January 16, 2009
Production Tips For Top Performers: Hibiscus moscheutos
Hibiscuses are one of the most showy and popular tropical plants. The genus contains more than 200 species that are native to temperate, subtropical or tropical regions of the world. Many are valuable ornamentals that add a spectacular exotic flair to gardens. For that tropical feel in a northern location, the tender species are wonderful in containers. Northern gardeners also have a hardy option: swamp rose mallow or H. moscheutos is native to southern and eastern North America and is cold-hardy to Zone 5. Like their tropical cousins, H. moscheutos sports huge flowers in shades of pink, red or white that can be over 9 inches in diameter. The flower power of the enormous blooms is irresistible. H. moscheutos will tolerate wetness and does best in consistently moist soil. They prefer sun to part shade. Plants die down to the ground each winter and are very late to emerge in […]
December 17, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Lavandula Stoechas
Figures 1a and b. The flowers of Spanish lavender or L. stoechas have showy, whimsical bracts on top of the inflorescence, reminiscent of bunny ears. Few plants can match the romantic appeal of lavender. The silvery foliage and drifts of flowers are lovely in their own right but are also evocative of old-world charm and idyllic sun-drenched Mediterranean settings. Lavender plants are surely one of the best choices to line a sunny garden path, where brushing against them as you pass will release that classic scent. In a container garden, people can enjoy the fragrance and spiked inflorescences up close. Lavender is produced commercially for its essential oil, valued in perfumes and also has some medicinal and culinary uses. In floriculture, lavender is a desirable and popular part of both the herb and ornamental segments of the market. Lavenders are also a very practical choice for modern gardeners since they […]
October 21, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Echinacea ‘Sunrise’ & ‘Harvest Moon’
Figure 1a. Echinacea ‘Sunrise.’ The flower color of ‘Sunrise’ is cheerful, buttery yellow and its petals are perpendicular to the stems. A few years ago, the world of herbaceous perennials went cone crazy with the introduction of novel yellow and orange-colored echinacea (cone flower) hybrids. These star hybrids of Echinacea purpurea and Echinacea paradoxa have continued to shine with their promising performance. Over the last few years, we have trialed numerous echinacea cultivars for their greenhouse and garden performance, and we have been charmed with the two yellow-colored cultivars–’Sunrise’ and ‘Harvest Moon.’ The flower color of ‘Sunrise’ is cheerful, buttery yellow and the petals are perpendicular to the stems (Figure 1a) while ‘Harvest Moon’ has golden yellow flowers with reflexed petals (Figure 1b). Figure 1b. Echinacea ‘Harvest Moon.’ Golden yellow flowers with reflexed petals highlight ‘Harvest Moon.’ Both cultivars are mildly fragrant and have been reliably hardy at least in […]
September 18, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Campanula Persicifolia
There are about 300 species in the genus campanula, most native to northern temperate regions. Many are valuable ornamentals and have become classic elements in the garden, adding a touch of grace and refinement. Species range from tiny alpines to 5-foot-tall specimens for the back of the border. The flowers are generally bell-shaped and lavender-blue, white or pink. Campanula persicifolia is commonly called peach-leaved bellflower because the long narrow leaves resemble those of the peach tree. It is native to Western Asia and Europe, and forms upright spires about 3 feet tall, with many flowers of lavender-blue or white. The plants prefer cool conditions and perform best in Zones 3 to 6. C. persicifolia plants spread and will also self-sow quite freely in the right environment–full sun or part shade, and moist well-drained soil. They are an elegant and showy addition to any border, and also make excellent cut flowers. […]
August 25, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Gaillardia ‘Oranges & Lemons’
Gaillardia, commonly known as blanket flower, has adorned many traditional perennial gardens. Recently, a number of new cultivars of this drought-tolerant North American native have been introduced. This year at OFA Short Course, there were several new cultivars of gaillardia displayed and many of them are trial worthy. After trialing several great gaillardia cultivars for their greenhouse performance, we were particularly impressed with ‘Oranges and Lemons.’ As the name suggests, this cultivar has cheery, peachy-yellow flowers that almost gleam in the sunlight. In the MSU trial gardens (USDA cold hardiness Zone 5), ‘Oranges and Lemons’ has over-wintered in two separate locations for the last three years, and it continues to bloom all summer long without deadheading. Gaillardia ‘Oranges and Lemons’ is as easy to produce in flower as it is to grow in a garden. Starting Material Since ‘Oranges and Lemons’ is patented, its unlicensed propagation is prohibited. We used […]
