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April 4, 2012

Amy Hinkle had her first entrepreneurial encounter with flowers when she was 11 years old, selling them at her local farmers market in Columbus, Ohio. When she was 9 years old, her family started selling goods from their produce farm at that market. Hinkle noticed that only one other person there sold flowers -- and he could not keep up with the demand. By the time she graduated from high school, her family's stand was selling about 20 different kinds of field-grown annuals. Hinkle, a senior horticulture major with a business production focus, came to Penn State because of its strong agriculture program, and because it was far away from her home.

February 14, 2012

Over-reliance on glyphosate-type herbicides for weed control on U.S. farms has created a dramatic increase in the number of genetically-resistant weeds, according to a team of agricultural researchers, who say the solution lies in an integrated weed management program.

February 7, 2012

It may seem early, but now is the time to pick the tomato varieties you want to grow in your garden this summer, according to an expert in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. You may have noticed that your seed catalogs showed up earlier than ever this winter, noted Steve Bogash, Penn State Extension horticulture educator based in Franklin County. "With the rapid growth in vegetable gardening, demand promises to be higher than ever," he said. "If there are specific varieties of vegetables that you truly want for the coming season, you may want to get your orders in early."

January 10, 2012

With the defending National Football League champion Green Bay Packers having another great season and securing home-field advantage in the NFL's upcoming playoffs, millions of people will by looking at Allen Johnson's work when they watch the games. No doubt the fields manager of famous Lambeau Field will have the playing surface in top shape when the Packers host their first playoff game, and he will employ expertise he gained from Penn State in the process. He is a graduate of the University's Advanced Turfgrass Management Certificate Program.

December 13, 2011

High tunnels offer an inexpensive way to extend the production season for vegetables and small fruits. They also might help eradicate a "food desert" in the southeast corner of the Keystone State, if a collaboration between Penn State Extension and community partners in Philadelphia is successful.

November 29, 2011

Pittsburgh Steelers fan George Peters scored the internship of a lifetime -- in enemy territory. The turfgrass science major in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences interned at Lincoln Financial Field with the Philadelphia Eagles grounds crew. Peters, from Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa., has been interested in sports-turf management since high school and relished the opportunity to get hands-on experience.

November 22, 2011

The challenge of weeds that have become resistant to glyphosate -- the active ingredient in Round-Up herbicide -- has become an evolving national threat, with new challenges emerging and spreading annually. At least three glyphosate-resistant species on the horizon for Pennsylvania require new strategies to combat them, according to a specialist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. Penn State Extension weed scientist Dwight Lingenfelter said several resistant species currently are approaching Pennsylvania. These weeds were controlled routinely over the years with glyphosate-based herbicide programs, but now the effectiveness of those programs is dwindling.

November 11, 2011

Penn State's Board of Trustees today (Nov. 11) approved a plan submitted by the College of Agricultural Sciences to restructure the college's academic departments, reducing their number from 12 to nine. The new structure formally will take effect July 1, 2012.

October 31, 2011

Researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences have been awarded a $2.3 million grant by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to investigate how certain cover crops and rotations can improve production of organic commodities. The study's goal is to determine whether diverse cover crop mixtures -- as opposed to a single-species cover cropping -- can enhance ecosystem functions in a corn-soybean-wheat cash crop rotation that produces organic feed and forage, according to project leader Jason Kaye, associate professor of soil biogeochemistry.

October 24, 2011

A post-doctoral scholar and instructor in Penn State's Department of Crop and Soil Sciences has been recognized by the Ecological Society of America as a 2011 ESA Education Scholar. Emily Rauschert, a plant ecologist who works in the Department of Crop and Soil Science's Weed Ecology Lab, also was appointed by the society to a two-year term as a contributing editor of the Ecological Society of America EcoEd Digital Library.

October 22, 2011

With the arrival of apple-harvest season, researchers and extension educators in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences have teamed with counterparts from across the country to establish a new online resource about growing apples and apple production.

October 3, 2011

Listeriosis outbreaks like the current one traced to Colorado cantaloupes are extremely rare, according to a farm food-safety expert in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. But Luke LaBorde, associate professor of food science, worries that melons present a heightened risk for spreading food-borne illnesses.

October 3, 2011

Choosing which college to attend can be a difficult decision for high school students, but Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is trying to make it a little easier with its Open House and High School Senior Day, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 10, at the University Park campus.

September 21, 2011

Now that communities across the state have dried out and are repairing damages from Tropical Storm Lee, a gardening expert in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences reminds backyard gardeners that fruits and vegetables are not safe to consume if they have been partially or completely submerged in flood water or have come in contact with contaminated water.

August 17, 2011

Reacting to sagging populations of bees and other pollinators, members of Gov. Tom Corbett's staff recently sought and received Penn State Extension certification for the gardens at the Governor's Residence as "pollinator friendly."

August 15, 2011

Road maintenance may accidentally spread the seeds of invasive plants, according to Penn State researchers. "The road graders that are used during these operations can act like a plow, pushing seeds along the road," said Emily Rauschert, senior project associate and applied ecologist in crop and soil sciences in the College of Agricultural Sciences. "They can pick up seeds of an invasive grass and spread them several orders of magnitude further than the natural dispersal."

July 15, 2011

Surinder Chopra, associate professor of maize genetics in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, has received a $1.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to study molecular mechanisms that control genetic modifications during plant development.

July 5, 2011

Despite widely published reports, many people are unaware that bees -- both managed colonies of honeybees and wild bees alike -- are in trouble due to Colony Collapse Disorder and other environmental factors.

June 22, 2011

Many homeowners live in envy of those neighbors who seem able to turn a few trees, flowers and even rocks into an inviting outdoor scene. But you, too, can do it by following a few basic guidelines, according to a horticulturist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

June 16, 2011

Dean McPheron recently presented a draft plan for a new academic unit structure in the college. His proposal reduces the number of academic units from 12 to 9, and would have a dramatic impact on the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences. If this plan is implemented the crop and turf science faculty would merge with Horticulture to form a new Plant Sciences unit, while the soil science faculty would merge with the School of Forest Resources to form a unit call Forestry and Ecosystem Management. (Click the title of this article for more information on the new academic unit structure proposal).