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Larry Hodgson

Horticultural journalist, writer, and columnist
Posthumous Honorary Doctorate in Horticulture

Larry Hodgson left his mark on the horticultural world as an internationally respected communicator and educator known for his professionalism, his thoroughness, and his ability to make gardening accessible to all. His boundless knowledge of plants and his passion for gardening proved fertile ground for a remarkable journey that established his stellar reputation.

Larry Hodgson graduated from the University of Toronto in French and German studies in 1974, then went on to earn a bachelor's degree with a concentration in language teaching at Université Laval in 1978. This self-taught gardener learned the ins and outs of gardening from his father in Scarborough, a suburb of Toronto.

He held numerous positions in the course of his career, first as president and senior editor of Horticom, then as editor-in-chief of horticultural magazines, and host and columnist in various media outlets. He also worked as a freelance journalist and lecturer, and volunteered with horticultural organizations. His blog, «Le Jardinier parrasseux» (the «Laidback Gardener» in English) has helped thousands with advice and gardening tips. He authored over 60 books on horticulture, leaving a rich legacy of writings and teaching materials.

Larry Hodgson won the 1990 Florida Foliage Expert of the Year Award and was honoured with a certificate of merit for his contribution to the development of horticulture in Québec from Regroupement Expo-Plantes in 1993  He was also named Horticultural Communicator of the Year in 1994 by Fédération des sociétés d'horticulture et d'écologie du Québec. He won the Perennial Plant Association's Garden Media Promoter Award in 2006 and the Gold Medal for Best Garden Blog from Garden Communicators International in 2022.

To keep his legacy alive, Québec Vert created the Prix Larry-Hodgson de communication en horticulture ornementale, environnementale et nourricière with him as the first recipient in 2022. This award will be presented annually to an outstanding horticultural communicator.

Larry Hodgson passed away in October 2022, but will remain Québec's most widely read horticultural journalist. Université Laval is proud to award him a posthumous Honorary Doctorate in Horticulture to honour his memory and recognize his exceptional contribution to the growing popularity of horticulture in Québec.

Photo: France Bouchard