The East Texas Fruit, Nut and Vegetable Conference will take place Jan. 14 at the Cross Brand Cowboy Church at 11915 Farm-to-Market Road 2015 in Tyler.

Cluster of large heirloom red and yellow tomatoes
Growing tomatoes will be one of the topics covered at the East Region Fruit, Nut and Veggie Conference. (Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Kay Ledbetter)

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service event costs $25, payable at the door. An RSVP is requested to the AgriLife Extension office in Smith County at 903-590-2980.

Registration begins at 8 a.m., with the program from 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Lunch is included, and vendors will be onsite.

Conference topics, speakers

“The East Texas Fruit, Nut and Vegetable Conference will feature the state’s blueberry expert, Dr. Dave Creech, as well as AgriLife Extension horticulturist Kim Benton from Cherokee County, the home of the famous Jacksonville tomato,” said Greg Grant, AgriLife Extension horticulturist, Smith County. “Speaker Truman Lamb is a lifetime pecan grower and expert grafter.”

Grant, a lifetime member of the Native Plant Society of Texas, will cover fruits and nuts native to East Texas. 

The complete list of topics and speaker is as follows:

  • Fire Ant Control, Janet Hurley, AgriLife Extension, Dallas.
  • Growing Berries in East Texas, Creech, Ph.D., professor emeritus, Stephen F. Austin University, Nacogdoches.
  • Growing Tomatoes and Peppers in East Texas, Benton.
  • Grafting Pecans, Lamb, AgriLife Extension agriculture and natural resources agent, Anderson County.
  • Native Fruits and Nuts, Grant.

“Due to its acid, well-drained soils and ample rainfall, East Texas has long been an ideal place to grow edibles in the garden,” Grant said. “Beginners, Master Gardeners and professionals should all learn something to grow on from this event.”

Susan Himes
Susan Himes is a writer and media relations specialist for Texas A&M AgriLife. She writes news releases and features from science-based information generated by the agency. She also covers human interest stories and events across the state.