Your instructors

Alan Weninger Arborist for Patterson Gardens, USask

Alan is passionate about botany and the cultivation of woody plants. He is an ISA Certified Arborist with a Bachelor of Science degree from the U of S and a Horticulturist Certificate from the University of Guelph. Since 2006 Alan has worked as a gardener and arborist for the Department of Plant Sciences at the Horticulture Field Facility and Patterson Arboretum, one of his favourite places. He has also grown trees as a hobby for many years and maintains a diverse collection near Saskatoon.

Dr. Barry Brown Emeritus Professor

Dr. F. Barry Brown is Professor Emeritus and former Head of the Departments of Curriculum Studies and Educational Communications and Technology in the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan. Barry began beekeeping as a hobby in 1973 with two hives. After retirement he scaled up to a commercial level operation. He currently is operating about 1000 beehives situated near Langham and Borden. He enjoys teaching and mentoring new beekeepers.

Dr. Bob Bors

B.Sc. (University of Maryland), Ph.D. (University of Guelph) Dr. Bob Bors has been a Professor in the Plant Sci. Dept. at the University of Saskatchewan since 1999. He teaches classes on Fruit Science, Plant Propagation, Greenhouse Management and Introduction to Horticulture. His research involves breeding hardy fruits for northern areas with an emphasis on crops that can be mechanically harvested and need little or no pesticides. His program has 40 acres of fruit and a 93 year history of developing varieties for Northern Canada and is the coldest location in North America for a major fruit breeding program. In recent years his program has released 5 sour cherries, 4 apples and 8 Haskap varieties. He runs a Prairie Fruit Genebank and regularly writes articles for his website

Chet Neufeld Executive Director, Native Plant Society of Saskatchewan

Chet Neufeld is the Executive Director of the Native Plant Society of Saskatchewan. He works on a variety of projects including teaching workshops across the province and is a contributor to Gardener for the Prairies magazine.

Grant Wood Assistant Professor

Grant’s passion is with urban agriculture, which includes small-scale food production, and local food security. Grant developed Plant Science 235 – Urban Agriculture, which draws almost 100 students per year from across campus. This course helps students learn how to grow food within city limits, both from a domestic and commercial basis. Grant is very involved in the local urban food movement, and can often be found promoting local food production to a wide variety of audiences. Grant’s work has been recognized locally, provincially and nationally, and he has received university awards in teaching, plus outreach and engagement.

Helen Shook Gardenline Specialist

Helen has been at the University of Saskatchewan since 2017. During the growing season she operates Gardenline, where she answers questions from the public, and writes for the website and social media. She is kept busy working on a variety of special projects at the university over the winter months. She holds her Prairie Horticulture Certificate from the University of Saskatchewan and is a Master Gardener as well. Helen hasn’t met a plant she doesn’t like and grows a little of everything (actually a lot of everything) indoors and out, at her home in Saskatoon.

Jackie Bantle AgBio Greenhouse and Hort Field Plots Manager

Jackie Bantle BEd, BSA (Horticulture major) has been working in horticulture at the University of Saskatchewan for the last 26 years. With 15 years of vegetable research experience and 10 years managing the USask Agriculture Greenhouse, Jackie loves to share her broad horticulture knowledge and experiences with anyone who will listen but more importantly, she acknowledges that she gains much more from listening to her students and other horticulturists than what she is able to provide.

Kim Ross

Kim Ross is a fifth generation farm girl who spent her summers picking pea's in her mother's garden and travelling the prairie land around the farm with her Grandparents looking for the best saskatoons to pick. Producing food was a way of life and it's a tradition Kim continued with her own children! From her 26,000 square foot no till garden that produces vegetables, fruit and fresh herbs, to producing vegetables all winter long, Kim is an avid grower that enjoys sharing with other gardeners. Kim is a Master Gardener and is working on her Prairie Horticulture Certificate in both the Greenhouse Crop production and Vegetable and Fruit Production streams.

Lisa Howse Compost Education Coordinator, SWRC

Lisa Howse is the Compost Education Coordinator with the Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council (SWRC), a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people and organizations make less garbage. The SWRC also coordinates the Saskatoon Compost Coaches on behalf of the City of Saskatoon. Lisa is passionate about reducing waste, protecting the environment and building healthy soil.

Lyndon Penner Author, Naturalist and Radio Personality

Lyndon Penner grew up in Saskatchewan and began gardening at a very young age and since then, has gardened on three continents. Having recently turned 40, Lyndon Penner now feels that he is finally the age he has really been since he was 18. A garden designer, public speaker, environmentalist, author, and birdwatcher Lyndon has been working in the horticultural industry since he was a teenager. He has done botanical interpretive work in the Canadian Rockies, co-ordinated educational programming for the Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden in Lethbridge, and was also a long time columnist for CBC Radio. He makes his home in Manitoba now, where he is the head gardener for Riding Mountain National Park.

M. P. M. Nair Orchidist and Plant Breeder

M. P. M. Nair is an orchidist with more than 40 years of growing and conducting orchid seminars, including teaching experience in India and Australia. At one time he had over 4,000 plants in his specially designed Saskatoon home. He is also an epicurist with a taste for flavorful food. Nair began to make truly traditional vegetarian south Indian (Kerala) food over 60 years ago in India, and cooking has remained his passion since. Since then, he’s traveled around the world 7 times, expanding his culinary expertise along the way.

Nina Mohr Department of Biology, USask

Nina A. Mohr completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Entomology at the University of Manitoba. She also conducted research at the University of Guelph before coming to the University of Saskatchewan, way, way back in 1996. She has broad experience in pollination biology, insect behaviour, plant science and pesticides. She always looks forward to meeting new students and enjoys the exchange of information.

Sara Williams Author and Retired USask horticulturist

Retired as the horticultural specialist of the University of Saskatchewan, Sara Williams is author and co-author of many gardening books: Creating the Prairie Xeriscape; Best Trees and Shrubs for the Prairies; Best Groundcovers and Vines for the Prairies; Gardening, Naturally: A Chemical-free handbook for the Prairies and The Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo: A Photographic History. She also was founding editor for The Saskatchewan Gardener magazine (now known as The Gardener or, previously, Gardener for the Prairies). Sara holds a B.A from the University of Michigan in English and History as well as a B.Sc. (with great distinction) and M.Sc. from the University of Saskatchewan in Horticulture. She received an Honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from the University of Saskatchewan in 2015 and was inducted into the Saskatchewan Agriculture Hall of Fame in 2013. She helped initiate the University of Saskatchewan Master Gardener Program and coordinated it for many years. She gardens on 5 acres of sand near Saskatoon.

Vanessa Young Instructor and Gardening at USask Coordinator

Vanessa Young is the leader of the Gardening at USask outreach education programming. With degrees in Science and in Education and background in business and communications, she is well suited for her position. In addition to her outreach teaching with Gardening at USask, she also teaches for the Prairie Horticulture Certificate Program and manages various agronomy professional development programs. In her spare time, Vanessa also does freelance curriculum development work, practices hort therapy, and attempts to manage three teenagers and three dogs. Besides her utter obsession with mulch, she also enjoys hands-on building projects that wildly exceed her actual skill set.

William Hrycan Landscape Architect, Crosby Hanna and Associates

William Hrycan is a landscape architect in Saskatoon, and the Horticultural Editor for The Gardener. He is also a garden photographer, devoted dad, and self-confessed gardening addict who gardens wherever and whenever he can.