Feature Story from 2007
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi State University's herd of jersey cows is among the best in the nation, and proof of it can be found in the MSU Sales Store in the form of ice cream, cheese and other dairy products.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Anyone looking to add some sparkle to their home lawn will find lots of ideas at the North Mississippi Spring Garden Day.
The May 19 event will be held at the North Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Verona from 9 a.m until 5 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend the free program.
Featured speakers include Mississippi State University Extension horticulturist Mengmeng Gu, who will give a presentation on plants for shade gardening, and plant columnist Jim Long with a program on cutting-edge plants.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Everyone involved in Mississippi’s dairy industry is invited to the Mississippi State University Statewide Dairy Field Day May 24 in Tylertown.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- As therapeutic riding programs catch on across the state, Mississippi State University is planning to host a national training workshop for instructors and volunteers interested in improving their skills.
The MSU Extension Service’s 4-H therapeutic riding program will host a national workshop June 7 and 8 for up to 40 people. The deadline for registration is May 1.
By Patti Drapala
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi ranks No. 1 among states in AIDS cases diagnosed in black women, and health-care officials want to focus on ways to halt the spread of AIDS, raise awareness and improve medical care for these women.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Corn market prices are almost double what they were a year ago, and Mississippi farmers are responding in kind.
Arkansas and Mississippi will lead the nation in percentage corn production increases with 296 percent and 279 percent, respectively. Of 48 states with a corn crop in 2006, only Massachusetts is expected to decrease its acreage this year.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi cotton growers may have fewer acres to plant, but not necessarily fewer challenges in 2007.
While environmental conditions will be the biggest factor, the boom in corn acreage may increase certain insect pressure in Mississippi's cotton.
Angus Catchot, entomologist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said corn is one of the primary hosts for bollworms, which edged out tarnished plant bugs as the state's No. 1 cotton pest last year.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Summer annuals, perennials, herbs, baskets and ferns will be available at the Mississippi State University Horticulture Club’s annual spring plant sale April 13 and 14.
Doors to the greenhouses behind Dorman Hall will be open from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Friday and from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday.
Horticulture students will be on hand to answer questions and offer guidance in plant selections. Proceeds from the sale help fund academic trips, community service projects and next year’s sale.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- An unknown enemy is destroying honey bee colonies across the nation, and researchers are scrambling to discover what is causing it and how it can be prevented.
The problem is being called colony collapse disorder, and it was identified in late 2006. Hives with the disorder go from a robust colony with a large adult bee population to an empty hive with the queen and brood abandoned in the space of a few weeks.
VERONA -- Each year for more than 50 years, representatives of agricultural producer groups in 27 northeast Mississippi counties have met to talk about their needs and to tell those needs to Mississippi State University research scientists and Extension professionals.
In the early 1950s, meetings were held under the oak trees at the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station in Holly Springs. More recently, the site of the gathering has been the North Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Verona.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A one-day workshop for farmers, landowners and resource managers will provide the tools to start and manage a natural resource enterprise.
Fee fishing, fee hunting, agritourism, and wildlife watching are examples of enterprises based on the natural resources commonly found on Mississippi private lands.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Organized 38 years ago to encourage youth to become involved in exhibiting livestock, the Dixie National Sale of Junior Champions still meets that goal and much more.
R.O. Buckley of Starkville said magnificent animals, hard-working youth and generous buyers are the key components in one of the best youth livestock sales in the country.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's wheat that thrived in March's balmy weather experienced major damage during two nights of freezing temperatures over the Easter weekend.
Erick Larson, small grains specialist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said the early warm temperatures had advanced the maturity of the crop and made it more vulnerable to the freeze. Wheat was about two weeks ahead of schedule.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippi's hog producers are finding ways to stay in business despite the major blow dealt by the March 30 closing of Bryan Foods' West Point plant.
The Sara Lee Corp. decision to close the meat-processing plant caused the state's swine industry to scramble to find new markets and a new direction. Mark Crenshaw, swine specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said the closing has a devastating impact on the swine industry in Mississippi and surrounding states.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Local economic development officials, a Mississippi State University team and railroad owners are working to revive a 92-mile section of tracks linking the Delta and the eastern part of the state.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Many Mississippi fruit and nut growers are waiting to see what impact Easter weekend's freezing temperatures had on their crops.
Blueberries and pecans were at a vulnerable stage when temperatures dropped the first weekend in April. Strawberries were already being harvested and were mostly unharmed, and the new growth on muscadine grapes appears unhindered by the cold.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A job that seems secure one day can be gone the next, leaving those without an income struggling unless preparations were made before the job loss.
In West Point, the Bryan Foods plant closed at the end of March, putting more than 1,600 people out of work. In nearly every community across Mississippi, some people lose their jobs almost every week.
Bobbie Shaffett, family resource management specialist with the Mississippi State University Extension Service, said a savings is the best defense against financial ruin.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Poultry companies are facing significantly higher production costs in 2007 as corn prices remain at historic levels without much relief in sight.
John Anderson, agricultural economist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said corn prices are about $1.25 per bushel higher than a year ago.
By Robert H. Wells
Delta Research and Extension Center
STONEVILLE -- A Delta researcher is using new biological control technology to combat reniform nematodes, underground worms that cause Mississippi cotton producers losses of $30 million annually.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Camping often brings people closer to nature, but Mississippi State University is also offering the opportunity to learn about wildlife, fisheries and the great outdoors to parents, teachers and children as young as 10.
Two camps will be offered this summer: June 3-7 and July 8-12. The cost for each camp is $225 per person and includes on-campus lodging, meals, field trip transportation and a camp T-shirt. During the week, participants will eat a wildlife meal after receiving tips on cooking game.