Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (FDACS) has established a partnership with Florida Nursery, Growers & Landscape Association (FNGLA) to promote gardening and landscaping to the public through a $250,000 USDA grant.
With the grant, FNGLA will showcase an interactive educational exhibit at Walt Disney World’s 2008 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. The exhibit will feature displays to encourage children and their families to garden and promote Florida-friendly landscaping, environmental responsibility and water conservation.
FNGLA will also transform its existing online Plant Locator into a real-time, online plant locator service that will enable growers to update information and offer real-time plant inventory in a database for landscape and retail customers.
A series of public service announcements will also air, and FNGLA will work with FDACS and the Florida Department of Education to transform the existing horticultural curriculum in Florida high schools to provide a path to the Certified Horticulture Professional program.
The Specialty Crops Competitiveness Act of 2004 actually cleared a path for a grant like this one. The Act authorizes USDA to make grants to states to enhance the competitiveness of nursery and other crops.