Industry Pulse Fall Survey Results

We surveyed growers about mums and poinsettias, asking them what sizes they grew, when they shipped and if they had any suggestions for improving sell-through on mums and poinsettias, among other things. Here are the full results of our latest Industry Pulse survey.

Q: Which of the following best describes your business?
Grower-retailer … 48.5 percent
Wholesale grower … 50.5 percent
Young plant grower … 1.0 percent

Q: If you grew mums this year, will you grow them again next year?
Yes … 84.5 percent
No … 8.3 percent
Not sure … 7.1 percent

Q: If you do grow mums, who is your primary customer?
E-commerce sites … 0
Farm markets … 6.4 percent
Home improvement chains … 5.1 percent
Independent garden centers … 38.5 percent
Mass merchandisers … 2.6 percent
Other growers … 0
Supermarket chains … 7.7 percent
Warehouse clubs … 2.6 percent
Wholesale florists … 2.6 percent
Your own retail shop … 34.6 percent

Q: Who are your other mums customers?
E-commerce sites … 0
Farm markets … 28.8 percent
Home improvement chains … 3.4 percent
Independent garden centers … 32.2 percent
Mass merchandisers … 1.7 percent
Other growers … 20.3 percent
Supermarket chains … 10.2 percent
Warehouse clubs … 0
Your own retail shop … 42.4 percent

Q: How does your mum production this year compare to your mum production from last year?
Our mum production was up more than 10 percent over last year  … 16.9 percent
Our mum production was up between 5 and 10 percent over last year … 14.3 percent
Our mum production was up less than 5 percent over last year … 9.1 percent
Our mum production was about the same as last year … 31.2 percent
Our mum production was down less than 5 percent over last year … 5.2 percent
Our mum production was down between 5 and 10 percent over last year … 10.4 percent
Our mum production was down more than 10 percent over last year … 13.0 percent

Q: When did you begin shipping mums this year?
Before July 1 … 2.7 percent
July 1-15 … 4.1 percent
July 16-31 … 9.6 percent
August 1-15 … 26.0 percent
August 16-31 … 32.9 percent
September 1-18 … 24.7 percent

Q: Did you begin shipping mums later this year than you did last year, and if so by how long?
Yes, we began shipping 0-2 weeks later this year … 12.3 percent
Yes, we began shipping 2-4 weeks later this year … 2.7 percent
Yes, we began shipping more than 4 weeks later … 0
No, we began shipping around the same time this year … 60.3 percent
No, we began shipping earlier this year … 24.7 percent

Q: If you did begin shipping mums later this year than last year, what caused the late start?
-Customers not buying until after Labor Day.
-Early crop failure.
-Cool summer: People’s spring plants looked great. No need for additional color.
-All the rain from June 8 until July 3.
-Later varieties did not grow any earlys Excess heat.
-Excess heat.
-Paradigm shift in consumer buying patterns…trending later.
-Cool summer temps.

Q: Up to this point, how do this year’s mum sales compare to last year’s mum sales?
Sales are up more than 10 percent … 18.4 percent
Sales are up between 5 and 10 percent … 11.8 percent
Sales are up less than 5 percent … 7.9 percent
Sales are about the same as last year … 31.6 percent
Sales are down less than 5 percent … 6.6 percent
Sales are down between 5 and 10 percent … 7.9 percent
Sales are down more than 10 percent … 15.8 percent

Q: Did mum sales meet your expectations this year?
Yes … 52.1 percent
No … 22.5 percent
Not sure … 25.4 percent

What sized container resulted in the most mum sell-through for you this year?
Small (6-inch or smaller) … 12.8 percent
Medium (6-inch to 10-inch) … 73.1 percent
Large (10-inch or larger) … 14.1 percent

Does your greenhouse operation have any marketing programs or promotions in place for mums or fall planting?
-Yes … 28.0 percent
-No … 72.0 percent

Do you have any suggestions for other growers looking to improve sell-through with mums?
-Use mums in mixed container plantings, and have smaller sizes for do-it-yourself container planters.
-Develop signage and programs directed to the end user.
-Don’t try to cheapen the product.
-Start later.
-Don’t be stingy with fertilizer.
-For the larger operations, it is important to have at least three different varieties that bloom in succession so you always have a crop ready to ship or sell.
-School fundraisers are a good way to market 10-inch mums.
-Don’t skimp on crop input costs.

Are you growing poinsettias this year?

Yes … 53.7 percent
No … 46.3 percent

If so, who is your primary poinsettia customer?
E-commerce sites … 1.9 percent
Farm markets … 1.9 percent
Home improvement chains … 3.8 percent
Independent garden centers … 30.2 percent
Mass merchandisers … 3.8 percent
Other growers … 1.9 percent
Supermarket chains … 9.4 percent
Warehouse clubs … 3.8 percent
Wholesale florists … 3.8 percent
Your own retail shop … 39.6 percent

From which of the five major poinsettia breeders do you buy cuttings? (Check all that apply.)

Dümmen … 31.4 percent
Oglevee … 15.7 percent
Paul Ecke Ranch … 96.1 percent
Selecta First Class … 19.6 percent
Syngenta Flowers … 52.9 percent

Are you satisfied with the latest poinsettia varieties available to you this year?
Yes, I believe there are enough new varieties to keep consumers interested in poinsettias. … 90.7 percent
No, I believe more new varieties are needed to keep consumers interested in poinsettias. … 9.3 percent

How does your poinsettia production this year compare to your poinsettia production last year?
Our poinsettia production is up 10 percent. … 3.8 percent
Our poinsettia production is up 10 percent. … 13.2 percent
Our poinsettia production is up less than 5 percent. … 9.4 percent
Our poinsettia production is about the same as last year. … 18.9 percent
Our poinsettia production is down less than 5 percent. … 11.3 percent
Our poinsettia production is down between 5 and 10 percent. … 24.5 percent
Our poinsettia production is down more than 10 percent. … 18.9 percent

What are your sales expectations of poinsettia season?
I expect sales to increase more than 10 percent. … 5.6 percent
I expect sales to increase between 5 and 10 percent. … 14.8 percent
I expect sales to increase less than 5 percent. … 14.8 percent
I expect sales to be about the same as last year. … 29.6 percent
I expect sales to decrease less than 5 percent. … 5.6 percent
I expect sales to decrease between 5 and 10 percent. … 14.8 percent
I expect sales to decrease more than 10 percent. … 14.8 percent

Does your greenhouse operation have any marketing programs or promotions in place for poinsettias?

Yes … 35.2 percent
No … 64.8 percent

What percentage of the poinsettias you produced last year did you wind up dumping without even shipping to retail?
We didn’t dump a single poinsettia. … 9.4 percent
We dumped less than 5 percent of all poinsettias produced. … 49.1 percent
We dumped between 5 and 10 percent of all poinsettias produced. … 34.0 percent
We dumped between 10 and 20 percent of all poinsettias produced. … 5.7 percent
We dumped more than 20 percent of all poinsettias produced. … 1.9 percent

Do you have any suggestions for other growers looking to improve sell-through with poinsettias?
-Differentiate your product.
-Grow less, but higher quality.
-Grow in unique containers, non-standard pot sizes.
-Combine with other plants combo planter.

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