NC State University graduate students win weed science awards

by Dee Shore, NC State University

Commonly referred to as pigweed, Palmer amaranth is one of the biggest production challenges farmers in the Southeast face. At NC State, scientists and graduate students are making progress toward lessening the weed’s impact in a range of crops.

Two of those students, Cole Smith and Nicholas Basinger, were recognized recently at the Weed Science Society of North Carolina for research they’ve conducted on Palmer amaranth and other destructive weeds. Smith won the society’s M.S. outstanding graduate student award, while Basinger won the Ph.D. student award. Continue reading

PhD position available

The Invasive Plant Science Lab at Utah State University in Logan, UT is seeking to fill a PhD position in cropping systems. The research will focus on the use of cover crops to address invasive plants in agronomic crops of the Intermountain and Western US. Funding has been secured from the Western IPM Center to support the project, which has the potential for expanding into a variety of crops and systems, including organic.

We seek candidates with: 1) strong quantitative and statistical skills, 2) demonstrated research excellence and 3) strong oral and written communication skills. Preference will be given to applicants whose research interests and expertise complement the research project but outstanding applicants looking to broaden their field of interest will also be seriously considered.

Send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, statement of research interests, and names and addresses of three references as email attachments (pdf or word formats) to Dr. Steve Young at steve.young@usu.edu. For earliest consideration, apply by May 1, 2018. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. Utah State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity/ADA Employer.  

Jacobs-Young Announces Shanower as Acting NIFA Director

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Acting Deputy Undersecretary for Research, Education, Economics and Acting Chief Scientist Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young announced today that Thomas Shanower will become Acting Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Shanower will be replacing outgoing NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy.

“Dr. Shanower brings more than 20 years of experience in scientific research and management, and he will maintain a steady hand at the helm of NIFA,” said Dr. Jacobs-Young. “NIFAs’ support of the best and brightest scientists has resulted in groundbreaking discoveries that combat childhood obesity, improve rural economic growth, address water availability issues, increase food production, explore new sources of energy, mitigate climate variability and ensure food safety. We salute Dr. Ramaswamy for his tireless enthusiasm at NIFA in support of agriculture-related research and education.” Continue reading

EPA to Hold Two Webinars to Help Communities Improve Mosquito Management

Mosquito season is almost upon us. The Environmental Protection Agency is hosting two webinars about how integrated pest management technology can assist with mosquito management in your community: Continue reading

Planning for Pollinators on the Farm, Workshop in Clemson, SC

Please join Apiculture Specialist, Dr. Jennifer Tsuruda, for a discussion on the importance of pollinators, and considerations for encouraging them to become a natural and permanent resource on the farm.  Student Organic Farm manager, David Robb, will give a tour of the farm and provide information on practices currently in place to encourage and support pollinators.  Plenty of time will be provided for questions. 

Thursday May 10th, Clemson University Student Organic Farm, Clemson, SC

Click here for more information.

Citrus Disease Research and Extension (CDRE)

The Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) Citrus Disease Research and Extension Program (CDRE) is authorized in the Agricultural Act of 2014 (H.R. 2642) to award grants to eligible entities to conduct research and extension activities, technical assistance and development activities to: (a) combat citrus diseases and pests, both domestic and invasive and including huanglongbing and the Asian citrus psyllid, which pose imminent harm to United States citrus production and threaten the future viability of the citrus industry; and (b) provide support for the dissemination and commercialization of relevant information, techniques, and technologies discovered pursuant to research and extension activities funded through SCRI/CDRE and other research and extension projects targeting problems caused by citrus production diseases and invasive pests. Continue reading

Smith-Lever Special Needs Competitive Grants Program

Within the states and territories, the Cooperative Extension System has repeatedly served as the trusted community organization that has helped to enable families, communities, and businesses to successfully prepare for, respond to and cope with disaster losses and critical incidents. Once a disaster has occurred, the local extension outreach includes: 1) Communicating practical science-based risk information, 2) Developing relevant educational experiences and programs, 3) Working with individuals and communities to open new communication channels, and 4) Mitigating losses and facilitating recovery. NIFA intends to fund Special Needs projects to implement applied scientific programs that serve public needs in preparation for, during and after local or regional emergency situations. Continue reading