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September 29, 1997 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Children can treat adults to an enjoyable Halloween evening by using good manners and following some simple safety rules.

Parents carry the bulk of the responsibility for communities having safe, enjoyable Halloweens.

Dr. Louise Davis, extension child and family development specialist at Mississippi State University, said parents need to carefully supervise their children on this fall night, often dedicated to juvenile antics.

September 29, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, About Extension

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi agriculture has evolved into a diverse, multibillion dollar industry in the last 20 years, and the Farmweek crews have covered it all.

Launched in October 1977, Farmweek continues to provide educational television viewers with news from every facet of the state's agriculture. Farmweek's 30-minute weekly shows are produced by Mississippi State University's Extension Service.

September 29, 1997 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden

By Amy Woolfolk

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Temperatures may be cooling, but yellow jacket season is just heating up before winter sends them packing.

"Yellow jackets are more noticeable now because their eggs hatched in the summer, producing high populations by fall," said Dr. James Jarratt, extension entomologist at Mississippi State University.

Jarratt said the best protection against yellow jacket stings is awareness. Because they generally nest in the ground, they may go unnoticed until it's too late to avoid them.

September 26, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Forages, Beef, Wildlife

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Rains provided some relief to Mississippi's dry conditions, but cattle producers were the main benefactors. Row crops will reap minimal profit or damage from the water.

Rankin County agricultural agent Houston Therrell said cattlemen and wildlife enthusiasts were the big winners.

"Pastures were extremely short. Most had stopped growing a month before the rains arrived," Therrell said. "These rains will help the winter grasses come along as well as help pastures gain some grass before the first frost."

September 25, 1997 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

The camellia sasanqua is one of the most important species of camellias in the South -- next to the camellia japonica. You've passed up a winner if you haven't planted one in your landscape or at least looked at the latest selections.

The sasanqua is great as a base planting around the home and great for background screens. Under ideal growing conditions, it is not uncommon for a sasanqua to reach almost 15 feet high.

September 19, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Soybeans

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Some Mississippi soybean growers are looking at excellent yields; others, who fell victim to unseasonably cool, wet conditions at planting time, never had a chance.

Mack Young, Quitman County agricultural agent, said this year's crop is divided into early, middle and late crop beans.

"Yields on the earliest planted beans are looking really good. With at least half the Group IV's harvested, yields are running from the mid-30s to the 60-bushel-per-acre range," Young said.

September 18, 1997 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

The indigo spires may be the most beautiful perennial salvia that we grow. I hope you have the opportunity to see them blooming right now. It seems strange that I have hundreds of books, but only a couple even mention this great plant.

The Salvia indigo spires is a cross between salvia farinacea and salvia longispicata. This gorgeous plant reaches about 3 to 4 feet tall and has blooms that reach close to 15 inches in length.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: 4-H, Collegiate 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- In the past, 4-H activities ended with high school, but a club at Mississippi State University encourages students to continue 4-H involvement throughout college.

MSU's collegiate 4-H club continues the fellowship and service students found in their local 4-H clubs.

Karen Martin, president of MSU's club, said most 4-H students want to continue their involvement with the organization after high school because of all they have gained from the experience.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: 4-H, Collegiate 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- 4-H clubs, already very familiar to thousands of Mississippi youth, will be getting some national attention in October.

Oct. 5 to 11 has been set aside as National 4-H Week. 4-H activities will be highlighted during this time. In addition, the National Ad Council will kickoff their latest campaign that week, this one promoting 4-H.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: Family, Food Safety

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- With the arrival of football season comes another popular activity -- tailgate parties. Don't let these special times with family and friends turn into an experience with food poisoning.

Dr. Melissa Mixon, extension human nutrition specialist at Mississippi State University, said too much sun and heat can make perishable foods unsafe to eat. Mishandled food can become contaminated with bacteria and cause food poisoning.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Livestock, Beef

By Amy Woolfolk

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Cattle producers struggle to interpret confusing market signals and maintain an efficient farms. Better communication between industry segments could reduce some of the confusion.

