Larry Lafleur is the president of Tree Time Services and performs the role of director of nursery operations.
In his capacity as director of nursery operations Larry is responsible for ensuring that Tree Time Services has the reclamation stock it requires. Of course this job is made easier because Larry is also the president of the Smoky Lake Forest Nursery and also managed the facility for the better part of two decades.
Larry has spent his entire career on the cutting edge of the forestry industry. After graduating from the NAIT Forestry Tech. program in 1968, Larry spent ten years conducting field research for the Canadian Forest Service.
In 1978 Larry moved over to the Alberta Forest Service and was responsible for the construction, setup, and operation of Alberta's only seed extraction, cleaning, and testing facility—the only facility of its kind in Alberta even today.
In 1983 Larry took over the bareroot tree program at Pine Ridge Forest Nursery. Under Larry's direction, the program adapted and improved methods of transplanting seedlings from containers to bareroot fields. Under Larry's management the program was able to produce up to 18 million seedlings a year.
In 1990 Larry was promoted to the manager of the commercial tree nursery section of the Alberta Forest Service and was responsible for ordering and procuring all the reforestation seedlings for private industry for the entire province. He was also responsible for the incubation of the privately owned tree nursery industry in Alberta. At its peak Larry was responsible for 45 million seedlings growing in 36 facilities from BC to Ontario on an annual basis.
1994 was a busy year for Larry. The Alberta government privatized the reforestation seedling industry. Larry responded by leaving the government and incorporating as Lafleur’s Consulting. He continued acting as the go between for Alberta's major forest companies and many of Alberta’s tree nurseries. He also got six nurseries to join a cooperative to help market their trees collectively.
In 1997 Larry got a group of investors together and took over Pine Ridge Forest Nursery in Smoky Lake. The facility became known as the Smoky Lake Forest Nursery.
In 2002 Larry partnered with his son Brad and Scott Formaniuk to create Tree Time Services. Tree Time Services’ primary activity was the marketing of trees for the cooperative Larry formed a few years earlier, which became Coast To Coast Reforestation in 2003. Since that time, Tree Time Services has been growing and expanding under Larry's careful direction.
Even though Larry spends a good deal of time in front of a computer these days, it hasn't stopped him from innovating.
In 2004 he developed a method of growing hybrid aspen stock based on root propagation that is significantly more cost effective and more reliable than tissue culture, the next best technique. And along with his head grower at Smoky Lake Forest Nursery they continue to improve the technique.
Larry has also been instrumental in consulting on the development of oil sands reclamation projects. Along with his growing team at SLFN, they have been developing methods of growing trees and shrubs specifically suited for oil sands reclamation. Smoky Lake Forest Nursery grows nearly all of Alberta's oil sands reclamation stock which amounts to 50 species and in 2011 totaled 1.75 million seedlings.
In his off time you can find Larry fishing with his grandchildren, curling, or enjoying the company of his wife, Judy.