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MSU Foundation announces gifts for Darr College of Agriculture

Crops
Several Missouri State University alumni have made major gifts to the William H. Darr College of Agriculture.

The Darr Family gift

Continuing their support for MSU, William H. (class of 1957) and Virginia (class of 1954) Darr have created two new endowed funds:

  • The Darr Family Facilities Endowment to support the day-to-day operations of the college’s facilities
  • The Family Agriculture Graduate Student Support Endowment to assist graduate students with their research pursuits, including materials, stipends and travel expenses

The couple gave these gifts to recognize the recent name change from Darr School of Agriculture to Darr College of Agriculture.

The George and Paula Kindrick Hartsfield gift

George Hartsfield and Rev. Dr. Paula Kindrick Hartsfield (class of 1976) gave their 80-acre farm located near the Springfield-Branson National Airport to the college.

Named “The Kindrick Family Farm at Missouri State University,” about 65 acres of cultivated land will be used for crop production. Other uses include horticulture and plant science research and education.

“These gifts will allow us to continue moving forward in training new leaders in the field of agriculture who will be making a positive impact around the world,” said Dr. Ronald Del Vecchio, dean of MSU’s Darr College of Agriculture.

Donate to MSU Foundation

For more information, contact Del Vecchio at 417-836-5638.

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College of Agriculture alumna is first woman to win Precision Impact Award

Missouri State University Darr College of Agriculture alumna, Tayler McLane, from Broseley, Missouri, became the first woman to receive the Precision Impact Award at the 2016 Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) meeting in Orlando, Florida, after being nominated by the Missouri home office, MFA Inc. at Columbia.

Raised on a nearly 5,000-acre row crop farm in the Missouri bootheel, McLane wasn’t sure what her agricultural path would entail, but her love for the industry led her to Missouri State and an agronomy degree. McLane credits Dr. Michael Burton, professor in agronomy and ecology at Missouri State, and Dr. Ben Fuqua, faculty emeritus in plant science, along with all of her other agriculture professors for her success and knowledge.

“I’m super happy to hear of Tayler’s success and that her efforts were rewarded. I’m not surprised by her success, though. She was always one to look for the practical application to what she was learning,” said Burton, when he heard she had received this award.

After working for a year at the Fisher Delta Research Center in Portageville, Missouri, as an assistant weed scientist, McLane accepted a position as the precision agronomist for MFA agriservices in Bernie, Missouri.

As the precision agronomist, McLane takes soil samples and makes fertilizer recommendations based upon those samples. MFA agriservices in Bernie believes variable rate application (VRA) fertilization is the most efficient way to optimize farm productivity. VRA fertilization allows farmers to allocate certain amounts of fertilizer to meet the yield potential of specific areas within fields, improve low yielding zones and replenish high yielding spots.

McLane noted Bernie MFA agriservices and herself were nominated due to the number of acres she uses precision soil sampling on, and the amount of acres the company spreads fertilizer on. McLane received the Precision Impact Award after working three years with Bernie MFA agriservices. She commended her entire team and their customers for their hard work and dedication to precision agriculture.

“It takes a whole store to accomplish something like this, so when I got to thinking I thought, ‘no wonder we won,’” McLane said.

When McLane discovered she was the first woman to win this award she was honored and hopeful.

“It’s an even greater honor not only to win the award, but hopefully to start the path for other women to also win in the upcoming years,” McLane said.

According AGPRO, the Precision Impact Award is awarded annually at the ARA meeting to, “local retailer operations and local management individuals for excellence in incorporating precision ag into their retail operations and their farmer customers’ operations.” This award allows the public to see how agriculture retailers are using this technology to promote good stewardship and sustainable practices. One winner was chosen from each of the three regions; Plains-West, Northand South.

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Plant science grad students publish in industry newsletter

This summer, Dr. Chin-Feng Hwang’s graduate students, Daniel Adams and Surya Sapkota, began sampling berries for juice analysis from vines resulting from their grape breeding work. They want to relate berry and wine quality to particular genes in grapevine.

In the past, we have observed differences in juice analysis results between species related to the processing technique used. We decided to run a simple trial looking at three berry processing methods and four types of grapes. It is important for the analysis results to represent the juice that would result from actual pressing at the winery. This trial is of interest to grape growers and was recently published in the Iowa State Wine Grower News #345.

