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A Salute to Robert Raabe

Articles: A Salute to Robert Raabe

When asked about favorite articles in Pacific Horticulture, most readers comment that they turn to the Laboratory Report when they first open a new issue of our quarterly journal. Dr Robert Raabe has been contributing that column for twenty-five years, educating and entertaining readers with his short articles on scientific advances in the worlds of horticulture, agriculture, plant pathology, and environmental restoration and reclamation.

Bob’s interest in plants began in his early teen years in Waukeshaw, Wisconsin. His father responded to a radio offering of thirty-seven plants for $1.25, which was a substantial sum during the depression. Most of the plants in the package were common trees and shrubs, some even weedy. Included were two gladiolus corms; although one died (perhaps diseased?), the other grew taller than Bob and produced a spike of bright red flowers. Bob was hooked, and he began ordering every seed and nursery catalog that he came across. (“It’s amazing how much one can learn from seed catalogs,” Bob notes.) He began buying plants with his own modest savings, gained from a newspaper route; then, as now, flowering plants interested him the most.

After a couple ...


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