NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Stephen F. Austin State University's SFA Gardens will host the monthly Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 10, in the Ina Brundrett Conservation Education Building at the Pineywoods Native Plant Center, 2900 Raguet St. Tom Cox will present "Breaking New Ground with Conifers for the South."

Cox and his wife, Evelyn, started the Cox Arboretum and Gardens in 1990 when they purchased an undeveloped 13-acre land parcel in Canton, Georgia. Over the last 25 years, this has evolved into one of the premiere collections of woody taxa in the Southeastern U.S. In 2002 and again in 2014, the arboretum was the host site for the American Conifer Society's national meeting and is now a frequent stop for gardening enthusiasts as well as those involved in serious plant study.

A pioneer in the evaluation of conifers for adaptability in the Southeast, Cox is recognized as one of the leading authorities on growing conifers in the region. The arboretum received full accreditation in 2012 and is now a site for the preservation of rare and endangered plants from around the world.

Cox is a frequent lecturer on the subject of conifers and other woody plants and is a member of the prestigious International Dendrology Society as well as Botanic Gardens Conservation International. He is a past president of the American Conifer Society and has been published numerous times in both British and U.S. conifer journals. He is the co-author of the 2013 book, "Landscaping with Conifers and Ginkgo for the Southeast." In 2014, his book was recognized by the Georgia Writers Association as first runner-up in the specialty category at its 50th year annual awards banquet.

Cox graduated cum laude and received a bachelor's degree from The New York Institute of Technology. He received a master's degree in psychology from Georgia State University.

The Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series is held the second Thursday of each month at SFA's Pineywoods Native Plant Center. A rare plant raffle will be held after the program. The lecture is free and open to the public, but donations to the Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series fund are encouraged.

Parking is available at the nearby Raguet Elementary School, 2708 Raguet St., with continual shuttle service to the Ina Brundrett Conservation Education Building.

For more information, call (936) 468-1832 or email