Feature Story from 2005
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Business development is important for every community, but encouraging entrepreneurship can be difficult for low- and moderate-income communities.
The Mississippi Microenterprise Association Network, the Association for Enterprise Opportunity and AmSouth Bank are sponsoring the Microenterprise Development Training Institute March 21-22. The national conference will be held at the Jackson Hilton Hotel.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Challenges in urban landscapes will be the focus of an upcoming Integrated Pest Management workshop in Raymond on March 22.
Mississippi State University's Extension Service is sponsoring the General Pest Management Workshop at the Central Mississippi Research and Extension Center. Registration is $10 and begins at 8 a.m. for the full-day event to be held in the auditorium.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- More than 100 years of 4-H activities ranging from cattle to computers to Mississippi's youth created a lot of keepsakes. There's now a home for memorabilia associated with the organization.
The Pete Frierson Mississippi 4-H Museum, located on the grounds of the Mississippi Agriculture and Forestry Museum in Jackson, was dedicated just before Christmas 2004. The 2,000-square-foot facility now is ready for exhibits to be put into place.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Authorities and scholars on quilt history, identification, conservation and preservation will speak at a March 4-5 public symposium at Mississippi State University's Mitchell Memorial Library.
Speakers during "Quilts: A Social and Cultural History of Rural Mississippi" will include Mary Elizabeth Johnson, author of Mississippi Quilts; Carol Vickers, chairman of the Mississippi Heritage Quilt Search Project; and Martha Ginn and Ollie Jean Lane, trained quilters and juried show participants.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The April 15 deadline sparks feelings of dread for many Mississippians, but tax season can be a much-needed financial boost for low- to moderate-income families.
Bobbie Shaffett, a Mississippi State University Extension Service family resource management specialist, said these families often are unaware of three tax credits that effectively could amount to a 40 percent raise.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Proper irrigation is a science, but implementing it on a farm is less precise.
Moisture for a crop serves two purposes; it cools the plant and transports nutrients needed for development. When nature doesn't provide the water through rain, technology can by irrigation. Jim Thomas, agricultural engineer with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said there are no fixed initiation or termination dates for irrigation in the state.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Lambs and goats sold for more in the state than ever before Thursday at the Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions, where an overall sales record also was set.
Thirty-six champion steers, hogs, lambs and goats sold at auction for $238,693, breaking the record set in 2004 by about $46,000. These much-higher-than market prices bring to just under $3 million the reward generous buyers have given youth for their efforts since 1970.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi youth are applying for grants to help them gain pride in themselves and in their communities through an environmental improvement program.
Community Pride is a grants and awards program sponsored by the ChevronTexaco Companies and administered by Mississippi State University's Extension Service.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- When the new head of Mississippi State University's Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering assumed his duties in January, he already knew a lot about the department's work.
William D. Batchelor's background is in plant growth and development modeling.
"A lot of that technology was developed here at MSU," he said. "Most of my previous work has been with corn and soybeans, and I look forward to working with cotton."
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Nothing quite matches the freshness of home-grown vegetables, and gardeners can ensure a successful backyard crop of their own with proper planning.
Rick Snyder, vegetable specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said finding the right location is one of the first and most important steps in planning a vegetable garden.
VERONA -- M.D. Phillips will celebrate his 90th birthday this year. For more than half of those years, he has been a member of the North Mississippi Producer Advisory Committee.
The committee meets annually to give input to the Mississippi State University Extension Service and the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station on the research and education needs of agricultural producers in 27 north Mississippi counties.
Phillips was at the first committee meeting in 1953 and was one of about 160 producers attending the 2005 gathering.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Weed control is synonymous with glyphosate use to many row crop producers, but a resistant weed in the Delta is making producers change their management strategies.
John Byrd, weed scientist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said mare's tail or horseweed has become resistant to glyphosate applications in the Delta. Tennessee and Arkansas are fighting resistant strains of this weed, too, and Arkansas has just confirmed glyphosate-resistant populations of common ragweed.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Mississippi State University Extension Service specialist with almost 20 years' experience working with the state's soybean producers has received the Mississippi Society of Agronomy's top honor.
Extension soybean specialist Alan Blaine was named the organization's Agronomist of the Year during the Feb. 15-17 Mississippi Crop College at MSU.
A native of McCool, Blaine earned a bachelor's degree in animal science and a master's and doctorate in agronomy at Mississippi State.
By Linda Breazeale
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- One Mississippi State University researcher is hoping electromagnetic fields hold the key to reducing the side effects of traditional cancer treatments.
"In addition to the life-threatening aspects, many people may fear cancer diagnoses because of the necessary levels of chemotherapy and radiation that can make patients very sick and then drastically reduce their quality of life," said Dr. Cody Coyne, a researcher at MSU's College of Veterinary Medicine.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Ignoring safety precautions when using hand or power tools can turn a routine task into a painful or even deadly experience.
Herb Willcutt, a Mississippi State University Extension Service safety specialist, knows from personal experience the importance of using safety equipment when operating power tools. He was using a portable grinder one Saturday afternoon when a sliver of metal lodged in his eye.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Fruit and vegetable growers can learn how to produce the safest food possible during upcoming workshops in north and south Mississippi.
The workshops are slated for April 15 in Waynesboro and April 20 in Hernando. Each workshop will review food safety issues including good agricultural, handling and manufacturing practices that will meet food safety requirements during production, harvesting and grading. The afternoon sessions will be devoted to each producer developing an individualized manual and documentation needed for their food safety programs.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Flowers blooming and birds courting are signs of spring's arrival, but swarms of termites are the more ominous indicators.
Blake Layton, an entomologist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said termite colonies normally remain unseen, shunning light and quickly plugging any holes or openings to the outside world. But each spring, well-established colonies send out swarmers to reproduce, spread and begin new colonies.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Two Mississippi State University veterinary science researchers hope to help prevent a portion of the 76 million cases of food poisoning in the United States each year.
Hart Bailey and Bob Wills are researchers in MSU's College of Veterinary Medicine Department of Pathobiology and Population Medicine. They focus their research efforts on preventing food-borne illnesses during the production phase.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- When homeowners look out in the spring and see more weeds than grass, it's time to take action to beautify the lawn.
Winning the battle of the weeds begins with a two-part effort. Eliminate existing winter weeds in yards and apply pre-emergence herbicide to prevent summer weed seedlings from establishing.
"If you've not done anything before, you've got to jump in at some point in time if you want a well-groomed, manicured lawn," said John Byrd, weed specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A catfish hatchery owner with a little time on his hands developed a cheap and easy solution to a problem that nags producers.
Hatcheries typically place catfish egg masses in mesh baskets in metal troughs, and flow water over them with rotating metal paddles placed between the baskets. The paddles move water to simulate the care male fish give eggs.
Jim Steeby, aquaculture specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said this technique, while simple and effective, poses some danger to workers.