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NC State Extension

Thomas G. Ranney Short Bio

Tom Ranney knealing with mountains in the background

Professor Department of Horticultural Science
North Carolina State University

Tom received his B.S. degree from The Ohio State University followed by a M.S. and Ph.D. from Cornell University. He has been a faculty member at North Carolina State University since 1989 and is currently a Professor of Horticultural Science. He lives, works, and plays in the mountains of Western North Carolina where he leads a research program at the Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center in Mills River, NC.

His research program focuses on the evaluation, selection, and development of new landscape and bioenergy crops. These efforts involve an ongoing search of new plants that provide economic opportunities for the green industry and a foundation for further plant breeding. Recent plant developments from his program include new hybrid Albizia, Calycanthus, Chaenomeles, Clethra, Exochorda, xGordlinia, Hydrangea, Hypericum, Illicium, and xSchimlinia. He has published more than 230 research and popular articles on diverse horticultural topics. He has served in editorial positions for Tree Physiology, the Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science, and the Southern Nursery Association Research Conference.

Recent awards include the Publication Award, Extension Educational Award and Distinguished Achievement Award for Nursery Crops from the American Society for Horticultural Science; the Research Friend of Extension Award from NC State University; the Porter Henegar Memorial Award for Research from the Southern Nursery Association, and the H. Marc Cathey Award for outstanding scientific research from the American Horticultural Society.

He has served on boards of the NC Urban Forest Council, Metropolitan Tree Improvement Alliance, Landscape Plant Development Center, and International Plant Producers Society.

He has advised and served on committees of 30 graduate students and has the good fortune to work with exceptional faculty, staff, and students at N.C. State University.