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News Filed Under Smart Landscapes

Close up of black-eyed Susans
February 28, 2023 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Landscape Architecture, Landscape Design and Management, Smart Landscapes

Native plants have garnered a lot of attention, especially because of their relationship to pollinators, but these plants are valuable for many other reasons. In addition to pollen, they provide food and shelter for birds and other wildlife, as well as creating biodiversity in the ecosystem.

January 12, 2023 - Filed Under: Creating Healthy Indoor Childcare Environments, Healthy Water Practices, Water, SipSafe

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A water sampling program conducted by the Mississippi State University Extension Service has encouraging initial data about lead levels in drinking water collected at child care centers around the state.

Preliminary data gathered as part of the SipSafe program paint a reassuring picture for most of the faucets sampled.

Red Nandina berries.
December 16, 2022 - Filed Under: Smart Landscapes

Heavenly bamboo, commonly referred to as nandina, is a popular, evergreen landscape plant that produces vibrant red berries and resembles hollies. 

September 14, 2022 - Filed Under: Soils, Mississippi Land Resource Areas, Healthy Soils and Water, Healthy Water Practices

COMO, Miss. -- The Mississippi State University Extension Service will cohost a collaborative field day in Panola County Sept. 29 to share information about cover crops and reduced-till farming, soil and water health, and pasture soil and water management.

The Mississippi Land Stewardship field day runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and begins at Buckeye Farms at 3251 Tom Floyd Road in Como. Attendees will then travel to two different fields, one row crop and one pasture. The field day will conclude at Home Place Pastures. A complimentary lunch is included for participants.

June 30, 2022 - Filed Under: Soils, Healthy Soils and Water, Healthy Water Practices, Water

SHAW, Miss. -- Mississippi State University scientists will cohost a collaborative field day in the Mississippi Delta on July 13 to share information about cover crops, soil and water health, and irrigation automation and efficiency. 

The Soil and Water Stewardship in Row-Crop Systems field day runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and begins at Mosco Farm at the southwest of 813 US-61 in Shaw. Attendees will travel to Clements Farm and finish the event at the West F.A.R.M. Pavilion. A complimentary catfish lunch is included for registered participants.

Yellow coreopsis flowers.
May 23, 2022 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

Native plants are great to have in the landscape because they often do not require watering, fertilization, or maintenance. They grow naturally in the region and are adapted to the overall climate and soil conditions. Native plants also provide food and shelter for wildlife and pollinators! 

White and pink native azaleas.
April 25, 2022 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

There’s no plant more iconic in the springtime than azaleas. Their bright, colorful blooms are exactly what we need to welcome the warm weather after a dreary winter. 

A man and a woman pose in a garden.
October 22, 2021 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture, Landscape and Garden Design, Smart Landscapes

Participants in a Mississippi State University landscape symposium learned tips for preserving the life in their own backyards and contributing positively to the larger, regional ecosystem. The 66th Edward C. Martin Landscape Symposium was held Oct. 20 at MSU.

Salt marshes and water
October 21, 2021 - Filed Under: Plants and Wildlife, Smart Landscapes, Environment

BILOXI, Miss. -- Coastal restoration has been a hot topic along the Gulf of Mexico coast for many years now. 

One clear aspect of coastal restoration is that it’s a team effort that requires not only the coast, but entire watersheds. From reducing excess fertilizer usage and litter to increasing low-effort natural landscaping and pervious surfaces, there are many actions we can take anywhere to help restoration of coastal ecosystems.

Flowers bloom outside a brick building.
October 7, 2021 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture, Landscape Design and Management, Smart Landscapes

An annual Mississippi State University landscape symposium promotes the idea that landscapes can be both pretty and sustainable, beautifying the environment while protecting ecosystems.

A shade sail with cloudy blue sky.
May 20, 2021 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

If there’s one thing all Mississippians can agree on, it’s that the summer sun can be brutal. I enjoy spending time on my back patio, but it’s hard to enjoy without shade. I’ve noticed several restaurants, parks, and pools have installed shade sails to provide shade to visitors. Why not install one in your own back yard? 

February 1, 2021 - Filed Under: Landscape Design and Management, Landscape and Garden Design, Professionals Corner, Smart Landscapes, Turfgrass and Lawn Management

The Mississippi State University Extension Service is leading a research project aimed at enhancing pollinator habitat in managed turfgrass of the Southeast.

A person using their foot to shovel dirt from a trench.
September 24, 2020 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

Backyard drainage problems are not fun to deal with. A big rain comes and suddenly your backyard turns into a puddled mess! Having standing water in your yard can lead to turf diseases, mold, or wood rot to your home. Nobody wants to have to deal with that! Consider installing a French drain in your yard during the upcoming fall and winter months. A French drain allows water to naturally drain from your yard. 

An assortment of litter retrieved from a watershed displayed on a wooden dock.
September 17, 2020 - Filed Under: Coronavirus, Places for Wildlife, Natural Resources, Waste Management, Water, Wildlife, Urban and Backyard Wildlife

Are you tired of seeing used masks and gloves dropped in the parking lot at the grocery store? Me, too!

“Pandemic litter” is a relatively new problem, but pollution is nothing new. I grew up watching the ad that admonished, “Give a hoot, don’t pollute!”

Battling the coronavirus requires the use of some single-use items, but they don’t have to end up on the ground!

Here are three tips to help keep Mississippi beautiful!

An assortment of litter retrieved from a watershed displayed on a wooden dock.
September 10, 2020 - Filed Under: Coronavirus, Places for Wildlife, Natural Resources, Waste Management, Water, Wildlife, Urban and Backyard Wildlife

Increased littering of single-use items related to the novel coronavirus pandemic, including masks, gloves, and disinfecting wipes, has troubling consequences for the environment.
When trash is not properly disposed of, it makes its way into watersheds, where it travels by water flow from rivers and streams into the ocean.

Two wooden chairs on a porch underneath a tan shade sail.
August 21, 2020 - Filed Under: Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

If there’s one thing all Mississippians can agree on, it’s that the summer sun can be brutal. I enjoy spending time on my back patio, but it’s hard to enjoy without shade. I’ve noticed several restaurants, parks, and pools have installed shade sails to provide shade to visitors. Why not install one in your own back yard? 

An orange butterfly on a yellow flower.
July 23, 2020 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, Landscape Architecture, Smart Landscapes

What are pollinators and why are they important? Bats, bees, beetles, birds, butterflies, and other mammals play a vital role in our environment. These creatures help move pollen from one flower to another, which helps fertilize plants so they can reproduce.

A bright green moss pathway with large pavers.
July 9, 2020 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Landscape Architecture, Landscape Design and Management, Landscape and Garden Design, Smart Landscapes

A moss pathway is an easy way to add a special touch of elegance, enchantment, and royalty to your landscape. A pathway covered with bright green moss seems like something a king or queen would have in their landscape, right? 

A close-up of a white-tail deer's face.
June 11, 2020 - Filed Under: Lawn and Garden, Landscape Architecture, Landscape Resources, Smart Landscapes, White-Tailed Deer

Oh, deer! White-tailed deer can be quite the nuisance in the garden. It’s disheartening to see deer ate the flowers in your back yard for a snack. 

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.

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