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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tobacco photo of the month

This image is from 1952, near Hanging Rock State Park in Stokes County, NC. I have had tobacco trials near this same location in 2008 and 2009, and will hopefully have another trial there this year.

NCSU Students win ESA President's Prize

Three NCSU entomology students were awarded the ESA President's Prize at the ESA National meeting held in Indianapolis, IN, December 13-16.

Nancy Maxwell, a PhD student working with Mark Abney, received the second place prize in Community and Spacial Ecology for her work on Plectris aliena.

Richard Reeves, a PhD student in my lab working on threshold revision for key tobacco insect pests, won second place in Trapping and Forecasting for his master's research on stink bug sample methodology in cotton (conducted at Clemson University).

Finally, despite a scheduling error that resulted in her placement in Phylogenetics and Evolution rather than Behavior, Eleanor Spicer, a PhD student working with Jules Silverman, won second place for her work on Dear Enemy pheromone in Asian needle and Argentine ants.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Linnaean Games Update

The NCSU Linnaean Games team beat Oklahoma State to move onto the semi finals where they will meet either Penn State or UC Riverside. A UCR match up would be a repeat of last year's finals. Congrats for a great showing so far and more to come!

The finals begin at 5:30pm Tuesday.

UPDATE: Despite a well fought effort in the semi finals, NCSU lost to UC-Riverside. Riverside then completed against the University of Illinois. Illinois was a force to be reckoned with, and won the 2010 championship. Congratulations!

Monday, December 7, 2009

2010 Tobacco Meeting Dates

I will be attending the following county tobacco meetings in 2009-2010 (links to meeting location):
December 7: Piedmont Regional Meeting, Winston-Salem, NC. 99 attendees.
December 8: NCSU Crop Protection School, Raleigh, NC. 35 attendees.
December 17: Caswell County tobacco production meeting, Yancyville, NC. 110 attendees.
January 5: Bertie County tobacco production meeting, Windsor, NC. 35 attendees
Martin County tobacco production meeting, Williamston, NC (I am not attending this meeting)

January 6: Person, Granville, Orange County tobacco production meeting, Roxboro, NC. ~150 attendees
January 11: Duplin County tobacco production meeting, Kenansville, NC. ~25 attendees
Wayne County tobacco production meeting, Goldsboro, NC.
~75 attendees
January 13: Eastern Regional Meeting, Rocky Mount, NC. ~80 attendees
January 14: Pitt County tobacco production meeting, Greenville, NC. ~35 attendees
Johnston County tobacco production meeting, Smithfield, NC.
~70 attendees
January 26: Lenoir County tobacco production meeting, Kinston, NC. 82 attendees
Craven County tobacco production meeting, New Bern, NC.
40 attendees
February 8: Cumberland County tobacco production meeting, Fayetteville, NC. 15 attendees
February 12: Green County tobacco production meeting, Snow Hill, NC. 60 attendees
February 10: Franklin, Vance, and Oxford County tobacco production meeting, Louisburg, NC. Note: Clyde Sorenson will be presented at this grower meeting in my place.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Winter tobacco meetings begin

The above image is from the Life Photo Archive, indexed by Google. There are amazing images of NC tobaccco production from the early 1900s through the present. By following the link and searching "NC tobacco" at the top of the page, you can find a wealth of other beautiful and fascinating images. You can even order reprints.

The first tobacco meeting of the winter extension season is tomorrow, December 7th, in Winston-Salem. We held Tobacco Day and tobacco agent training on December 3rd in Johnston County and now begins the round of winter meetings. A list of upcoming and past meeting dates can be found here. Meetings typically include pesticide applicator credits for those not directly engaged in tobacco production but in search of the last few credits needed to keep their license active.

Light Up Durham!

I get a big kick out of the name of Light Up Durham--Last Friday they lit the Lucky Strikes tower at the American Tobacco Campus for the holidays. Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Department Linnaean Games Tournament

The NCSU Entomology Department Linnaean Games Tournament is scheduled for Thursday, December 10th at 5pm in the Steven's Room (3503 Thompson Hall). This is a chance to see our branch winning team members play with other department members and to send them off in style to the national meeting in Indianapolis! Contact Hannah ( to submit teams or ask questions.

Smithsonian Magazine covered the national tournament last year, and it's a good read to get excited for this year's contest!

Northern Piedmont Specialty Crop School - March 5th

The Northern Piedmont Specialty Crop School, an annual event organized by NCCE horticulture agent Carl Cantaluppi, is scheduled for March 5th, 2010. Registration information and scheduled speakers can be found in the school's brochure. This year's school will focus on high tunnel production of specialty crops, including caneberries, one of my favorite crops.

Tobacco Day attendance

This year's Tobacco Day, hosted by the Johnston County cooperative extension center drew over 280 attendees--the largest number of growers, agents, and industry leaders that have attended this meeting since I have been on the faculty. In addition to research updates from tobacco extension faculty, the annual Tobacco Greats awards were presented. This year's honorees were Tom Pharr, an ag. engineer who has helped develop much of our modern tobacco equipment, and Suzanne Bailey, a driving force behind the Tobacco Farm Life Museum in Kenley, NC. Mrs. Bailey was honored posthumously with her husband and family in attendance.