September 14, 2015
Smith Gardens Is Developing Growers With A New Initiative
Finding enough qualified growers has long been a problem in the industry, but it’s one that Smith Gardens is working to solve, at least locally. The operation, which ranks No. 22 on Greenhouse Grower‘s Top 100 Growers list, is the largest in the Pacific Northwest, and spans more than 50 acres of greenhouses and 50 acres of field growing over four locations in Washington, Oregon and California. As a 112-year-old family business that recognizes the need to invest in its future, Smith Gardens has made its Cultivating The Future initiative a corporate priority to attract young people to careers in the horticulture industry. Don Spence, the production manager at Smith Gardens’ Aurora, Ore., location, started working with local schools years ago. The operation expanded its program to local community colleges, and this year Smith Gardens worked with the American Floral Endowment to set up an internship program, and hosted an […]
April 15, 2017
How Oregon Growers Are Making Lean Improvements With Help From Their Peers
The Oregon Nursery Lean Consortium recently helped two Pacific Northwest growers realize significant productivity gains and labor savings.
November 30, 2015
Why Smith Gardens’ Marysville, WA, Facility Is A Great Place To Work
Labor rates in Washington State are some of the highest in the nation, making competition for labor fierce. This is why Smith Gardens in Marysville, WA, wants to strengthen its reputation as a great place to work.
July 2, 2014
Smith Gardens Stabilizes Greenhouse Climate With Light-Diffusing Screens
Smith Gardens faced a challenge when constructing its newest range, a state-of-the-art Prins glasshouse at its Aurora, Ore., location. The long winters and warm summers characteristic of the climate in the Northwest U.S. make providing an even temperature and stable climate an often difficult task. The operation found the answer in light-diffusing screens. After numerous trials and research, Head Grower Aaron Bivens selected XLS 45 F Harmony Revolux, an open, light-diffusing shade screen from Svensson. “You walk into the range and can instantly feel a more even temperature,” Bivens says. “There is a noticeable difference between the light diffusion in the new range, compared to our houses with aluminum screens.” Diffused light is scattered by particles, in this case the screen, so it is much less intense and more evenly spread. Diffused light has been shown to provide significant benefits for plants in greenhouses, creating fewer hot spots and shady […]