across Mississippi commonly encounter illnesses, viruses or the contagious and bothersome head lice.

David Shrock, a health education and wellness graduate assistant at Mississippi State University, said the head louse is a parasitic insect that can be found on heads, eyebrows and eyelashes of humans.

Gary Bachman, horticulture expert with Mississippi State University, provides guidance to the "Ask This Old House" crew, including (from left) producer Heath Racela, landscape contractor Roger Cook, director Thomas Draudt and grip Sean Finnegan. The traveling home improvement show filmed the installation of a backyard high tunnel in Biloxi on Oct. 9. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 14, 2013 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden

BILOXI – Biloxi homeowner Jesse Aguilar got a little help installing a high tunnel in his backyard from two Mississippi State University horticulture scientists and the traveling home improvement show “Ask This Old House.”

October 15, 2013 - Filed Under: Agri-tourism, Community, Rural Development

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Two Mississippi State University units are helping sponsor a conference for people interested in developing outdoor recreation and tourism businesses.

The MSU Extension Service and Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development are promoting the annual Alabama-Mississippi Rural Tourism Conference Oct. 28-30. The event will be in Guntersville, Ala., and the theme is outdoor recreation.

More than 20 horses from the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station's herd, such as this 2-year-old gray mare, will be sold in an online auction from Nov. 1 to 21 at http://www.auction.msucares.com. (Submitted Photo)
October 16, 2013 - Filed Under: Livestock, Equine

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi State University is moving a popular horse sale into cyberspace with a special online auction.

More than 20 horses from the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station’s herd will be sold from Nov. 1 to 21 at http://www.auction.msucares.com. Buyers can also bid on the stud fee for one 2014 breeding to gray American quarter horse stallion UGA King of Aces.

October 16, 2013 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Starkville-area teachers are invited to bring their students Nov. 1 to the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine to listen to the adventures of National Geographic explorer Helen Thayer.

The college is hosting Thayer as part of its Nestle Purina Human-Animal Bond Series. Thayer will share her adventures as the first woman to travel to the Magnetic North Pole with only the companionship of her dog. She will also discuss her experience living among wolves for a year.

Rachel Harvey of Monticello pets Bob, a buff Plymouth Rock chicken raised by Stone County 4-H member Aaron Scara. Bob was one of six chickens Scara entered into the poultry show at the Mississippi State Fair on Oct. 12. The poultry show returned to the state fair in 2013 after a 30-year absence. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 16, 2013 - Filed Under: 4-H, Poultry

JACKSON – After a 30-year absence, the 4-H poultry livestock show returned with great fanfare to the Mississippi State Fair this year.

Jessica Wells, poultry science specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the poultry program has been very popular with 4-H’ers since it returned to the program lineup in 2012. She said 150 children participated this year with 64 showing their chickens at the state fair.

October 17, 2013 - Filed Under: Family Financial Management

INDIANOLA – An upcoming seminar will help people discover ways to secure, save and safeguard tax refunds for themselves or the clients they serve.

Mississippi State University Extension Service will offer the program from 11:45 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on Oct. 23 at the Charlie Capps Technology Center in Indianola. The seminar’s purpose is to provide organizational leaders and professionals with information on tax credits that can result in higher income tax refunds.

Jason McDonald (center), FiLoLi Tea Farm owner, talks with Guihong Bi (left), associate research and Extension Professor with Mississippi State University and Shirley Estes, Lincoln County Master Gardener, after the Oct. 17 groundbreaking for the first-ever commercial tea-growing operation in Mississippi. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Susan Collins-Smith)
October 17, 2013 - Filed Under: Crops

BROOKHAVEN – When Hurricane Katrina destroyed his timber stand in 2005, Lincoln County landowner Jason McDonald searched for an alternative crop.

In May 2012, he visited the Charleston Tea Plantation in South Carolina and began to consider growing the crop himself.

“I wanted something that was sustainable and better at resisting storm damage,” McDonald said. “As long as tea plants are managed well, they are low-growing, which makes them able to survive high winds.”

Blue Mohawk rush softens the edges of this walkway and is one of the hardy plants suggested by landscape architecture associate professor Bob Brzuszek at the recent landscape design symposium at Mississippi State University. (Submitted Photo)
October 17, 2013 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Landscape Architecture

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Gardeners with landscape challenges walked away with wheelbarrows full of ideas after three landscape designers shared tips at the nation’s oldest symposium of its kind.

The 58th Edward C. Martin Jr. Landscape Symposium drew more than 100 garden club members, Master Gardeners, students and design professionals to Mississippi State University Oct. 16.

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