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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

News Center

Medicinal Herbs Discussed at September Events

LAS CRUCES -- Growing and using medicinal herbs will be the focus of two events to be held in Alcalde and San Lorenzo in September.

New Mexico State University's Sustainable Agriculture Science Center at Alcalde will host a field day for northern New Mexico starting at 10 a.m. September 16. For southern New Mexico, a tour of the herb plot at the No Cattle Company (NCC) will be held September 23 in San Lorenzo in the Mimbres Valley south of Silver City.

The Alcalde field day will include observation of herb plots and a talk on various growing methods and their results. After lunch, there will be a discussion of medicinal plants in New Mexico and comments about herb marketing and developing small businesses.

The events are sponsored by the science center and the Herbal Medicine Project, a non-profit educational organization in Silver City. Charlene Grunerud and Michael Alexander are managing NMSU's herb research at the NCC.

"Many herbs have a long history of use in New Mexico as remedies," said Tom's Enos of the Herbal Medicine Project and research project collaborator. "As wild populations are depleted and the demand increases for organic products, the potential exists for supporting small-scale farms in the herb trade."

NMSU researchers began studying herbs about two years ago, after a pilot project identified a group of plants that are in demand and could be grown in New Mexico. The researchers are now investigating production and processing of these plants and studying ways to support the herb industry in the state.

Principal investigators with the project are Constance Falk, agricultural economist, Marisa Wall, postharvest physiologist, and Steve Guldan, superintendant of the science center.

The science center is located on NM 68, several miles north of Espanola. The No Cattle Company is located on the Mimbres River in San Lorenzo, near the junction of highways 90 and 35. For more information, call Steve Guldan in Alcalde at 852-4241, or Tom's Enos at 535-5630.