2008 Recipient: John and Lisa Leatherwood

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Ornamentals/Nursery Plants

John and Lisa Leatherwood of Haywood County are adding rhododendrons to their tomato and cattle farm. Rhododendrons are new to the Leatherwoods and can be an expensive operation to start, but they have a more secure market than vegetables.

The Leatherwoods hope the sales will make up for the loss they’ve felt since they stopped growing tobacco.

John and Lisa Leatherwood

"I want to keep my farm going," said John, whose family’s income solely comes from farming. "It’s in my blood, and I want farming to be there for my two teenage sons if they want it."

Haywood County

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