LOS LUNAS–The Valencia County Extension Master Gardeners chose Michael Chavez and Gerald Armijo as winners of the Yard and Garden of the Month for October in the season’s final contest co-sponsored by the News-Bulletin.

“They had a large variety of plants and made very good use of water-management techniques to maximize their ability to sustain their grass, flowers, fruit trees and vegetables,” said Rigo Chavez of the Valencia Master Gardeners, who was one of the judges for this month’s contest. “They use ditches to route rain water into ponds where it can be held and used later.”

Flowers and shrubs along one of the paths in the October Yard of the Month at the home of Michael Chavez and Gerald Armijo.

Chavez said he and his partner moved to the 1-plus acre lot off Vaisa Road in Los Lunas about five years ago.

“We wanted a place where we had space to put in areas where we could relax and enjoy our yard,” Chavez said. “We have enjoyed working on it and spending time in it, especially during the past year and a half when we hardly went out because of the pandemic.”

Their yard features a number of paths that meander around the yard between grassy areas, including a putting green, flower and vegetable beds, and an area with fruit trees including plums, apples, peaches, pomegranates and figs.

Chavez said Armijo designed the yard that also includes a pergola with a table and chairs, an enclosed bar area, the putting green and a covered Koi pond.

As winners of this month’s contest, Chavez and Armijo will receive a $100 cash prize.

The Valencia County Master Gardeners is a community service program of the New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Service and provides courses and information to help community members improve their gardening skills. A series of courses for those seeking to become Master Gardeners will begin after the first of the year. For information call the Valencia County Extension Office at 565-3002.

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The Valencia County News-Bulletin is a locally owned and operated community newspaper, dedicated to serving Valencia County since 1910 through the highest journalistic and professional business standards. The VCNB is published weekly on Thursdays, including holidays both in print and online.