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Scientist searches for controls for weeds in rice
(Distributed 04/04/14) CROWLEY, La. – LSU AgCenter weed scientist Eric Webster continued his work in 2013 on dormant hybrids and red rice outcrossing by starting a new project using several different herbicides to eliminate undesired plants in a field.
USA Rice Leadership class visits Louisiana
(Distributed 04/04/14) CROWLEY, La. – The 2014-16 USA Rice Leadership class visited the south Louisiana rice-growing region on April 3, including the LSU AgCenter Rice Research Station.
International scientists spend time in AgCenter labs
(Distributed 04/04/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Increasing international cooperation in research has been the goal of the LSU AgCenter for many years, and during the past three years scientists from around the world have been able to conduct research in labs here through the Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship Program.
Autumn ferns bring a special something to the flower bed
(Video 04/07/14) Ferns can dot landscapes with a lush-looking appeal. Some types are evergreen, and some types are not. One unique evergreen fern garners attention not only because of its green display, but also thanks to some bonus color. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill introduces you to the autumn fern. (Runtime: 1:40 seconds)
Clark elected fellow in American Phytopathological Society
(Distributed 04/02/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Chris Clark, LSU AgCenter plant pathologist, has been elected a fellow of the American Phytopathological Society in recognition of his contributions to managing major sweet potato diseases.
AgCenter brings AgMagic to N.O. area May 14-17
(Distributed 04/02/14) NEW ORLEANS – The LSU AgCenter will present AgMagic on the River, an interactive, visually stimulating learning experience, at Docville Farm in Violet on May 14-17.
29 new La. Master Farmers recognized
(Distributed 01/10/14) LAFAYETTE, La. – The 2014 graduates of the Louisiana Master Farmer Program were recognized at the 68th Annual Meeting of the Louisiana Soil and Water Conservation Districts recently (Jan. 9).
AgCenter joins mental health, substance abuse project
(Distributed 04/01/14) NEW ORLEANS – The LSU AgCenter in partnership with the Prevention Research Center at Tulane University will work with local stakeholders to identify behavioral health needs of Orleans Parish residents and share best practices for improving community behavioral health.
Shrimpers, crabbers learn to save money, work safer at meeting
(Distributed 04/01/14) DELCAMBRE, La. – The LSU AgCenter and Louisiana Sea Grant held a series of meetings March 25-26 for crabbers and shrimpers with experts to advise them how to save money, to work safer and to comply with state and federal regulations.
AgMagic at Parker Coliseum April 28-May 4
(Distributed 03/31/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Although agriculture is a vital $11.8 billion industry in Louisiana, many children do not realize the role it plays in their daily lives.
Choose bedding plants carefully
(Audio 04/07/14) You can choose among many types of warm-season bedding plants to bring color to your garden. Even shady areas where some plants won’t grow have particular plants that do well there. Listen to learn more about the different types of plants to grow in your flower beds. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
The best time to fertilize your lawn is early April
(Audio 04/07/14) Early April is an outstanding time to fertilize your lawn. You can use any type of lawn fertilizer you find available, but if you have concerns with your lawn, make sure you find a fertilizer that targets those problems. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Early April is the time to harvest mild-weather herbs
(Audio 04/07/14) Some herbs do better when the weather is hotter, but most frequently used herbs grow better when the weather is milder. Because they are producing abundantly right now, harvest them and freeze some so that you have herbs to use in your dishes through the summer season. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Crawfish are having trouble beating the cold weather
(Video 04/02/14) Crawfish is part of Louisiana’s culture, and the crawfish boil is a springtime tradition, but LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard reports that this Cajun crustacean may be hard to come by this season. (Runtime: 1:25 seconds)
Proper support for tomatoes leads to less disease
(Audio 04/07/14) Letting tomato plants lie on the ground in Louisiana is inviting disease problems. Supporting these plants will help prevent disease and will increase fruit production. This can be done with stakes or growing the plants in cages. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Planting varieties of tomatoes
(Audio 04/07/14) Warmer temperatures allow gardeners to start transplanting tomatoes. When choosing which types of tomatoes you want to plant, make sure that you have more than one variety. Consult your local nursery to help with choosing different varieties. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Cold weather slows crawfish growth
(Audio 03/31/14) The cold winter didn’t kill crawfish, but it has significantly slowed their growth. LSU AgCenter crawfish specialist Greg Lutz says the crawfish in the pond are about the same size they were in December, and he doesn’t expect them to do much catching up. (Runtime: 1:22)
Weyerhaeuser donates $20,000 for Trees & Trails pavilion
(Distributed 03/31/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden has received a $20,000 donation from Weyerhaeuser through its Giving Fund for construction of a pavilion that will expand the Trees & Trails educational program.
Sugar byproducts show promise in plastics
(Distributed 03/28/14) ST. GABRIEL, La. – Louisiana sugar producers may one day have a stake in the U.S. plastics industr, with the help of LSU AgCenter researchers.
Cat Whiskers – Ornamental Plant of the Week for March 31, 2014
(Distributed 03/28/14) Most folks do not know about cat whiskers (Orthosiphon stamineus).
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New buddleia named Louisiana Super Plant
(For Release On Or After 04/25/14) Buddleia Flutterby Petite Tutti Frutti Pink is a Louisiana Super Plants selection for spring 2014. I know the variety name is a mouthful, but it is well worth remembering and looking for at your local nurseries.
Fresh herbs – easy to grow and delicious
(For Release On Or After 04/18/14) Many Louisiana gardeners have discovered how easy and rewarding growing herbs can be. Especially popular are the culinary herbs used to flavor foods. The trend for gardeners to plant and grow herbs continues to gain in popularity. Indeed, planting herbs is fairly common these days, particularly among gardeners like me who enjoy cooking.
Kauai torenia selected as Louisiana Super Plant
(For Release On Or After 04/11/14) Spring is here, and it’s time to plant warm-season bedding plants into our flower gardens. These plants will provide color for us through the coming summer. An outstanding choice is Kauai series torenia (Torenia fournieri), a Louisiana Super Plant selection for spring 2014.
Grass doesn’t always grow under trees
(For Release On Or After 04/04/14) It’s amazing how many times I’ve gotten questions about growing grass in shady areas. This is a common issue as shade trees in a landscape grow larger over time. Eventually, the shade they create may not allow grass to grow well in the most shaded areas. When dealing with this sort of situation, you have several options.
Early April is the time to plant warm-season bedding plants
(Audio 04/01/14) The bedding plants that you see in bloom now were planted last fall. If you are looking to plant bedding plants to last through the summer, you want to focus on warm-season plants. Check your local nursery for the correct season's bedding plants. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
The Kauai torenia, a Lousiana Super Plant
(Audio 04/01/14) The Kauai torenia is one of Louisiana's Super Plants. It is a beautiful little bushy plant that cover itself with flowers from the time you plant in the spring to late fall. It is simply a great choice for your flower beds. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Youth Wetlands week set for April 21-25
(Distributed 03/28/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana’s wetlands are places to work, visit and enjoy. They are also places to learn. During the week of April 21-25, the LSU AgCenter’s Youth Wetlands program will be recognizing these diverse environments statewide through a variety of classroom lessons and wetlands activities.
Research gardens growing in Hammond
(Distributed 03/28/14) HAMMOND, La. – Since the debut of a landscape horticulture research and extension program at the LSU AgCenter Hammond Research Station seven years ago, gardens supporting the research at the station continue to expand.
Researcher studies 8 ethnic groups along Gulf Coast
(Distributed 03/25/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Appreciating the cultural diversity of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico region could aid in understanding how the oil industry has affected society, says sociologist Mark Schafer.He is studying how various demographic groups in the region have changed over the years.
Sapsuckers aren't harmful to trees
(Audio 04/01/14) The yellow-bellied sapsucker is a bird that does exactly as its name implies. These little birds actually feed on the sap that trees bleed out during this time of the year. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Planting your April vegetables
(Audio 04/01/14) Some of the summer's most popular fruits and vegetables produce best if they are planted around this time. Early planting helps with preventing insect and disease problems. Listen to hear more about which types of vegetables can be planted now. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Pruning shrubs after they flower
(Audio 04/01/14) Louisiana has a wide variety of shrubs that bloom during the springtime. The best time to prune these shrubs is after they finish flowering. Pruning at another time would interfere with the reproduction process because of the time that these plants produce next year's flowers. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Guest lecturer says nutrient deficiencies exist in most societies
(Distributed 03/27/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Only three billion of the seven billion people in the world are well-nourished, according to Lindsay Allen, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agriculture Research Service Western Human Nutrition Research Center. She said this is a problem in both wealthy and poor countries.
