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Helen Kraus

Associate Professor Emeritus

Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor

Kilgore Hall 114


Area(s) of Expertise

100% Teaching

  • Nursery Management (HS 411)
  • Nursery Production (HS 051)
  • Principles of Horticulture (HS 201)
  • Introduction to the Agriculture Institute (AGI 010)
  • Plant Nutrition (HS 451)

Teaching Philosophy

As a teacher I strive to guide my students through a particular subject matter. With each new class, I begin this journey anew. Sharing this trip while getting to know the students is why I love to teach. The exploration of the subject matter is as important as the relationships formed on the journey. As a college educator, I believe my job is to not only teach but also to inspire, mentor, and lead by example. Students need leadership, direction, guidance, and encouragement. I consider it my responsibility as the teacher to provide these.

As the teacher and guide, I feel my roles include smoothing the bumps, helping students explore, and pointing out important aspects along the way while also letting students grow so that they are able to further investigate subjects of interest. My goals for the students are to not only gain the knowledge taught in the course, but to also learn to think about and apply the knowledge in ways that will be practical and helpful in their lives. I want them to be able to asses a situation, analyze the problem, collect pertinent information, explore options, and come to a resolution. I believe that if the basics of a course are taught well, a student can go anywhere with the information.

As a teacher, I challenge myself to create a successful learning experience every time I enter the classroom. I have five creeds that guide my teaching

  • Avoid information overload. It just creates frustration for the teacher and the student.
  • Teach less better.
  • Be innovative. Don’t be afraid to try new and different approaches, they might be just the way to reach someone.
  • Challenge the students to think. Knowledge is more than just regurgitation. Application of knowledge is power.
  • Reward their hard work. They deserve it.

I want the students to know that I care about their learning and am will to do whatever it takes to accomplish our shared learning objectives. Every student is different, has different learning styles, and has different learning objectives. I expect my students to work hard, and I work hard to create the most positive learning experience possible while they learn. My goals as a teacher are to motivate students to learn, to challenge them to know, understand, and be able to apply the material, and to learn how to me more effective in achieving these goals with my students.

Professional experience

2009 – present Assistant Professor Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University
2004 – 2009 Lecturer Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University
2000 – 2004 Visiting Lecturer Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University
1997 – 2000 Associate Extension Agent, Environmental Horticulture Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech University
1995 – 1997 Assistant Professor of Horticulture Plant Science, Texas Tech University

Refereed Publications

  • Tyler, H. H., S. L. Warren, T. E. Bilderback, and W. C. Fonteno. 1993. Composted poultry litter: I. Effect on physical and chemical properties of a pine bark based substrate. J. Environmental Horticulture 11:131-136.
  • Tyler, H. H., S. L. Warren, T. E. Bilderback, and K. B. Perry. 1993. Composted poultry litter: II. Effect on plant growth. J. Environmental Horticulture 11:137 141.
  • Warren, S. L., T. E. Bilderback, and H. H. Tyler. 1995. Efficacy of three nitrogen and phosphorus sources in container-grown azalea production. J. Environmental Horticulture 13:147-151.
  • Tyler, H. H., S. L. Warren, and T. E. Bilderback. 1996. Cyclic irrigation increases irrigation efficiency and ammonium retention. J. Environmental Horticulture 14:194-198.
  • Tyler, H. H., S. L. Warren, and T. E. Bilderback. 1996. Reduced leaching fractions improve irrigation application efficiency. J. Environmental Horticulture 14:199-204.
  • Kraus, H.T. 1998. Effect of soil moisture and mulch on growth of desert willow. HortTechnology 8:588-590.
  • Kraus, H. T., R. L. Mikkelsen, and S. L. Warren. 2000. Container substrate temperatures affect mineralization of composts. HortScience 35:16-18.
  • Kraus, H. T. and S. L. Warren. 2000. Performance of turkey litter compost as a slow-release fertilizer in containerized plant production. HortScience 35:19-21.
  • Warren, S. L., T. E. Bilderback, and H. T. Kraus. 2001. Method of fertilizer application affects nutrient losses of controlled-release fertilizer. Acta Horticulturae 548:349-353.
  • H.T. Kraus, S.L. Warren, and C.E. Anderson. 2002. Nitrogen form affects growth, mineral nutrient content, and root anatomy of contoneaster and rudbeckia. HortScience 37:126-129.
  • H.T. Kraus and S.L. Warren. 2006. Nursery Production of¬†Helleborus x hybridus:¬†Management of Nitrogen and Substrate pH. J. Environ. Hort. 24(4):91-96.



PhD Horticultural Science NC State University 1995

MS Horticultural Science NC State University 1992

BS Ornamental Horticulture NC State University 1989


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