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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU hosts pre-season pest monitoring workshop at Los Lunas Agricultural Science Center

LOS LUNAS, N.M. - As the days grow warmer, gardeners are once again preparing for the growing season. One aspect of gardening they might need help with is how to monitor various fruit and vegetable pests to better protect their produce.

To help them, New Mexico State University's Los Lunas Agricultural Science Center and the Valencia County Cooperative Extension Service are hosting a free pre-season pest monitoring workshop at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 16, at the science center, 1036 Miller Road, Los Lunas.

"This session is directed at market gardeners and serious home gardeners who want to learn how to use the different traps and lures to monitor common fruit and vegetable pests," said Tess Grasswitz, Extension small farm integrated pest management specialist. "We will take an in-depth look at the rather labor-intensive monitoring methods necessary to correctly time control measures for difficult pests such as codling moth, peach twig borer and corn earworm."

For more information about the pest monitoring workshop, contact the Extension office at 505-565-3002 or the agricultural science center at 505-865-7340.

Later in the season, monthly 'Bug Nights' will be held at the science center. Participants will observe both pests and beneficial insects on a variety of fruit and vegetable crops, while Grasswitz and Kyle Tater, Valencia County Extension agriculture agent, suggest suitable control techniques.

"We held two pilot 'Bug Nights' last year that were very successful and we plan to do more this year," Grasswitz said. These events will be held on the first Wednesday of each month beginning in June.