Louisiana sugar bulletin available online
(Distributed 03/26/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter and the Louisiana State University Library recently completed digitizing approximately 20,000 pages of the “Sugar Bulletin,” the monthly publication of the American Sugar Cane League.
AgCenter researcher studying arsenic in rice
(Distributed 03/26/14) CROWLEY, La. – Dustin Harrell, LSU AgCenter agronomist at the Rice Research Station near Crowley, is participating in a multi-state study on arsenic in rice to determine if levels of the element are higher in different varieties and to see if varied flooding methods affect arsenic content
La. agriculture economy reaches record in 2013
(Audio News 03/26/14) For the second year in a row, the value of agriculture to Louisiana's economy reached a record high. LSU AgCenter economist John Westra said the state's agriculture culture was $11.8 billion in 2013.
Cold, wet weather delays corn planting
(Video 03/19/14) The cold, wet winter is hampering spring planting. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard reports that corn planting is behind schedule and fewer acres than expected may be planted if the state doesn’t soon see warmer, drier weather. (Runtime 1:20 seconds)
Getting rid of buck moths in your trees
(Audio 03/24/14) The stinging buck moth caterpillar can pose a hazard to people and pests. If you see them in your trees, you can get a pest service to come and spray them before they make their way down. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Sago palms, beautiful but dangerous plants
(Video 03/1714) Sago (Say-go) palms grow well in Louisiana. But they are particularly dangerous to dogs this time of year. LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains that danger and what you can do about it, as well as some other Sago plant care tips, on this edition of Get It Growing. (Runtime 1:39 seconds)
Inspecting trees can save money
(Audio 03/17/14) It is a wise to hire an arborist to inspect trees on property you are planning to purchase. The trees may need care that could create costs in the future. (Runtime 60 seconds)
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Wheat crop survives winter freezes
(Video 03/19/14) The cold winter hasn’t done much damage to the state’s wheat crop. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard reports that the crop is in good shape heading into spring. (Runtime: 1:20 seconds)
Louisiana ag economy grows to new record high of $11.8 billion in 2013
(Distributed 03/24/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – For the second year in a row, Louisiana farmers had record-breaking values for many of their commodities, which led to a new high value of $11.8 billion for the agriculture sector of the Louisiana economy in 2013 – up 3.8 percent from 2012.
Experts search for cold-tolerant weevils
(Distributed 03/21/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Unusually cold temperatures in north Louisiana parishes are expected to have killed 90 percent of the salvinia weevils used to combat the invasive aquatic plant giant salvinia, which is clogging waterways across Louisiana, according to LSU AgCenter weed scientist Dearl Sanders.
Bandana Lantana – Ornamental Plant of the Week for March 24, 2014
(Distributed 03/21/14) A Louisiana Super Plant to consider for this spring is the Bandana lantana.
All-America Selections names 2014 winners
(Distributed 03/21/14) HAMMOND, La. – Six bedding plants have been named national All-America Selection winners for the 2014 gardening season. They include Serenita Pink angelonia, Florific Sweet Orange New Guinea impatiens, Sparkle White gaura, NuMex Easter ornamental pepper, Akila Daisy White osteospermum and African Sunset petunia.
Dow gives AgCenter $10,000 for Children’s Garden Outdoor Classroom
(Distributed 03/21/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden has received a $10,000 grant from Dow Chemical through its DowGives program for construction of a Children’s Garden Outdoor Classroom to serve as a teaching shelter, sound barrier and protection from the sun.
Cold, wet weather delays corn planting
(Distributed 03/19/14) WINNSBORO, La. – About one percent of Louisiana’s corn crop is in the ground. This is unusual for mid-March when farmers typically have much of the crop planted.
Researcher studies food safety in greenhouse tomato production
(Distributed 03/20/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Commercial greenhouse vegetable production is becoming increasingly popular in Louisiana. While there are benefits to local production, even small-scale growers must learn how to prevent and manage diseases.
Markets, weather hot topics at forestry meeting
(Distributed 03/19/14) HAMMOND, La. – For nearly a decade, those involved in the forest industry have suffered considerable losses, but experts say the current trends seem to be brighter with more interest in wood products.
Prime time to plant Japanese magnolias
(Video 03/10/14) Japanese magnolias are beautiful spring-flowering trees, and now is a good time to plant them. With a variety of flower colors and styles, they are a striking sight in Louisiana landscapes. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains where to plant your Japanese magnolia and how to take care of it. (Runtime 1:38 seconds)
Marketing, operations information featured at seafood meeting
(Distributed 03/19/14) HOUMA, La. -- The LSU AgCenter and Louisiana Sea Grant held a seafood summit March 12 and 13 to provide information to help coastal residents who make their living from the seafood industry.
Corn planting is behind schedule
(Audio News 03/19/14) Less than one percent of Louisiana’s corn crop is in the ground. This is unusual for mid-March when farmers typically have much of the crop planted. Cold and wet weather has kept farmers out of their fields. (Runtime: 1:20 seconds)
Deadheading brings freshness to the flower bed
(Audio 03/24/14) Deadheading your flowers prevents them from making seeds and encourages them to continue to produce blooms. It's just not necessarily to make the flower bed look pretty. Different types of flowers should be deadheaded more often than others. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Buying the best tomato for your garden
(Video 03/31/14) It’s a great idea to get tomatoes into your garden during this time. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains the many types of tomatoes you can choose for your early planting. (Runtime: 1:55 seconds)
Wheat rebounding from cold, wet winter
(Audio 03/17/14) A stiff north wind whipped through a wet wheat field. LSU AgCenter wheat specialist Josh Lofton says the field on the AgCenter’s Macon Ridge Research Station is thriving despite a damp and cold winter. (Runtime: 1:15)
Replanting your spring bulb plants
(Video 03/24/14) Flowering bulbs are a natural part of spring. You might wonder: “Will my potted tulips or daffodils keep growing, or can I replant them?" On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill answers those questions and talks about the general care of these beautiful plants. (Runtime: 1:40 seconds)
Controlling thrips in rose bushes
(Audio 03/24/14) Thrips are very tiny insects that invade the flower buds of our roses. They usually are a problem on spring and early summer flowers. Controlling them can be difficult, but there are a few insecticides you can use. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
The proper time to replace tropicals
(Audio 03/24/14) March is still too early to replace the tropicals that were killed by the winter freezes. They like to be replanted when the weather is nice, warm and settled. Trimming them back, however, can be done around this time. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Baton Rouge to host regional Master Gardeners in fall
(Distributed 03/17/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – More than 500 gardeners from throughout the Southeast are expected in Baton Rouge for the Southern Region Master Gardener Conference Oct. 21-24.
New farm bill provides price loss coverage for rice farmers
CROWLEY, La. – Rice farmers across Louisiana learned how the new farm bill will affect their operations in a series of meetings held by the LSU AgCenter and the USA Rice Federation. Large crowds showed up for the meetings held in Abbeville, Kinder, Crowley, Alexandria and Rayville.
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Wait until April to fertilize lawns
(Audio 03/10/14) Lawns start to wake up in March. Home gardeners may be anxious to fertilize their lawns during this phase, but doing so can be detrimental to the grass. Wait until April to fertilize. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Louisiana Iris – Ornamental Plant of the Week for March 17
(Distributed 03/14/14) Blooming from late March to early May, the Louisiana iris is a floral ambassador that has carried our state’s name all over the world.
Renowned nutrition researcher to speak at annual Patrick Lecture
(Distributed 03/14/14) BATON ROUGE, La – A distinguished researcher and educator will talk on improving the quality of diets across the globe on March 26 as part of an annual endowed lecture series on the LSU campus.
Research identifies better-performing roses for Louisiana
(Distributed 03/14/14) HAMMOND, La. – Gardeners who have shied away from growing roses because of the fungicides and care needed to grow them can take heart in a recently completed research project conducted by the LSU AgCenter and the American Rose Society at the Gardens of the American Rose Center in Shreveport.
