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Little Known or Interesting Factoids About Trees and Tree Physiology

Karen Rockoff 
Contact:  Cell: 830.955.0304
                     Karen Rockoff  Arborist  - TDA Certified


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The Field Report
  Page 1 

        AND WHO AM I?

I am Field Roebuck, a lifelong gardener and an avid student of horticulture, roses, and the soil sciences. A sixth-generation Texan, born and reared in Graham, I grew up with milk cows, chickens, fruit trees, and a large garden to care for.  In my spare time and during summer vacations from school, I worked in the oilfields and as the maintenance supervisor, greenskeeper, and entire work force at the local 9-hole golf course.

I was a Registered Professional Engineer and, effective March 1, 2004, am a retired independent engineering and geological consultant.  I have authored two science books, chapters in two others, and a book about growing roses.   I contributed parts of another gardening book, have had 35 scientific papers published, and have been listed in Who's Who in the Southwest, Who's Who in Science and Engineering, Who's Who in Commerce and Industry, and American Men and Women of Science.

My degrees are in engineering from The University of Texas at Austin, with minors in mathematics, chemistry, and geology.  I was on the engineering faculty at The University of Texas for five years -- including one semester as department chairman -- and taught courses that included industrial chemical calculations, properties of hydrocarbons, fluid flow in porous media, rock property analyses, clay technology, oilwell drilling fluids, and engineering report writing.  I also served for eight years as an adjunct professor of geological sciences at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

During my professional career, I traveled throughout the United States and to 36 foreign countries on 6 continents. This was a boon for my lifelong avocation because it enabled me to observe first hand the plants, the soils, the gardens, and the gardening practices in many parts of the world.

I am a free-lance writer and photographer and have contributed gardening articles to The Dallas Morning News, to the Gardener and Neil Sperry’s Gardens magazines, and to several gardening club bulletins. I have also contributed historical articles to True West and Old West magazines. My book, Foolproof Guide to Growing Roses (Creative Homeowner, Upper Saddle River, NJ), was released nationwide at the end of February, 2001.  My photos have appeared in all of these publications, as well as in Ortho’s All About Roses and All about Vines.

I provided most of the lists of roses for the The Lone Star Gardener's Book of Lists, compiled by William D. Adams and published by Taylor Publishing Company of Dallas in 2000.

I am an organic gardener, not so much because of any particular lifestyle or philosophy and not only because I began gardening before the days of agricultural chemicals, but because I have found that, once the processes are established, organic gardening is not only kinder to my family and to the environment, it is also less expensive and much less work than other methods.  I am not averse to new methods and new products, organic or not, but I believe in scientific principles, research, and experimentation. And I work actively to expose the chemophobes and the outright charlatans, con artists, and latter-day Luddites that infest and pollute the field of organic gardening.

My wife, Joan, and I specialize in Old Garden Roses, kitchen herbs, and flowering perennials, which we grow in the amended, alkaline clay soil at our home in Dallas.  We are members of the Dallas Area Historical Rose Society, the Heritage Rose Foundation, the Texas Botanical Garden Society, the Royal Horticultural Society, the Heritage Herb Club, and the Seeds of Texas Seed Exchange.  I am also a member of the Society of Independent Professional Earth Scientists, the Garden Writers Association of America, and the Western Writers of America; past president of the First Men’s Garden Club of Dallas; an honorary member of the Collin County Rose Society; and a show judge for the Gardeners of America.

If you would like to contact me, my mailing address is 6960 Joyce Way, Dallas, Texas 75225, and my e-mail address is 


Karen Rockoff 
Contact:  Cell: 830.955.0304
                     Karen Rockoff  Arborist  - TDA Certified


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