Events & Announcements

Below we have listed some of the major agricultural-related activities scheduled for or on behalf of our Science Center.


2018 Annual Fruit Grower Workshop

Tart Cherry on Branch in Leaves
Tart Cherry (Photo by Shengrui Yao)

Thursday, March 1, 2018, 8:30 am- 3:30 pm

Join SASC faculty and staff along with other fruit experts at Los Luceros Ranch, Alcalde, NM for a day of discussion and field demonstrations on fruit growing in New Mexico.Topics include: updates of fruit research at Alcalde (with Shengrui Yao), grape varieties, bee and pollination in fruit production, marketing and local farmers market discussion panel, NM organic certification and regulations, acequia legacy in Northern New Mexico (with Steve Guldan), tree planting and transplanting and management, and gopher management.

Pre-registration fee for meal and materials is $12 per person before Feb. 20 and $15 after Feb. 20. To pre-register, please call Joy at Santa Fe County Extension Office at 505-471-4711.

Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop

Red Gala Apples in Pile
Gala Apples (Photo by Shengrui Yao)

Thursday, March 8, 2018,1:30- 4:00pm

Join SASC for a day of hands-on pruning and presentations. We will cover apple, peach, cherry, plum, apricot, and blackberry. Instructors include Shengrui Yao (NMSU SASC Alcalde Center), Tony Valdez (Taos County Extension), Tory Hougland (RAIPAP), Don Martinez (Rio Arriba County Extension), Tom Dominguez (Santa Fe County Extension).

This event will be limited to 35 participants. Please register online or Call Augusta/Anna at 505-852-4241.


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.