La. 4-H receives healthful grant for second year
(Distributed 03/14/14) POLLOCK, La. – The Louisiana 4-H program has again received the $30,000 Eat4-Health grant through National 4-H and United Healthcare.
Central La. garden expo set for April 11-12
(Distributed 03/14/14) ALEXANDRIA, La. – The 2014 Central Louisiana Garden Expo will be held at the State Evacuation Shelter in Alexandria on April 11-12.
Different types of fertilizers and how to choose them
(Audio 03/17/14) There are many different types of fertilizers. All plants need the same essential elements, so all of your plants can be fertilized with the same general fertilizer. The type of area where a plant is located indicates the type of fertilizer to use. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Proactive spraying will show best results in plants
(Audio 3/17/14) Spraying fruit trees has to be done preventively. It must be done long before the problems with pests show up. Different fruit trees need to be sprayed at different times. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Controlling brown patch in your lawn
(Audio 03/17/14) Brown patch is a common fungus that attacks lawns. This happens when the weather is cool and moist. Controlling brown patch will help ensure healthy grass for your lawn. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Now is the time for flower bed preparation
(Audio 03/17/14) March and April are the months that people plant their plants. Now is the time to prepare the area where you will plant. This corresponds to how well the plants will do. Listen to learn more about the process of preparing beds. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
New Orleans garden show to celebrate 35 years
(Distributed 03/13/14) NEW ORLEANS, La. – The 2014 New Orleans Spring Garden Show will be held at the City Park Botanical Garden April 5-6 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. each day.
Small-ruminant field day set for April 26 at LSU
(Distributed 03/13/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A field day for people who raise sheep and goats is scheduled for April 26 at the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine on Skip Bertman Dr.
New food safety rules still being developed
BATON ROUGE, La. – Although Congress passed the Food Safety Modernization Act in 2010, the Food and Drug Administration is still in the process of developing rules to enforce the law. The rules seek to enhance safety regulations by requiring more documentation and shifting the focus to prevention rather than response.
Wheat, oat field day set for April 16 at Macon Ridge Research Station
(Distributed 03/12/14) WINNSBORO, La. – LSU AgCenter experts will conduct a wheat and oat field day on April 16 at the Macon Ridge Research Station just south of Winnsboro, La.
Lead Certified Renovator Training at LaHouse March 27
(Distributed 03/12/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A Lead Certified Renovator Training will be held at the LSU AgCenter LaHouse Resource Center on the LSU campus on March 27 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Mold Control and Remediation Training at LaHouse March 19-21
(Distributed 03/12/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A training session on mold control and remediation will be held at the LSU AgCenter LaHouse Resource Center on the LSU campus March 19-21 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. each day.
Cattle experts give advice at Iberia Station field day
(Distributed 03/11/14) JEANERETTE, La. – More than 150 people attended the 2014 Beef Cattle Producers Annual Spring Field Day held at the LSU AgCenter Iberia Research Station on March 8.
Mayhaw – Ornamental Plant of the Week for March 10, 2014
(Distributed 03/07/14) Mayhaws are one of the most widely known of the native fruit tree species found in Louisiana.
Sustainability assures growth in Louisiana’s forestry industry
(Distributed 03/07/14) SHREVEPORT, La. – The director of the Louisiana Forestry Association said companies using Louisiana wood products to make biofuels want to know how they can make sure feedstocks are obtained from sustainable sources.
Dividing perennials provides beautiful variety
(Audio 03/10/14) Perennials are plants that last year after year. They provide a colorful variation in your gardens. Dividing these perennials and spreading them out can make your landscape diverse in texture. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
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Positive effects of mulching
(Audio 03/10/4) Mulches are extremely useful and valuable. Decaying mulch will make soil richer and more fertile. Listen to learn more about how mulch has a positive effect on your gardens. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
AgCenter soil scientist reviews SoilWeb app
(Distributed 03/07/14) WINNSBORO, La. – To help farmers sort through the hundreds of apps available to aid with agricultural production, an LSU AgCenter soil scientist has begun posting online reviews.
Spring brings pests to landscapes
(Distributed 03/07/14) HAMMOND, La. – Spring is near. We have many wonderful plants coming into flower and foliage this time of year, but our landscapes also have diseases, insects and weeds that need to be monitored and dealt with when appropriate.
Baton Rouge Garden Show set for Mar. 29-30
(Distributed 03/07/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The 12th annual Baton Rouge Spring Garden Show is set for March 29-30 at the John M. Parker Coliseum on Highland Road in Baton Rouge.
Properly transplant plants for best results
(Audio 03/10/14) Vegetable transplants that are purchased from greenhouses are not accustomed to the real world. Make sure to properly care for these plants so that they grow to be as healthy as possible. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
West Monroe plant sale set for April 5
(Distributed 03/06/14) WEST MONROE, La. – The Northeast Louisiana Master Gardeners will hold their sixth annual plant sale at the West Monroe Farmers Market from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on April 5.
Louisiana producers should prepare for possible aphid attack on sorghum
(Distributed 03/06/14) WINNSBORO, La. – There’s a new pest infiltrating Louisiana sorghum crops, and producers should be on the lookout, according to LSU AgCenter scientists.
Whooping cranes in White Lake
(Video 03/05/14) Rare and endangered birds are making a comeback in Louisiana with the help of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the LSU AgCenter. AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard has this report on the effort to bring back the whooping crane.(Runtime: 2:20 seconds)
March is the time to fertilize shrubs
(Audio 03/10/14) March is a great time to fertilize the shrubs in your landscape. Some shrubs may not need the extra fertilizer. Testing the soil in your landscape can be very helpful to know how to fertilize. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Winter wheat progressing with little cold damage
(Distributed 03/05/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Over the past few weeks, the winter wheat crop has gone through the gamut of late winter and early spring conditions, said LSU AgCenter wheat specialist Josh Lofton.
Whooping cranes return to White Lake
(Audio News 03/05/14) Sara Zimorski and Carrie Salyers suit up in white costumes with crane head gloves to interact with an experimental flock of whooping cranes in White Lake Wetland Conservation Area near Gueydan. Both are biologists with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and are working with the flock to reestablish a population of whooping cranes in Louisiana. (Runtime: 2:10)
Osteospermum - Ornamental Plant of the Week for March 3, 2014
(Distributed 02/28/14) Osteospermums are becoming more popular as cool-season-to-warm-season transition bedding plants in the landscape. These plants are commonly referred to as African daisy.
Planning the summer flower garden
(For Release On Or After 03/28/14) As we move into April, we can enjoy the peak blooming season of our cool-season annuals. But it’s not too early to begin to plan our summer gardens. If you have empty flower beds, you may even begin to plant summer flowers in late March in south Louisiana or early to mid-April in north Louisiana.
Notice our beautiful spring wildflowers
(For Release On Or After 03/21/14) Mention blooming wildflowers, and most people think of country meadows and drives along rural roads. Wildflowers, however, are to be found everywhere, including cities and suburbs as well as in the country.
Don’t miss educational opportunities
(For Release On Or After 03/14/14) Gardening is no different from any other human endeavor. Whether you want to repair your own car or cook a fancy meal, you must understand the information and techniques that have to be learned and done properly.
Stop ‘crape murder’
(For Release On Or After 03/07/14) The term “crape murder” has been coined to describe the cutting back of crape myrtle trees. Although perhaps a little overly dramatic, it is in use by horticulturists across the Southeast wherever crape myrtles are a popular and common tree.
‘Yards and neighborhoods’ provides basic landscape information
(Distributed 02/28/14) HAMMOND, La. – One of the programs the LSU AgCenter offers is “Louisiana Yards and Neighborhoods.” It was developed several years ago as an educational program to teach home gardeners about sustainable landscaping and home horticulture practices.
Rice growers get word on preparing for season
(Distributed 02/28/14) ST. MARTINVILLE, La. – St. Martin Parish rice and soybeans producers heard preseason advice Wednesday (Feb. 26) from LSU AgCenter experts about preparing for this year’s crops.
