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A branch is loaded with flower buds.
March 28, 2022 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

I spent time outside this weekend enjoying my landscape and garden and trying to get caught up with late-winter/early-spring pruning. I spent a couple of hours in my citrus grove marveling that I can grow such a variety of these delicious fruit trees.

I’ve found that most years, there seems to be a difference in flowering among the trees. I’ve thought that maybe citrus will get into the alternate bearing pattern that is so common in the live oaks here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

Dye, eggs and dyed eggs on a counter.
March 25, 2022 - Filed Under: Food and Health, Food, Food Safety

Eggs are a traditional part of Easter décor and celebrations, and it is risky to eat or use these hard-boiled eggs for recipes after the festivities are over.

Frozen food at shelves in cold warehouse
March 24, 2022 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Beef, Local Food System Economies

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Two years have passed since the first cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the U.S., but problems the virus caused in the country’s grocery supply chain could remain well into 2022, which will likely mean higher beef prices for consumers.

Josh Maples, an agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said labor reductions caused beef shortages, which have increased the price of this commodity across the country.

A single hummingbird drinks from a flower.
March 21, 2022 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

It is officially spring, so we can start to get serious about our gardens and landscapes. But this is also the time we enjoy the annual, northward migration of hummingbirds. That means we need to start thinking about plants that will attract hummingbirds to our landscapes.

A man delivers a food box to a senior citizen.
March 21, 2022 - Filed Under: Food and Health, Food, Nutrition and Wellness

RAYMOND, Miss. – Unique nutritional needs require older Americans to pay special attention to how they stock their pantries to ensure they are consuming enough of the right foods.

March 21, 2022 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Beef, Poultry

RALEIGH, Miss. – Beef and poultry producers across Mississippi will have an opportunity to get up to speed on the latest issues facing their industries and see new products and equipment on April 14.

March 18, 2022 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture

One way to improve a home landscape is to learn from the best, an opportunity coming to area gardeners when Douglas Tallamy speaks twice at Mississippi State University.

An adult pumps gas into a car at a gas station.
March 15, 2022 - Filed Under: Family, Family Financial Management

Gas prices have been inching up for months, but the recent overnight increases have many people looking for ways to keep costs down. According to AAA, gas prices in Mississippi average $3.99 per gallon of regular unleaded. A month ago, that average was $3.14; a year ago, it was $2.48.

Two women load an ice chest on a bus.
March 15, 2022 - Filed Under: Health and Wellness, Nutrition and Wellness, Nutrition

Dependable, good nutrition is key to children’s successful development, a fact that brings hundreds of organizations and individuals into action when a disruption threatens lifelong impacts. Such a disruption came in March 2020 when the pandemic lockdown made school virtual. Thousands of Mississippi children who relied on school cafeterias for breakfast and lunch were suddenly without a huge percentage of their daily nutrition. Many school districts leaped into action, using existing bus routes to deliver meals to students a few times a week.

A hunter shows off a turkey he harvested.
March 14, 2022 - Filed Under: Natural Resources

As the weather finally begins to change and periods of high pressure set in across the Southeast, Mississippi’s spring turkey season looms in the no-so-distant future.

During this time, many critters are beginning to change their day-to-day behavior, including turkey hunters. Whether its deer and squirrels recovering from the cold breeding season and now preparing to deliver their offspring, or the waterfowl dispersing back North, our state’s most popular game bird is just beginning to wind up for its most exciting time of year.

Yellow flowers cover a hanging basket.
March 14, 2022 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

I have to admit I wasn’t prepared for last weekend’s cold snap. I physically protected those plants that needed protection from the cold snap, but I wasn’t ready mentally for the cold. We have had some really good gardening weather the past couple of weeks, and I was ready to get on with my spring and summer landscape.

Man in the background holding a cell phone in the foreground
March 9, 2022 - Filed Under: Marketing and Business Planning, Small Business, Marketing

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Business leaders looking to upgrade their social media marketing strategies can now get started by tuning in to a new podcast series.

Bricks-To-Clicks Marketing, a Mississippi State University Extension program, helps business leaders develop a digital marketing plan to bring in more customers and revenue. The program has launched an eight-episode marketing podcast centered around use of social media platforms to grow personal brands and businesses.

Paper bags are filled with grocery items.
March 8, 2022 - Filed Under: Community, Food and Health, Food

Rural Mississippians face the same challenge as every other community across the country when a local grocery store closes: Where do lower-income residents find food? Many communities have chosen to act rather than let this setback destroy the way of life they hold dear.

Upright green leaves grow among red blooms.
March 7, 2022 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

When planning my home garden and landscape, I love to combine different plants in containers. My basic practice is to follow the thriller, filler and spiller recipe.

The thriller plants are upright and grow taller than the rest, adding interest and excitement. The spillers are low-growing plants that sprawl out and over the container edges. Filler plants have rounded and mounding growth habits that fill in the gaps between thrillers and spillers.

The beauty of this recipe is that you can leave one of the parts out of the planting.

March 4, 2022 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Commercial Fruit and Nuts, Fruit, Beef, Beekeeping, Equine, Goats and Sheep, Vegetable Gardens, Forestry, Wildlife

Central Mississippi agricultural producers and industry professionals met with Mississippi State University personnel to discuss research and education priorities at the 2022 Producer Advisory Council meeting on Feb. 23 in Raymond. The annual event is aimed at helping clients improve their productivity. Attendees gathered in small commodity groups to share their ideas with agents, researchers and specialists with the MSU Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.

A yellow flower blooms on a small plant.
March 4, 2022 - Filed Under: Commercial Horticulture, Green Industry, Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

Home lawns and landscapes have possibly never looked better, as consumer data show people changed buying habits and spent more on plant and landscape items during the pandemic. Tricia Knight, director of coastal horticulture research at Mississippi State University’s South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station in Poplarville, said revenue for the green industry grew during the pandemic in part because people were looking for something positive amid all the uncertainty.

Small white, blue and pink flowers bloom from a container.
February 28, 2022 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

This week marks the official beginning of meteorological spring, and that means it’s time to start getting our gardens and landscapes ready for the coming year. One of the first tasks may be to get your containers ready, as more and more home gardeners are becoming interested in the joys of growing plants in containers.

Three young people sit on ATVs as they listen to their instructor.
February 23, 2022 - Filed Under: 4-H, 4-H Safety Programs, ATV Safety

A recent grant award is helping provide all-terrain vehicle safety training to Mississippi 4-H’ers. The Mississippi State University Extension Service 4-H ATV Safety Program recently received $10,000 from Polaris through the company’s T.R.A.I.L.S. grant program. The funds purchased two youth sized Polaris ATVs and safety equipment. T.R.A.I.L.S. is an acronym for trail development, responsible riding, access, initiatives, lobbying and safety.

A group of people sitting around a table.
February 23, 2022 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Commercial Horticulture, Swine, Forestry

VERONA, Miss. -- Each February, agricultural producers in Mississippi speak, and personnel with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station listen.

Producer Advisory Council meetings present opportunities for growers to meet with MSU commodity experts and share ideas for research and educational projects.

February 21, 2022 - Filed Under: Environment, Wildlife

For most hunters and bird enthusiasts in the Southeast, the term “game bird” conjures up images of a turkey gobbler in full strut, a covey of quail flushing from the brush and tall grass or an incoming group of mourning doves on the horizon. But the American Woodcock garners little attention despite being one of the most common game bird species.

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