Farwest 2017 Spotlights Latest Insights in Horticulture From Growing to Retailing

The 2017 Farwest Show takes place Aug. 22-25 in Portland, OR, and features presentations from industry-leading experts, as well as several networking opportunities. Here’s a closer look at must-see items on the agenda.

Keynote Presentation Tackles Balancing Work and Professional Life

The keynote speaker on Wednesday. August 23, is Terri McEnaney, President of Bailey Nurseries. McEnaney’s presentation, sponsored by Greenhouse Grower magazine, is titled “Connections: Cultivating Your Company and Your Professional Life.” McEnaney is a fourth-generation leader in her family’s nursery business. Bailey Nurseries is a highly recognized leader in horticulture throughout the U.S. and worldwide. The brand has maintained its family-owned roots for more than 112 years, and is celebrating its 40th anniversary of expansion to growing in Oregon. McEnaney took over as president in 2001 and has been instrumental in the nursery’s growth for more than 25 years. She has served on the boards of many notable organizations, including AmericanHort, the Horticultural Research Institute (HRI), and HRI’s Seed Your Future initiative.

Nursery Country Tours

The Farwest Show’s theme, “Be Far From Ordinary,” will be on full display during this year’s pre-show Nursery Country Tours. Greenhouse growers will find special interest in tour stops at premier nursery growers in the western outskirts of Portland. The tours take place Tuesday, August 22. Destinations include Eshraghi Nursery, Farmington Gardens, Blooming Nursery, and Bailey Nurseries. For the greenhouse professional, the tour spotlights growing successful plant material from the grower to the retail outlet to the customer. Tour nurseries will discuss quality and innovation in terms of giving plants the best start and keeping them thriving every step of the way. Attendees will gain valuable knowledge about how to source and sell plant material. Stops also include wholesale growers who also operate retail outlets. Pre-registration at FarwestShow.com/register.shtml is required. Cost is $99 per person with early bird registration by July 31. Registration after August 1 is $119.

Brie Arthur
Brie Arthur

Brie Arthur and Jim Monroe Speak to Sustainability and Potential in Today’s Local Food Movement for Garden Retail

Two of the horticulture industry’s leading advocates and experts in the local food movement will deliver seminar addresses at Farwest 2017. Garden communicator Brie Arthur and Jim Monroe, Founder of Hort Couture Plants and Owner of Greenbrier Nurseries, will speak to the importance of sustainability in the landscape and the opportunities for food at garden retail.

Arthur’s seminar, “Foodscape Revolution: Ecology and Sustainable Management,” will underscore the importance of managing landscapes in a sustainable manner for the health of clients, family, community, and the ecosystems surrounding the landscape. Soil science is the key. Arthur will explain how microbial activity is the catalyst for healthy plants. Organic products, pollinators, and plants will be spotlighted to give attendees take-away ideas.

Monroe’s seminar, “The Importance of Food in the Garden Center,” will point out how young families are dedicated to healthier food choices, and the important role therein for the local, independent garden center. He will explain using upscale farm markets to drive traffic in slower months, growing CSA farm shares in the greenhouses for winter cash flow, and how the local food movement has made garden centers more relevant in the community.

Grower Solution Center Schedules Mini-Sessions Relevant to Greenhouse and Nursery Growers

The Farwest Show’s Grower Solution Center will present an informative series of 18 free mini-sessions at this year’s show. The sessions take place during the Trade Show hours on the show floor, and many of them complement Farwest’s comprehensive breakout seminars and pesticide classes. The Grower Solution Center includes a slate of industry experts from around the country speaking on key topics including soil health, pest and disease issues, technology, irrigation, labor, energy, and more. Talks address grower challenges and offer solutions for more productive and efficient operations. Talks will be delivered in power-packed 25-minute segments starting on Wednesday, August 23, and running during the trade show, with the last scheduled at on Friday, August 25. The Mini-Sessions are designed to give attendees an educational reprieve from the busy show floor.

“The Grower Solution Center adds so much to the show in a concentrated way,” says Allan Niemi, Director of Events for the Oregon Association of Nurseries. “The Mini-Sessions are a power punch of ideas and inspiration for our greenhouse/nursery grower attendees.”

World Perspectives on the Future for Breeding and Plants

Industry experts Chuck Pavlich and Kevin Hobbs will deliver two seminars of particular relevance to greenhouse growers looking to the directions and trends for new plant material. The two will focus on the future for breeding and new plants entering the marketplace.

Pavlich, Director of New Product Development for Terra Nova Nurseries, Inc., will present a seminar, “The Future of Plant Breeding is Now.” Pavlich, through his world travels, will share outlooks on consumer trends and demands for breeding and propelling North American natives into the international market.

Hobbs is Head of Research and Development Department at Hillier Nurseries. His talk, “Plants From Across the Pond,” highlights the latest plants from the United Kingdom and PlantHaven International being brought to market by Hillier Nurseries. His seminar takes place Thursday, August 24.