Forestry future looks good in Louisiana
(Distributed 02/28/14) ALEXANDRIA, La. – The future for wood products in Louisiana is bright, thanks to Europe, a beetle in Canada and an increase in U.S. housing construction, LSU AgCenter experts said Tuesday (Feb. 25) at the Central Louisiana Forestry Forum.
24 graduate from AgCenter leadership program
(Distributed 02/28/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The 13th class of the LSU AgCenter’s Agricultural Leadership Development program completed its two-year course of study with graduation February 22 at Nottoway Plantation in White Castle as AgCenter administrators recognized 24 leaders in agriculture production and ag-related industries from around the state.
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Beef field day set for March 8 in Jeanerette
(Distributed 02/28/14) JEANERETTE, La. – The Acadiana Beef Cattle Producers field day will be held March 8 at the Iberia Research Station.
Control your weeds
(Audio 03/03/14) Cool-season weeds are active in lawns, flower beds and vegetable gardens this time of the year. You don't want to allow these weeds to flower and set seeds. Get rid of them as best you can to keep them under control. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Long life of perennials
(Audio 03/03/14) Perennials are grown for their beautiful foliage or flowers and can live for many years in our landscapes. This gives them an advantage over annuals. Look for perennials growing in gallon containers at nurseries. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Sucessful way to weed prevention
(Audio 03/03/14) Herbicides come in two basic categories, post-emergence or pre-emergence herbicides. Pre-emergence herbicides are applied before weeds occur. Spray it on a clean bed to keep weeds from developing. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Correct time to plant flower beds
(Audio 03/03/14) You may see plants like dianthus and pansies blooming in flower beds and consider planting some this time of year. The best of those were planted in fall or winter. Beds planted with these flowers this month will never achieve the look of earlier planted beds. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Gourmet in the Garden scheduled at Burden
(Distributed 02/25/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Dining and music among the blooms and under the stars will be featured during Gourmet in the Garden: A Progressive Dinner in the Gardens at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden on April 25, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Brush With Burden exhibition to feature local artists
(Distributed 02/25/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The fourth annual Brush With Burden art exhibition will be held at the LSU AgCenter’s Botanic Garden at Burden from March 23-30.
Two AgCenter rice scientists honored at national meeting
(Distributed 02/24/14) NEW ORLEANS, La. – Two LSU AgCenter scientists were honored at the 2014 Rice Technical Working Group’s 35th meeting held Feb. 18-21. Johnny Saichuk received the Distinguished Rice Research and Education Award, and Mike Stout was one of seven entomologists from rice-growing states to be recognized with the Distinguished Rice Research and Education Team Award.
Families learn to eat healthy, exercise more at weekend 4-H camp
(Distributed 02/24/14) POLLOCK, La. – Families learned about healthy eating and the importance of exercise at the Louisiana 4-H Food and Fitness Camp held at 4-H Camp Grant Walker Feb. 22-23.
EPA OKs label for rice fungicide
(Distributed 02/24/14) CROWLEY, La. – LSU AgCenter plant pathologist Don Groth said a federal label for the fungicide Sercadis has been granted for the upcoming growing season.
Now is the time to trim or add ground cover
(Video 03/03/14) Now is a good time to begin getting your yard into better shape. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains how late February is a great time to trim ground cover or add some of these plants to your landscape. (Runtime: 1:50 seconds)
Chinese evergreens offer colorful variations
(Video 02/24/14) The traditional Chinese evergreen is a tough houseplant that has always come in one color – green. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains how recent developments with this plant now include striking variations from the original color and style of the plant. (Runtime: 1:50 seconds)
Myths persist about saltwater purges, tail curl for cooking crawfish
(Distributed 02/24/14) CROWLEY, La. – With crawfish season underway, south Louisiana residents look forward to dining on a regional delicacy, either in a backyard setting or a restaurant.
Farm bill forces farmers to make safety net decision
(Video News 02/21/14) Louisiana farmers were relieved to finally see passage of a farm bill. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard talks with an ag economist about what the bill means for local producers. (Runtime: 1:31)
Supertunia -- Ornamental Plant of the Week for February 24, 2014
(Distributed 02/21/14) With an ever-increasing number of color combinations now spread over 33 available varieties, the Supertunia petunias from Proven Winners continue to impress in container and landscape trials across the Southeast.
Flowering trees add to February, March landscapes
(Distributed 02/21/14) HAMMOND, La. – Flowering trees add considerable color and beauty to our landscapes during late winter and early spring. Many of the trees that flower at this time of year can be considered low-maintenance compared to the amount of pleasure we get from them.
Farm bill forces farmers to make decisions
(Audio 02/21/14) Earlier this month the president signed a new farm bill. Farmers have been operating without a farm bill for two years. LSU AgCenter economist Kurt Guidry says the $1 trillion bill eliminates the direct payment program in which farmers could enroll every year to receive payments based on the their historical program payment acres, rates and yields. (Runtime: 1:25)
Researcher works to make sugarcane resistant to brown rust disease
(Distributed 02/20/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Brown rust fungus poses a serious threat to Louisiana's nearly $1 billion sugarcane industry. Thanks to funding from the American Sugar Cane League, LSU AgCenter molecular biologist Niranjan Baisakh is studying DNA markers in sugarcane associated with resistance to the fungus. He hopes to help sugarcane breeders develop varieties that block the fungus at the molecular level.
ARK-LA-TEX forestry forum scheduled for March 6
(Distributed 02/20/14) SHREVEPORT, La., – The LSU AgCenter will hold its 30th Annual ARK-LA-TEX forestry forum on March 6 at the Holiday Inn Financial Plaza in Shreveport.
Beauregard Parish garden show scheduled for March 1
(Distributed 02/20/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Beauregard Parish Master Gardeners will hold a spring garden festival and plant sale at the Beauregard Parish Fairground Exhibit Hall and Demonstration Garden from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m on March 1.
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Artificial reefs could stem coastal land loss
(Distributed 02/20/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana’s issues with coastal land loss are well-documented. Scientists estimate that since 1930 as much as 25 square miles of land per year have been lost in the Mississippi River delta area.
Burnett named new administrator in LSU College of Agriculture
(Distributed 02/20/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Mike Burnett has been named executive associate dean of the LSU College of Agriculture. In this new role, Burnett hopes to help the college's 10 departments and schools meet needs that will allow improved funding and recruitment, particularly in graduate programs.
Tanger named new AgCenter forestry economist
(Distributed 02/19/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Shaun Tanger has been named the new forestry economist with the LSU AgCenter. Based in Baton Rouge, Tanger coordinates the outreach programs of five regional forestry specialists and helps provide the industry with the information necessary for continued growth and development.
Louisiana youths named champions at 79th Annual LSU AgCenter Livestock Show
(Distributed 02/19/14) GONZALES, La. – Hundreds of young people from across Louisiana were named state champions during the 79th Annual LSU AgCenter Livestock Show held Feb.8-15 at the Lamar-Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales.
Does fertilizer go bad over time?
(Audio 02/24/14) Fertilizer does not go bad over time. Proper care and storage leads to fertilizer being just as nutritious as when the bag was first opened. Listen to learn more. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Best time to plant caladiums
(Audio 02/24/14) Caladium bulbs can be planted before spring starts. Bulbs can be bought and planted in potting soil flats where proper care can be given to them so that they stay warm and moist. This will help give bright colors to the flowers when planting them in the ground at the beginning of spring. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
East Baton Rouge Master Gardeners plant sale set for April 12
(Distributed 02/18/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – East Baton Rouge Parish Master Gardeners will have a plant sale at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sat., April 12.
Gardens need organic matter
(Audio 02/17/14) Gardeners may be unsure about what exactly organic matter is. Essentially it is material derived from plants or plant parts, such as grass clipping or wood chips. Letting this material decay will give you compost. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Federal food safety law poses problems for agricultural producers
(Distributed 01/27/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The U.S. Food Safety Modernization Act is the first major overhaul of American food safety laws in decades. It strives to make the food supply safer, but growers and manufacturers could face a number of challenges.
