Felder Discusses Benefits of Slow Gardening

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Last Wednesday, the Southern Miss Food Research Group hosted the third installment of its four-part lecture series called “Culinary Communities of Mississippi” at the Peck House Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.

Wednesday’s lecture featured Felder Rushing, who is a horticulturalist, radio-personality and author of Slow Gardening. Rushing discussed a laid-back style of gardening known as “slow gardening,” the subject of his book of the same name. He also discussed how slow gardening can supplement a grocery store diet with home-grown produce.

He talked about composting, decoration styles, types of plants native to the south and ways to grow wherever you live and in whatever type of container is available,” said senior library and information science major Amy Howard.

Rushing also showed many pictures of the plants that he grows to illustrate his message. Rushing encouraged the crowd to have a laid-back attitude toward gardening.

I was most interested in hearing such a master gardener say it’s OK to do it how you want and not worry about all the rules,” Howard said.

The lecture series is organized by the Southern Miss Food Research Group a funded by a number of departments at The University of Southern Mississippi.


One of the goals is to bring the conversation about food and ideas about food to the broader Hattiesburg community,”  Haley said.


To do that, we established a speaker series funded by the Mississippi Humanities Council, the Department of Communication Studies, the Department of History and the Center for the Study of the Gulf South and supported by College of Arts & Letters and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

The Southern Miss Food Research Group is a collection of scholars whose research relates to food. The research group was founded last year in the College of Arts and Letters and primarily focus of the social and cultural aspects of food, but the group is now reaching out to other departments across campus.

The final installment of the lecture series called “Grits, Greens, and Southern Grown Identity How Food Defines the South,” will be held April 1 at the Peck House and will feature Southern Miss communications studies professor Wendy Atkins-Sayre and University of North Carolina-Charlotte communications studies professor Ashli Stokes.

Those attending are asked to bring dessert items for the event.

To learn more about the Southern Miss Food Research Group, and to find a list of food related courses offered at USM, you can visit their website here.