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NMSU Peanut Field Day set for Sept. 5

CLOVIS - New Mexico State University's Agricultural Science Center at Clovis will hold its annual Peanut Field Day on Sept. 5 from 9 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.

Participants at the 2006 Peanut Field Day gather at a field to discuss the peanut industry, which produces a crop valued at about $15 million a year in New Mexico. The New Mexico State University Agricultural Science Center at Clovis will host the 2007 Peanut Field Day Wednesday, Sept. 5. (NMSU photo)

The day will begin with registration at 8:30 a.m. at Curry County Fertilizer, located about four miles south of Clovis on U.S. 70. Opening remarks will begin at 9 a.m., and poster presentations of current peanut research will be led at 9:15 a.m. by Rao Kottapalli, a postdoctoral scholar at Texas Tech University, and Paxton Payton, a physiologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service. Posters presented will include information on genomics and seed proteomics as related to heat and water stress.

The group will travel to a field owned by local grower Dee Brown to learn about the most recent research efforts with peanuts conducted by NMSU and the Texas Tech University faculty. The farm is located 12 miles from Curry County Fertilizer on RR2N in Roosevelt County.

At 10:30 a.m., Soum Sanogo, a pathologist in NMSU's Entomology, Plant Pathology and Weed Science Department, will highlight projects involving peanut disease control methods, specifically those associated with biological mechanisms as an alternative to chemical control. Sangu Angadi, a crop stress physiologist at the Agricultural Science Center at Clovis, will discuss a project that investigates the effects of various row spacings and planting patterns on peanut yield.

A fertility study that looks at the benefits and feasibility of foliar applied nitrogen and calcium solutions to peanuts will be presented by Mark Marsalis, Extension agronomist at the Agricultural Science Center at Clovis. Naveen Puppala, a peanut breeder at the Agricultural Science Center at Clovis, and Mark Burrow, a molecular geneticist at Texas Tech, will review the peanut breeding research programs conducted collaboratively with NMSU and TTU. Information on new breeding lines and improved potential varieties will be discussed.

Also, Jimmy Shearer, CEO, Sunland Inc., will give an industry update; Richard Robbins, president of the National Peanut Research Board, will give a national peanut research update; and Wayne Baker, president of the New Mexico Peanut Research Board, will give a New Mexico research update.

Eastern New Mexico produces more than 80 percent of the annual supply of the specialty Valencia peanuts. More than 15,000 acres of peanuts are grown each year in Roosevelt, Lea and Curry counties, the value of which exceeds $15 million annually, according to "New Mexico Agricultural Statistics." New Mexico farmers produce close to 60 million pounds of peanuts each year.

After lunch, attendees will be given the opportunity to visit the main research station of the Agricultural Science Center at Clovis to view a root demonstration project being conducted by Angadi. This demonstration will show the differences among various crops and their respective root systems.

"Pits will be dug to give everyone a chance to view how roots of commonly grown and alternative crops grow and how they respond to varying water amounts," Marsalis said. The Agricultural Science Center at Clovis is located 13 miles north of Clovis on SR 288.

The event is free to all. Lunch will be provided and is sponsored by the New Mexico Peanut Research Board and Sunland Inc.

The event is part of NMSU's continuing outreach efforts to help educate and improve the lives of people in New Mexico and the region.

For more information, or if you are an individual with a disability who is in need of an auxiliary aid or service to participate, contact Mark Marsalis in advance at (505) 985-2292 or marsalis@nmsu.edu.