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Feature Story from 2010

Dan Batson, owner of GreenForest Nursery, visits with Patricia Knight, head of the Mississippi State University Coastal Research and Extension Center, at the 2010 Ornamental Horticulture Field Day. (Photo by Cheree Franco)
October 28, 2010 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Lawn and Garden

By Cheree Franco
MSU Ag Communications

POPLARVILLE - Dan Batson and Mississippi State University have been collaborating on horticulture projects for more than 30 years, beginning in the late 1970s when Batson entered the university as an undergraduate horticulture student.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Community, Disaster Response, Family

By Cheree Franco
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Last spring Mississippi suffered two catastrophes. On April 20, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, killing four Mississippians and causing immeasurable damage to the Gulf Coast ecosystem and economy. A few days later, a massive tornado ripped roofs from homes and businesses in Yazoo and Choctaw counties, leaving a death toll of 10. Paula Threadgill wanted to do something to help her home state. As a Mississippi State University Extension professor, she was well positioned for community outreach.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- The staff at the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station Sales Store, located on Mississippi State University’s campus, is gearing up for a busy holiday season and encouraging patrons to place orders now.

Customers should place their orders by early to mid-November for Christmas delivery.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Livestock, Beef

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Quality beef cattle will move through the auction ring in the annual fall sale when Mississippi State University markets 44 lots of cattle from research herds.

The Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station and MSU’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences will host the 28th annual Livestock Production Sale of bulls and bred heifers on Nov. 18.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Forages

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Those with an interest in forage production and grasslands will find topics that appeal to them at a Nov. 17 Mississippi State University conference.

The 2010 Mississippi Forage and Grassland Conference will focus on forage production systems and economic sustainability. The event will run from registration at 7:30 a.m. until wrap-up at 4:45 p.m. at the Mississippi Horse Park in Starkville.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Economic Development

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Nov. 16 workshop will teach manufacturers how to serve their customers better.

Mississippi State University’s Value Stream Mapping workshop is a one-day course that will teach manufacturers how to make their work flow more efficiently and eliminate unnecessary steps by mapping their work processes.

The 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. workshop will be held in the Renasant Center in Tupelo. The $40 registration fee covers lunch and materials.

MSU’s Franklin Furniture Institute experts will teach the mapping concept, first used by Toyota.

November 4, 2010 - Filed Under: Animal Health

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- While it may not be an obvious choice, many veterinarians follow a career path that takes them into the military, which has a great demand for their specialized services.

Dr. Misty Jarvis Looney is a major in the Air National Guard and a graduate of the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine’s class of 2004.

“I’ve always had a desire to serve in the military,” Looney said. “I started as a welder in the Navy when I was 18 and spent eight years there.”

Lex, a retired Marine Corps bomb-sniffing dog, was evaluated at Mississippi State University's College of Veterinary Medicine when his owners noticed he had some difficulty standing. Dr. John Thomason, a CVM small animal internal medicine resident, (left) and Jennifer Evans, a veterinary student, conducted his exam. (Photo by Scott Corey)
November 9, 2010 - Filed Under: Animal Health, Pets

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Lex, a U.S. Marine Corps bomb-sniffing dog who lost his handler in Iraq, is getting help facing the challenges of aging with war injuries.

Lex was injured in a rocket-propelled grenade attack in Fallujah that killed his handler, Cpl. Dustin Lee of Quitman. Lee’s parents, Jerome and Rachel Lee, adopted Lex when he was granted retirement from duty.

Lex came to Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in late October. Dr. John Thomason, a CVM small animal internal medicine resident, is his attending clinician.

November 11, 2010 - Filed Under: Community, Family

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- School organizations, scouts and churches are among the groups that have found holiday plants make great fund raisers, and in some cases, excellent learning opportunities as well.

Richard Harkess, professor of plant and soil sciences at Mississippi State University, said the student horticulture club holds several plant sales during the year to raise money to travel to regional and national meetings. Any additional funds go into community service projects for the club.

November 11, 2010 - Filed Under: Family

By Kaitlyn Byrne
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Finding creative and affordable holiday gifts can be difficult, but one possible solution to this dilemma is to make scrapbooks for loved ones.

Alana Cecil of Independence, who has been scrapbooking for seven years, said a scrapbook can be a special gift that will still be meaningful to the recipient years down the road.

November 11, 2010 - Filed Under: Family, Rural Health

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Making daily tasks easier for people with physical limitations can be a meaningful gift to them at the holidays or anytime.

Routine tasks, such as cooking, cleaning and bathing are generally easy for those who can move freely. When health or age put a person in a wheelchair or a walker, accomplishing these tasks takes thought and planning. Changes in vision, hearing or speaking present even more challenges.

