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News Filed Under Forages

Award-winning forage specialist Rocky Lemus, associate Extension and research professor at Mississippi State University, examines grass growing in 2015 research plots. (MSU Extension Service file photo)
August 18, 2017 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The National Association of County Agricultural Agents recently recognized a Mississippi State University Extension Service specialist for his outstanding efforts guiding forage producers.

Rocky Lemus, associate Extension and research professor, received the 2017 Achievement Award during the NACAA’s annual meeting and professional improvement conference in Utah. This award is given to agents with 10 years or fewer of service in Extension and who have exhibited excellence in the field of Extension education.

June 14, 2017 - Filed Under: Forages, Lawn and Garden, Natural Resources

NEWTON, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service invites anyone interested in growing the state wildflower, Coreopsis, and other beauties to the July 13 Wildflower Field Day.

The event will be at the Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station in Newton and will include morning seminars and an afternoon field tour. It is sponsored by Keep Mississippi Beautiful, which is providing lunch.

Topics include native seed production, backyard habitats and milkweed management. Speakers are MSU Extension Service specialists and an industry representative.

Mississippi State University Extension Service forage specialist Rocky Lemus inspects wheat interseeded with balansa clover at the H.H. Leveck Animal Research Center in Starkville, Mississippi, on April 20, 2017. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kevin Hudson)
April 21, 2017 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Last year's drought will likely affect this year's hay acreage in Mississippi.

Rocky Lemus, forage specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said he anticipates about 690,000 hay acres. The state had about 750,000 acres devoted to hay production in 2016.

April 18, 2017 - Filed Under: Forages

NEWTON, Miss. -- Forage growers looking to improve production and management of their fields are invited to a workshop in May.

The Coastal Plain Forage Production Field Day will be held May 4 at the Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station at 51 Coastal Plain Road in Newton. The Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry and Experiment Station are hosting the free event.

Mississippi producers are expected to plant 550,000 cotton acres this year to meet high export demand. If realized, this will be a 26 percent increase over last year’s production. (File photo by MSU Extension/Kat Lawrence)
March 31, 2017 - Filed Under: Corn, Cotton, Peanuts, Rice, Soybeans, Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Strong export demand for cotton and soybean is causing Mississippi producers to shift away from corn and rice as they finalize their planting plans for 2017.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Prospective Plantings report released March 31 estimates the state's growers will plant a total of about 4.194 million acres, a 170,000-acre increase over 2016 acreage.

March 16, 2017 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Cattle producers in the North Mississippi area are invited to the Mississippi State University campus April 4 for an evening cool-season forage tour.

The event will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. at MSU’s Henry H. Leveck Research Farm, sometimes called South Farm. It is sponsored by the MSU Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station.

Bill Evans, a Mississippi State University researcher with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, discussed research and education priorities with representatives of the fruit and nut commodity group on Feb. 22, 2017. MSU Extension Service specialists and agents also took part in the annual MSU Central Mississippi Producer Advisory Council meeting in Raymond, Mississippi. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Susan Collins-Smith)
February 24, 2017 - Filed Under: Commercial Horticulture, Commercial Fruit and Nuts, Forages, Beef, Beekeeping, Dairy, Equine, Forestry, Wildlife

RAYMOND, Miss. -- Agricultural producers and industry professionals in central Mississippi met with agents and research scientists of the Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station Feb. 22 to share input and give feedback.

The Central Mississippi Producer Advisory Council meeting was held in conjunction with Hinds Community College and the Alcorn State University Extension.

October 19, 2016 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Adequate forage for livestock is becoming a concern for Mississippi producers as drought conditions persist, but alternative hay sources and feeding options can compensate for shortages.

The Mississippi Hay Directory helps livestock producers locate hay supplies. The directory is updated each time a new entry is submitted, and listings expire after 60 days.

Johnny Howell rakes his last row of hay before moving on to the next field on Aug. 3, 2016, in the Bell Schoolhouse Community north of Starkville, Mississippi. The state’s hay production is projected to fall slightly this year, as growers face heat-induced infestations of fall armyworms. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Linda Breazeale)
August 5, 2016 - Filed Under: Forages

PELAHATCHIE, Miss. -- Rankin County forage producer Jeff Adams anticipates an average hay harvest this year, but he has sprayed twice for fall armyworms in just three weeks.

“I’ve used two different sprays that are supposed to give you a 20-day residual between applications,” he said. “Neither one got me through more than seven.”

Rocky Lemus (left), forage specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, explains successes and challenges with fescue growing at the H.H. Leveck Animal Research Center. Lemus led tours during a Forage Field Day near Starkville, Mississippi, on April 7, 2016. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kevin Hudson)
May 6, 2016 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A cool, wet spring delayed growth of several summer grasses, but not the weeds that compete for space in fields and pastures across Mississippi.

