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  • Funded by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture

    The Southern Region IPM Center is located at North Carolina State University, 1730 Varsity Drive, Suite 110, Raleigh, NC 27606, and is sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
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Stevia being explored as crop in Southeast

In Southeast Farm Press

As it stands now, there are still many questions on producing stevia in the Southeast with less than 300  acres currently planted to the crop in North Carolina. But there is a commitment and a definite interest in making stevia a viable cash crop across the Southeast.

North Carolina State University is firmly dedicated to expanding stevia production with a team of researchers working on the economics of growing stevia to varietal development to weed and disease control and more. Continue reading

Study IDs Ways to Encourage ‘Refuge’ Planting, Slowing Resistance to Bt Crops

by Matt Shipman, North Carolina State University

A new study from North Carolina State University finds a significant shortfall in the amount of “refuge” cropland being planted in North Carolina – likely increasing the rate at which crop pests will evolve the ability to safely devour genetically engineered Bt crops. However, the study also identified actions that may make farmers more likely to plant refuge crops in the future.

For about 20 years, growers have made use of Bt crops to limit crop damage from pests. Bt crops, including corn, are genetically engineered to produce proteins from the Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) bacterium. These proteins are harmless to vertebrates, but toxic to a specific class of invertebrate crop pests. Continue reading

Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology at NC State seeks tenure-track Assistant Professor- Precision Pest Ecology

The Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology at North Carolina State University has extended the deadline for application to the position of tenure-track Assistant Professor- Precision Pest Ecology until Nov. 28 (https://jobs.ncsu.edu/postings/73753).

For this position, there is also a 40% extension component that will be required to overlap my 70% extension component in field crops. As a result, I have a vested interest in ensuring that this position is filled with an individual who will be collaborative and serve our extension stakeholders. Also, please note that while GIS skills are desirable for the research component (60%), there is no requirement that the individual possess this particular skill set. We encourage any qualified applicant to apply.

NC State horticulture experts work to restore the garden beauty to rain gardens

Scientists at North Carolina State University are working to keep rain gardens beautiful and functional.

Originally designed as natural water filtration systems for urban runoff, capturing and treating water coming from a roof or parking lot rather than allowing the water to flow into a storm drain, rain gardens have become scenic areas of their own. Or at least they’re supposed to be. Like other gardens, they are plagued with insects and weeds, perhaps more so because they have to endure extreme conditions and are composed of sandy soils, perfect for any weed to sprout. The weeds make the garden unsightly, and untamed weeds can even force out the preferred plants. Dr. Helen Kraus, a horticulturist at NC State University, used a $30,000 Southern Region IPM Enhancement Grant to survey common weeds in rain gardens and find control measures for them. Continue reading

NC State doctoral student wins Friends of Southern IPM Award for work on urban heat islands

A doctoral student at NC State University will receive a regional award in November for his work on urban tree integrated pest management.

NCSU Ph.D. student, Adam Dale, was one of several graduate students nominated to receive a Friends of Southern IPM Graduate Student award. The Southern IPM Center, which sponsors the award, gives one Masters award and one Ph.D. award based on the decision of an outside panel.

Continue reading

Corn growers can take steps to avoid mycotoxins

From Southeast Farm Press

The issue of mycotoxins in corn isn’t one of the most pleasant conversational topics for corn farmers, but North Carolina Extension Corn Specialist Ron Heiniger stresses that mycotoxins are a major concern in North Carolina that needs to be addressed.

“There are no good mycotoxins. We want it gone, stomped out, eliminated. It’s just like a weed in a field. There is no good weed, and the same is true about mycotoxins,” Heiniger said at a corn aflatoxin control field day held Aug. 14 at the Upper Coastal Plain Research Station’s Fountain Farm in Rocky Mount.

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Sorghum farmers concerned about anthracnose

From Southeast Farm Press

The disease of real concern to North Carolina sorghum growers is anthracnose, which has appeared every year in the state since North Carolina State University started working with the crop, according to Dr. Randy Weisz, North Carolina Extension small grains specialist.

Anthracnose is a fungal disease that is common in sorghum in this wet and humid region, Weisz said. Weisz notes that preliminary research shows that yield loss in sorghum due to anthracnose can be as high as 15 to 30 bushels per acre. NC State is conducting fungicide studies to control the disease.

Continue reading