November 11, 2010 - Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics

By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – The pressures of the holiday season can be challenging for anyone, but for divorced parents and their children, this time of year can be particularly stressful.

“Divorce is tough on the whole family, and issues that it causes can get amplified during the holidays,” said Cassandra Palmer, a professional counselor working in Starkville. “Parents generally do not want to miss any time with their children, and the children can pick up on negative feelings the parents are experiencing.”

November 11, 2010 - Filed Under: 4-H

MISSISSIPPI STATE – The holiday season reminds many people to give to others and perform service for communities and the needy, but at least one youth organization practices these principles year-round.

Mississippi State University senior nutrition major Madison Jones of Germantown, Tenn., and MSU vice president of agriculture Gregory Bohach work side by side at the annual sweet potato drop on campus Friday, Nov. 12, 2010. They helped bag 15,000 pounds of the potatoes to donate to food pantries in the Golden Triangle area. (Photo by Scott Corey)
November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Sweet Potatoes, Community

By Patti Drapala
MSU Ag Communications

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Several Mississippi State University student groups recently waged war on hunger by bagging sweet potatoes for food pantries in the Golden Triangle area.

The Society of St. Andrew, a grassroots, nonprofit organization that recruits volunteers to gather leftover crops, located farmers willing to donate produce. The 15,000 pounds of Beauregard sweet potatoes that arrived at the Palmeiro Center on Nov. 12 for the event known as the sweet potato drop came from Dawson Farms of Delhi, La.

November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Two Mississippi State University biochemistry and molecular biology students won top honors in the Maroon Edition’s “Three Cups of Tea” essay contest, which was open to all MSU freshmen.

Liza Hudspeth of Walnut and Ryan Stockman of Hurley took first and second place, respectively.

Maroon Edition is MSU’s campus-wide reading initiative, which seeks to foster discussion by encouraging freshmen to read the same book in a limited timeframe. This year’s book was Greg Mortenson’s “Three Cups of Tea.”

Unheated greenhouses that capture the sun's heat, allowing crops to be grown earlier or later than normal, are called high tunnels. MSU students visited several high tunnels, such as this one growing cucumbers in bags with drip fertigation in Ag Demonstration Park in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province in East China. (Photo provided by University of Arkansas/Jim Robbins)
November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Community

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Three Mississippi State University students spent three weeks in China studying that country’s extensive involvement with season-extension agriculture.

Season-extension technology allows a crop to be grown beyond the normal production window typically allowed by weather. One method gaining popularity in Mississippi is growing crops in high tunnels, which are unheated greenhouses that capture the sun’s heat, allowing crops to be grown earlier or later than normal.

Thirty-two varieties of poinsettias in shades of red, pink and white are gaining more color each day as the Mississippi State University's annual holiday plant sale approaches. The event will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 3 in the campus greenhouses behind Dorman Hall on Stone Boulevard. (Photo by Kat Lawrence)
November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Community, Flower Gardens

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Dozens of poinsettia varieties and holiday plants will be available at the Dec. 3 holiday plant sale hosted by Mississippi State University’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences.

The MSU student horticulture club will sell poinsettias and other holiday plants from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the campus greenhouses behind Dorman Hall on Stone Boulevard. Thirty-two varieties of poinsettias in shades of red, pink and white will be available in 6-inch pots and 10-inch baskets.

November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Agricultural Economics, Livestock

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- A Dec. 9 workshop at Mississippi State University will delve into the increasingly important world of risk management in agriculture.

The event is free to those who preregister and $20 per person for those who register at the door. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in MSU’s Bost Conference Center and is being coordinated by John Michael Riley, MSU Extension Service agricultural economist.

November 18, 2010 - Filed Under: Community, Pets

MISSISSIPPI STATE -- People expect veterinarians to offer quality care to their pets, but they may be surprised to discover the depth of the doctors’ concern for animals and their owners.

Dr. Joey Burt is chief of community veterinary services with Mississippi State University’s Animal Health Center. Beginning when he was in private practice in Ohio, he has felt an emotional connection with pet owners when they lost pets.

November 19, 2010 - Filed Under: Agriculture, Crops, Corn, Cotton, Soybeans

MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi cotton, soybean and corn producers who take advantage of a three-day short course in December will receive valuable information about how to succeed in agriculture.

Registration for the Dec. 6-8 Row Crop Short Course is free until Nov. 26 and $40 a person after that. The event is hosted by Mississippi State University’s Extension Service and will be held on campus in the Bost Extension Center. The program begins with lunch at noon on Dec. 6 and concludes with lunch on Dec. 8.

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