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NMSU Santa Fe County Extension hosts fruit growers workshop

SANTA FE, N.M. - New Mexico fruit growers will meet at the annual Fruit Growers Workshop, Wednesday, March 16, at the Santa Fe County Fair Building, 3229 Rodeo Road, Santa Fe. Registration will be at 8 a.m., followed by the welcome and opening remarks by Patrick Torres, Santa Fe County Extension agriculture agent, at 8:30 a.m.

The free event is sponsored by the New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Service, the New Mexico Apple Council and the New Mexico Department of Agriculture marketing division.

The morning sessions will feature various aspects of orchard management. Sam Smallidge, Extension specialist, will discuss vertebrate pest management, while Carol Sutherland, NMDA entomologist, will report on the status of honey bees and give an update on apple maggots and other fruit insect pests. Extension fruit specialist Shengrui Yao will discuss orchard floor management and give an update on the multi-state NC 140 rootstock trial and fruit tree winter damage. Rudy Garcia, USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service state agronomist, will discuss how to measure soil moisture to schedule timely irrigation.

After the provided lunch, Richard Carr, New Mexico Organic Commodities Commission inspector, will present the organic certification process and Nancy Flores, NMSU Extension food safety specialist, will discuss the Food Safety Act and what it means to the producer.

The New Mexico Apple Council will hold a meeting following the presentations.

Participants are asked to contact Pat Torres at 505-471-4711 or by e-mail at patorres@nmsu.edu by March 14, to be included in the meal count.