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Dr. Leonard Pike - Texas Sweet Onion King
The 1015, developed in the early 1980s by Dr. Leonard Pike, a professor of horticulture at Texas A&M University, is named for its suggested planting date - October 15. Nicknamed the "million-dollar baby" because of the money spent to develop it.
Pike received his Ph.D. in Horticulture in 1967 from Michigan State University and came to Texas A&M to work on cucumbers and carrots - at least that's what he thought at the time.
This Texas A&M University faculty member has one singular distinction: he developed one of the nation's most famous sweet onions, the Texas 1015.
"Never did I dream that I'd be known for onions.", he chucked. "You just don't think of people being known the whole world over because they worked with a certain type of crop. I've travelled to India, Russia, Germany, France, Australia, and England, and everbody knows about the 1015."
In fact, onions are the Lone Star State's leading vegetable crop. Sales reach $100 million per year, and the overall impact on the Texas economy has been estimated to be about $350 million per year.