Trim ground covers in late winter
(Audio 02/24/14) Late February is a good time to cut back ground covers. Do this before new growth occurs in the spring. This helps rejuvenate the plant and controls height. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Plant gladiolas in late February
(Audio 02/24/14) Louisiana gardeners can start planting gladiolas in late February and can plant them into March. Gladiolas need to bloom while the weather is still mild. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Right amount of light helps plants thrive
(Audio 02/24/14) To grow plants successfully, provide them with adequate light. Light is food for plants. Some plants need full sun, others part shade. Listen to learn more about these terms. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
AgCenter announces 14 field days for 2014
(Distributed 02/17/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter has scheduled 14 field days at off-campus research stations during 2014.
Youths earn Gerry Lane Premier Exhibitor Awards
(Distributed 02/17/14) GONZALES, La. – Six exceptional Louisiana youths were recognized Saturday (Feb. 15) for their knowledge, skills and communication abilities as they were named winners of the Gerry Lane Premier Exhibitor Award at the 79th annual LSU AgCenter Livestock Show at the Lamar Dixon Expo Center here.
4-H, FFA youth, leader honored for livestock work
(Distributed 02/17/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter honored five Louisiana 4-H and FFA students and one adult leader Saturday, Feb. 15, for their work with youth livestock projects.
4-H'er with Down syndrome finds purpose through livestock program
(Audio 02/17/14) Affectionately known as "John John" by his family, friends and fans, John Sonnier, a 4-H’er from St. Mary Parish, was prepping to show his pigs at the LSU AgCenter’s State Livestock Show. Sonnier has Down syndrome, and his sister, Brittany Durham, says showing livestock has given him a real purpose. (Runtime: 1:55)
Forestry forum scheduled for March 14 in Hammond
(Distributed 02/14/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The 25th annual Florida Parishes forestry forum is scheduled for Friday, March 14, at the University Center at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond.
Dianthus – Ornamental Plant of the Week for February 17, 2014
(Distributed 02/14/14) Some of the best dianthus for Louisiana are the Amazon series. These are extremely prolific flower producers and can be planted in September through early November or in February through March.
Special needs student succeeds at livestock show
(Video 02/14/14) For one week a year, youngsters and their animals gather for the LSU AgCenter Livestock Show. The show attracts students from all walks of life. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard visited with a 4-H’er with Down syndrome who shines during his moment in the show ring. (Runtime: 1:57)
New bait could benefit La. crab, shrimp industries
(Video News 02/10/14) A new gelatin- like bait using shrimp waste could improve the way blue crabs are caught and add value to Louisiana’s shrimp processing industry. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard has this report. (Runtime: 1:46)
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Forum brings together producers, processors, distributors
(Distributed 02/14/14) NEW ORLEANS –People involved in providing agricultural products to the New Orleans area joined in a leadership forum to discuss ways to improve the current system in New Orleans on Feb. 11.
Students take fashion designs to the runway
(Distributed 02/14/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Rachel Detloff’s purple ombre gown is going from the classroom to the runway. Detloff is one of a group of senior level students and former students from the LSU College of Agriculture’s Department of Textiles, Apparel Design and Merchandising showing pieces during a runway show on Feb. 15.
Louisiana palm trees suffer from cold weather
(Distributed 02/14/14) HAMMOND, La. – Palm trees have become increasingly popular in Louisiana home landscapes recently, and this resurgence mainly can be attributed to the lack of severely cold weather over the past 30 years.
Youngster with Down syndrome finds pride showing livestock
(Distributed 02/14/14) GONZALES, La. – Affectionately known as “John John” by his family, friends and fans, John Sonnier, a 4-H’er from St. Mary Parish was prepping to show his pigs at the LSU AgCenter’s state livestock show. He stopped occasionally to visit with people passing by and to show off his dance moves.
Agritourism business grows in Louisiana
(Distributed 02/12/14) LAKE CHARLES, La. – Louisiana birds and wildlife habitat considered commonplace by local residents are considered exotic and fascinating by many out-of-state visitors looking for the different and unusual, according to speakers at an agritourism workshop on Feb. 11.
LSU AgCenter prepares for garden shows across the state
(Distributed 02/10/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana gardeners can work in their yards almost every day of the year, but spring is prime time for gardening.
Divide perennials while they are dormant
(Audio 02/17/14) Gardeners can divide dormant perennials in February. Perennials may need to be divided if the clump has gotten too big or if you want plants in other areas. It is best to do this before the flowers wake up and begin growing. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Young trees need fertilizer
(Audio 02/17/14) Trees can benefit from the extra nutrients fertilizers provide. Young trees especially need fertilizer. You can use tree spikes or granular fertilizer to fertilize your trees. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Spring-flowering bulbs can withstand cold
(Audio 02/17/14) Spring-flowering bulbs are growing in gardens, but most won't bloom until March. Despite the extreme cold Louisiana has had this winter, there is no need to protect the plant parts. The flowers can be damaged if a hard freeze occurs in March. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Transplant trees in winter
(Audio 02/17/14) Trees sometimes pop up in places they don't belong or are in areas that don't work. Gardeners who want to transplant a tree should do it in winter. Listen to learn how. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Invasive species, crop residue highlight farmer meeting
(Distributed 02/12/14) DELHI, La. – Invasive species and residue management highlighted a recent (Feb. 6) LSU AgCenter agriculture producer meeting.
New crops on horizon for north Louisiana, Mississippi producers
(Distributed 02/07/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Farmers growing crops in Louisiana and Mississippi may soon have two new crops to add to their portfolios. Researchers with the LSU AgCenter, Mississippi State University Cooperative Extension Service and the United States Department of Agriculture are working together to bring sugarcane and sweet sorghum north – way north – of Interstate 10.
Precision ag can improve farm efficiency
(Distributed 02/11/14) ALEXANDRIA, La. – Farmers can improve the efficiency of their fertilizer applications with a combination of soil electro-conductivity, soil sampling and crop-yield monitors, according to two LSU AgCenter agents who conducted a workshop on precision ag technology.
Plant hardy shrubs to bring back the green
(Video 02/17/14) If most of your yard is brown with plants destroyed by freeze damage, then now's the time to tip the balance back to shades of living green. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains how you can liven your landscape by planting hardy shrubs. (Runtime: 1:31)
Cool-season plants offer color now through May
(Video 02/10/14) Landscapes with ugly, dead, freeze-damaged plants don't have to look that way. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains what beautiful plants you can find at the nursery right now -- plants that will provide continuous color from now through May. (Runtime: 1:50)
Cold delays La. strawberry crop
(Video News 02/07/14) Freezing temperatures that persisted through much of January set back the state’s strawberry crop. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard visited Ponchatoula, where most of the strawberries are grown. (Runtime: 1:38)
Blue crab bait could improve crab, shrimp industries
(Distributed 02/11/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A new gelatin-like bait using shrimp waste could improve the way blue crabs are caught along the coast of Louisiana and add value to the state’s shrimp processing industry.
Pericallis – Ornamental Plant of the Week for February 10. 2014
(Distributed 02/10/14) Many people may be unfamiliar with pericallis, but the Senetti series contains the first repeat-blooming varieties.
LaSalle Parish gets $1 million for fitness project
(Distributed 02/07/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Eighteen months after receiving a $1 million matching grant to fight obesity, residents of LaSalle Parish are seeing what new ideas and infrastructure can do to improve health.
LSU AgCenter researcher develops blue crab bait
(Audio News 02/06/14) Blue crabs caught along the coast of Louisiana are lured into traps using Atlantic-caught menhaden. But menhaden is expensive to ship, must be kept frozen and is becoming harder to get as bait. So LSU AgCenter researcher Julie Anderson is developing an alternative bait. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
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Rose time is approaching
(Distributed 02/07/14) HAMMOND, La. – Roses are one of our most popular ornamental plants. And home gardeners should learn about and be aware of recommended management practices for roses.
Forestry Forum set for Feb. 25 in Alexandria
(Distributed 02/06/14) ALEXANDRIA, La. – The LSU AgCenter will hold its annual Central Louisiana Forestry Forum on Feb. 25 at the State Evacuation Shelter at the Dean Lee Research and Extension Station adjacent to the LSU-Alexandria campus.
AgCenter researchers work to improve sugarcane production
(Distributed 02/06/14) LAFAYETTE, La. – LSU AgCenter researchers detailed their projects recently at the annual meeting of the Louisiana Division of the American Society of Sugar Cane Technologists. The conference, Feb. 3-5, was held in conjunction with the American Sugar Cane League.
