NDSU Extension Service Hires Horticulturist


Esther McGinnis has joined the NDSU plant sciences department as an Extension Service horticulturist and assistant professor.

Her areas of responsibility will include advising county Extension Service agents and coordinating horticultural programs. In addition, she will oversee the Master Gardener program and implement online training.

McGinnis graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy. From there, she went on to the University of Minnesota Law School and practiced law for nine years in St. Paul.

“My path to a horticulture career was a little circuitous,” says McGinnis.” After realizing that horticulture was my passion, I enrolled in the Applied Plant Sciences program at the University of Minnesota.”

She earned her master’s degree at the university and recently defended her doctoral dissertation.

For her dissertation, McGinnis studied the environmental manipulation of flowering in Carex pensylvanica, which is a native sedge. She hopes to continue her research in the propagation and use of native species in ornamental landscapes.

“I am extremely pleased to have Esther McGinnis join NDSU Extension as a horticultural specialist,” says Chris Boerboom, NDSU Extension Service director. “North Dakotans love gardening and landscaping, so it is important to provide research-based education and training opportunities in these areas. Dr. McGinnis will provide excellent horticultural programs, including leadership of the Master Gardener program.”

NDSU is recognized as one of the nation’s top 108 public and private universities by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education.