Events & Announcements
Below we have listed some of the major agricultural-related activities scheduled for or on behalf of our Science Center. If you have questions regarding any of these events please click on the event link for more information.
From Bloom to Bloom: Medicinal Herbs for Pollinator and Human Health
Friday, June 16, 2017, 9 am- 12pm
From Bloom to Boom is a project initiated by NMSU- Alcalde Sustainable Agriculture Science Center Horticulturist Robert Heyduck, farmer-researcher Todd Bates of NM Native Plant Recyclers, and queen honey bee breeder-researcher Melanie Kirby of Zia Queenbees Farm & Field Institute. This first investigation will share information on Oregano de la Sierra- a well known native New Mexican medicinal herb.
Todd Bates will share information on how he cultivates the plant- from its wild mountain roots, to adapting it to lower elevations along the Rio Grande and on its medicinal properties.
Robert Heyduck will share information on the process of the investigation and sampling/collection protocol for assessing the potential benefits of this glorious plant.
Melanie Kirby will share information on the importance of habitat and its relationship to pollinator health and fortifying locally adapted strains of pollinators.
Additional guest lecturers include:
Dr. Don Hyder, a chemist at San Juan College (Farmington) who will share information on chemical analysis and composition of medicinal NM honeys and hive products....
Dr. Olivia Messinger-Carril will share pollinator identification information and about her North American native bee book (Princeton Press), Know the Bees in your Backyard
Dr. Ashley Bennett ,Small Farm IPM Specialist, Los Lunas NMSU Agriculture Science Center
Dr. Jose D. Villa, USDA-ARS Baton Rouge Bee Research Unit (retired)
This is a FREE event! Open to the public. Registration starts at 8:30 am. Please see flier for more details or call Anna Trujillo at 505.852.2668.
Registration begins at 8:30 am at NMSU SASC in Alcalde. At 9 am the even will begin. At 10:30 am the group will move to Todd Bates field in Embudo. Please consider carpooling and there will be snacks provided.
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.
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.