The Wine Grower News has a circulation of over 1,700 in 11 countries and is a great way for our students to help the grape and wine industry with their findings.

Surya Sapkota collects berry samples from Norton grapevines. It is important to collect an equal number of berries from each side of the trellis.
Surya collects berry samples from Norton grapevines.  The students tested Vitis aestivalis ‘Norton’, Vitis labrusca ‘Catawba’, Vitis vinifera ‘Cabernet Sauvignon’ and the mixed hybrid ‘Chambourcin’.
This is the stomacher machine - one of the three methods used to process juice. The other two were hand pressing in a ziploc bag and hand pressing then wringing through cheesecloth.
This is the stomacher machine – one of the three methods used to process juice. The other two were hand pressing in a ziploc bag and hand pressing then wringing through cheesecloth.
Daniel and Surya analyze the juice processed by three different methods for sugar content, pH and acid content.
Daniel and Surya analyze the juice processed by three different methods for sugar content, pH and acid.

 

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Plant science students visit the Mountain Grove Campus

Dr. Melissa Remley’s Plant Science class visited the Mountain Grove Campus to tour the facilities and meet our group. Jennifer Morganthaler presented an overview of our programs which was followed by a tour of the MSU Winery and Distillery led by C. J. Odneal. We then toured the field and research plantings. Susanne Howard and Surya Sapkota talked about their work in plant genetics and breeding at the genomics vineyard. Then we stopped by the high tunnel to talk about the raspberry trial. It was great to meet this class and introduce them to opportunities at our station!

C. J. Odneal led the tour of the MSU Winery and Distillery for the students.
C. J. Odneal (right) led the tour of the MSU Winery and Distillery for the students.
The production and marketing of our products were discussed.
The production and marketing of our wine and distilled products were discussed.
Jennifer talked about the raspberry project and then the group harvested some berries.
Jennifer Morganthaler talked about the raspberry project and then the group harvested some berries.
We really enjoyed this visit and were happy to show the student what our campus has to offer.
We really enjoyed meeting the students and were happy to show them what our campus has to offer!
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Fall mushroom cultivation workshop

The Mushroom Cultivation Workshop held on Saturday, September 4 at the Darr Center was interesting and fun. We learned about Shiitake mushroom cultivation and actually got to inoculate our own oak log for production. It takes a year for the fungi to grow into the log before they will produce mushrooms. The log may produce up to 5 years! Dr. Goerndt of Missouri State partnered with the UMC Center for Agroforestry to offer this event.

Dr. Goerndt, right, helps Susanne Howard, horticulturist at the Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station in Mountain Grove, drill holes in an oak log for innoculation with spawn.
Dr. Goerndt (right), MSU Agriculture forestry professor, helps Susanne Howard (left), horticulturist at the Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station, drill holes in an oak log for inoculation with spawn.
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Greenhouse and High Tunnel Workshop Aug 3 -4, 2016 at Mountain Grove

One of the features of the workshop will be an on-site tour of the State Fruit Experiment Station greenhouses and high tunnel.
One of the features of the workshop will be an on-site tour of the State Fruit Experiment Station greenhouses and high tunnel.

All are invited to a two day workshop on greenhouses and high tunnels Wednesday and Thursday, August 3 and 4, 2016 at the State Fruit Experiment Station at Mountain Grove.

Topics include hydroponics, greenhouse and high tunnel crop production, insect and disease management and more. Cost is $40 per person and includes lunch on both days.

For more information and to download the registration form, go to

http://mtngrv.missouristate.edu/commercial/workshop2016.htm

This workshop is a collaborative effort involving Missouri State, the University of Missouri Extension and Lincoln University.

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Home Wine Making Workshop July 26, 2016 at Mountain Grove

We are having a Home Wine Making Workshop at Mountain Grove on Tuesday, July 26, 2016.

Pressing grapes for home wine.
Pressing grapes for home wine.

The workshop is designed for beginning and experienced home winemakers.

Cost is $40 for lunch and wine kit.

Class is limited to 25 participants.

For more information see http://mtngrv.missouristate.edu/mtngrvcellars/HomeWinemaking.htm

 

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Make starting a garden quick, easy

Missouri’s rocky soil can make it difficult start a garden. According to Dr. Clydette Alsup-Egbers, associate professor of agriculture at Missouri State University, there’s a quick and easy way to overcome this obstacle. “One of the easiest ways I have found to establish a new garden is to basically create an instant raised bed,” said […]

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