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Horticulture and Natural Resources

Dr. Cathie Lavis

Dr. Cathie Lavis

Professor | Extension Specialist: Landscape Management


Kansas State University
3736 Throckmorton PSC
1712 Claflin Road
Manhattan, KS 66506

Ph: +1-785-532-1433
Fx: +1-785-532-6949

Areas of Specialization

  • Irrigation
  • Ornamental Horticulture

Biography & Education


Dr. Lavis states, "Students are my focus and I've discovered they learn best when hands-on instruction supports classroom theory." Lavis is keen on incorporating new teaching strategies into her courses that focus on student development of critical thinking skills. Her teaching skills have been acknowledged with several national teaching awards as well as two university awards. She is also a recognized speaker on topics concerning irrigation, the care of trees and landscape plants. Through her efforts, K-State was the first university to work hand-in-hand with the Irrigation Association to develop an irrigation system design course that leads to certification through this professional association. K-State became a Tree Campus USA in 2013 as a result of her leadership and enthusiasm of arboriculture students promoting the care of campus trees.

In addition, Dr. Lavis is an award-winning adviser who co-advises Horticulture Club and the Landscape Contracting Team for the National Colligiage Landscape Competition held each spring at a different hosting school. She also coordinates opportunities for horticulture students to participate in international travel during their college years. Recently, she has accompanied students on trips to Costa Rica, Italy, England/Wales, Australia, Belgium, Netherlands and Northern France.

  • B.S. Agronomy, Oklahoma State University (1986)
  • M.S. Ornamental Horticulture, Kansas State University (1993)
  • Ph.D. Agronomy, Kansas State University (2005)


  • Cabon, J., D. Bremer, Fry, J., and Lavis C. 2016. Effects of soil moisture–based irrigation controllers, mowing height, and trinexapac-ethyl on tall fescue irrigation amounts and mowing requirements. Int. Turfgrass Soc. Res. J. 13:1–6 doi: 10.2134/itsrj2016.04.0242
  • Lavis, C. C., K. A. Williams, J. Fallin, P. K. Barnes, S. J. Fishback, S. Thien. 2016. Assessing a faculty development program for the adoption of brain-based learning strategies. J. Faculty Development. 30(1): 57-69.
  • Carmichael, T. R., Boyer, C. R., Griffin, J. J., Warren S. L., and Lavis C. C. 2014. Production and landscape establishment of nursery crops in eastern redcedar-amended substrates. J. Environ. Hort. 32:77-83.
  • Domenghini, J., D. Bremer, S. Keely, J. Fry, C. Lavis and S. Thien. 2014. Assessing student learning with surveys and a per/post-test in a new online landscape water issues course. Nat. Sci. Educ. 43:109. Doi:10.4195/nse2014.03.0008


Course #TitleSemesterDelivery Method
GenAG 505Horticultural Study AbroadSpringOn Campus
HORT 508Landscape MaintenanceFallOn Campus
HORT 550Landscape Irrigation SystemsFallOn Campus
HORT 551The Business of Landscape ContractingSpringOn Campus
HORT 585ArboricultureSpringOn Campus