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News Filed Under Crops

The first photo shows ground that has been disked in the middle of dormant grasses. The second photo shows the same location with green plants growing beside grasses that are not as lush.
October 19, 2018 - Filed Under: Soils, Wildlife

Thinning timber, prescribed fire and planting wildlife food plots are the most common tools in wildlife management, but there is another, often overlooked practice: using light disking to disturb the soil.

Two large, orange pumpkins grow on the vine in the foreground, with others visible in the background.
October 19, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Pumpkins

Summer weather allowed Mississippi pumpkin growers to have a good harvest, but there still are not enough pumpkins grown in the state to meet fall demand for this colorful crop.

A covered trailer in a field with six workers sorting sweet potatoes into large, wooden crates along the trailer’s edges.
October 12, 2018 - Filed Under: Sweet Potatoes

Mississippi sweet potato fields that missed needed rains in June and July are experiencing favorable harvest conditions in October.

Jamie Earp, president of the Mississippi Sweet Potato Council, said yields are “fair, at best” at the halfway point in the 2018 harvest season.

Cotton with sprouting plants lies on muddy ground.
October 5, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Corn, Cotton, Grains, Soybeans

Most of Mississippi’s corn and rice crops had been harvested when prolonged, late-September rains soaked much of the state, but the wet weather could not have come at a worse time for soybeans and cotton.

September 28, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Farm Safety, Forages, Livestock

As farmers head out to their fields, locating underground utility lines may not be at the top of their safety checklists.

But this knowledge should be a top priority, said Leslie Woolington, a risk management specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.

Hundreds of reddish-brown heads of grain sorghum rise above green stalks in a field.
September 28, 2018 - Filed Under: Grains, Insects-Crop Pests

Grain sorghum has never been a major agricultural commodity in Mississippi, but it has seen better days: For two years in a row, acreage of the crop has been less than one-tenth of its annual average.

Free-standing blooms in red, orange, yellow and pink fill the frame against a background of green leaves.
September 14, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Commercial Horticulture

What is sometimes called the green industry includes landscape services and greenhouse and nursery production, a wide-ranging, growing agricultural sector worth more than $1 billion to the state.

A golden ear of corn with the husks pulled back is attached to a dried stalk in a cornfield.
September 7, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Corn

Tropical Storm Gordon interrupted harvest across Mississippi, but the storm left most of its wind along the coast and does not seem to have damaged the state’s corn crop.

Close-up view of an ear of field corn encased in brown husk ready for harvest.
September 7, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Commercial Horticulture, Sweet Corn, Corn

Field corn is harvested after it has dried sufficiently, which means the husks are brown, not green like the husks of fresh sweet corn. (Photo by Kevin Hudson)

Very large field of green rice plants bordered by a dirt path on the near side and trees on the far side.
August 17, 2018 - Filed Under: Rice

STONEVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi growers will produce about 20 percent more rice this year, mostly thanks to additional acres planted over 2017’s total.

Larry Falconer, agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said early forecasts predict national yields near last year’s 7,400 pounds per acre.

“National acreage is up about 20 percent. In Mississippi, the increase is slightly more at 23 percent,” Falconer said. “It helped that, at planting time, prices were slightly better than the previous year.”

August 13, 2018 - Filed Under: Sweet Potatoes

PONTOTOC, Miss. -- Sweet potato producers, crop consultants, agricultural industry representatives and the general public will learn about ongoing Mississippi State University sweet potato research and outreach efforts at a field day Aug. 30.

The MSU Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will host the event at the Pontotoc Ridge-Flatwoods Branch Experiment Station, located at 8320 Highway 15 South in Pontotoc County.  

A close-up of a fire ant mound.
August 10, 2018 - Filed Under: Commercial Horticulture, Livestock, Pets, Fire Ants, Insects-Home Lawns, Insects-Pests, Turfgrass and Lawn Management, Vegetable Gardens

Fire ants are everywhere. If you’ve thrown your hands up in exasperation trying to deal with them, don’t give up just yet. (File photo by MSU Extension Service)

Muscadines of various shades are bunched on the vine.
August 8, 2018 - Filed Under: Commercial Fruit and Nuts, Fruit

Producers can learn about issues related to muscadine production and other fruit-related topics at an upcoming field day in Pearl River County, south of McNeill.

Green soybean plants set pods in a field.
August 2, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Soybeans

Mississippi’s soybean crop is in good or excellent condition, but growers are losing access to some foreign markets due to circumstances beyond their control.

A paper wasp on a multi-cell nest.
July 31, 2018 - Filed Under: Insects-Crop Pests, Insects-Forage Pests, Fire Ants, Household Insects, Insect Identification, Termites, Insects-Home Lawns, Insects-Pests

Mississippi has an abundance of bugs, especially in the warmer months. We are all familiar with mosquitoes, bumblebees, and house flies. But I bet there are bugs around your house and yard that you can’t identify. (Photo by Blake Layton)

A pink cotton bloom sits among green leaves.
July 27, 2018 - Filed Under: Cotton

As most cotton across Mississippi is setting bolls ahead of schedule this year, some fields look fantastic and others are struggling, depending on the weather and irrigation.

A wife and husband stand in a field with cotton rows.
July 26, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Corn, Cotton, Peanuts, Soybeans

Lonnie Fortner has been named the Mississippi winner of the 2018 Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year award.

Light green lettuce, dark purple eggplant and cucumbers sit on black shelves.
July 13, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Local Flavor

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.

Large field of mature, golden wheat with green trees on the far side.
July 6, 2018 - Filed Under: Wheat

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.

The leaves of green tomato plants droop on the plants
July 6, 2018 - Filed Under: Tomato Pepper and Eggplant, Vegetable Gardens

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.

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