Thomas Leo Ogren
Thomas Leo Ogren is the author of four published books, most recently, "Safe Sex in the Garden". His two previous books, both short novels, were published through Laubach Literacy International, by New Readers Press and by Sundown Press. They are used nationwide for adult literacy programs.
Tom authored several chapters of the book, Horticultural Therapy, just published by the National Council of State Garden Clubs. He is also author of Allergy-Free Gardening, from Ten Speed Press. In 2004 Time Warner Books will be publishing a book on lawns that he is now writing. In addition, Tom is currently working on a botany book, written from a gardener's perspective.
Mr. Ogren has a diverse background and has held many different jobs, including horticulture teacher in Watts, community gardening organizer for Cooperative Extension, brakeman on the Santa Fe Railroad, dairy farmer, landscaper, nursery owner, and free lance writer.
Tom has an AA degree from Compton College, a BA degree in Sociology from Chico State, and an MS degree in Agriculture/ Horticulture from Cal Poly University, San Luis Obispo.
For a dozen years he was the landscape-gardening teacher at the California Youth Authority in Paso Robles, where he started the existing two- man program, and wrote the currently used curriculum for the CYA statewide. At the CYA he used gardening to teach many boys to read, to write, to speak correct English, to do math, and especially to love to garden. Many of his ex students keep in touch with him and some of them are now college graduates themselves.
He has appeared three times on HGTV's "Smart Solutions," and his research has been the subject of documentaries made by City TV in Toronto, and also by the Canadian Discover Channel.
Tom writes for many magazines, websites, and newspapers, and has been published in, among others, Garden Design, American Rose, Alternative Medicine, New Scientist, Der Spiegel, Utne Reader, Earth Island Journal, Landscape Architecture, the London Times, the Seattle Times, the Boston Globe, and the Chicago Tribune.
He is a consultant on plant flowering -systems, allergy and landscape plants, for the Association of Professional Landscape Designers, the USDA Department of Forestry, the California State Department of Forestry, for www.Allegra.com, for county asthma coalitions, and for the American Lung Association. He has lectured on urban allergies and landscaping at many places including Cal Poly University and at the University of California at Santa Cruz. His favorite hobbies are: reading, writing, fishing, rock hounding, metal detecting, hybridizing roses, camping, and gardening. Tom lives with his family in San Luis Obispo, California.