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March 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Nutrition

By Kelli McPhail

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Planning a balanced vegetarian diet requires substituting foods that provide needed nutrients for those foods they eliminate.

Vegetarians are usually stereotyped as people who do not eat red meat, fish or poultry. There are, however, several different kinds of vegetarians.

"A lacto-ovo-vegetarian's eating pattern is based on vegetables, fruits, grains, eggs and dairy products," said Dr. Barbara McLaurin, human nutrition specialist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service.

March 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Family, Food

By Amy Woolfolk

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- If preparing meals for a picky child means extra time in the kitchen, arguments and frustration, consider offering a variety of foods at meal time to please every eater.

"Every picky eater has different habits, so it is difficult to define the term," said Dr. Melissa Mixon, human nutrition specialist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service. "Picky eaters are identified, however, as people who refuse to eat a particular food or group of foods."

March 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Cotton

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- No-till cotton farming has gained in popularity in recent years as farmers are learning it can be a successful practice when managed correctly.

Dr. Jac Varco, agronomist with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, said no-tillage cotton increased from 1,183 acres in 1989 to 52,146 acres in 1997. Starting with the 1985 Farm Bill, farmers are required to put highly erodible land in either the Conservation Reserve Program or use conservation practices on that land.

March 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Swine

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Not only do consumers want bacon with their eggs, they want the hog farms raising the bacon to be environmentally good neighbors.

Poorly operated hog farms can raise a stink, but odor can be managed. A voluntary, new program offered by a cooperation of leading pork producers' organizations can help producers serious about having environmentally friendly farms. The On-Farm Odor Assistance Program, sponsored by the National Pork Producers Council in association with the National Pork Board and PORK '98 magazine, will kick-off in March.

March 5, 1998 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

This spring you have got to look for the hot, new verbenas called Temari. Temari, which means "a handful of flowers," is being brought to us by Suntory, the same firm who gave us Surfinias and Tapien verbenas.

Temari verbenas are available in bright red coming from the orange and yellow hues, violet and bright pink. These flowers' colors are very bold and bright. They are trailing type verbenas that actually live up to their claim of having baseball-sized flower clusters.

February 26, 1998 - Filed Under: Herb Gardens

By Norman Winter
Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Many people seem determined to associate herbs with a 1970's hippie adventure in the garden. But the truth is, herb gardening is a new tide rising on a wave of popularity, and I hope you consider planting an herb garden this year.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Weed Control for Crops

By Russell Hood and Bob Ratliff

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Choice is usually a good thing, but sometimes a person doesn't have the time or information to make the right decision, whether it be choosing a flavor of ice cream or the best weed-control method.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Youth Livestock

JACKSON -- Generous buyers rewarded exhibitors of 33 champion market animals with another record-setting sale following the recent Dixie National Junior Livestock Show.

Dr. Joe Baker, animal specialist with Mississippi State University' Extension Service, said the 1998 Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions netted $185,654. The previous record was set last year at $161,431.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Nutrition

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A new set of daily nutrition standards are being established to give health-conscious people a better guide for eating right.

The Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences is developing new dietary standards for the United States and Canada. These standards are being released in seven reports that should be complete by 2000.

Dr. Barbara McLaurin, nutrition specialist at Mississippi State University's Extension Service, explained the impact these changes, known as Dietary Reference Intakes, will have on nutrition guidelines.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Children and Parenting

By Kelli McPhail

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A program that teaches parents the importance of family and parenting skills also seeks to provide a safe environment where children can grow.

Children born into poverty or single-parent families risk poor development and may not receive skills necessary to become healthy and productive adults.

The Mississippi Department of Human Services and the Mississippi State University Extension Service developed the Bright Futures program in 1995. The program promotes family values and teaches resource management.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Rural Health

By Kelli McPhail

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A new program to help high school juniors select a career in medicine may improve one of Mississippi's most life-threatening concerns -- rural health care.

Of the 82 counties in Mississippi, 57 counties have a shortage of primary care physicians. Encouraging physicians to move to rural areas could help residents and travelers feel safe while living in or traveling through the undermanned counties.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Youth Livestock

JACKSON -- Generous buyers rewarded exhibitors of 33 champion market animals with another record-setting sale following the recent Dixie National Junior Livestock Show.

Dr. Joe Baker, animal specialist with Mississippi State University' Extension Service, said the 1998 Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions netted $185,654. The previous record was set last year at $161,431.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Vegetable Gardens

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- If the ground is so muddy gardeners don't want to put their hands in it, they shouldn't put their shovels in it either.

Dr. David Nagel, horticulturist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said wet ground is seriously damaged when it is worked.

"Anytime you can squeeze water out of the soil, it is too wet to work with," Nagel said. "If you step on soil and water comes around your shoes or you can rub soil between your thumb and forefinger and make a ribbon that holds together, you probably need to wait before you start gardening.

February 23, 1998 - Filed Under: Nuisance Wildlife and Damage Management

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Beavers are not a problem in Mississippi. That is, they aren't a problem unless they are on your land.

Researchers have compiled data from all 82 Mississippi counties to estimate the population and acreage effected by beavers. Dr. Dale Arner, now retired head of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries at Mississippi State University, completed his third statewide survey in 1997 of beaver activities.

February 19, 1998 - Filed Under: Trees

By Norman Winter
Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Redbuds are not the only flowering trees that herald the arrival of spring. One different looking, but gorgeous tree you may have noticed is the Taiwan cherry.

February 12, 1998 - Filed Under: Sweet Potatoes

By Norman Winter
Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Sweet potato vines are becoming all the rage as landscape plants. It is not too hard to believe when you realize that many of us grow their close relatives, the morning glories or moon flowers.

February 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Health

By Amy Woolfolk

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Good health practices and cleaning habits can help protect people from widespread colds and flu during the peak of the season.

Dr. Mary Currier, state epidemiologist, said Mississippi has experienced an average flu season. The best news is that reports have been on two strains of Influenza A, which are easier to treat than Influenza B. Unfortunately, one of the strains (A-Sidney) could not be controlled by the vaccine.

February 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Youth Projects, 4-H Safety Programs, ATV Safety

By Kelli McPhail

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- All-terrain vehicle accidents claim lives and cause hundreds of injuries each year, and young operators especially need to learn responsible habits to avoid deadly accidents.

Recreational use of ATVs, better known as three- and four-wheelers, increases as temperatures warm and days lengthen.

Dr. Dannie L. Reed, Choctaw County extension agent, said kids often see ATVs as toys. However, ATVs carry severe consequences if not carefully operated.

February 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Few areas of the financial world remained untouched by Asia's economic troubles that started in October, but Mississippi farmers are weathering it well.

Agricultural markets were shaken when Asian stock markets plummeted last fall. Hardest hit were Indonesia, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia and Taiwan. These countries along the Pacific Rim have traditionally been strong consumers of American grain, cotton and poultry.

February 9, 1998 - Filed Under: Farming

By Bonnie Coblentz

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The topic of many causal conversations this winter is no light matter to farmers who must make decisions for the upcoming year based in part on the weather.

January has not brought the freezing temperatures it usually does, and warmer weather means more crop pests can survive until spring. But a lack of cold weather did not stop the rain, which has brought area flooding to some portions of the state.

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