Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center (SWPAC)

Size and Topography

  • 220 acres in Knox County north of Vincennes; 150 tillable acres, with about 90 used for research purposes
  • Sandier soils and climatic conditions suitable for melon and other horticultural and specialty crop production


SWPAC was established in 1979, when Purdue University purchased 175 acres from Hank DeBuisseret to replace a 78-acre sand horticulture research site in Gibson County. Purdue relocated research operations to Knox County to take advantage of water availability for research and to build working relationships with Vincennes University and the USDA. The university purchased an additional 45 acres from Steve Klein in 1992.​

Contact Us

Jon Leuck
Interim Director, Purdue Agricultural Centers and Project Coordinator
615 W. State Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907
Phone: (765) 494-8368

Dennis Nowaskie
Superintendent, Southwest-Purdue Agricultural Center 
4669 North Purdue Road
Vincennes, IN 47591
Phone: (812) 886-9661



  • Home to the Southwest Purdue Ag Program (SWPAP)
  • Five greenhouses used to grow transplants
  • Swamp cooled greenhouse
  • Three high tunnels
  • Two diagnostic and research laboratories
  • Horticultural cold storage coolers
  • Capability of variety testing for seed companies as well as fungicide and insecticide testing for agribusinesses
  • Summer workforce to plant, maintain, harvest crops and collect data
  • Onsite plant pathologist, horticulturist/vegetable specialist 
  • Collection site IN-22 for National Atmospheric Deposition Program (NADP) 
  • Collection site VIN140 for the Clean Air Status and Trends Network (CASTNET)
  • Knox County Extension office located on site
  • Vincennes University John Deere/Cummins/Heavy Diesel Technology teaching facility on site


Although SWPAC is the smallest PAC in Purdue’s regional farm system, it is one of the most active in research on fruits and vegetables — crops primarily grown in southwestern Indiana. Projects focus on increasing horticultural and agronomic crop yields and quality while decreasing input expenditures, including  pesticides. An example of an IPM (integrated pest management) program used at SWPAC is MELCAST, a weather-based disease forecasting program developed at Purdue University to manage fungicide applications of foliar diseases of cucurbit vegetables.

Research on vegetables includes, but not limited to testing on muskmelon and watermelon varieties, strawberries, new specialty crop varieties, new product testing of fungicides and insecticides for disease and insect control and organic vegetable production. Research is also conducted on growth and management of wine and table grapes including viniferous varieties. 

Research is conducted on high value protected ag crops in three high tunnels located at SWPAC.

Row crop research includes studies on weed and disease control, variety testing on corn, soybeans, hemp and canola as well as nitrogen rate and micro-nutrients.  

Departments in Purdue Agriculture that currently conduct research at SWPAC include Agronomy, Botany and Plant Pathology, Entomology, Forestry and Natural Resources and Horticulture and Landscape Architecture.  

Learn More About PAC's

  • August 23, 2022 | Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center - Agriculture Sprayer Drone Technology Day
  • For more information contact Dennis Nowaskie at 812-886-9661 or

Jon Leuck
Interim Director, Purdue Agricultural Centers and Project Coordinator
615 W. State Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907
Phone: (765) 494-8368

Jeff Boyer
Davis-Purdue Agricultural Center (DPAC)
6230 North State Road 1
Farmland, IN 47340-9340
Phone: (765) 468-7022
Fax: 765-468-8125

Brad Shelton
Feldun-Purdue Agricultural Center (FPAC)
1117 State Road 458
Bedford, IN 47421
Phone: (812) 279-8554

Stephen Boyer
Northeast-Purdue Agricultural Center (NEPAC)
4821 East 400 South
Columbia City, IN 46725
Phone: (260) 244-7290 (Also Fax)

Gary Tragesser
Pinney-Purdue Agricultural Center (PPAC)
11402 South County Line Road
Wanatah, IN 46390
Phone: (219) 733-2379

Joel Wahlman
Southeast-Purdue Agricultural Center (SEPAC)
4425 East 350 North
Butlerville, IN 47223
Phone: (812) 458-6977

Jason Tower
Southern Indiana Purdue Agricultural Center (SIPAC)
11371 East Purdue Farm Road
Dubois, IN 47527
Phone: 812-678-4427
Fax: (812) 678-3412

Dennis Nowaskie
Southwest-Purdue Agricultural Center (SWPAC)
4669 North Purdue Road
Vincennes, IN 47591
Phone: (812) 886-9661

Jay Young
Throckmorton Purdue Agricultural Center (TPAC)
8343 South US 231
Lafayette, IN 47909-9049
Phone: (765) 538-3422

PAC Events

PAC Events

farmers on edge of field during training day
2022 Field Days & Training Events

Field Days. The Purdue Agricultural Centers (PACS) will be offering public field days, workshops, and other events in 2022. These events provide educational opportunities for commodity producers, crop/livestock advisers, and others seeking...

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