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Horticulturist György Bálint passes away

Hungary's Beloved Horticulturist Passes Away

D&T
June 21, 2020

Possibly the most popular figure in Hungary, widely respected and loved horticulturist György Bálint passed away this Sunday evening, just over a month before his 101st birthday.

A gardening expert and former TV host, best known for Hungarians as 'Bálint gazda' (Master Bálint) did even in the last days of his life what he had been doing for decades beforehand: pursuing his profession and passion: being a professional gardener, preserving nature and giving advice to everyone on these subjects.

Horticultural engineer, journalist, a degree holder in agricultural sciences and a former member of parliament, György Bálint had been known to most Hungarians as a 'media gardener'.

He was born in Gyöngyös, east of Budapest, on July 28, 1919, received his degree in horticultural engineering from the Royal Hungarian Academy of Horticulture in Budapest in 1941, and in 1949 he also obtained a degree in agricultural engineering from the Hungarian University of Agricultural Sciences. He worked as a chief agronomist and chief gardener, wrote agricultural textbooks, edited various horticultural journals and regularly published in several newspapers.

From 1981 to 2009, he was a permanent employee of the Hungarian Television's public interest magazine program 'Ablak' (Window), and from 1991, he became the editor-in-chief of the channel's agricultural education program 'Gazdaképző'.

In 1994, he joined the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ) and was elected a member of the party's National Council. From 1994 to 1998, he represented the party as a Member of Parliament. In 1995, he earned his bachelor’s degree in communication. He left the SZDSZ in 2009 and participated in the founding of the Liberal Civic Association (SZPE) as a founding member.

His work was recognized with the Cross of Merit of the Republic of Hungary (2005) and the Prima Primissima Award (2017), among others, and he was also an honorary citizen of Budapest and Gyöngyös.

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