June 10, 2014

Jill West Of Al’s Garden Center And Greenhouses Is A 2014 Finalist For Head Grower Of The Year

Innovation and strong leadership skills make Jill West a worthy finalist for Head Grower of the Year.

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June 10, 2014

Ivan Tchakarov Of Metrolina Greenhouses Is a 2014 Finalist For Head Grower of The Year

Ivan Tchakarov's contagious enthusiasm, technical knowledge, drive for innovation and deep passion for his work make him a deserving finalist for the 2014 Head Grower of the Year.

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June 10, 2014

Agri-Starts Is A 2014 Nominee For Operation Of The Year

See why Agri-Starts unique products and services has made it a finalist for Greenhouse Grower's Operation of the Year Award.

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June 10, 2014

Creek Hill Is A 2014 Finalist For Operation Of The Year

See why Creek Hill Nursery's sustainable growing practices and strong customer relationships has made it a finalist for Greenhouse Grower's Operation of the Year.

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June 10, 2014

Henry Mast Greenhouses Nominated As 2014 Finalist For Operation of The Year

See how Henry Mast Greenhouses’ commitment to quality crops, customer success and sustainable practices has made it a finalist for Greenhouse Grower’s Operation of the Year Award.

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June 10, 2014

North Creek Nurseries Is A 2014 Finalist For Operation Of The Year

See why North Creek Nurseries' commitment to sustainable horticulture practices has secured its nomination as a finalist for Greenhouse Grower's Operation of the Year.

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August 19, 2013

Operation Of The Year, The Perennial Farm: Putting Customers First

Rick Watson, owner of The Perennial Farm in Glen Arm, Md., has a simple goal. “I want to make sure our customers have all the plants they need when they need them,â€�  he says. “That sounds like a very simple goal, but it’s a challenging one.â€� Challenging indeed. With that objective in mind, Watson has built a business that spans more than 50 acres of highly efficient greenhouses and outdoor production, growing more than 1,000 varieties of perennials, ferns, grasses, groundcovers and flowering vines. A fleet of 16 trucks delivers to customers throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions, and a staff of 75 employees pot, maintain, sell plants and track orders. After Fowler’s death in 1998, Watson made the difficult decision to close the landscaping division and change the name of the nursery division to The Perennial Farm. It is still a family business — Watson’s wife, Gail, does the […]

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August 19, 2013

Head Grower Of The Year Dennis Crum: The Grower’s Grower

Dennis Crum values relationships. It’s a trait that has served him well over the years and it defines his career. And it’s those relationships that have stood the test of time and remain important after the excitement of the day and after the applause dies down. This was illustrated perfectly at Greenhouse Grower’s Evening of Excellence reception at OFA Short Course. The ballroom was abuzz with excitement, as 17 companies and individuals were nominated for awards at the prestigious ceremony, including four finalists for the 2013 Head Grower of the Year Award, sponsored by BASF. When Crum, the director of growing operations at Four Star Greenhouse in Carleton, Mich., was announced as the winner, the room erupted with applause and cheers from his many supporters. Crum accepted his award with humility. Through jokes and a few tears, he thanked owners Tom and Sharon Smith and his team at Four Star […]

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June 20, 2013

Dennis Crum Is The 2013 Head Grower Of The Year

Dennis Crum is a grower’s grower. The 21-year mainstay at Four Star Greenhouse spends a lot of his time on the telephone answering culture calls and flying around the country to work with growers, help them plan spring production, review their seasons and decide what to grow or replace. It’s all part of the partnership Four Star has established with its grower customers, but it’s also the role, among his many, that makes Crum the happiest. As the director of growing relations and the wearer of many hats, he says he’s first and foremost a grower at heart. He has mentored countless young growers and emphasizes hands-on education and training with his fellow production teammates. “I try to stay as close to the greenhouse and growing as I can,” he says. “I never want to lose touch and become a talking head.” Crum started at Four Star in 1992 to […]

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June 20, 2013

Corwin Graves Is A Head Grower Of The Year Nominee

When Rocket Farms merged with Nurserymen’s Exchange in 2011, the company also acquired a huge resource in head grower Corwin Graves, an eight-year veteran who was then in charge of the operation’s substantial miniature rose program. Learning how to grow roses taught the horticultural science graduate from Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo about the importance of stock management and that taking shortcuts in production leads to less-than-desirable results. Since then, the pride Graves takes in ensuring quality in all of Rocket Farms products shows in the company’s success. “We have built our reputation as a company by not taking shortcuts,” Graves says. “We have great facilities, an experienced and thoughtful staff, an ideal climate and a sense of pride that I think is uncommon in the trade.” Graves became head grower in 2011 and is responsible for all flowering products under the Rocket Farms brand, including 18 flagship and research and […]

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June 20, 2013

Rob O’Hara Is A Head Grower of the Year Nominee

For the second consecutive year, Rob O’Hara is a finalist for Head Grower of the Year. As someone who has truly helped to grow a business from the ground up, O’Hara’s reputation is synonymous with hands-on innovation, education, crop quality and leadership. In the 16 years O’Hara has been at Rainbow Greenhouses, the company has grown from just two acres to three fully automated locations that will grow to 50 acres by next year, with a 200-person staff.  O’Hara grew up in the greenhouse at his parents’ small operation on the prairie in Alberta, Canada. He studied greenhouse management at Alberta’s Olds College, where he continues to dedicate time and resources to up-and-coming students. Currently, he is helping students there research the use of renewable biochar to enrich growing media. Education has always been a focus for O’Hara, who promotes horticulture at a local secondary school program, where he mentors […]

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