Freeze delays state's strawberry crop
(Audio News 02/03/14) A winter storm that blanketed most of Louisiana in snow and ice, shutting down roads, schools and businesses, took a toll on the state’s strawberry crop. As temperatures rose following the freeze, Ponchatoula strawberry farmer Eric Morrow pulled back the row covers that protect his crop to survey the damage. (Runtime: 1:30)
Crab trap rodeo set for Terrebonne coast Feb. 15
(Distributed 02/05/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter is helping organize a derelict crab trap rodeo off the coast of Terrebonne Parish. The roundup will take place Saturday, Feb, 15, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Toby Voisin’s oyster dock at the end of Highway 315 in Dularge.
Soil additive can change hydrangea color
(Audio 02/10/14) Hydrangea color is dependent on the acidity of the soil. Gardeners can change the color of their hydrangeas by adding aluminum sulfate or lime around the hydrangea plant. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Gardeners can plant bare-root roses in February
(Audio 02/10/14) Not many plants are sold with bare roots. Gardeners can still find bare-root roses in nurseries. They are more perishable than container-grown roses and should be planted this month while they are still dormant. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Fertilize fruit tree to keep it productive
(Audio 02/10/14) To keep your fruit tree healthy and productive, fertilize it. You can have your soil tested to choose the best fertilizer for your soil or use a general purpose fertilizer. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Cool-season color for shady areas
(Audio 02/10/14) Gardeners looking to add cool-season color to shady areas have several options. Plants like forget-me-nots and foxgloves can tolerate mostly shade with just a few hours of sun. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Prune hardy fruit trees in February
(Audio 02/10/14) February is a good time to prune hardy fruit trees. The way the tree is pruned depends on the type of fruit tree it is. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Freeze effects to state's agriculture are minimal
(Distributed 01/31/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A winter storm that blanketed most of Louisiana in snow and ice, shutting down schools and businesses, didn’t cause much damage to the state’s agriculture. Kurt Guidry, an LSU AgCenter economist, conducted a survey of major commodities.
Feral hog problem continues with few options for control
(Distributed 02/03/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The growing feral hog population is causing millions of dollars of damage to agriculture across the southeastern United States. Because they are intelligent, difficult to control and have an appetite for just about anything, the hogs can quickly wipe out fields of crops along with farmers' investments.
4-H’ers learn ways to teach healthy living to their peers
(Distributed 02/03/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A Louisiana 4-H group attended the first 4-H National Youth Healthy Living Summit recently to learn how to spread the message about living safer and healthier.
Arbor Day brings throngs to Botanic Gardens at Burden
(Distributed 01/30/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – More than 700 visitors enjoyed balmy temperatures and bright skies at the Arbor Day celebration at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden on Jan. 18.
Fringe Trees – Ornamental plant of the week for February 3, 2014
(Distributed 01/30/14) The American fringe tree (Chionanthus virginicus) produces clusters of flowers with long, narrow, greenish-white petals that are produced in masses all along the branches.
Echinacea named perennial of the year
(Distributed 01/30/14) HAMMOND, La. – The National Garden Bureau has selected echinacea, commonly known as coneflower, as its 2014 perennial of the year because of the vast assortment of flower colors and shapes available to today’s gardener. It’s also an American staple.
Prune roses in early February
(For Release On Or After 02/07/14) Early February is an excellent time to cut back roses growing in your landscape. Hybrid tea and grandiflora roses, in particular, should be pruned around this time every year. Otherwise, these roses tend to become leggy, less vigorous and unattractive and do not bloom as well.
Garden with termites in mind
(For Release On Or After 02/28/14) The next several months are a popular time for adding new beds of shrubs, ground covers and flowers to the landscape or reworking and replanting existing beds. When dealing with beds that are right next to your house, this work can affect your home’s termite protection.
Yellow leaves are not always a problem
(For Release On Or After 02/21/14) Yellow leaves have been showing up on a wide variety of evergreen shrubs since the past fall, and this has caused many Louisiana gardeners some concern. Although the condition may look alarming, in most cases the yellowing leaves do not indicate a problem.
Protect trees during construction
(For Release On Or After 02/14/14) Homeowners whose new houses were constructed on lots with existing trees are often dismayed to find the trees declining in health or dying a few years after construction. This tragedy can be avoided if existing trees are properly protected during construction around them.
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Winter Honeysuckle – Ornamental Plant of the Week for January 27, 2014
(Distributed 01/27/14) Winter honeysuckle (Lonicera fragrantissima) is a great plant for late-winter interest in the landscape. It is problem-free and produces small winter flowers and naturally cascading branches in February.
Adding resistant starch to diet could aid weight loss
(Distributed 01/27/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Fiber is an essential part of any healthy diet, and it may be the key to success for people looking to lose weight. A fermentable fiber known as resistant starch, which is found in peas, beans, lentils and some grain products, could help lower body fat, according to Michael Keenan, an associate professor in the LSU AgCenter's School of Nutrition and Food Sciences.
Aphid causes problems for Louisiana grain sorghum
(Distributed 01/27/14) OPELOUSAS, La. – LSU AgCenter experts urged farmers who experienced harvest problems caused by the white sugarcane aphid in grain sorghum to report their difficulties to state agriculture officials to help obtain approval for a pesticide to control the insect.
Urban leadership forum set for New Orleans Feb. 11
(Distributed 01/27/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Producers, processors and distributors who provide agricultural products to the New Orleans area are invited to a leadership forum to discuss ways to improve the current system.
LaBonte receives national sweet potato award
*Distributed 01/27/14) NEW ORLEANS La. – Don LaBonte, a sweet potato breeder and director of the LSU AgCenter School of Plant, Environmental and Soil Sciences, was presented the 2014 Distinguished Service Award by the U.S. Sweet Potato Council on Jan. 21 at its annual convention.
Ground covers thrive in shady areas
(Audio 01/27/14) Ground covers are low-growing, evergreen plants that work nicely in shady areas of lawns where grass won't grow. They can also lower the maintenance of lawns. Ground covers are hardy and can be planted this time of the year. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Research, technology featured at national sweet potato meeting
(Distributed 01/27/14) NEW ORLEANS, La. – The latest in Louisiana sweet potato research was highlighted recently as more than 375 producers, processors and industry representatives met at the 2014 U.S. Sweet Potato Council Convention.
Prepare beds for spring planting
(Audio 01/27/14) Even with all the cold weather we've had, gardeners can still find mild days to do bed preparation. This is very helpful for vegetable gardens. Listen to learn how to do proper bed preparation. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Get roses planted before warm weather arrives
(Audio 01/27/14) Late January and early February is a good time to plant roses. Gardeners can find roses at local nurseries. The earlier you get them in, the more time they have to establish before the warm weather arrives. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Houseplants need plenty of light
(Audio 01/27/14) Most people have a few plants growing indoors. To keep houseplants healthy and happy, they must get the right amount of light. Keep them by a clean window and pull back curtains or blinds to get the maximum amount of light. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Freezes hurt tropical plants
(Audio 01/27/14) Louisiana has seen some really cold weather this winter. Many tropical plants have been damaged by the freezes. Gardeners can cut back herbaceous tropical plants like cannas, but should wait until spring to cut back woody tropical plants like hibiscus or angel trumpets. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Smartphones can aid with weight loss
(Video 01/27/14) Your smartphone can help you get healthy. Calorie-counting apps are making people more aware of the nutrition content of their food. Nutritionists also are using smartphone technology to help clients. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard has this report. (Runtime: 1:57)
Don't 'murder' your crape myrtles
(Distributed 01/27/14) HAMMOND, La. – We are midwinter in Louisiana, and this is the time when people think about pruning crape myrtles. Unfortunately, these are one of the most abused trees in Louisiana’s residential and commercial landscapes.
TV, radio host featured at gardening seminar
(Distributed 01/23/14) WEST MONROE, La. – Gardening expert Melinda Myers, who also is a TV and radio host, author and columnist, was the featured speaker at this year’s annual Master Gardener’s seminar in West Monroe.
