Looking Ahead Around Houston After Ike

Looking Ahead Around Houston After Ike

Hurricane Ike will go down as one of the most diasterous storms in Texas history after pummeling the southeastern portion of the state a couple weeks ago. Sales will surely slow for the time being, but the vibe in the surrounding Houston area is that the storm could have been worse–and business will soon go on as usual.

Eddy Edmondson, president of the Texas Nursery & Landscape Association (TNLA), recently spoke with a couple of insurance companies about damage claims. One insurance company told him it had 30-plus claims as a result of Ike yet no catastrophic damages. The other insurance company had 19 claims totaling about $12 million in losses.

TNLA is currently working with the Texas Department of Agriculture developing a list of affected growers to get assistance from USDA. “The number we put in was probably around $10.9 or $11 million,” Edmondson says. “That includes cleanup.

“As far as the wholesale growers go, I don’t know of anyone who had a complete loss. They dodged a bullet there.”

Green Valley Growers, the second-largest greenhouse grower headquartered in Texas which ranks 59th on our Top 100 Growers List, is one operation dodged a bullet with Ike. Green Valley Growers was battered but not necessarily bruised the way President Jim Hessler expected.

“The eye of the hurricane passed right over us,” he says. “We were right in the thick of it, but we actually came through and I was pleasantly surprised come Sunday morning. We had some damage, but it was not as extenisve as it could have been.”

Green Valley Growers, which was featured in our February 2008 cover story, spent the days before Ike’s arrival soaking plants as much as possible to avoid burnout. The crew secured fabric and irrigation systems, and it even covered much of its office with plastic.

“That was based on our experience from Rita,” Hessler says. “Covering the office in plastic was unnecessary because we did not have any damage to the office building itself. Other buildings around town did, though.”

Green Valley Growers will, of course, be forced to dump some plants. The operation sits about 30 miles north of Houston, and its main crops are annuals, perennials, blooming tropical and potted plants, palms, shade and fruit trees and ferns and citrus. Hessler says a handful of foliage sustained some burn, but the propagation department experienced no damage–and that was his biggest concern.

“We had no damage whatsoever to propagation,” Hessler says. “The mum crop was untouched. You can’t tell anything had ever happened to the mum crop. The greatest amount of damage was probably in the trees–they said on this storm, the winds on the ground level were not necessarily as strong.

“The little bit that I’ve heard from others so far is that the growers east of us didn’t get hit as bad. It was mostly windy and we got a lot of rain down with it. Twelve inches of it at the nursery.”

Leave a Reply

More From State of the Industry...
Plants-and-Money

January 5, 2018

State of the Greenhouse Industry: Dealing With Your Banks in 2018 Will Take Patience

Financial institutions are still reluctant to part with capital for agricultural and horticultural growth, despite economic indicators. Here’s why banks have raised the bar on lending.

Read More
Capitol-Building

December 28, 2017

State of the Greenhouse Industry: Regulatory Uncertainty Means It’s Time to Get Involved

With election dynamics, a new farm bill, and pending immigration reform in the mix, 2018 looks to be a wait-and-see year for the horticulture industry.

Read More

December 9, 2017

Southern California Wildfires Narrowly Miss Most Grower Operations

Here’s an update on horticulture businesses in the areas affected by the California wildfires.

Read More
Latest Stories
Plants-and-Money

January 5, 2018

State of the Greenhouse Industry: Dealing With Your Ban…

Financial institutions are still reluctant to part with capital for agricultural and horticultural growth, despite economic indicators. Here’s why banks have raised the bar on lending.

Read More
Capitol-Building

December 28, 2017

State of the Greenhouse Industry: Regulatory Uncertaint…

With election dynamics, a new farm bill, and pending immigration reform in the mix, 2018 looks to be a wait-and-see year for the horticulture industry.

Read More

December 9, 2017

Southern California Wildfires Narrowly Miss Most Grower…

Here’s an update on horticulture businesses in the areas affected by the California wildfires.

Read More
Biocontrols in a Greenhouse

November 3, 2017

Take Greenhouse Grower’s 2018 State of the Indust…

Growers and others associated with the greenhouse business often ask the Greenhouse Grower editorial staff where we get ideas for stories. The Answer: You! That's why we're asking you to please take some time to answer our annual State of the Industry survey.

