MSU’s Tseng honored by nation’s premier weed science association

Contact: Grace Jones

Portrait of Paul Tseng
Paul Tseng (Photo by David Ammon)

STARKVILLE, Miss.—A faculty member in Mississippi State’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences is an honoree of the nation’s premier weed science association.

Associate Professor Paul Tseng in the MSU Department of Plant and Soil Sciences is the recipient of the 2022 Outstanding Early Career Weed Scientist Award from the Weed Science Society of America. Founded in 1956, the WSSA encourages and promotes the development of knowledge on weeds and their impact on crops and the environment.

Each year, the WSSA selects one researcher as the Outstanding Early Career Weed Scientist who showcases originality and creativity, has made a notable contribution to weed science, and demonstrates potential for continued excellence. 

“I am honored to see my hard work recognized by this society. It’s an international audience, so I am proud and thankful for those who nominated me and helped support me to achieve this award,” Tseng said. “I also want to thank all of my students, past and present; collaborators; family; parents; and the plant and soil sciences support staff.”

As a scientist in the university’s Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, Tseng has dedicated his time and passion to innovative research that advances weed science to better protect crops and improve the environment.

“One research project examines the competitive nature of weedy rice, which grows taller and tolerates more environmental stresses. We’re trying to develop a rice variety that could be tolerant to various fluctuations in temperature and that could grow in an atmosphere like Mars,” Tseng said. “Another project explores sustainable ways to manage weeds. Herbicides are the common and best way to do this, yet weeds can develop resistance to chemicals. We explore natural management techniques like allelopathy, which is a plant that produces a natural defense method for weeds and cover crops, steaming the soil where we get an industrial steamer and try to kill the weeds, plus a combination of treatments that rely less on herbicides for weed control.”

Darrin Dodds, professor and head of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, spoke of Tseng’s hard work since he arrived at MSU.

 “Dr. Tseng came to MSU in 2015 and since then he has authored or co-authored 48 peer-reviewed journal articles and won several awards that acknowledge and celebrate his exemplary work ethic, dedication, research and teaching abilities,” Dodds said. “He is most deserving of this honor.”

Tseng received his B.S. in biotechnology from Bangalore University, India; his M.S. in plant biotechnology from Allahabad Agricultural Institute, India; and Ph.D. in cell and molecular biology in weed science from the University of Arkansas.

To learn more about the Weed Science Society of America, visit Visit MSU’s Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at

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