December 29, 2021 - The annual East Texas Fruit, Nut and Vegetable Conference, Friday, January 14 at the Cross Brand Cowboy Church (11915 FM 2015, Tyler, Texas 75708) will offer both professional and amateur gardeners tips on blackberries, blueberries, fire ants, native fruits and nuts, pecan grafting, peppers, and tomatoes.
Registration will begin at 8 a.m.; followed by the first session at 8:30 a.m. Lunch is provided. Cash, checks, or credit cards will be accepted at onsite registration. Program cost is $25. The program will be held in person only. Pre-registration is required for a lunch headcount. No Texas Department of Agriculture CEU’s will be awarded for this event. However, CE’s (5 hours) for certified Texas Master Gardeners will be.
Topics and speakers include:
- Growing Tomatoes and Peppers in East Texas, Kim Benton, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. Kim is the county horticulturist in Cherokee County, home of the famous “Jacksonville tomato.”
- Growing Berries in East Texas, Dr. David Creech, Professor Emeritus, Stephen F. Austin State University. Dr. Creech is the director of SFA Gardens in Nacogdoches and the leading expert on blueberries in Texas.
- Fire Ant Control, Janet Hurley, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Senior Program Specialist. Janet is an entomologist and contributor to the popular Insects in the City website (citybugs.tamu.edu).
- Grafting Pecans, Truman Lamb, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. Truman is the county agent in agriculture and natural resources for Anderson County and has a lifetime of experience grafting and growing pecans.
- Native Fruits and Nuts, Greg Grant, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. Greg is the county horticulturist in Smith County and is also a past winner of the Lone Star Land Steward Award for his property in Shelby County.
This event was organized to meet the growing demand for information about fruit, nut, and vegetable production for home gardeners and commercial growers in East Texas. It’s an opportunity to learn tips from specialists and agents on how to be successful, how to avoid common pitfalls, and how to learn more as you grow.
The East Region AgriLife Conference and Expo will be held the same day, at the same time, on the same property, so be sure and find your way to the Fruit, Nut, and Vegetable Conference if that is your desire. The Expo on site will be attended by professionals seeking Texas Department of Agriculture CEU’s.
For more information on either conference or to pre-register, contact the Smith County Extension office at 903-590-2980. The flyers and schedules are posted on the Texas A&M AgriLife-Smith County Facebook page.