Photo of Margaret Balbach

Margaret Balbach

An event honoring the life and academic contributions of Margaret Balbach will be from 2-4 p.m. Saturday, June 25, at Illinois State University’s Horticulture Center. Remarks by former students, colleagues, and friends will be at 2:30 p.m.

Margaret Balbach joined Illinois State’s Department of Agriculture in 1973. She founded the department’s horticulture-agribusiness program and taught courses in plant identification, landscape design, propagation, and floral design. She retired as a full professor of plant and soil science in 1994.

A charter member of the Garden Writers of America, Balbach authored a weekly horticulture column in The Pantagraph from 1976-2006, then continued online for several years. She was certified as a professional horticulturist through the American Society for Horticulture Science and was a Champaign County Master Naturalist. Along with her husband, Hal Balbach, she created an endowment to support horticulture education at Illinois State University.

To RSVP for the event, register online at by Friday, June 17 or call (309) 438-2586. Walk-ins are welcome to the event. Contributions to the Drs. Margaret and Harold Balbach Endowment Fund in support the Horticulture Education programs can be made online.

Illinois State’s Horticulture Center is located at 1000 W. Raab Road in Normal, across from the Corn Crib baseball stadium.