October 6, 2009

First Lady Talking Gardening On ‘Sesame Street’

Michelle Obama will be appearing on the premier of “Sesame Street’s” 40th Season, encouraging kids to plant gardens and eat healthier. The show’s producers say Obama will teach the furry “residents” of Sesame Street about the benefits of growing a garden and healthy living, and she’ll show children how to plant tomato, cucumber and lettuce seeds, reports Reuters. For more information on the First Lady’s Sesame Street appearance, click here. Check out a clip from Mrs. Obama’s “Sesame Street” visit, below. 

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September 28, 2009

Eagle Creek Leads Green Movement

Progressive grower-retailer Eagle Creek Garden Center in Bainbridge and Mantua, Ohio, received an Emerald Award from Crain’s Cleveland Business last week for leading the region in sustainable initiatives. The Emerald Awards recognize Northeast Ohio companies that have implemented sustainable strategic priorities that significantly trim costs or increase cash flow with innovations and products that reduce their environmental footprint. An independent panel of judges reviewed nominations that included information on an organization’s sustainability initiative and goals, as well as the results and impact of those efforts on the triple bottom line–people, planet and profit. Eagle Creek won the award in the medium for-profit company category, with $9.9 million in annual revenues or less. “Eagle Creek Garden Center hopes to become nearly fossil-fuel independent by 2011 and employ a 100 percent local work force,” Crain’s reported. “Eagle Creek strives to use biodegradable and environmentally safe products and to recycle 100 percent of […]

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September 22, 2009

Hershey Hosts America In Bloom

Next week will be a sweet one in Hershey, Pa., when America In Bloom (AIB) celebrates the shared victories of the communities participating in this year’s competition. AIB is a national revitalization program and contest funded by our industry and managed by OFA. Hershey is a past AIB winner and considered one of the nation’s cleanest and greenest cities. Founder Milton S. Hershey dreamed of building the perfect town to live, work and play for the employees of his chocolate company. What began as a town that chocolate built has become a year-round, world-class resort destination with outstanding heritage, beautiful gardens and landscaped areas, community pride and environmental awareness. The eighth annual symposium begins Thursday, Oct. 1, with an opening reception. Greenhouse Grower’s Editor Delilah Onofrey and Alex Pearl will present the criteria awards, recognizing the towns that really stood out in the eight judging criteria–floral displays, landscaped areas, urban […]

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September 18, 2009

SAF Honors Entomologist Lance Osborne

The Society of American Florists (SAF) will present its Alex Laurie Award for Research and Education to Lance Osborne, professor of entomology/nematology at the University of Florida during its annual convention in Phoenix this week. Active in teaching and research on managing insects in ornamental and vegetable crops, Osborne has advanced new biological control methods in greenhouses and nurseries and worked with growers to help them adopt those new methods. He is known for pioneer work using banker plants as a source for insect predators, which are becoming an important tool in growers’ efforts to control insects in an environmentally friendly way. “Lance is a seeker of the truth rather than a seeker of the limelight,” says Margery Daughtrey, senior extension associate with Cornell University’s department of plant pathology. “He is a source of reliable research, extensive knowledge and sound judgment that you would want on any team of scientists […]

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August 5, 2009

South Carolina Association Creates Fund For HRI

The Horticultural Research Institute (HRI), the research affiliate of the American Nursery & Landscape Association (ANLA), has announced the establishment of the South Carolina Nursery & Landscape Association (SCNLA) Fund. “The South Carolina Nursery and Landscape Association is excited to be a part of an endowment fund that has such a good track record in supporting horticultural research,” says Donna Shealy Foster, SCNLA executive director. “The SCNLA Board of Directors felt the time had come to invest in the industry that has given so much to all of us.  We are proud to be a part of the HRI family.” HRI was established in 1962 as the research arm of ANLA. HRI’s mission is to direct, fund, promote and communicate horticultural research, which increases the quality and value of ornamental plants, improves the productivity and profitability of the nursery and landscape industry, and protects and enhances the environment.

