April 26, 2012
Make Your Employees A Lean, Mean Team
Walter Gravagna, the president of Van de Wetering Greenhouses, a Greenhouse Grower Top 100 Grower located on Long Island, N.Y., had heard of the lean manufacturing concept, but he found it to be rather elusive. Lean manufacturing is the idea that eliminating waste, be it incidental work or damage to products, allows businesses to operate at maximum efficiency. After increasing his plug tray sticking production by more than 20 percent just two hours after implementing a new progressive sticking method, Gravagna feels differently about the concept. “If you would have told me we’d get those kinds of results, I would have said forget it,” Gravagna says. “But you have to be open-minded.” The lean manufacturing process all started when Gravagna noticed one of his longtime customers received Van de Wetering shipments much faster. Elzinga & Hoeksema Greenhouses of Kalamazoo, Mich., was transplanting more product – a lot more. “They had […]
March 9, 2012
Make Your Business A Lean, Mean Machine
Walter Gravagna, the president of Van de Wetering Greenhouses, had heard of lean manufacturing concept, but he found it to be rather elusive. After increasing his plug tray sticking production by more than 20 percent just two hours after implementing a new progressive sticking method, Gravagna doesn’t feel that way anymore. “If you would have told me we’d get those kinds of results, I would have said forget it,” Gravagna says. “But you have to be open-minded.” The lean manufacturing process all started when Gravagna noticed shipments from Van De Wetering, a Greenhouse Grower Top 100 Grower located on Long Island, N.Y., were more efficiently being received by one of his longtime customers. Elzinga & Hoeksema Greenhouses of Kalamazoo, Mich. was transplanting more product – a lot more. “They had become so much more efficient in terms of how much they could receive in one day,” Gravagna says. So Gravagna […]
October 12, 2011
AAS: Advantages Are Solid
All-America Selections (AAS) has developed an enviable cachet over its nearly 80 years, but taking advantage of it isn’t always easy. That was one of the themes that emerged from a panel discussion with industry leaders held during the recent annual summer tour–appropriately enough–right in the middle of McShane’s Nursery in Salinas, Calif. A wide range of opinions was shared by the six panelists, but the panel was unanimous in one belief: the good feelings engendered by the AAS logo. In fact, many agree with Stephanie Turner of Park Seed in Greenwood, S.C., who says the logo is essentially the industry’s own Good Housekeeping seal of approval. Some panelists, however, wouldn’t go quite that far, saying it wasn’t as well known. The moderator of the discussion was Jeanne Svob, flower seeds business manager, Syngenta Horticultural Services, who started out by asking how AAS could better integrate with nurseries. Kate Santos, […]
July 25, 2011
Fredriks Nursery: Nice Guys Finish First
David Fredriks takes the old recipe for success in business, find a need and fill it, to a new level. As the owner of Fredriks Nursery in Ripon, Calif., about a two-hour drive east of San Francisco, Fredriks tries to anticipate people’s needs and fill them before they feel, well, needy. Take his customers’ products, for example. Fredriks is a wholesale grower who supplies independent retail nurseries within a 100-mile radius of his operation, which consists of approximately 140,000 square feet of greenhouses and more than 12 acres of shade house area. “I have to keep them happy,” he says, “and to be happy they need to have things that are different than the chain stores.” Fredriks says he’s always sold to the independent stores, and they’ve been really good to him. So he made a commitment years ago not to sell to the big box stores. “I have nothing […]
April 24, 2017
Ian Baldwin Offers Examples From Grower-Retailers on Pr…
In March, Baldwin wrote a blog advising grower-retailers to consider raising their prices this spring. The post inspired a number of creative suggestions.
April 22, 2017
American Floral Endowment Announces Winners of 2017 Pau…
Four students pursuing careers in horticulture now have scholarships to help them along the way, thanks to the American Floral Endowment.
April 20, 2017
Terra Nova Nurseries Releases Two New, Attractive Begon…
Stardust is the latest addition to Terra Nova Nurseries’ existing T Rex Begonia series, and Silver is the first introduction to the company’s new Spectre Begonia series.
April 19, 2017
Suppliers Can Offer Technical Solutions for New Cannabi…
Here’s a look at how a few manufacturers have partnered with growers to make their transition into cannabis a smooth one, whether it’s through hands-on guidance or partnering with other industry leaders.
April 18, 2017
Cool Combos From CAST 2017 – Editor’s Choic…
With container gardening becoming more of a lifestyle among consumers than a trend, and breeders continuing to put more effort in container mixes and components, I feel I would be remiss if I didn't share some of the special combinations that not only caught my eye at California Spring Trials, but absolutely took my breath away and made me want to immediately get started gardening.
April 17, 2017
LumiGrow’s Latest Lighting Research Highlighted in Grow…
Industry leaders representing a broad range of vegetable, floriculture, and cannabis producers gathered to learn how to implement modern lighting strategies for their own production.
April 16, 2017
Danziger Invests in Continued North American Business G…
As part of a new business structure for its North American market, Mike Fernandez has been appointed Market Manager North America for Bedding Plants and Perennials, and Kate Zvara was named as Key Account Manager and Retail Specialist.
April 15, 2017
How Oregon Growers Are Making Lean Improvements With He…
The Oregon Nursery Lean Consortium recently helped two Pacific Northwest growers realize significant productivity gains and labor savings.
April 14, 2017
How to Trial a New Product Before You Use It in Your Gr…
Before you apply a new product on a plant, you want to make sure it is safe and effective. Technical experts from Kemin have compiled a five-step guide designed to help you measure the benefits of a new product you want to incorporate into your operation.
April 13, 2017
AmericanHort’s Production Technology Conference To Debu…
The AmericanHort Production Technology Conference is designed to give nursery and greenhouse growers a chance to get hands-on with the latest advancements in production technology and explore the return on investment potential of equipment purchases and upgrades.
April 13, 2017
Research Team Seeking Feedback From Hydroponic Growers
Are you a hydroponic grower of food crops? If so, Michigan State University and Iowa State University researchers are looking for your input.
April 12, 2017
Looking for Info on New Varieties for Hot Climates? Che…
The Florida Nursery Growers and Landscape Association’s Florida Flower Trials, which are focused on new and improved varieties able to thrive in the extremes of Florida’s climate, are a great opportunity to connect with national breeders.
April 11, 2017
Begonias, Celosias Among Dr. Allan Armitage’s Favorites…
Check out some of Allan’s top picks from his final day at CAST 2017, which included visits to Green Fuse Botanicals and Floranova.
April 11, 2017
Green Fuse Botanicals’ Rex Begonias and First Looks; Fl…
Here are the highlights from Green Fuse Botanicals and Floranova on the last day of CAST 2017.