For 40 years people have met in the mountains of North Carolina to talk about pests and pathogens of ornamental plants. It started as a few professors chatting about new pests problems by day and playing music by night. It has grown considerably; the last Ornamental Workshop in 2014 attracted 130 people from 35 states. Attendees included academics, extension personnel, members of the agrochemical and biocontrol industries, non-profit organizations, and others.

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This year the Ornamental Workshop is October 24-27. Although the meeting has grown it is still fun and informal. We mix presentations and discussions. Sometimes entomologists and plant pathologists meet separately to focus on the intricacies of each discipline. We also come together for sessions important to both like arthropod transmitted plant pathogens and extension innovation. What’s more it’s held at a secluded mountain retreat with nightly socials to encourage (force?) networking and hopefully making new friends.

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The Ornamental Workshop is a place for people to share new research, extension, and pest management practices with other research and extension professionals. There is no trade show, no pesticide credits, and no formal training. But, if you have ideas and information to share this is the place to do it. Register and submit your presentations here. Contact Steve Frank (sdfrank@ncsu.edu) with questions.

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