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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Fruit Workshop Will Teach Organic and Conventional Pest Controls

ALBUQUERQUE - New Mexico fruit growers can learn about conventional and organic methods for controlling apple maggot and codling moth at a free workshop Feb. 17 in Santa Fe.

The event is co-sponsored by New Mexico State University's Cooperative Extension Service and the New Mexico Apple Council, which will hold its annual meeting following the workshop.

"We've had good success using organic methods against pests like codling moth and peach twig borer, and we want to share those techniques with growers," said Ron Walser, an Extension fruit specialist at NMSU's Sustainable Agriculture Science Center at Alcalde.

Walser will present 2004 yield results for organic fruit trials at Alcalde, which include cold-hardy small fruits such as raspberries, blackberries and strawberries, as well as apples and peaches.

Ed Costanza?-a large-scale grower from Belen who heads the Apple Council-?will talk about his success in controlling codling moths with pheromone puffers that disrupt mating cycles. He also uses soft pesticides that don't harm beneficial insects.

"Other growers can learn a lot from his success," Walser said.

Carol Sutherland, an entomologist with NMSU and the New Mexico Department of Agriculture, will give an update on the apple quarantine that the NMDA imposed last fall to contain the apple maggot. Sutherland will discuss chemical and organic controls for maggots, Walser said.

NMDA marketing specialist Craig Maple will present alternative marketing opportunities for growers, such as selling fruit to New Mexico public schools.

The workshop runs from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Santa Fe County Fairgrounds, 3229 Rodeo Road. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. A free lunch will be served at noon. Apple Council members will meet from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

For more information, or if you are an individual with a disability who is in need of an auxiliary aid or service to participate, call Pat Torres at (505) 471-4711.