Red Willow Farm

Just off the main road to the original Pueblo, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, RWC operates a diverse year-round vegetable farm with four greenhouses, two heated for winter production; a seasonal 1½ acre field; an outdoor and indoor (year-round) farmers market (Wednesdays, 10am – 5pm); full-site drip irrigation; cold produce storage; biomass district heating system that serves three onsite organizations (3 buildings, 2 greenhouses); solar thermal and 3.2-kw solar pv systems; an additional subterranean phase-change heating-cooling system in one greenhouse; and an online, real-time data system for important operating parameters (still being refined).

Approved by Tribal Council Reconciliation 2002-02, the Education &
Training Division was granted 3.3 acres of prime agricultural land on
which to construct the communitiy-built Red Willow Education
Center. The Center began operation in June 2003 under the Taos
Pueblo Sustainable Agriculture Initiative, which is a holistic program
designed to address several challenges faced by Taos Pueblo through
the broad focus of revitalizing agriculture at Taos Pueblo. The term
holistic agriculture refers to farming and gardening as well as energy,
lifestyle livelihood, and key aspects of sustainable living. This
requires a synthesis of traditional and modern sustainable
agricultural approaches as well as emphasis on:

  • food nutrition/health
  • economic development
  • renewable energy/energy efficiency
  • education and training
  • traditional agricultural knowledge

Much of the renewable energy, data system, and other work has been performed by volunteers, and each year several visiting service learning groups visit the site to volunteer.