Emergent Networking Event for Young Horticulture Professionals

The 2017 Farwest Show will host its annual event, “Emergent: A Group for Growing Professionals,” on Wednesday, August 23. Sponsored this year by F&B Farms and Nursery, Emergent brings together the industry’s best and brightest professionals under 40. Young professionals will network with like-minded horticultural enthusiasts, establish new relationships, and share in building a brighter future for the green industry. They will have opportunities to exchange insights, innovative ideas, and business practices. Originating six years ago as the Young Nursery Professionals Group, with a handful of eager, talented young individuals, Emergent: A Group for Growing Professionals now boasts more than 3,000 of the nation’s brightest young minds in horticulture. Extending the event beyond Farwest, participants will be able to network online on Emergent’s Facebook page.

Retailer Idea Center Offers 17 Mini-Sessions Covering Topics Essential to Garden Retail

A series of free mini-sessions at this year’s Retailer Idea Center will takes place during the show on the show floor. The key sessions spotlight a menu of subjects and issues pertinent to garden retail owners and employees. The Retailer Idea Center will feature themes that address timely and trending topics including digital marketing, design, merchandising, new products, and more.

Focus on Biocontrol Issues for the Greenhouse Grower

Industry experts Suzanne Wainwright-Evans and Paul Koole will deliver a series of talks of particular importance to greenhouse growers. The two will focus on challenges and solutions in the areas of biocontrol and pest management.

Wainwright-Evans, Owner of Buglady Consulting, will conduct two seminar sessions during the show. The first, “Mythbusters: Greenhouse Biocontrol Management for Specialty Crops,” is sponsored by Greenhouse Grower magazine and is scheduled for Thursday, August 24. This talk dispels common myths about specialty crop biocontrol and offers truths for tackling pest issues in the greenhouse. Her second seminar, “Aphids. What You Need to Know to Manage Them,” covers the most common aphids and how to manage them with biological control agents. Attendees will learn about identification, biology, beneficials, chemical compatibility with biological control agents, and banker plant systems. This talk takes place Friday, August 25.

In addition to her seminars, Wainwright-Evans is slated to speak at the Grower Solution Center on the Show floor at two time slots. Her first talk, “Broad Mites: Identification and Treatment,” takes place Thursday, August 24. Her second talk, “Biocontrol Mythbusters 101: The Top 3 Myths about Biological Controls,” is scheduled for Friday, August 25.

Koole, Technical Team Coordinator – North America at Biobest USA Inc., will deliver a message titled “Biocontrol of Thrips in Greenhouse Crops: Advanced Session.” This advanced session for experienced users of biocontrols will discuss western flower thrips management in greenhouse crops (vegetables and ornamentals) and is designed to enhance the ability to combat this greenhouse pest. Koole’s talk is scheduled for Friday, August 25.

“Women in Horticulture” Networking Event with Industry Leader Leslie Halleck

“Women in Horticulture” brings women together to establish connections, share knowledge, and encourage progress to advance women in the green industry. The event will be a place to network and discuss the unique opportunities and challenges women face in today’s business. Featured guest this year is Leslie Halleck of Halleck Horticultural, LLC. Halleck is a Certified Professional Horticulturist with 25 years of green industry experience. She currently runs Halleck Horticultural, LLC, providing horticultural consulting, business and marketing strategy, product development and branding, and content creation for green industry companies. The industry networking event takes place on Thursday, August 24.

Seminar Speakers Leslie Halleck And Gary Lewis Focus on Garden Retail in a Series of Seminars

Retail leaders Halleck and Gary Lewis will deliver four seminars on various subjects with relevance for independent garden center owners and employees. Talks will cover topics of customer demography, digital marketing, marketing strategy, and new plants.

In her first seminar, Halleck presents “Making the Match: Which Customers Do You Really Want?” on Wednesday, August 23. She will elaborate on various types of customers and pitfalls and tips in targeting, recruiting, and keeping the right customers. Her second talk, “Are You Digitally Relevant,” takes place Thursday, August 24. This address looks at current online technology, apps, and other digital distribution channels that retailers can us to be face-to-face with customers to capture market share.

Lewis, Owner of Phoenix Perennials and Specialty Plants Ltd., in British Columbia, will present a talk, “Groupon or Coupon?: Using Conventional and Modern Marketing Strategies to Build and Maintain Your Customer Base,” on Wednesday, August 23. He will share his experiences using conventional marketing such as print, radio, and events versus modern marketing such as a digital, social media, and social commerce. Lewis will offer strategies to leverage their full potential while avoiding their pitfalls. His second seminar, “Hot New Plants: Cutting Edge Garden Plants for Cutting Edge Retail/Wholesale/Design,” is scheduled for Thursday, August 24. As a grower-retailer, Lewis will comment on new introductions from both retail and production viewpoints. He will share the inside track on cutting edge garden plants, new introductions, and future plant breeding, discussing the role of new plants in the product mix.

For complete details on Farwest 2017, go to FarwestShow.com.

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