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 […]
May 24, 2018
New Cannabis Greenhouse in Washington Nears Completion
Once the Marijuana Company of America’s new 30,000 square-foot facility is fully built, it will have the ability to house approximately 4,000 plants.
May 23, 2018
Collegiate Plant Initiative Helps Foster a Love of Plan…
CPI offers a unique perspective of the plant world, with the goal of connecting college students with exciting plants and teaching them more about opportunities in the plant industry.
May 23, 2018
How Low Substrate pH Can Cause Lower Leaf Chlorosis
Geraniums grown in substrates below an optimal pH range will exhibit chlorotic leaf spotting between veins, interveinal chlorosis, and marginal and leaf necrosis of the lower foliage.
May 22, 2018
Little Leaf Farms Expands Its Indoor Baby Greens Produc…
The Massachusetts-based company has increased the size of its greenhouses to 5 acres, more than doubling its annual production of baby greens.
May 22, 2018
Register Now for Award-Winning Online Greenhouse Growin…
Learn about production cost and profit, as well as the basic behind plant science, via two online classes being offered by the University of Florida.
May 21, 2018
Insights From Lawmaker’s Visit to a Top 100 Greenhouse …
When Rep. Julia Brownley of California visited Sun Valley Group, she got a firsthand look at a very busy time in the life of a flower grower.
May 20, 2018
Smithers-Oasis Now Offering Rootcubes Foam Media in Ret…
Designed with smaller or hobby growers in mind, the Rootcubes packs are also ideal for larger growers to use for trials.
May 19, 2018
Westerlay Orchids Shows Its Support for Local Schools
Proceeds from all sales the company made during the Carpinteria Greenhouse and Nursery Tour will be donated to fund STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) programs.
May 17, 2018
Ian Baldwin: Why the Rise of the Under 35s Will Help Yo…
In his latest blog, garden retail consultant Ian Baldwin says this new generation of plant buyers is seriously engaged in gardening, and is using social media to help become successful plant owners.
May 16, 2018
2018 Perennial Plant Symposium Offering Power to the Pe…
Perennial and gardening enthusiasts of all experience levels are invited to attend plant discussions on Monday, July 30 for a chance to hear from the best in the field on a range of topics.
May 15, 2018
Floriculture’s Future Hangs in the Balance Between Labo…
The nation’s largest growers are investing heavily in technology, new structures, human resources, and efficiency measures to stay competitive and profitable, despite significant labor shortages.
May 15, 2018
Gotham Greens Expanding Greenhouse Production Into Balt…
Scheduled to open in early 2019, Gotham Greens’ Baltimore facility will bring a reliable, year-round, local supply of fresh produce to serve retail, restaurant, and foodservice customers throughout the mid-Atlantic region.
May 14, 2018
Growing Innovations Geared to Connect Specialty Ag With…
Innovation abounds in agriculture, yet it can feel sometimes as if the gap between exciting new developments and what growers actually need in their operations can be awfully wide. We at Meister Media Worldwide intend to help narrow this gap. Which is why we’re pleased to introduce Growing Innovations – an altogether new type of event that will debut Nov. 7-8 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV. Unlike most agricultural events and trade shows, Growing Innovations is not about technology per se, nor is it about everyday issues that growers face. Instead, this new conference and tradeshow is very acutely solutions oriented. It takes as its starting point specialty crop growers’ most pressing real-world challenges – production efficiency, labor and water shortages, logistics, and data management to name just a few – and showcases advances, both current and up-and-coming, that have the greatest potential to bring […]
May 12, 2018
Fungicide Resistance in Botrytis is an International Ch…
Clemson University’s research team is exploring Botrytis in cut roses to find out how to help you maintain postharvest crop quality by avoiding fungicide resistance.
May 11, 2018
New Sterile Ornamental Grasses One Solution to Grass In…
Aggressive grass species can turn gardeners off to using ornamental grasses. Less fertile alternatives offer options for keeping grasses from taking over the garden.
May 10, 2018
Beekenkamp Plants Acquires Sunny Osteospermum Breeding …
Beekenkamp took over all Sunny Holland sales activities in 2017, and now has ownership of the company’s entire breeding program.