Read More

November 1, 2017

Technology Is Changing the Game for Growers

Technology is sexy. There’s a fervor associated with buying the latest go-go-gadget — and a fear of missing out if we don’t. We all want that latest, most advanced smartphone, home assistant, or wearable tech, no matter the cost. And jobs associated with technology? Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter — offer some of the most competitive and coveted positions on the planet. Just look at the stir Amazon made when it announced it would build a $50 billion second headquarters, with cities from all over North America clamoring to be the one chosen, considering the significant economic potential. Technology and tech jobs are it — and it’s no wonder growers don’t feel jobs in horticulture can compete. But what if they can? If tech jobs are the future and the future of horticulture depends on technology, then we have a real opportunity to seize. Millennials who have grown up […]

Read More

May 23, 2017

USDA-APHIS Bulletin on Unauthorized Distribution of Gen…

On May 2, 2017, USDA-APHIS was informed that an orange petunia variety was potentially genetically engineered and had been imported and moved interstate without required authorization by APHIS. This led to testing of numerous petunia varieties, which confirmed this particular variety and several others are genetically engineered, and meet the regulatory definition of a regulated article under APHIS regulations. APHIS continues to work with the industry to ensure unauthorized GE petunias are not distributed in the United States.

Read More

March 2, 2017

Greenhouse Grower State of the Industry Whitepaper Avai…

This year’s survey featured a record 975 respondents and tackled topics such as sales trends, technology, major industry challenges and opportunities, and much more.

Read More
Greenhouse Grower State of the Industry Webinar

February 27, 2017

State of the Industry Webinar Available for On-Demand V…

The half-hour presentation includes an analysis of Greenhouse Grower’s 2017 State of the Industry survey, along with insights from horticulture industry leaders.

Read More

February 11, 2017

Poinsettia Survey Reveals Growers Increased Poinsettia …

On average, growers responding to Greenhouse Grower’s 2016 Poinsettia Survey said the poinsettia season was “good,”Here’s a glance at the outlook for poinsettias in the marketplace.

Read More

January 25, 2017

59 New Members of Congress Need to Hear from You, SAF S…

Retailers, wholesalers, suppliers, and growers coming to the Society of American Florists' (SAF) 37th Annual Congressional Action Days, March 13-14 in Washington, DC, have a lot of explaining to do. There are 59 new congressmen and senators on Capitol Hill, and this freshmen class needs a lesson about floriculture.

Read More
bouldin-lawson-pro-sticking-line-at-north-creek-nurseries

January 25, 2017

State of the Industry 2017: Growers are Ready to Invest…

Greenhouse Grower's 2017 State of the Industry Survey revealed that grower investment in technology is imminent due to the cost and availability of labor, to improve efficiency, expand their growing operations, and allow employees to concentrate on higher value jobs that are less labor-intensive.

Read More

January 24, 2017

Growers are an Aging Demographic, 2017 State of the Ind…

Owners and upper management of growing operations in the horticulture industry, not unlike others in agriculture, are aging, according to Greenhouse Grower’s 2017 State of the Industry Survey.

Read More
Biocontrols and beneficials absolutely can be used in outdoor production, with the use of banker plant systems

January 24, 2017

Growers Becoming More Sustainable but Most Think Climat…

Greenhouse Grower's 2017 State of the Industry Survey revealed that growers are adopting biocontrols and organic production, yet 58% of growers said they don't believe humans can control climate change.

Read More

January 24, 2017

State of the Industry Survey Says 2017 Will be a Year o…

Growers, suppliers, and researchers who took Greenhouse Grower’s 2017 State Of The Industry Survey say they are ready to drive change and profitability in horticultural businesses.

Read More
Moana plant yard

January 4, 2017

Green Industry Poised for Continued Economic Growth in …

Positive economic indicators point to 2017 being a year of modest growth for the green industry, according to economist Charlie Hall.

Read More

January 3, 2017

Growing Optimism for the Horticulture Industry in 2017

With a new administration and a new Congress, AmericanHort's Craig Regelbrugge says the horticulture industry has reason to be cautiously optimistic that regulatory relief could be on the horizon.

Read More
Bees on flowers

October 11, 2016

Bees Endangered? Here’s The Rest Of The Story

Recently, mainstream media reported that certain bee species have been placed on the endangered species list, but the situation isn’t as dire as one might think.

Read More
cuttings-facility

September 27, 2016

How Global Suppliers Of Unrooted Cuttings Are Working T…

The world’s top vegetative producers discuss how they continue to evolve to overcome challenges and embrace opportunities to help growers and the varieties supply chain.

Read More