October 29, 2009

Blackmore Introduces New Ellepot Trays

The Blackmore Company unveiled two new products Thursday: 30-millimeter and 90-millimeter trays for Ellepots and Jumbo Ellepots, respectively. The Ellepot trays are 3 x 25 strip trays designed to accept 30-millimeter Ellepots. The tray has fluted cell walls for extra strength and staggered cells that allow nesting for shipment when empty, yet prevent compression of media when filled trays are stacked. A special bottom design allows Ellepots to be easily popped out of cells. The newest trays for Jumbo Ellepots, meanwhile, are ideal for landscapers. The 90-millimeter Jumbo Ellepots plant up to twice as fast as plastic pots because plants don’t need to be removed from pots. There are no plastic pots to pick up at the end of a planting job, either. For more information on either tray or other Blackmore products, visit the company’s website at BlackmoreCo.com.

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September 30, 2009

Online Only: Decorative Containers Give Instant Impact

If you’ve seen one black plastic grower’s pot, you’ve seen them all.” It’s not really an old saying, but it could be. Luckily more and more growers are trying their hand(s) at decorative pots–using them to differentiate themselves from other growers and to catch the eye of retailers and their consumers. Ryan Mast, national sales manager at Rush Creek Designs, contributes this growing trend to the huge increase in container gardening that started a couple of years ago. “The idea was that a younger generation was able to walk into a greenhouse or garden center, buy their already potted up flowers and put it on their front porch,” he says. “I think that’s now being taken to the next step and starting with more growers.” Mast says that many of the growers using Rush Creek decorative pots, use them as pot covers. “They take their grower pots, drop them right into […]

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September 25, 2009

Online Only: Pots And Trays Showcase

Want more on pots and trays? Check out October’s feature,Tomorrow’s Containers, for industry suppliers’ takes on changing customer demands, new materials, and recycling. And you can read about the latest trends in decorative containers here.   East Jordan Plastics: Project 100% Horticulture Container Recycling Program   East Jordan Plastics, building on its long history of plastic recycling, has engineered and implemented a closed loop recycling process that uses proven technology and ensures maximum energy efficiency and quality products. The company’s fist processing line in South Haven, Mich., has the capacity to recycle more than 10 million pounds of material annually. To arrange recycling of your plastic horticulture containers, or for more information, visit East Jordan Plastic’s Project 100% site.   Summit Plastic Company: Ä“co360   The Summit Plastic Company Ä“co360 line of products are engineered for the environmentally conscious grower and designed for the home gardener. OP47 Bio Pots, Poly-lactic Acid (PLA) Pots and […]

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September 16, 2009

Tomorrow’s Containers

Pots and trays are a staple of greenhouse production, but there are some fairly dynamic developments taking place in containers, both for growers and suppliers. We spoke with representatives from several of the industry’s leading container manufacturers to get their takes on the issues driving the industry in 2009. Changing Customer Demands When your biggest customers come to you with new requirements, it’s often impossible to say no, even when fulfilling them means big changes. That’s what’s happening now with some of the box stores requiring more specific labeling – in some cases, asking for barcodes identifying the genus of the plant in the container. “Genus-specific labeling is challenging for us, and I think it’s even more challenging for the grower,” says Cal Diller, president of East Jordan Plastics. “It’s going to impact us,” agrees Norman Belliveau, CEO and president of Summit Plastics. “Up until now we’ve been putting on […]

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September 16, 2009

Containers: Paper Or Plastic?

Sustainability has become a commonly discussed topic within the floriculture industry. Few studies, however, have quantified whether conversion to a sustainable production practice is a worthy investment. Therefore, we conducted a case study for a medium-sized Indiana commercial greenhouse interested in substituting plastic 4.5-inch pots with Ellepots for bedding plants. Ellepots are “pots” made from degradable non-woven paper that wraps around the growing media and can be planted directly into the soil. To determine if the proposed practice was a worthy investment, a net present value (NPV) and financial feasibility analysis was conducted. Net present value is defined as the discounted sum of the projected series of net cash flows for an investment, including the initial investment and the terminal value of the investment at the end of the planning horizon. NPV can be used as a strategic planning tool to determine the worthiness of a new investment. For this […]

