It sits on the Llano Estacado, the “staked” or “palisaded” plains in the southwestern U.S., one of the largest mesas on the continent. Spanish conqusitadors roamed here; a number of native American peoples like the Apaches, the Comanches and the Kiowa lived here.
It is Lubbock, founded in 1876 and named for a Texas Ranger. It’s the birthplace of rock and roll singer Buddy Holly, the country music group The Flatlanders, and actor Chace Crawford, among others. It is a city proud of its university, Texas Tech, and the Texas Tech Red Raiders have been playing college football since 1925.
The city also sits within the largest contiguous cotton production region in the world; more than half of all U.S. cotton is grown in this region. And Lubbock is now the home of Monsanto’s new cotton research megasite, which was officially opened and dedicated yesterday.
The statistics: The new facility sits on 12.2 acres in the Lubbock Economic Development Alliance Business Park. It cost $10.5 million to build. About 20 people will work at the site full-time, with up to 50 temporary employees during peak season.
This is where we will house both our High Plains and Rolling Plains breeding programs and our Discovery Breeding efforts. Also based here will be our Integrated Texas Testing Program and research related to water use efficiency – important for a crop and a region that depends upon the Ogalalla Aquifier for irrigation.
This is a good place for us to be and to live, and we’re grateful to have this opportunity to expand our operations in the High Plains.
Photograph at right: Lubbock Mayor Tom Martin discusses the importance of research to Texas.