Dr. Charlie Forrest, extension marketing specialist at Mississippi State University, said market efficiency in the beef industry has fallen behind other industries.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Farming, Farm Safety

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Sept. 2 was a normal day for two Mississippi families until separate farming accidents killed two tractor operators.

An Ackerman man was mowing the side of a pond when his tractor flipped over. Without a roll-over protective structure, ROPS, and seat belt, he was pinned beneath the tractor and died.

In Madison, a man was working on the family farm when his tractor went into a culvert and flipped over on him. Without the safety features on the tractor, he also was killed.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: Environment, Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, About Extension

PICAYUNE -- Already boasting a presence in every county in the state through the extension service, Mississippi State University now has another significant presence in South Mississippi.

In a Sept. 15 ceremony, the Crosby Arboretum in Picayune formally became part of MSU. Valued at $5 million, the arboretum was established in 1980 as a living memorial to L.O. Crosby Jr., a South Mississippi timber pioneer and philanthropist.

September 15, 1997 - Filed Under: Wildlife

By Amy Woolfolk

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Leasing the hunting privileges to land provides a way to raise revenue and help protect the value of the land.

Dean Stewart, extension wildlife specialist at Mississippi State University, said many people who lease hunting rights generate enough revenue to cover property taxes and still make a profit. Lease prices in Mississippi range from $1.50 to $25 per acre annually.

September 12, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Rice

By Allison Powe

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- After a season of mostly favorable weather conditions, rice growers are seeing the first signs of a promising crop as harvest begins.

"Rice looks good so far and the yields seem promising, but with only about 10 percent harvested, it's too early to make solid predictions," said Dwayne Wheeler, Tunica County area rice extension agent.

Cool temperatures hurt stands early in the spring during planting time, but weather conditions were more favorable throughout the growing period, particularly while rice was heading.

September 11, 1997 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Red Holly hybrids are a new group of hollies noted for their deep burgundy color on new growth. These are all seedling selections from the Mary Nell variety.

Hollies are some of the very best shrubs or small trees for the Mississippi landscapes. They come through as troopers in the coldest of winters. Then when azaleas wilt in the hottest summers, hollies stand firm.

September 5, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Cotton, Insects-Crop Pests, Insects

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Cotton farmers and their nemesis, the boll weevil, begin their traditional fall routines with 1998 on their minds.

The verdict is still out on 1997's crop which battled all season to overcome late plantings in cool, wet conditions.

Dr. Blake Layton, extension cotton entomologist at Mississippi State University, described the state's crop as "the most erratic crop we've ever seen." Still, he said Mississippi growers should harvest a better-than-average crop.

September 4, 1997 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Many people believe purple coneflowers are worthy of awards, but now it's official.

The Perennial Plant Association named Magnus purple coneflower as its Perennial Plant of the Year for 1998.

Purple coneflowers, known botanically as Echinacea, have long been favorites with gardeners in the South and now have found their way to the health food aisle in stores as a medicinal plant.

September 1, 1997 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Community, Vegetable Gardens

RAYMOND -- Seeds are the only things breaking out from prison plots in one Mississippi facility, but the prisoners are still happy with the results.

Inmates at the Hinds County Penal Farm are eating better and costing taxpayers less money, thanks to a gardening program at the facility.

Bill Maily, Hinds County extension agent, helps run the Mississippi Vegetable Demonstration Project at the prison. Meal costs dropped from $1.68 to about 43 cents, saving more than $20,000 a month. The farm feeds the about 200 inmates, and supplements meals at the two Hinds County jails.

September 1, 1997 - Filed Under: Technology, Family

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- People are becoming more cautious when they read the want ads, but they should not let their guard down when surfing for opportunities on the Internet.

The increase of computers at home and the increasing desire to work at home is driving many opportunity seekers to the Internet.

Dr. Beth Duncan, extension home-based and entrepreneurial business specialist at Mississippi State University, said the Internet is one more avenue scam artists use to hook people.