Sandhills Turf and Ornamental Conference 2024

— Written By Savanah Laur
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Thursday, February 8, 2024

Moore County Agricultural Center
707 Pinehurst Ave. Carthage, NC 28327


The Sandhills Turf and Ornamental Conference provides continuing education and re-certification credits for green industry professionals, including landscapers, grounds and turf managers, and greenhouse and nursery producers. Home gardeners, HOA grounds managers, and anyone interested in these topics are also welcome to attend.


Register online by February 1, 2024. The registration fee is $20, which  includes lunch catered by Stubbs and Son BBQ.


NC Landscape Contractor Licensing Board (NC LCLB) 5 Landscape Technical

N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDA) Pesticide continuing education credits:

A : 1.0
L : 2.0
N : 3.0
D : 3.0
X : 3.0

International Society of Arboriculture (ISA)

Certified Arborist: 4

BCMA – Science: 3

Municipal Specialist: 4

BCMA – Management: 1

Note that you must attend the full day to receive credit.


7:00a.m. – 7:30 a.m.- Check-in

7:30a.m. – 7:45 a.m. – Welcome and Introduction of Extension Resources

Savanah Laur will review helpful resources from Extension related to plant selection, disease and pest diagnoses, Integrated Pest Management, and turf management.

7:45a.m. – 8:45 a.m. – Ailing Arborvitae and Languishing Leylands: Diagnosing Problems with Cupressaceae in North Carolina Landscapes

Mike Munster, Plant Disease Diagnostician

Members of the family Cupressaceae – especially arborvitae, Leyland cypress, and junipers – are among the most widely planted trees and shrubs in North Carolina landscapes. Unfortunately, they also suffer from a number of diseases, pests, and abiotic disorders. We’ll explore how to identify many of those problems and when to call for help in making the diagnosis.

9:00a.m. – 10:00 a.m. –Soil Prep for Landscapers – Dealing with “New-Build” Soil

Barb Fair, Landscape Extension Specialist, PhD and ISA Certified Arborist

Soil is the life blood of our landscapes and yet, we destroy it. What does our mis-management of soil mean for plants, and what steps can we take to remedy the situation to ensure long-lived, healthy plants.

10:15a.m. – 11:15 a.m. –Climate Change and  Tree Species Selection

Barb Fair, Landscape Extension Specialist, PhD and ISA Certified Arborist

Hey, It is getting warm out here. Learn how the changing climate may be affecting plants we have in the ground, and what may be better choices for the future of our landscapes in NC.

11:15 a.m. -12:15 p.m. Lunch catered by Stubbs and Son BBQ

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. –Scales Affecting Woody Ornamentals

Steve Frank,Professor and Extension Specialist, Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology

Dr. Frank will discuss an integrated pest management strategy for managing scale insects on trees and shrubs in the landscape.

1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.-Aquatic Plant Identification and Management

Andrew Howell, NC State Research Scholar

Active management of aquatic weeds is often necessary to improve native aquatic habitats, increase recreational opportunities, and allow for clean water access. Management and control of aquatic vegetation typically requires several strategies to overcome weedy infestations and identifying weed problems early on can help reduce associated impacts and costs. Discussion will include how to identify aquatic plant issues, possible management options, new technologies for weed control, and examples of common aquatic weed management scenarios from small farm ponds to large reservoir systems.

2:30 -2:45 p.m. – Wrap-up, CEU verification, and evaluations

NC State University and N.C. A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equal opportunity and prohibit discrimination and harassment regardless of age, color, disability, family and marital status, genetic information, national origin, political beliefs, race, religion, sexual identity (including pregnancy), and veteran status. NC State, N.C. A&T, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating. Persons with disabilities and persons with limited English proficiency may request accommodations to participate by contacting Savanah Laur, Horticulture Extension Agent, at 910.947.3188,, or in person at the County Extension Office at least 30 days prior to the event.