Dave Woodske’s service to the greenhouse and nursery sector was honoured December 2 at the annual awards of the BC Landscape and Nursery Association.
Woodske retired as the BC Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries’ floriculture and greenhouse specialist in March 2020, shortly after COVID-19 hit. The restrictions on gatherings last year led to cancellation of many industry events.
The association held its annual awards ceremony online last year, but the loosening of restrictions this year allowed it to express their appreciation in person to Woodske.
Woodske spent three decades with the ministry. He became the province’s nursery specialist in 1998. His role was combined with others through several iterations until he was responsible for the floriculture and greenhouse vegetable sectors, too. His career also extended to the cannabis sector, and he was a participant in the first two Cannatech West events held in parallel with the Pacific Agriculture Show.
Personable and knowledgeable, Woodske was a trusted resource for growers. Committed to grower education, he was a regular contributor to the development of programming for the Lower Mainland Horticultural Improvement Association’s annual short course.
One of his first tasks as industry specialist was helping the nursery sector navigate Sudden Oak Death. Working with others, he led development of best management practices for dealing with the new pathogen. A collaborative approach led to the industry being able to protect itself and mitigate the risk posed by the disease.
Woodske also worked with greenhouse vegetable growers. His contributions to the sector won him the BC Greenhouse Growers’ Association’s Meritorious Service Award in 2016.