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August 1, 2009

Listening To Leaders

A large crowd of growers gathered at this year’s Southeast Greenhouse Conference (SGC) to hear Charlie Hall, a Texas A&M professor and Greenhouse Grower contributor, make a presentation on the state of our industry and the factors impacting it. Unfortunately, as one of our industry’s information All-Stars was delivering vital economic news to growers, another grower crowd was gathering just a few yards away to feast on appetizers during the conference’s opening night. The dinner crowd, of course, doesn’t spell the end of our industry. It does, however, reflect priorities that need changing. We’ve all heard about growers who’ve folded, declared bankruptcy or are barely surviving. Perhaps that’s you. So now is the most critical time to tune in to industry leaders who can help steer your operation through the tough times. On the bright side, many growers are tuned in to industry leaders and they’re actively searching for ways […]

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July 21, 2009

Industry-Wide Grassroots Marketing Initiative

Two industry members have sparked a new interest in an industry-wide marketing initiative, this time on a grassroots level. A meeting at OFA Short Course drew an invited crowd of about 40 people from all different aspects of the floriculture industry to gauge interest in a basic, comprehensive marketing message that would cover everything from garden retailers (big box and independent) and growers to florists and landscapers. The message would be in addition to any branding efforts and could appear alongside a retailer or grower brand. The industry members, Frank Zaunscherb of ZMI Marketing in Canada and Laurie Scullin of The New Product Group marketing company who’s also a Greenhouse Grower contributor, led the discussion. The discussion included creating a simple message and building a website and marketing campaign behind it. The goal is to build interest in floriculture by communicating directly with consumers. Scullin says there hasn’t been any […]

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May 8, 2009

Kicking Around Industry Careers

Chicago’s John Marshall High School will host a free community event from 9:30 a.m. to noon called Plant a Garden, Grow an Opportunity next Saturday. Speakers will discuss careers in agriculture and horticulture, from marketing and business to science and the environment. Syngenta is among the event’s sponsors, and Jim Jenkins, head of the corporate alliance for Syngenta, is scheduled to present along with other industry speakers.  To attend the event, contact Barb Anderson at anderagcom@sbcglobal.net.

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April 27, 2009

FIRST Foliage Teaches Kids About Plants

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 FIRST Foliage, a large blooming patio plant and foliage grower in Homestead, Fla., kicked off its I Love Clean Air initiative by donating time and houseplants to educate future gardeners. Green Kid Clincs, hosted for children from first through sixth grades, educate children about plants, how they purify the air and how important it is to be considerate of our planet.  “There are various clinic themes depending on the age of the child but the message is strong and clear; if we each pledge a commitment to help our planet we can make a difference together.” says Bea Garces, VP Sales and Marketing, FIRST Foliage. Younger children are taught to reduce and reuse by reusing a water bottle as a pot for their new houseplant. They also get a chance to express themselves by decorating their plants with tags. The older children decorate brown […]

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April 21, 2009

Costa Kicks Off Fresh Air Tour

Costa Farms is engaging the next generation of consumers by bringing indoor plants to college campuses. The campaign kicked off last week at the University of Florida (UF). Three hundred peace lilies (spathiphyllums) were distributed as “free air purifiers” as part of Costa’s O2 For You campaign. Based in Homestead, Fla., it made sense to begin with the UF Gators in Gainesville, but Costa’s marketing manager, Marta Maria Garcia, didn’t start with the floriculture department, where students are already interested in plants. She contacted marketing students and Gators for a Sustainable Campus, whom were also supported by the American Lung Association and the Clean Air Council. On Wednesday, April 15, students and faculty swarmed the Plaza of the Americas at 9:50 a.m. and all the plants were distributed within 40 minutes. Those who took plants were asked to sign a large board pledging to live a greener life. Student organizers […]

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April 6, 2009

OFA Scholars Named For 2009

Six bright young floriculture students have been named OFA Scholars for 2009. The program is designed to develop students as strong contributors to the industry by providing education and networking opportunities. The OFA Scholars Program was opened up to students across the country in 2009, after being an Ohio-only program in its first two years. This year’s winners are: Alicain Carlson, North Carolina State University QiuXia Chen, Kansas State University Carola De La Torre, The Ohio State University Gretchen Giles, Michigan State University Jongyun Kim, University of Georgia Nathan Thompson, The Ohio State University Winners will receive a one-year membership in OFA and complimentary attendance at this year’s Short Course. You can find more information on the 2009 OFA Scholars and the program here.

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