East Texas Fruit and Vegetable Conference set Aug. 18 in Overton

OVERTON — The annual East Texas Fruit and Vegetable Conference will offer professional and amateur producers tips on everything from production and marketing to critter and pollinator management.

The annual East Texas Fruit and Vegetable Conference will cover a variety of topics from pollinator and pest management to tips on orchard and berry production. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo by Adam Russell)

The event will be Aug. 18 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center, 1710 Farm-to-Market Road 3053, Overton. There is a $30 fee for individuals and $50 for couples. The deadline to register is Aug. 11. There is an additional $5 charge for late registration.

The program offers five Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units including three general and two integrated pest management.

Registration for the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program begins at 7:30 a.m. followed by sessions starting at 8:30 a.m. Lunch and snacks are included.

Onsite registration with cash or checks is accepted. To preregister, please make checks to “East Texas Fruit and Vegetable Conference” and mail to Chad Gulley, AgriLife Extension office Smith County, 1517 W. Front St., Room 116, Tyler, Texas 75702.

Speakers and topics include:

– Dr. Joe Masabni, AgriLife Extension small-acreage horticulturist, Overton, Garden Disease Identification.

– Keith Hansen, retired AgriLife Extension horticulturist, Smith County, Critter Management.

– Dr. George Philly, retired AgriLife Extension plant pathologist, Overton, Peach Production.

– Dr. Dave Creech, director of Stephen F. Austin University Gardens, Nacogdoches, Tree Fruit and Berry Production.

– Dawn Stover, research associate, Mast Arboretum, Stephen F. Austin State University, Pollinator Management.

– Monte Nesbitt, AgriLife Extension program specialist – horticultural sciences, College Station, Cover Crops for Fruit Trees.

The sessions will be followed by a tour of Masabni’s aquaponic greenhouse.

Masabni said the event was organized to meet the growing demand for information about fruit and vegetable production for home gardeners and established commercial growers.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity to learn some tips and tricks from our specialists and growers on how to be successful,” he said. “It’s a chance to see what successful producers are doing to grow better quality and quantities of fruit and vegetables and how to safely manage critters and, most importantly, pollinator health.”

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