Congratulations to Dr. Ellen Leue!

Chris Beytes

Congratulations to long-time PanAmerican Seed breeder Ellen Leue for being awarded the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS) 2020 Distinguished Industry Achievement Award “for breeding some of the most widely used bedding plants on the market, for being a model for other young breeders with her embrace of technology, and for her mastery of both the art and the science of breeding.”

This is hardly your typical industry achievement—it’s not an annual award; it hasn’t been given since 2014. Previous winners include Claude Hope and Glen Goldsmith, so Ellen is in rarified air!

Since joining the company in 1982, Ellen has bred a broad range of product in annuals, perennials and vegetables—at least 25 different species, including staples like the Dreams Petunias and firsts like Serena, the first seed angelonia. She pushed impatiens to the 95% germination mark and was granted the first utility patent for a flower product for the starburst pattern in impatiens.

Most recently she's led the group at PanAmerican Seed developing innovative vegetables and herbs for home gardens and local fresh markets. This has resulted in Cajun Belle, an AAS award winner; Candy Cane Red, an attractive striped pepper; and PeppiGrande Red, a red corno di toro (Italian sweet) pepper that's virtually seedless. GT