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News From 2020

A gloved hand holds a credit card above a keyboard.
June 4, 2020 - Filed Under: Family Financial Management, Fraud and Identity Theft, Coronavirus

Adding insult to injury, attempts at fraud always increase during times of crisis, a reality many Mississippians are experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

June 1, 2020 - Filed Under: Floral Design

When Jim DelPrince became a horticulture specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, his goal was to get flowers in the hands of Mississippians.

A cluster of pink flowers has dark-red centers.
June 1, 2020 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

To some gardeners, the zonal geranium is an old-fashioned plant, but to me, there’s nothing like having this classic in my landscape.

A group of 4-H’ers make silly gestures.
June 1, 2020 - Filed Under: 4-H, Coronavirus

With social distancing measures still in place, Mississippi 4-H’ers will participate in the state’s first-ever Virtual State 4-H Congress in 2020 instead of the traditional in-person gathering.

Leaves of young cotton plants.
May 29, 2020 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Corn, Cotton, Rice, Soybeans

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Row crop growers in Mississippi used a relatively dry May to make up for planting time lost earlier in the spring due to wet weather and soggy fields.

As of May 24, planting progress for the state’s four major row crops was slightly behind their five-year averages but ahead of where it was at that time in 2019.

A basket of catfish hovers above a pond and against a sunset background.
May 28, 2020 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics, Catfish, Catfish Marketing, Agri-business, Coronavirus

Catfish producers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic have the opportunity to provide the U.S. Department of Agriculture information on why they should be eligible for economic assistance through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program.

Dozens of white and purple flower stalks rise from a stand of green plants in a cement planter.
May 22, 2020 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

Many of the garden center stars that draw the most attention are plants with big, flashy flowers. But there’s a group of plants that can have just as much landscape value: plants with tiny flowers.

An assortment of food items in a box.
May 22, 2020 - Filed Under: Community, Family, Food and Health, Coronavirus

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- More than 19% of Mississippians were food insecure before COVID-19 prevention measures shut down much of the state’s commerce. Now, layoffs and missing paychecks make it even more difficult for many to access proper nutrition.

A pond with green film at the top.
May 22, 2020 - Filed Under: Healthy Water Practices, Pond and Lake Water Quality, Pond and Lake Topics

In the age of COVID-19, we do not need more to worry about. However, the summer of 2019 proved that even recreating in your local pond, stream or beach comes at some risk.

We saw a nationwide outbreak of rare, yet severe, maladies that originated from the water. These problems usually start in the hottest part of summer.

Closeup of blueberries in various stages of ripeness.
May 21, 2020 - Filed Under: Commercial Fruit and Nuts, Local Flavor, Farmers Markets, Specialty Crop Production

The COVID-19 pandemic presented a new obstacle for Mississippi blueberry growers in 2020, impacting the labor force for the early-season varieties.

May 21, 2020 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Coronavirus

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi producers affected financially by the COVID-19 pandemic can now access a guide on applying for monetary relief through a new federal program.

A pivot irrigation system stands in algae-covered water in a flooded field with farm buildings in the distance.
May 21, 2020 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Disaster Response, Economic Development

A sharper focus on the economic impact of the lower Delta backwater flood of 2019 helps predict the implications of continued flooding this year.

Trumpet-shaped orange flowers bloom on vines next to pink buds.
May 18, 2020 - Filed Under: Flower Gardens

One of the landscape views many gardeners ignore is the horizontal plane. Plants that create mats or carpets create a lot of interest and serve an important role in landscapes and gardens.

Let’s look at a few of my colorful carpet favorites.

May 14, 2020 - Filed Under: Food and Health, Coronavirus, Nutrition, SNAP-Ed

As Mississippians continue to practice social distancing, they can learn ways to create shared food and family experiences, prepare meals at home, shop for healthy foods on a budget and be more physically active through the HappyHealthy social campaign.

Orange blooms cover the top of a green plant.
May 11, 2020 - Filed Under: Coronavirus, Flower Gardens

I’m becoming increasingly optimistic about our 2020 Mississippi summer gardens and landscapes. COVID-19 is on everyone’s mind, but an upside to the virus is that more homeowners are gardening than ever before. If you’re looking for summer color that will grow through the summer and beyond, then Profusion zinnia is the plant for you.

May 11, 2020 - Filed Under: Centers and Institutes, Extension Program Priorities, Community

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service is offering 10 of its online professional development courses free of charge through June 30.

Those who enroll in any of the self-paced classes will have three months to complete all course materials from the time they start the course. Course descriptions are available at https://bit.ly/2SVJPpQ.

May 11, 2020 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Pesticide Applicator Certification, Coronavirus

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- There is a new online pathway for agricultural producers and applicators to obtain pesticide use certification.

The Mississippi State University Extension Service Pesticide Safety Education Program, in partnership with the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce (MDAC), has launched an online Private Applicator Certification program in Mississippi.

A closeup of a Southern yellowjacket queen.
May 7, 2020 - Filed Under: Beekeeping, Insects-Home Lawns, Insects-Pests

News reports of a new, invasive hornet spotted in the Northwest has heightened people’s awareness of flying insects recently.

A boy and girl sit at a wooden table and use markers to draw on different colored sheets of paper.
May 6, 2020 - Filed Under: Family, Children and Parenting, MSU Extension Head Start, Family Dynamics, Coronavirus

Following nationwide closures of pre-Ks and early childhood education centers due to coronavirus, millions of parents are now caring for their young children at home.

Many Mississippi parents are wondering how to continue their young child’s learning, said Louise Davis, a Mississippi State University Extension Service professor with the School of Human Sciences. With a little bit of structure and some fun activities, young children can continue to develop the skills they need for school and beyond.

Individual purple flowers rise above the greenery placed on an open-grid surface.
May 4, 2020 - Filed Under: Coronavirus, Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens

May 4 marks a milestone for me and my wife as the last Star Wars movie, “Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker,” is being released straight to digital, thanks to COVID-19.

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