Sustainable Agriculture Science Center at Alcalde

We are open Monday through Friday from 7:30am - 4:30pm.

For general information or questions, please contact the Rio Arriba County Extension Service at 505-685-4523 (Abiquiu) or 575-588-7423 (Tierra Amarilla). Or go to Rio Arriba County Extension Services.


Save the Dates!

Red Jujube Fruit Hanging on Tree
Jujube Fruit (Courtesy of Shengrui Yao)

Annual Jujube Workshop

Wednesday, September 27, 2017, 2:00- 4:30 pm

Fall cool nights and warm days trigger the ripening of fruit, including the Chinese date, commonly called jujube. The annual fruit-tasting workshop, held by Cooperative Extension Service fruit specialist Shengrui Yao, will feature a presentation about jujube flowering and fruiting habits, a tasting session of the 40-plus cultivars, and a field tour.

Since 2010, Yao has promoted jujube fruit as a solution to the significant financial impact experienced by northern New Mexico fruit growers because of late frosts in mid-May. Jujube trees begin blooming in June.

"Some of the cultivars are very impressive with around 50 percent of the trees carrying 5-10 pounds or more of fruit in 2017, third year after planting at Alcalde," Yao said.

The free workshop at the Sustainable Agriculture Science Center in Alcalde is limited to 40 participants. You can register online or call Augusta/Anna at 505-852-4241.


Announcements

Hive Bar of Full of Bees
Bar of Bees (Courtesy of Zia Queen Bees)

SASC at Alcalde Part of Team that Receives USDA Grant to Conduct Experiment with Honey Bees and Oregano de la Sierra

The NMSU SASC has partnered with San Juan College, the USDA-ARS Bee Research Lab, and a pair of local producers (Melanie Kirby and Mark Spitzig of Zia Queen Bees and farmer Todd Bates) in an experiment entitled "From Bloom to Boom: Investigating Oregano de la Sierra (Monarda fistulosa) for Potential Bee and Human Health."

The project received a year long USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP) in 2016. The team will determine the phytochemicals present in the nectar of Monarda fistulosa var menthifolia and in honey originating from its flowers, and evaluate their effects on bee health and nutrition. At each of three Northern New Mexico sites, bees will be fed Monarda nectar in isolation and free-choice. Nectar and honey will be analyzed by gas chromatography for a range of plant chemical compounds that have shown bactericidal, viricidal, and miticidal activity in previous research, among them carvacrol, thymol, p-cymene. By feeding bees in isolation and free-choice, the team will seek to determine a potential bee preference and evaluate the parasite loads of bees fed different diets. The team also aims to identify a range of native pollinators that also visit Monarda. Results will be disseminated through a local field day, through the website Herbs4Bees, and at national and international professional meetings.

The goal, as a team of professional farmers and researchers, is to examine and promote Monarda as a new crop and/or accessory planting to positively affect bee health in situ and also produce a hive product and field crop that can be processed in a number of ways either as honey, a dried herb (flowers and leaves), or as an extracted product containing the volatile compounds.


Students a Building Hoop House
Students Building a Hoop House (NMSU photo by Jane Moorman)

NMSU Receives USDA Grant to Expand Agricultural Education Program to 18 Pueblos

  • News Release: "NMSU Receives USDA Grant to Expand Agricultural Education Program to 18 Pueblos"
    New Mexico State University's beginning farmers and ranchers program that helps Native American farmers and ranchers succeed in agriculture has been extended three more years and expanded to include both the eight northern and 10 southern pueblos. For the past three years, NMSU's Cooperative Extension Service's Rural Agricultural Improvement and Public Affairs Project has conducted the Southern Pueblos Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Program helping 59 Native American beginning farmers and ranchers to improve their agricultural operation.



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Sustainable Agriculture Science Center at Alcalde
371 County Road 40
P.O. Box 159
Alcalde, N.M. 87511
Phone: (505) 852-4241
Fax: (505) 852-2857
Email: alcalde@nmsu.edu

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