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News Filed Under Crops

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.

A watermelon with a dark green outer shell and light green stripes rests in a field.
June 29, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Watermelons, Farmers Markets, Food

TAYLORSVILLE, Miss. -- Before the first batch was picked on June 22, two fields at Ford Farms were covered with red and yellow watermelons. That wasn’t the case a year ago.

Any kind of melon crop at the Smith County farm is an improvement over 2017.

June 28, 2018 - Filed Under: Soils, Soil Health, Environment

CLARKSDALE, Miss. -- Growers who planted cover crops for the first time last year will share their experiences with other producers at a cover crop field day.

June 28, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Organic Fruit and Vegetables, Soils, Soil Health, Beekeeping, Herb Gardens, Vegetable Gardens

SAUCIER, Miss. -- Producers and gardeners looking for tips on growing herbs and improving their soil can attend a July 20 field day.

Straight rows of cotton grow toward the horizon.
June 22, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Weed Control for Crops

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- There's always something for farmers to monitor or manage, and in many row-crop fields across the state, weed control is the big concern of the moment.

Jason Bond, weed scientist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said rains that keep machinery out of the fields allow time for weeds to grow rapidly.

A sliced, ripe watermelon sits on a table outdoors.
June 19, 2018 - Filed Under: Watermelon Cantaloupe and Cucumber, Watermelons, Vegetable Gardens

Choosing a ripe watermelon at the market is easy if you know what to look for.  (Photo credit: Jonathan Parrish/Cindy Callahan)

These early stage blueberries are green with a pink center.
June 15, 2018 - Filed Under: Fruit, Local Flavor, Specialty Crop Production, Farmers Markets

 Blueberry growers in Mississippi are having a successful season thanks to good harvesting conditions, crop quality and market prices.

Rows of small green plant, some near disturbed soil, in a large field.
May 25, 2018 - Filed Under: Peanuts, Nuisance Wildlife and Damage Management

ABERDEEN, Miss. -- Peanut growers are experiencing a mixed bag of conditions across the southeastern United States in general and Mississippi in particular.

A logo that represents the Mississippi Crop Situation Podcast. The logo contains graphics that represent a tractor, the sun and a plant.
May 22, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Agricultural Economics, Crops, Farming

We’re excited to announce MSU Extension has recently launched the Mississippi Crop Situation Podcast!

Green baby cotton plants poke through soil.
May 18, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Cotton

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Growers may be on their way to planting more cotton in Mississippi soil than they have in 11 years, despite a late start.

Darrin Dodds, cotton specialist for the Mississippi State University Extension Service, estimated that growers will plant 700,000 acres of cotton this year. If that much gets harvested, it will be the best total since 2006, when the state produced 1.2 million acres of cotton. Last year, Mississippi cotton producers harvested 625,000 acres.

May 14, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Insects-Crop Pests, Plant Diseases

Two half-day training sessions next month will provide expertise on pest and disease control on small farms.

 Small soybean plants stand a few inches tall against a blue sky.
May 11, 2018 - Filed Under: Soybeans

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- At about 2.2 million acres, soybeans are easily the state’s biggest row crop with a flexible planting window that puts them in the clean-up position when farmers cannot plant other crops on time.

Short, green rice plants stand in a Drew, Mississippi, field.
May 4, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Rice

RAYMOND, Miss. -- Spring’s cool temperatures have rice producers playing the waiting game in Mississippi.

Man drives tractor pulling a large roller over a grass field while spectators watch.
May 3, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Farming

MAYHEW, Miss. -- Agents and specialists with the Mississippi State University Extension Service are currently the No. 1 fans of using cover crops, but farmers will soon surpass their enthusiasm after realizing the value of adopting this management practice.

Strawberries in various stages of ripening sit on top of black weed barrier matting.
April 27, 2018 - Filed Under: Crops, Fruit, Specialty Crop Production, Farmers Markets

MACON, Miss. -- Myron Unruh has no complaints about the quality of his farm’s strawberries. He just wishes more of them would grow.

“We picked some strawberries earlier this week, and they were gorgeous, but we’re getting less than half of what we should be getting,” said Unruh, who owns Lazy U Farms in Macon. “It’s pretty tough right now.”

Three men crouch in a field to look at tiny corn seedlings.
April 20, 2018 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics, Corn

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- More than half of Mississippi's expected corn crop has been planted and is emerging, although cool and wet weather have made progress difficult.

Erick Larson, grain crops agronomist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said planting began in late March but has been hindered by frequent rains.

Green wheat plants emerge from the ground.
April 6, 2018 - Filed Under: Agricultural Economics, Wheat

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- 2017 marked a 54-year low for wheat acreage in Mississippi, and 2018 is not much better.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports an estimated 50,000 acres in winter wheat for 2018, an increase of 11 percent. Production dropped to 45,000 acres last year, just three years after wheat growers planted 230,000 acres in 2014.

Four separate cucurbit crops grown in a field.
April 3, 2018 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Lawn and Garden, Plant Diseases, Vegetable Diseases

MSU scientists are on the lookout for a cucurbit crop bandit. And they need your help!

Cucurbit downy mildew is a sneaky thief with the ability to quickly and significantly reduce yields or wipe out entire crops of susceptible cucurbits, including cucumbers, melons, pumpkins and squash. (File photo by Rebecca A. Melanson)

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