In memoriam: Dr. Harrison Flint

In memoriam: Dr. Harrison Flint

We regret to report that Purdue University’s Dr. Harrison Flint passed away on April 13, 2021. Many horticulturists have utilized Dr. Flint’s book “Landscape Plants for Eastern North America” as well as had him as their professor at Purdue University. INLA honored Dr. Flint with the 2003 INLA Award of Merit.  Picture above is when Dallas Foster (left) presented Dr. Harrison Flint with the award.

Although there has been no official obituary published, we did find the following is the announcement of Dr. Flint’s appointment to the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. This appointment was shortly before he came to Purdue University and provides a nice summary of his accomplishments up to that point in his career.

Dr. Harrison L. Flint was appointed Associate Horticulturist at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University on July I, 1966. Dr. Flint, a native of Vermont, received his B.S. from Cornell University, an M.S. from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. from Cornell after serving two years in the U.S. Army. In 1958, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Horticulture at the University of Rhode Island where he taught the subject of plant propagation and nursery management. His research interests then were in the fields of mineral nutrition, plant propagation and the cold tolerances of woody ornamental plants. From 1962 to 1966 he was Associate Horticulturist at the University of Vermont and concerned with extension programs for commercial nurserymen, greenhouse operators and amateur groups interested in community beautification. Again in Vermont, his research concerned the hardiness of woody ornamental plants and while tests led to the selection of hardy clones, his studies sought the reasons for hardiness in the physiological processes related to growth and nutrition.

Dr. Flint is married and has four children. He is a member of Pi Alpha Xi, Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Xi, and Phi Sigma, honorary scholastic fraternities. As an active member of several national horticultural societies, he has written scientific articles for professional journals and popular articles for other horticultural magazines and papers. His work at the Arnold Arboretum will continue hi;, investigations in the factors controlling plant hardiness, the selection of desirable ornamental woody plants and the teaching of horticultural subjects to Harvard students and as part of our educational program.

We know many INLA members were instructed by Dr. Flint during their days at Purdue University. If you were one of those lucky students, we’d love to hear your memories of one of Purdue’s beloved horticulture professors. Please send your memories to