Los Lunas Plant Materials Center
Serving areas in the States of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah
Size: 80 acres
PMC Operation: NRCS
Land Ownership: New Mexico State University
The Los Lunas Plant Materials Center (NMPMC) serves the semi-arid and arid southwest region. Areas served by the Center include Northeast Arizona, Southeast Colorado, New Mexico, and Southeast Utah. Environmental conditions, including low precipitation, high intensity rainfall, wind, extreme topography, and varied land uses, combine to produce a variety of problems needing plant material solutions. Land use is primarily rangeland. Major conservation concerns include erosion and sediment control, range production and improvement, riparian restoration, and abandoned cropland revegetation.
Work on plant materials improvement began at the Albuquerque Nursery, established by the Soil Conservation Service in 1935 and in operation until 1953. Original plant materials and related records were preserved for the opening of the Los Lunas Plant Materials Center in 1957. Since 1957, the Center has worked collaboratively with New Mexico State University Agricultural Science Center to turn agricultural and conservation challenges into opportunities on private, tribal, state, and federal lands.
The Los Lunas Plant Materials Center has developed over 30 improved conservation plants including varieties of sideoats grama, alkali sacaton, blue grama, bottlebrush squirreltail, New Mexico olive, and Rocky Mountain narrowleaf penstemon.