Fresh from the Field, Feb. 14, 2019

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Fresh From the Field is a weekly album showcasing transformative impacts made by partners supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Editor: Falita Liles                                                                                                 Feb.14, 2019

Success Stories 

FVSU’s 4-H Program’s Healthy Living Agri-STEM Community Garden. Photo by Latasha Ford. NIFA Impacts

FVSU’s 4-H Program’s Healthy Living Agri-STEM Community Garden

The rural, poverty-stricken community of Sylvester, Georgia, with a population of less than 6,200, is bridging arts and agriculture to create the world’s largest sculpture that feeds people. Agricultural researchers and 4-H extension staff at Fort Valley State University (FVSU) combine aeroponic technology with a bee farm, banana farm, and integrated black plastic research to grow traditional crops that feed more than 1,000 households annually for free. The project affects Georgia’s underserved-at-risk-minority youth and their families with quality healthy living education and experiential learning opportunities while improving dietary choices and increasing physical fitness.

NIFA supports this community outreach through the 1890 Capacity Building Grant funding. Photo by Latasha Ford. 

News Coverage

Leveraging Basic Ecology to Improve Water Quality and Aquaculture Production. Photo by Henry Fadarimo.NIFA Impacts

Leveraging Basic Ecology to Improve Water Quality and Aquaculture Production

Blooms of toxigenic cyanobacteria poison aquaculture ponds around the world. Researchers at Auburn University will integrate whole pond and lab-based experiments along with a large-scale pond monitoring study conducted at several aquaculture farms to evaluate the effectiveness of using food-web manipulations, namely the presence of large-bodied zooplankton (Daphnia) that are tolerant to toxic cyanobacteria, to control algal blooms in catfish aquaculture ponds. Extension outreach activities, such as workshops, newsletters, and pond bank interactions will be used to share project findings with aquaculture professionals, extension agents, legislators, and academics.

NIFA supports this research through the Special Research Grants Program.

Read more about this project through NIFA's Data Gateway. Photo by Henry Fadamiro.


Photo by Todd Johnson

Broadband Research in Rural Oklahoma

Many Oklahoma households with incomes less than $25,000 cannot afford internet access, and in rural communities, high-speed internet is often not available. Oklahoma State University (OSU) Cooperative Extension is partnering with libraries in eight rural locations to make hotspots with unlimited data available for checkout for up to two weeks per patron. After more than 300 checkouts and with a waitlist in every community, 90 percent of users ranked the program as a nine or ten out of ten and 27 percent of respondents said their internet skills increased after using the device. The program is planning to expand this year.

NIFA supports the Cooperative Extension Service.

Watch the Broadband Rural video by OSU. Photo by Todd Johnson.

Tweet of the Week


University Florida Citrus Greening NIFA Impacts