Simple ways to reduce heating costs
(Video News 1/23/14) Louisiana is having a cold winter and along with staying comfortable, home heating costs can be a concern. LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard talks with a housing specialist about ways to make a home more efficient. (Runtime: 1:554)
Lobularia – Ornamental Plant of the Week for January 6, 2014
(Distributed 01/03/14) Snow Princess lobularia is a unique breakthrough in the genus for heat tolerance and extended-season performance.
AgAlley shows where food, clothes come from
(Distributed 01/22/14) WEST MONROE, La. – LSU AgCenter agents from northeast Louisiana conducted AgAlley on Jan. 15-18 to provide agricultural information to school children during the annual AgExpo.
Water indoor plants properly
(Video 02/03/14) It sounds simple, but watering your indoor plants properly is an important part of keeping them healthy. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains the proper way to quench your plant's thirst. (Runtime: 1:42)
Keep home energy costs down when temperatures drop
(Distributed 01/22/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Heating bills are likely to be higher than usual this winter with the frequent freezes Louisiana has been having. Homeowners can make simple changes to help their homes run more efficiently and reduce costs.
Smartphones help with weight loss
(Audio 01/22/14) Celika Murphy lost 85 pounds with the help of a program through Pennington Biomedical Research Center, but a simple calorie-counting app on her smartphone is helping her keep it off. Murphy is sticking to a 1,200-calorie diet and logs her meals and snacks daily. (Runtime: 1:50)
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Time to plant fruit trees and bushes
(Video 01/27/14) It’s an ideal time to plant fruit trees and bushes now. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains crucial tips to keep in mind when purchasing your fruit plants. (Runtime: 1:36)
New technologies could mean profit for forest landowners
(Distributed 01/22/14) WEST MONROE, La. – New words like wood pellets and biomass are providing a ray of hope for forest landowners who have seen nothing but low prices since the downturn in the economy.
AgCenter hosts four meetings with ag teachers about Jump Start
(Distributed 01/22/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter hosted the first of four meetings on Jan. 21 on its Baton Rouge campus to help agricultural education teachers in Louisiana’s middle and high schools understand the new Jump Start program being implemented by the Department of Education.
Ukrainians visit AgCenter to learn about programs
(Distributed 01/21/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – A delegation from Vinnitsa State Agricultural University in Ukraine visited Baton Rouge Jan. 15-17 to learn how the LSU AgCenter and College of Agriculture work together to recruit undergraduate and graduate students and prepare them for graduate programs and the workforce.
Simple changes can reduce heating costs
(Audio 01/21/14) Heating bills could be high this winter with the frequent freezes we’ve been having. Homeowners can make simple changes to help their homes run more efficiently and reduce costs. LSU AgCenter housing specialist Claudette Reichel says sealing air leaks should be the first step. (Runtime: 1:50)
Japanese flowering apricot – Ornamental plant of the week for January 20, 2014
(Distributed 01/17/14) Varieties of Prunus mume – Japanese flowering apricot – have potential in Louisiana. Peggy Clark, Kobai and Fragrant Cloud are some of the recommended varieties.
Jan. 17 is Arbor Day in Louisiana
(Distributed 01/17/14) HAMMOND, La. – Now is a great time to plant a tree in Louisiana. We observe Louisiana Arbor Day this year on Friday, Jan. 17.
Producers learn about conservation at Master Farmer University
(Distributed 01/17/14) WEST MONROE, La. – About 40 farmers went back to class on Jan. 16-17 as part of the Louisiana Master Farmer University.
LSU AgCenter grower forum set for Feb. 6 in Delhi
(Distributed 01/16/14) The LSU AgCenter will hold a crop production forum for northeast Louisiana farmers on Feb. 6 in Delhi.
Louisiana youth head for state livestock show Feb. 8-15 in Gonzales
(Distributed 01/16/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – As many as 5,000 young people from across Louisiana will converge at the Lamar-Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales, La., for the 79th annual LSU AgCenter Livestock Show. The show, which runs from Feb. 8-15, is the statewide competition that students in 4-H and FFA livestock projects enter after placing in parish and district shows.
Some insects are active in winter
(Audio 01/20/14) The winter vegetable garden has fewer pest problems than the summer garden. There are some pests that remain active during winter. Caterpillars, aphids, snails and slugs can damage vegetables in winter. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Mealy bugs can infest houseplants
(Audio 01/20/14) Mealy bugs are small sucking insects. They can become a problem on indoor plants. Look for small cottony masses on the underside of leaves or in the crevices of the plant. Indoor houseplant insecticide spray can help control them. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Fellowship program trains international scientists
(Distributed 01/15/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – For the past three years, the LSU AgCenter International Programs office has been hosting scientists from around the world through the Norman E. Borlaug International Agricultural Science and Technology Fellowship Program to assist them with research in their countries.
Plant camellias in winter
(Audio 01/20/14) January is a great month to plant camellias. A great thing about camellias is they are in bloom when it is time to plant them. When you go to the nursery you can see the plants in bloom, making it easier to decide what variety you prefer. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Prune roses in winter
(Audio 01/20/14) In Louisiana, gardeners prune their roses in late January or early February. Pruning roses helps reduce the size of the bush and makes them more attractive. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Fatal palm disease detected in New Orleans
(Distributed 01/15/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The fatal disease Texas Phoenix palm decline, also known as date palm lethal decline, has been positively confirmed on Canary Island date palms in New Orleans, according to LSU AgCenter plant doctor Raj Singh.
Dormant plants don't need fertilizer
(Audio 01/20/14) It is important for gardeners to understand that fertilizer is a tool we use to provide adequate supplies of nutrients to plants. When plants are dormant and not growing, they do not need those extra nutrients so there is no reason to fertilize them. Plants that are in active growth this time of the year can be fertilized. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
3 precision ag workshops scheduled for Louisiana in February
(Distributed 01/14/14) ST. JOSEPH, La. – The LSU AgCenter will hold three precision agriculture workshops in early February.
Ecotourism, agritourism workshop set for Feb. 11 in Lake Charles
(Distributed 01/14/14) LAKE CHARLES – The LSU AgCenter will hold a day-long workshop on Feb. 11 for people interested in starting businesses based on ecotourism and agriculture.
LSU AgCenter wheat, feed grain grower meeting set for Jan. 23 in Opelousas
(Distributed 01/14/14) OPELOUSAS, La. – The LSU AgCenter will hold a meeting on Jan. 23 for farmers growing wheat and feed grains. The event will be held at the Opelousas Civic Center at 1638 Creswell Lane with registration at 7 a.m. and program starting at 7:45 a.m.
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Recent cold snap sets back strawberry crop
(Distributed 01/14/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Recent cold weather caused a slowdown in strawberry production, and that will delay some of the sales that growers were hoping for.
LSU president visits Vermilion Parish
(Distributed 01/10/14) KAPLAN, La. – LSU President F. King Alexander visited with Vermilion Parish residents on Jan. 10 to stress his recognition of the importance of agriculture to the statewide economy.
LSU AgCenter clinics help farmers prepare for upcoming rice season
(Distributed 01/10/14) CROWLEY, La. – LSU AgCenter experts met with rice farmers in south Louisiana recently (Jan. 6-10) to help them prepare for the upcoming growing season, with the start of planting only two months away.
Taiwan flowering cherry – Ornamental plant of the week for January 13, 2014
(Distributed 01/10/14) he Taiwan flowering cherry (Prunus campanulata) blooms in late January through February in Louisiana.
Broadband initiative improves connectivity with kiosk
(Distributed 01/10/14) BATON ROUGE, La. –The Louisiana initiative to improve Internet coverage in the state is providing public access computer kiosks in parishes where broadband Internet is underused or unavailable.
Smartphones help researchers keep track of people’s diets
(Distributed 01/10/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Keeping track of one's diet doesn't have to be boring. With the help of camera-enabled smartphones, visual food diaries are easy to create and more effective for nutrition researchers.
Cold weather brings landscape troubles
(Distributed 01/10/14) HAMMOND, La. – Cold weather in early January has the potential to cause varying problems in our landscapes from north to south Louisiana. We have seen damage in our garden trials at the LSU AgCenter Hammond Research Station.