Rocky Lemus, forage specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the state has about 903,000 acres of bahiagrass and 770,000 acres of bermudagrass.

April 20, 2016 - Filed Under: Forages

NEWTON, Miss. -- Landowners and producers who want to learn more about alfalfa production can attend a workshop next month in Newton.

The Mississippi State University Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station will host an alfalfa hay production and equipment demonstration May 19.

Mississippi is home to several species of cicadas, including this annual cicada. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kat Lawrence)
December 21, 2015 - Filed Under: Insects-Forage Pests

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- While many humans anticipate making certain changes with the arrival of a new year, certain insects have much different life cycles.

Periodical cicadas may anticipate emerging from the ground in 2016, while others may simply have to wait a few more years to see the light of day.

Cicadas are curious creatures. From beady eyes on the sides of their heads to prominent veins stretching across their glassy wings, they seem to be created from the Twilight Zone. Yet, they produce one the most common sounds of summer.

Rocky Lemus, associate professor of forage systems with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, leads the MSU official forage variety trials with plots containing 20 different species and 110 varieties at four locations across the state. (Photo by MSU Extension/Kat Lawrence)
November 5, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Rocky Lemus knows there are times when watching grass grow is incredibly exciting.

Lemus, an associate professor of forage systems with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, is always plotting his next variety trial.

“MSU has the only complete forage testing plots in the United States,” he said. “We have 20 different species, 110 varieties and four different locations.”

Cattle graze at the Mississippi State University Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station in Newton, the site of the 2015 Mississippi Forage and Grassland Council Annual Conference on Nov. 6. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kevin Hudson)
September 28, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages, Beef

NEWTON, Miss. -- Mississippi cattle producers can learn about the latest research on forage management during a Nov. 6 meeting.

The 2015 Mississippi Forage and Grassland Council Annual Conference will begin at 8:30 a.m. at the Mississippi State University Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station in Newton.

Stem maggots burrow into bermudagrass, which causes the top portion of the stems to die and plant growth to stop. (File photo by MSU Extension Service/Blake Layton)
August 7, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi forage producers are taking the good with the bad and dreading the ugly. The state’s pastures have produced ample grass, but they have also suffered from abundant weeds and stem maggots, and fall armyworms may soon cause even more problems.

Rocky Lemus, forage specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said summer rains have produced good growing conditions for pastures and hay production across the state. Mississippi has about 760,000 acres in hay production.

A Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station study of beef from cattle that forage on warm-season, native grasses indicates a positive reception by consumers. These grasses are beneficial to wildlife, especially ground-nesting birds. (Submitted photo)
July 21, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages, Beef, Food

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The old adage “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence” may have a new twist when it comes to cattle forages.

May 19, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages

NEWTON, Miss. -- Producers can learn about production and management methods for hay and other forage crops during a June 30 field day in Newton.

Experts with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station will lead participants on a tour of the MSU Coastal Plain Branch Experiment Station. Topics will include pasture weed control, sprayer calibration, current forage research, and hay production and management.

Fire ant mounds are common along fence lines where they are protected from grass-cutting equipment and other traffic, such as this mound in an Oktibbeha County, Mississippi, pasture on May 11, 2015. (Photo by MSU Ag Communications/Kevin Hudson)
May 19, 2015 - Filed Under: Forages, Insects-Forage Pests, Fire Ants

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Southern farmers may never win the battle against imported fire ants, but aggressive tactics can slow the pests’ invasion, reduce damage and prevent further spread across the United States.

Jane Parish is an Extension/research professor with the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station. She said cattle and hay producers have learned to live with and work around the troublesome ants since the pests arrived in the state almost a century ago.

The biggest reason people have trouble controlling fire ants is that they only treat individual fire ant mounds. Individual mound treatments can be useful situationally, but need to be supplemented with broadcast treatments that will control all fire ants in all areas. (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kat Lawrence)
May 15, 2015 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Insects-Crop Pests, Insects-Forage Pests, Insects, Fire Ants, Insects-Pests

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- People have many misconceptions on how to eliminate fire ant mounds and prevent them from coming back, and these erroneous beliefs hinder efforts to keep the harmful pest from spreading.

Mississippi 2014 Estimated Value of Ag Production
December 19, 2014 - Filed Under: Catfish, Corn, Cotton, Rice, Soybeans, Sweet Potatoes, Agricultural Economics, Forages, Beef, Poultry, Swine, Forestry

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Despite low prices for many commodities, the overall projected totals for Mississippi’s crop values should top $7 billion for the third straight year and essentially match the record set in 2013.

John Michael Riley, agricultural economist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said his preliminary estimate of 2014’s agricultural production values, excluding government payments, is over $7.7 billion.

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