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News From 2003

March 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Water

By Keryn Page

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While the excessive rain in recent months has some people feeling down, it means good things for communities, industries and agriculture in the South.

In fact, a Mississippi State University Extension Service agricultural engineer says there will never be too much rain, at least in terms of the area's underground water supply.

March 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Researchers used the value Americans and Europeans placed on a chocolate chip cookie to determine consumer attitudes towards genetically modified foods.

The research, conducted jointly by Mississippi State University and the University of Reading, England, found that Americans on average are less concerned about consuming genetically modified foods than their European counterparts.

March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Family Financial Management

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- With the threat of war looming and thousands of Mississippians being called to military duty, experts encourage families to plan ahead for their financial obligations during a deployment.

When making financial preparations, consider current salary, lifestyle and financial responsibilities.

The glistening white flowers of the perennial phlox David offers fragrance as well as beauty for an extended season.
March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Since gardening season is almost here, I feel compelled to remind you of a wonderful and honored plant that you might not have tried: the perennial phlox known as David.

March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Students at Mississippi State University's College of Veterinary Medicine will hold their 19th annual open house April 4 and 5 at the Wise Center, located on the south side of campus off Spring Street.

The theme of the open house is "A whole world of opportunities." 2003 marks the 29th year anniversary of the establishment of the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine by the Mississippi Legislature.

Alan Wood
March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Agriculture

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The director of a Mississippi State University institute has been named to a U.S. Department of Agriculture task force.

Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman appointed Alan Wood, director of the Life Sciences and Biotechnology Institute, to the eight-member Research, Education and Economics Task Force. The group is comprised of scientists from a variety of disciplines, including medicine, agriculture and biotechnology.

March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Agriculture

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's history is closely tied to the land -- from the era when flatboats moved the cotton harvest to the Gulf of Mexico to the current technology revolution in agriculture.

Preserving the stories of the people and events that have shaped the state's rural life is the goal of a new program at Mississippi State University.

March 3, 2003 - Filed Under: Wildlife, Northern Bobwhite Quail

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A free, half-day quail management workshop will teach participants ways to improve bobwhite quail habitat on rural property.

The March 29 workshop will take place from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Environmental Education Center at the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in south Oktibbeha County. Interested participants are encouraged to register by March 26. Lunch will be provided to those who preregister.

February 24, 2003 - Filed Under: Animal Health

By Laura Whelan

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While some people are preparing for a biological crisis with duct tape and plastic, Mississippi State University representatives are considering the animals in the food supply and the veterinarians who examine them.

February 24, 2003 - Filed Under: Community

JACKSON -- Mississippi manufacturers, agricultural producers and economic developers can learn ways to reduce dependence on fossil fuels during a March 25 and 26 conference.

The Mississippi Renewable Energy Conference will address how the use of alternative fuels can create jobs and reduce the environmental impact of energy production and use.

Mississippi State University's Extension Service and the Mississippi Biomass Council are sponsoring the conference at the Clarion Hotel in Jackson.

This striking, colorful mixed container includes Mexican feather grass, Superbena Dark Blue and Superbells Yellow calibrachoa.
February 24, 2003 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Superbena is sure to be hot this year, so get ready to look for this new verbena at a local garden center while supplies last.

Superbena certainly does look to be super and even monolithic in size by verbena standards, but gee, how about a better name? Obviously Proven Winners knows how to produce good plants and make a fortune without me, so I'll stop whining.

February 24, 2003 - Filed Under: Soils

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Farmers trying to avoid possible rising nitrogen costs by applying the fertilizer to fields before the new planting season may harm their wallet and the environment.

Most nitrogen applied to fields weeks before planting will be lost to the environment. Not only will it have to be reapplied, adding cost to the producer, but it can have negative effects on nearby water quality.

February 17, 2003 - Filed Under: Insects-Pests

By Charmain Tan Courcelle

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Neighborhood watch programs tend to deter criminal activity, and Mississippi State University researchers are hoping increased surveillance will have a similar effect on a devastating species of termites at work in the state.

February 17, 2003 - Filed Under: Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Many communities are ready and willing to make aesthetic improvements or increase environmental consciousness, but it often takes outside encouragement to get a project started.

"The Community Pride program usually provides the seed money to motivate youth groups to develop projects to improve their local environment. The grants are intended to stimulate additional investments by the local community," said Rae Wilkinson, 4-H program specialist with the MSU Extension Service.

February 17, 2003 - Filed Under: Environment

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A series of meetings around Mississippi in early March will help producers and agribusiness leaders understand conservation programs found in the new Farm Bill.

Charlie Forrest, agricultural economist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said the 2002 Farm Security and Rural Investment Act, or Farm Bill, provided for a substantial increase in funding for existing and new conservation programs.

The ruffled, amber-gold foliage of Amber Waves deserves a place in partially shaded gardens, even if its rose-shaped flowers never appeared.
February 17, 2003 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

I predict Amber Waves, a new heuchera, will be one of the most sought-after plants this spring.

When I saw Amber Waves in trials last year, I figured it would take a couple of years to get to our state, but I just saw it at a Mississippi greenhouse complex. Our gardeners are fortunate to have such progressive growers as those in the Mississippi Nursery and Landscape Association.

February 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Equine

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A growing number of students are finding that Mississippi State University is a great place to horse around -- seriously.

Forty students are members of the MSU Horseman's Association, and half of those members comprise the university's equestrian team.

February 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Youth Livestock, 4-H Livestock Program

JACKSON -- Excitement is always in the air for young livestock exhibitors who qualify for the Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions, which culminates the annual market animal show each February.

For 34 years, the sale has brought out the best in 4-H and FFA exhibitors and in philanthropic buyers who bid generously to reward some of the state's most responsible youth. This year, 35 market animals brought a total of $183,663. The eight steers averaged $9,268, the 12 hogs averaged $4,985, the 13 lambs averaged $3,343, and the two goats averaged $3,123.

February 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics

JACKSON -- Fifty lenders and other supporters of microenterprises recently met for the founding conference of the Mississippi Micro-Enterprise Association Network, designed to help the smallest businesses establish themselves in the state.

The dark purple foliage of the Purple Knight alternanthera will perform effortlessly for a long season giving incredible beauty to the landscape. Ordinarily reaching 16 to 20 inches in height, gardeners should space these plants 18 to 24 inches apart.
February 10, 2003 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden

By Norman Winter
MSU Horticulturist
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center

Late winter cold snaps are enough to make a gardener want to have a groundhog killing, but it would be better to channel our frustrations toward planning this year's landscapes. Therefore, I want to call your attention to a new, must-have plant for 2003.