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August 25, 2009

More Soil, Less Plastic In ECG Trays

Emerald Coast Growers has improved its tray sizes for Pennisetum xadvena ‘Rubrum’, Phlox paniculata, and Phlox subulata with a new 128-cell size. “With the new 128 tray size come two key advantages that go directly toward growers’ bottom lines: increased soil volume and a reduced amount of plastic per plant,” says Cheri Markowitz, sales manager at Emerald Coast Growers. “Like our customers, we’re focused on doing more with less.” Emerald Coast Growers is rolling the program out for the three plants we mentioned, but it soon plans to add even more choices to the 128 program. The additions should help lower input costs. Currently available in the 128-cell size are Pennisetum xadvena ‘Rubrum’ (Purple fountain grass); Phlox paniculata (Tall garden phlox) ‘Becky Towe,’ ‘Blue Paradise,’ ‘Bright Eyes’, ‘David,’ ‘Davids Lavender,’ ‘Franz Schubert,’ ‘Laura’ and ‘Starfire'; and Phlox subulata (Moss phlox) ‘Candy Stripe,’ ‘Crimson Beauty,’ ‘Emerald Blue,’ ‘Emerald Pink,’ ‘Fort Hill,’ […]

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August 3, 2009

A.M.A. Launches Biodegradable Planter Product

Al’s Flower Pouch II is a new earth-friendly alternative to the traditional plastic version from A.M.A. Plastics. When the season is over, home gardeners empty then plant material and growing media into a compost pile and dispose of the pouch in that same compost pile. The Flower Pouch’s oxo-degradable poly film begins a structural breakdown once in landfill conditions and completely disintegrates. Oxo-degradable plastics are available in product packaging including food grade bags, shopping bags, dry cleaning bags or garbage bags. These types of films are useful for products that don’t have an easily accessible recycling stream, like used poly film in small quantities. For more information on Al’s Flower Pouch II, call 800-338-1136 or 519-322-1397 or email ama@amaplas.com.

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July 14, 2009

Orchid Handling Simplified

Palm Tree Packaging’s newest product is the Bloom Bag, a decorative sleeve with handles. One sleeve size in particular (8 inch x 22 inch x 32 inch) is designed specifically for orchids. Bloom Bags are clear with white handles, and they’re suitable for pots ranging in size from 6 to 6.5 inches. The four different sizes of bloom bags ship in case packs that contain 500 bags. Palm Tree Packaging can also print images or text on Bloom Bags if growers have a message they’d like to convey. For more information on the Bloom Bag or other products from Palm Tree Packaging, click here.

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April 27, 2009

An Alternative Pack-And-Ship Material

The WiAir 200 inflatable air cushion packaging system is designed to save storage space occupied by bulky packaging materials. Its lightweight and durable air cushions offer greater vibration protection. Air cushions can be produced in 4-inch to 12-inch sizes from the same roll of polyethylene film, which is biodegradable and can be recycled. For more information on the system from Spiral Binding, click here.

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March 30, 2009

Another Production Facility For Ellepots

Ellepots are growing in popularity, and AMA Plastics has opened a production facility for them in Stockton, Ca., to enhance its service to the Western United States and Canada. AMA. Plastics offers Ellepots in a broad range of sizes and trays, and it produces them in restricted access facilities. To locate a distributor near you, call 800-338-1136. For more information on AMA Plastics, go to www.amaplastics.com.

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March 23, 2009

Grading Biodegradable Pots

Sustainability. It’s not just a buzzword. It’s increasingly becoming a way of life for many consumers, and that couldn’t be any more evident than in grocery stores, where once ubiquitous petroleum-based plastic bags now share the limelight with more sustainable alternatives like reusable totes. The ornamental horticulture industry isn’t immune to this fundamental shift in consumer behavior, either. Over the last several years, growers have been experimenting with compostable and biodegradable pots to cater to consumers’ growing environmental consciousness. What’s The Verdict? A lot of growers have questions about the efficacy of these earth-friendly pots, and now that several operations have grown in them for a couple years, they’re able to share their experiences. While the pots can have their quirks, growers tend to agree there are more positives than negatives. “I would say the benefits far outweigh the negatives,” says Suzanne Baker, head grower and president at Rush Creek […]

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