Farmers wrap up sugarcane harvest
(Video News 01/09/14) Farmers are finishing the state’s sugarcane harvest. Cold weather during the crop’s development and harvest didn’t damage the cane too much, and LSU AgCenter correspondent Tobie Blanchard says yields are some of the best farmers have seen. (Runtime: 1:33)
Fertilizers have long shelf life
(Audio 01/13/14) Gardeners use a wide variety of products in their gardens. Many of these, such as insecticides and fungicides, may break down over time, but this doesn't apply to fertilizers. They stay viable indefinitely. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
La. sugarcane farmers complete successful season
(Distributed 01/09/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana sugarcane producers are wrapping up one of their best seasons ever.
Louisiana sugar mills improve efficiency with LSU AgCenter-licensed technology
(Distributed 01/08/14) FRANKLIN, La. – Louisiana sugarcane mills have begun installing new equipment that has the potential of reducing processing time and increasing capacity for processing raw sugar.
AgCenter releases two new Clearfield rice varieties
(Distributed 01/08/14) CROWLEY, La. – Two new Clearfield rice varieties have been released by the LSU AgCenter, an improved Jazzman and a medium-grain, according to Steve Linscombe, rice breeder and director of the Rice Research Station.
EPA provides funds for mosquito, honeybee study
(Distributed 01/08/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Officials from the Environmental Protection Agency presented a $167,874 check to the LSU AgCenter on Jan. 8 as part of an integrated pest management program.
Care for your freeze-damaged tropicals
(Video 01/13/14) Hard freezes have impacted plants throughout Louisiana. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill explains how to prune back damaged tropicals and how to protect them through the rest of the winter. (Runtime: 1:49)
Tackle weeds during winter
(Video 01/20/14) Freezes may have killed your favorite plants, but unfortunately, weeds in your lawn don’t go away as easily. On this edition of Get It Growing, LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill describes the proper herbicides to use to tackle pesky weeds during winter. (Runtime: 1:37)
Use cuttings to create new plants
(Audio 01/13/14) One of the popular ways that gardeners propagate plants is to use cuttings. A cutting is a piece of a plant that you remove and root to make a new plant. This time of the year you can take hardwood cuttings from plants such as roses, figs and hydrangeas. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Gardeners should prunes trees while trees are dormant
(Audio 01/13/14) Many plants in your landscape are dormant at this time. You can easily prune deciduous trees while with their leaves off. Gardeners can also prune summer-flowering trees such as crape myrtles and vitex without affecting the flowering. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Turn, water compost pile
(Audio 01/13/14) Leaves can be valuable as compost. If you started a compost pile with all the fallen leaves, keep it moist and turn it if needs it. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Plant a tree for Arbor Day
(Audio 01/13/14) The depths of winter are the best time to plant hardy trees and shrubs in your landscape. You can add shade trees or decorative trees this month. Arbor Day is the third Friday in January in Louisiana. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Rose workshop scheduled for February 7-8 in Natchez
(Distributed 01/07/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU AgCenter is cooperating with the American Rose Society Gulf District to present a midwinter workshop on rose care Feb. 7-8 at the Natchez Grant Hotel in Natchez, Miss.
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Farmers wrap up sugarcane harvest
(Audio News 01/07/14) In a week where temperatures dipped into the 20s, farmers wrapped up the state’s sugarcane harvest. LSU AgCenter sugarcane specialist Kenneth Gravois says the crop ended like it started, on a cold note. (Runtime: 1:30)
Freeze can damage tender landscape plants
(Audio News 01/06/14) With temperatures dipping into the teens across much of Louisiana, some landscape plants can be damaged. Tropical plants can be killed back by a freeze. LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill says if you are not able to protect them, you may see damage. (Runtime: 1:25)
Cold snap may damage wheat, oats
(Distributed 01/06/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Cold artic air has invaded the southern United States with temperatures projected to reach about 20 degrees in south Louisiana and into the mid-teens in north Louisiana. This is the coldest in a recent string of cold nights and follows a pattern of cool weather that has predominated since mid-December.
Explore ‘cozy’ technologies at LaHouse Open House on Jan. 18
(Distributed 01/16/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – If your home has trouble staying warm during this week’s cold snap or your next utility bill is disturbingly high, explore solutions at the LSU AgCenter LaHouse Home and Landscape Resource Center’s open house from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Jan. 18.
Cold snap causes damage but has some benefits for farmers, too
(Distributed 01/06/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana is experiencing record cold weather, with lows forecast to dip into the upper 10s and lower 20s across the state. While the freezing temperatures will negatively affect some agriculture operations, farmers may also see some benefits.
Protect your landscape plants before a freeze
(Distributed 01/04/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill offers suggestions to protect your landscape plants before a freeze. First, make sure they are well-watered.
Protect your citrus trees from the cold
(Distributed 01/04/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana citrus tree owners need to take precautions to protect their trees during cold snaps this winter, according to LSU AgCenter extension horticulturist Dan Gill.
2013 was good year for La. agriculture
(Video News 01/04/14) For all major agricultural commodities, 2013 was a really good year, making it the second year in a row Louisiana farmers saw high yields and good prices. (Runtime: 1:26)
Hammond Research Station serves Louisiana horticulture industry
(Distributed 01/03/14) HAMMOND, La. – Many residents of southeast Louisiana may not know that the LSU AgCenter has an agricultural experiment station in that area devoted to horticulture research and extension programs to aid the commercial nursery and landscape industry, as well as home gardeners.
LSU AgCenter calendar photo contest deadline nears
(Distributed 01/03/14) BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana photographers who want to submit photographs for the LSU AgCenter 2015 Get It Growing Lawn and Garden Calendar have only a few weeks to enter.
4-H agents prepare for ATV safety training
(Video News 01/04/14) Youngsters on all-terrain vehicles are common in Louisiana, and some kids across the state may have even gotten one for Christmas. Several 4-H agents participated in a training program so they can go back into their parishes and hold ATV safety training courses for youth. (Runtime: 1:54)
Indoor plants need plenty of light
(Audio 01/06/14) It is wonderful to have plants indoors. In winter, you may have more plants inside. Make sure your plants are getting enough light. If you have plants that are not doing well, try moving them to a sunnier spot. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Gardeners can plant parsley in January
(Audio 01/06/14) Parsley is used often in Louisiana cooking. It garnishes food and makes the plate attractive. Parsley can also be decorative in the garden. Now is a good time to plant this herb. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Grow transplants of tomatoes, peppers, eggplants
(Audio 01/06/14) It is too early to plant things such as tomatoes and eggplants into the garden. But now is a good time to start growing your own transplants. It takes about eight weeks to grow transplants, so decide when you want to plant them into your garden and start your transplants eight weeks ahead. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Get foxgloves planted soon for spring displays
(Audio 01/06/14) Foxgloves, delphiniums and hollyhocks will do well in Louisiana gardens if planted early. Try the Camelot foxglove, which is a Louisiana Super Plant. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Plant chilled hyacinth, tulip bulbs in January
(Audio 01/06/14) In early January, gardeners can plant tulips and hyacinth bulbs that have been refrigerated. The plants come from cold climates and require chilling. Plant them in clusters or groups rather than in single rows. (Runtime: 60 seconds)
Camellias are outstanding in containers
(For Release On Or After 01/31/14) Few shrubs or trees are best purchased and planted while they are in bloom. One notable shrub, however, is currently in glorious bloom, and right now is an excellent time to plant it into your landscape.
Don’t wait for spring fever
(For Release On Or After 01/24/14) In the gardening world, “spring fever” is that time of the year when gardeners flock to nurseries in droves to buy flowers, shrubs, trees and other types of plants by the truckload. During that time, a frenzy of planting takes place, and the nurseries are crowded most weekends.
Plan carefully when designing small gardens
(For Release On Or After 01/17/14) Small, intimate gardens are typical in most landscapes. Even when yards are relatively large, small-scale plantings close to the house and around outdoor living areas are common.
Keep an eye on your landscape during wet winter weather
(For Release On Or After 01/10/14) It is not unusual for rainy weather to be an issue in late winter or early spring in Louisiana. Rain is common in late December, January and February. March is often stormy.
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Pruning trees requires care
(For Release On Or After 01/03/14) Virtually all trees in our landscapes will need to be pruned during their lives – particularly in the first two decades after planting. Sometimes a tree may need to be pruned in some way to help it, such as dealing with storm damage, reducing limb weight, removing dead limbs and stopping the spread of disease.
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