NMSU to Host Rio Grande Heritage Festival at Los Lunas Science Center

Agriculture has been the backbone of the Middle Rio Grande Valley for as long as humans have lived in the area. Cultural traditions are centered around the raising and use of the harvested crop. The Rio Grande Heritage Festival will celebrate many of these traditions for people to experience the history of farming in the valley. New Mexico State University’s Valencia County Cooperative Extension Service and Agricultural Science Center at Los Lunas are hosting the free event from 9 a.m. –1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21…

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Southwest Plant of the Month – Buffalograss – Buchloe dactyloide

Plant Form: Turfgrass Plant Size: 6” x varies Plant Type: Warm season Water: Low Sunlight: Sun Physical description: Soft, fine, gray-green foliage turning straw color after frost. Sod forming, spreading by rooting stolons. Care and maintenance: Needs reliable summer moisture to remain green or will go dormant and turn brown. Invasive Bermuda grass can be a weed problem. Does not like sandy soil, preferring heavier loam or clay soil. Gardener’s notes: Best if infrequently mowed. Good for naturalizing and wildflower meadows. Reseeds well. Native to…

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Beneficial of the Month – Lacewing Order: Neuroptera

There are two families of lacewings: green lacewings (Family Chrysopidae) and brown lacewings (Family Hemerobiidae). In summer, adult green lacewings will come to porch lights, but brown lacewings are much more reclusive and are rarely seen. Both groups lay their eggs on leaves, close to potential prey. Those of green lacewings are ‘stalked’ and are usually found on the undersides of leaves, either singly or in groups, depending on species. In both families, it is the larvae that are the main predatory stage; they have…

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Hubbell House Backyard Composting Workshop to be held September 14

Home composting is a straightforward way to recycle kitchen and yard leftovers into an excellent desert garden soil amendment. Join us for a series of free quarterly backyard composting workshops at the beautiful and historic Hubbell House as we demystify composting and explore a variety of approaches suitable to different scales and situations. The workshops will benefit both beginning and experienced composters. Feel free to attend even if you have taken classes with us before. The topic for the first workshop is Home Composting Basics. The…

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2019 Sandoval County Fair – Congratulations SCMG Winners

High Point – Best of Show – Winners Booth Thank You Loren Meinz, David Pojmann and Ben Wakashige for representing Sandoval County Master Gardeners at the 2019 Sandoval County Fair. Loren Meinz 1st Place – Gala apples 1st Place – Scallions 1st Place – Yellow Crookneck Squash David Pojmann 1st Place – Garlic 1st Place – Apricots 1st Place – Coronado Gold Tomatoes Ben Wakashige 1st Place Purple Dahlia Best of Show – Purple Dahlia People’s Choice – Purple Dahlia High Point – Floriculture 1st…

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Southwest Plant of the Month – Brownfoot – Acourtia wrightii (Perezia wrightii)

Plant Form:  Flower Plant Size:  4′ x 3′ Plant Type:  Perennial Water:  Low Sunlight:  Sun, Partial Shade Colors:  Pink, Red Physical Description: Two or three successive, spring to fall displays of showy flat clusters of rose to pale pink flowers on long leafy stalks lined with handsome grayish-green holly-like foliage. After the fluffy seed heads disperse, the stems coarsen and die back to the ground while new stalks are emerging as replacements. Gardener’s notes: Spreads very slowly by rhizomes. Although seldom commercially available, this El…

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Beneficial of the Month – Assassin Bugs – (Family: Reduviidae)

This is one of the largest families of true bugs and includes the blood-sucking ‘kissing bugs’ (Triatoma species) as well as useful insect predators. Kissing bugs are not normally found in crop orgarden situations, but even the assassin bugs that prey exclusively on other insects can inflict a painful bite if handled roughly. The beneficial members of this family are quite diverse in size, color, and structure; some have enlarged forelegs that help with prey capture, while the so-called ‘ambush bugs hide in flowers (usually…

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