A “green superfood” is making its way into the mainstream and into the fields of southwest Georgia farms, according to a University of Georgia vegetable expert. Increased consumer demand in connection with its many health benefits has Georgia farmers planting, and selling, more of the leafy green.
University of Georgia Extension is connecting vegetable farmers and impoverished families in Dougherty County, Georgia. The desired results are improved eating habits for this southwest Georgia community and a new market for producers.
Fusarium wilt reduces watermelon yields in Georgia fields. A University of Georgia Extension agent in one of the state’s most prolific watermelon-producing counties is searching for a way to help save the melons and the farmers’ profits.
Southerners love crowder, purple hull and black-eyed peas; so do cowpea curculios, a weevil that feeds on Southern peas. University of Georgia researchers in Tifton are working to eliminate this pest, which causes substantial yield losses to Southern peas grown in south Georgia.
Starting in October, a new training program will offer beginning and young farmers crash courses in business planning, vegetable and fruit production and goat husbandry to provide them with a strong foundation to help grow their new businesses.
Tropical storms may cause havoc for coastal homeowners, but the rainfall they bring recharges the water balance and keeps soil moist in the summer, according to University of Georgia climatologist Pam Knox. Lack of tropical storm activity in 2014 contributed to Georgia’s prolonged drought, she said.