July 22, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Aquilegia vulgaris
Aquilegia or columbines are among the most familiar and beloved flowers to grace our gardens in spring and early summer. There are approximately 65 species in the genus, most native to northern temperate and alpine regions, and countless hybrids exist. Plants produce showy flowers in many shades of purple, blue, lavender, red, pink, yellow or white. Most also have nectar spurs that can be up to 6 inches in length on some species. Aquilegia tend to be short-lived but they hybridize and self-sow freely. They will do best in part shade, in rich but well-drained soil and are hardy to USDA cold hardiness Zones 3 to 8. The blooms on many aquilegia are nodding, but the flowers of the Winky series from Kieft Seeds face upwards. We have worked with two of the double-flowered varieties: ‘Winky Double Red and White’ (introduced in 2003) and ‘Winky Double Dark Blue and White’ […]
July 8, 2008
Nepeta x faassenii ‘Walker’s Low’
Nepeta Ã— faassenii ‘Walker’s Low,’ selected as Perennial Plant of the Year in 2007, is an excellent garden plant adaptable to almost any sunny garden in USDA cold hardiness Zones 3 to 8. ‘Walker’s Low’ creates a backdrop of silvery-green foliage and dainty lavender-blue flowers (Figure 1) and combines well with other herbaceous perennials. Like other catmints, ‘Walker’s Low’ also contains nepetalacetone, and its aromatic foliage makes catmint a good choice for herb gardens. ‘Walker’s Low’ also incorporates well in large combination containers and is suitable for alpine and arid gardens because it tolerates drought after establishment in the landscape. Plants continue to bloom all summer long, provided that spent flowers are removed. The charming blue flowers of ‘Walker’s Low’ attract butterflies and bees while the plants are rabbit and deer resistant. Nepeta Ã— faassenii, commonly known as catmint or catnip, is a hybrid of N. nepetella and N. racemosa […]
June 16, 2008
During a brisk, wintry walk in a Michigan garden, one realizes that, of the few elements of winter interest in the garden, ornamental grasses stand tall. There has been much said and written about the extraordinary versatility of the landscape use of ornamental grasses. Grasses add stature, texture, movement and fall and winter interest to any garden. Chasmanthium latifolium, commonly known as northern sea oats, is no exception. With its bamboo-like foliage and delicate inflorescences, chasmanthium is certain to interest gardeners (Figure 1A and B). Figure 1A and B. Chasmanthium latifolium plants provide movement and texture to a summer garden, while inflorescences add color and interest to a fall and winter garden. Chasmanthium latifolium is native to the United States and is naturalized from New Jersey to Pennsylvania in the Northeast to Texas and northern Florida in the Southeast. Chasmanthium is hardy to USDA Zones 4 to 9 and […]
June 11, 2008
Production Tips For Top Performers: Geranium ‘Rozanne’
Figure 1 (above). The periwinkle-â€¨blue flowers of ‘Rozanne’ are larger than those of â€¨most perennial geraniums. Figure 2 (below). ‘Rozanne’ in a 5 1/2-inch pot. Geranium ‘Rozanne’ is such a lovely plant, demand would be high even if it hadn’t been selected as Perennial Plant of the Year for 2008 by the Perennial Plant Association. ‘Rozanne’ is well-deserving of the acclaim, with numerous showy periwinkle-blue flowers accented by lighter centers and reddish veins (Figure 1). This variety is a fantastic garden performer and also very appealing in the pot. Perennial geraniums (not to be confused with the annual geraniums, botanically known as pelargonium) have the common name of crane’s bill due to the long narrow shape of their seed pods. Comprising more than 250 species, members of this very diverse genus are found throughout the world, primarily in temperate regions. Numerous species and cultivars have become key elements in classic English […]
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.
May 9, 2018
How Greenhouse Sanitation Helps You Start Clean and Sta…
If you keep your greenhouse clean from the start, you’ll save yourself money in the end.
May 8, 2018
Greenhouse Production Costs Keep Going Up, So Why Are P…
There is a general sentiment within the industry that pricing needs to be reevaluated to better account for the trend toward rising input costs.
May 7, 2018
Lighting Innovator Fluence Bioengineering Acquired by O…
Fluence specializes in LED-based horticultural systems, using Osram LED chips, for a wide variety of applications, including vertical farming and greenhouses.
May 7, 2018
2018 Greenhouse Grower Top 100 Growers: The Complete Li…
Strong growth among the nation's largest growers shows no signs of slowing down, as nearly a third of the Top 100 growers have significantly expanded production, and many have ongoing projects underway.