April 28, 2016
Why Ornamental Grasses Are Great For People In Condos And Apartments
Allan Armitage says breeders need to do a better job of making growers, brokers, and garden centers aware of better ornamental grass cultivars for the increasingly shrinking garden space.
April 20, 2016
Growers And Breeders Are Always Looking For A Better Tomato, Says Allan Armitage
While edibles become more diverse, there's one goal that hard-core gardeners and urban foodscapers share.
April 19, 2016
Allan Armitage Picks His Favorites From Proven Winners, Danziger, and Syngenta During 2016 California Spring Trials
From “crazy” petunias to container pentas, there was plenty that caught Allan’s eye during the final day of 2016 California Spring Trials.
April 15, 2016
California Spring Trials: Dr. Allan Armitage Notes Emerging Trends From Ernst Benary, HMA, And Other Breeders
Attractive new varieties will draw the eyes of consumers, but innovation and creativity will keep them coming back.
April 14, 2016
Dr. Allan Armitage’s Top Picks From Floricultura And Sakata During 2016 California Spring Trials
The best new flower introductions have the power to turn a non-believer into a fan. Check out Dr. Allan Armitage’s top picks from his visit to Sakata and Floricultura, the latter of which hosted a number of breeders.
April 13, 2016
Dr. Allan Armitage Highlights His Favorite Varieties From Dümmen Orange At California Spring Trials
From the explosive color of a new verbena, to the vigor of an upright veronica, Armitage says there’s a lot to like from Dümmen’s new introductions this year.
April 12, 2016
Dr. Allan Armitage Names His Top 6 Picks From GroLink And Windmill Nursery At California Spring Trials 2016
Editor’s Note: Dr. Allan Armitage shares his top picks from the breeders who presented new varieties at the GroLink location in Oxnard, CA, and the Windmill Nursery location in Buellton, CA, during the 2016 California Spring Trials. Gerbera ‘Sweet Caroline’ (Florist Holland) Every year I am so impressed with the Garvinea gerberas from Florist. They have proven their ability to stand up to the rigors of winter, are available in more than a dozen colors, and may be used alone or in combination containers. The flower color and size of ‘Sweet Caroline’ are outstanding, and this is already enjoying robust sales. Begonia ‘Revelation Maroon’ (Terra Nova) Learning more about the diversity of plants offered by some of our best-known companies is always a treat. Walking into Terra Nova, I was ready for Echinacea and Heuchera, but was instead blown away by begonia and coleus. Terra Nova has been breeding begonias […]
April 11, 2016
Dr. Allan Armitage: 6 Picks From Ball Horticultural Co. And Green Fuse Botanicals During 2016 California Spring Trials
Editor’s Note: In Day 1 of our coverage of California Spring Trials 2016, Dr. Allan Armitage, Contributing Editor for Greenhouse Grower, talks about the plants that caught his eye. See images of his six picks in the slideshow below. Petunia ‘Night Sky’ (Selecta) Am I really starting off with a petunia? It is not that they are not all beautiful, there are just so many of them, Having looked at new plants for many years, it is difficult for any petunia to impress me. ‘Night Sky’ did just that. To gush about how the dozens of glittering white spots glitter on the blue petals does not do it justice. Suffice it to say it was different, it was fun, and people were talking about it. I certainly am. Begonia MegaWatt Series (PanAmerican Seed) Begonias are one of the building blocks of annual spring sales. “Full-size” wax begonias, personified by the […]
February 8, 2016
Why Succulents Have Become The Hippest Plants On The Market
Allan Armitage says succulents used to be relegated to the far end of the display bench, but their adaptability, decorative value, and low maintenance requirements have now made them a staple.
January 15, 2016
Allan Armitage: Why The Deck Has Becomes The New Hot Spot For Gardening
Armitage says decks and small spaces allow younger generations to enjoy all the benefits of a garden without the work.
December 22, 2015
Allan Armitage Explains Why People Will Always Want To Buy Plants
We may believe that an appreciation for gardening and plants is rapidly draining away, but there is reason to hope.
November 18, 2015
How To Stop Deer From Eating Up Your Plant Profits
If you deal with plants, you're going to deal with deer. Address the problem by knowing what plants deer will normally not choose to eat, and tell consumers the same thing.
October 20, 2015
Eucomis Aloha Series: A New Bulb Crop For Containers
The Eucomis Aloha series of Pineapple lilies may be the next money making bulbs for the deck with their compact habits and shorter stems that are perfect for containers.
September 2, 2015
Under Siege? Not Really, Just Go For A Walk
I have no trouble with people buying chocolates or wine instead of flowers to celebrate anniversaries, birthdays or peoples’ lives. We should all have choices. However, the other night I felt like I was entering the Republican caucus. I was minding my own business by the television set and became more than a little upset. A website called insteadofflowers.com came on the screen. It provided serene music and wholesome images of busy women doing busy things. It turns out that such busy women enjoy a small token of appreciation, but apparently their enjoyment, according to the voice-over, does not include flowers. This website delivers meals to the house, anything from beef brisket to beef bourguignon. It is a fine website with a good idea. But why pick on us? Why not use “insteadofbaloneysandwiches.com” or “insteadofgrilledcheeseandsoup.com,” “insteadofburgerdoodle.com,” or a dozen other things. When did flowers get to be the whipping boy? […]
July 30, 2015
Allan Armitage: Let’s Talk About Starflowers. Why Is Pentas Not More Popular?
It is good to talk about production techniques, performance results and then to see how our friends garden. Diversity of plant material has always been a strength in American garden centers, and we should never run out of plants to get people excited. However, perhaps people are tired of Petunias or Callas or Geraniums, but we will never run out of options to put in front of them. One plant that is often overlooked is Pentas, a fabulous summer crop for late spring sales. These are heat-tolerant plants, and growing them below 65°F in the greenhouse results in significant delay. Fertility should be at least 150ppm nitrogen, but avoid ammonia in the fertilizer. Plants are best grown at a somewhat higher pH than usual, between 6.4 to 6.8. For best presentation, pinch out the center bud. Side flowers will bloom together, and plants will walk off the shelf. Garden centers […]