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Extension workshop to offer information on maintaining healthy pecan trees

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. - Whether you have a well-established pecan orchard or are thinking about planting your very first trees, the "Otero Pecan Growers Workshop" in Alamogordo April 1 is sure to have the answers you need to grow and maintain a successful crop.



Robert Flynn, an NMSU agronomist at the Agricultural Science Center at Artesia, demonstrates how to collect soil samples in pecan orchards at a recent workshop in Alamogordo. (NMSU photo by Audry Olmsted)

"The people who attend this workshop are going to get good information about pecans," said Beth Gordon, agricultural agent for New Mexico State University's Cooperative Extension Service office in Alamogordo. "Our goal is to provide growers with information that will help them detect pecan problems in their orchards, determine when and how much water to apply to their trees to optimize pecan growth and minimize water waste and how to select the best soil sites for pecan orchards. These are all very important to all New Mexico growers."

Gordon will start the workshop with a welcome and introduction to the guests and speakers.

Richard Heerema, NMSU Extension pecan and pistachio specialist, will discuss the effects of improper irrigation on pecan trees.

Robert Flynn, an Extension agronomist, will talk about how to select a site to grow pecan trees and the appropriate soils to use.

Carol Sutherland, an NMSU and New Mexico Department of Agriculture Extension entomologist, will provide information about the top three insect pests of pecans and how to control them.

Natalie Goldberg, an NMSU plant pathologist, will give information about phymatotrichum, also referred to as "root rot." Root rot is a soil-born fungus that can affect more than 2,300 species of broadleaf plants. It is one of the most destructive and difficult to control.

Gordon will discuss how growers can sell their pecans at farmers markets and other venues.

There will be time during the workshop for growers to ask questions of the experts.

The workshop is April 1 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Otero County Cooperative Extension Service office at the fairgrounds.

Participants must preregister for the workshop by March 24, as space is limited. The fee is $20 and includes lunch. A check or money order and the registration form can be mailed to the Otero County Cooperative Extension Service office, 401 Fairgrounds Road, Alamogordo, N.M., 88310.

For more information about the workshop and to obtain a copy of the registration form, or if you are an individual with a disability who is in need of an auxiliary aid or service, contact Gordon before the workshop at (575) 437-0231 or egordon@nmsu.edu.