Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA Gardens Lecture Series to feature award-winning horticulturist

September 5, 2012 - SFA Public Affairs
Tom LeRoy, longtime Texas Agrilife Extension Service horiculturist, will be the featured speaker at the upcoming monthly Therese and Les Reeves Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20, in Room 110 of the Agriculture Building, 1924 Wilson Drive on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Longtime Texas Agrilife Extension Service horticulturist Tom LeRoy will present "Salad Gardening 101 for Texas Gardeners" when SFA Gardens hosts the upcoming monthly Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus. The event is planned for 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20, in Room 110 of the Agriculture Building, 1924 Wilson Drive.

LeRoy began his 35-year career with the Texas Agricultural Extension Service after receiving a bachelor's degree in horticulture and a master's degree in plant breeding from Texas A&M University. He served the first 11 years of his career as the Montgomery County extension agent - horticulture. In that role, LeRoy implemented the first Master Gardener program in the state of Texas. In 2004, he received an award from the Texas Master Gardener Association in recognition of his efforts in promoting the program. More than 115 Texas counties have now implemented their own Master Gardener Programs.

LeRoy also served as the Harris County extension agent - horticulture from 1988 until 1998, leading that area's Master Gardener program. Working alongside his colleague, Bill Adams, LeRoy helped establish a demonstration orchard and trial garden at the Harris County Extension Center. The two also co-authored three gardening books, "Growing Fruits and Nuts in the South," "Common Sense Vegetable Gardening in the South" and "The Southern Kitchen Garden."

For the past 14 years, Tom has again served again as the county extension agent - horticulture for Montgomery County, working with the same Master Gardener program he started in 1977.

LeRoy has been recognized for his superior service by Texas A&M University - Texas Cooperative Extension, first in 1985 for innovative programs such as the first Master Gardener program in Texas and again in 2006 for standard-setting leadership in implementing the Texas Master Gardener volunteer model. LeRoy recently retired and now serves on a part-time basis as assistant Texas Master Gardener program coordinator.

The Theresa and Les Reeves Garden Lecture Series is normally held the third Thursday of each month at the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture's SFA Mast Arboretum. A rare plant raffle is held after each program. The lecture is free and open to the public, but donations to the Theresa and Les Reeves lecture series endowed fund are always appreciated.

For more information, call (936) 468-1832 or e-mail grantdamon@sfasu.edu.