Evaluating Excellence

As we went to press, our jury members had just returned from the California Pack Trials and were thinking about their votes for the top five new introductions to consider for Greenhouse Grower’s (GG) Medal of Excellence for Breeding.

While the panel decides the Industry’s Choice award, GG still presents its traditional Editor’s Choice award and this is the second year you, our readers, will get to vote on the Reader’s Choice award. This year’s ceremony will mark the 20th year GG has presented a breeding award following Pack Trials.

In addition to the three breeding awards, we have rounded out our program to recognize innovative branding programs with our marketing award, as well as individuals and companies devoted to the varieties side of the business with our industry achievement award.

This is our sixth year having a panel decide the nominees for Industry’s Choice. We present this year’s jury:

PLUG GROWER: The Raker Team, C. Raker & Sons, Litchfield, Mich.

This leading plug producer has set the standard for serving customers of all sizes with the widest selection of annuals, perennials and specialty cut flowers. Representing the Raker Team this year are: Susie Raker, Jenny Kuhn, Lori May, Steve Reed and Lori Ricketts.

LINER GROWER: Mast Young Plants, Grand Rapids, Mich.

Rick and Joyce Mast, who founded leading young plant grower Glass Corner Greenhouses, are now operating as Mast Young Plants. Joining them at the trials are Brian Weesies and Jim Raterink. 

FINISHED GROWER: The Metrolina Team, Metrolina Greenhouses, Huntersville, N.C.

Metrolina is the largest single greenhouse location in the United States and is focused on finished plants for mass retail. Representing Metrolina are Abe Van Wingerden, Sim McMurry and Mark Yelanich. 

LARGE RETAIL: Vinny Naab, Naab Horticultural Marketing, Bethlehem, Pa.

As a long-time regional buyer for Home Depot, Naab continues to guide growers and allied vendors in the supply chain. He also writes a regular column in GG called Retail Details. 

INDEPENDENT GROWER RETAILER: The Welby Team, Welby Gardens, Denver, Colo.

Welby Gardens is a highly diversified business with its own retail garden centers and a thriving young plant division. Welby is known for its Hardy Boy brand and its plant trials. Representing the team this year are Al Gerace, Marty Gerace, John Gerace Jr. and Willie Knowles, who manages the Hardy Starts line. 

BROKER: Vaughn Fletcher, McHutchison LLC, Liberty, Mo.

Vaughn Fletcher is a sales representative and Midwest sales manager for McHutchison Horticultural Distributors. This is his fourth time representing independent brokers on our panel. 

ACADEMIC: Dr. Allan Armitage, University of Georgia, Athens, Ga.

As contributing editor, Armitage is our own resident varieties guru. His field trials are the litmus test of performance for the Southeast and he is always first to spot a new crop.

Leave a Reply

Latest Stories
Jim Devereux, Green Fuse Botanicals

June 24, 2017

Green Fuse Botanicals New Vice President is Focused on …

Jim Devereux, who will oversee production, sales, and marketing for Green Fuse, says he hopes to bring genetics to the market that break from traditional production methods for finished growers.

Read More
Greenbelt Microgreens

June 23, 2017

Greenbelt Microgreens is a Finalist for the 2017 Operat…

Winner of the Excellence in Innovation Award, Greenbelt Microgreens is constantly staying on top of the latest trends in technology,

Read More
Ushio Sakazaki feature

June 22, 2017

Japanese Breeder Ushio Sakazaki Wins Medal of Excellenc…

From Supertunias to Superbells, this innovative Japanese breeder has used wild genetics to create game-changing plants that help consumers reconnect with the beauty of nature.

Read More
Koppert Ulti-Mite Swirski sachet

June 21, 2017

New Tool from Koppert Provides More Effective Thrips Ma…

A newly patented sachet for the predatory mite Amblyseius swirskii is resistant to both low and high levels of humidity, helping growers combat thrips infestations.

Read More
CallaFornia Red

June 20, 2017

Dümmen Orange Enters Calla Market With Acquisition of G…

Golden State will continue to supply the market through September 2018, at which time Dümmen Orange will assume supply and delivery of much of Golden State’s product line.

Read More

June 20, 2017

Sign Up For The Luxflora Flower Run At Cultivate’17

The5k walk/run race, sponsored by Luxflora, is an opportunity for industry members to network, build relationships, have some healthy fun, and start off Cultivate’17 with a flourish.

Read More

June 19, 2017

IGC Show Features Talks on How to Cash in on the Buy Lo…

This year’s event, which takes place Aug. 15-17 in Chicago, also includes a free workshop on what you might do when starting your business over from scratch.

Read More
SNA Logo

June 19, 2017

SNA, MANTS Plan to Co-Locate Their Events in 2018

There is crossover appeal for participants of both events, according to show organizers, and this cooperation will bring value and potential new business opportunities for both audiences.

Read More
Heat Safety App

June 18, 2017

Protect Your Employees from Heat-Related Illnesses with…

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have released an updated app for smart phones that can help workers stay safe when working outdoors in hot weather.

Read More
Visser Autostix

June 17, 2017

Visser, Ball Partner on New Sticking Technology for Cut…

The new AutoStix system is designed to provide better consistency and uniformity with shipped cuttings, easier and more reliable counting, automatic transplanting, and optional buffering in the peak season.

Read More
sbi-software-triumph

June 16, 2017

Five Guidelines to Investing in Software for Your Green…

Any software improvement you make should make sense for your team and be worth the investment.

Read More
EOE-featureimage2017

June 15, 2017

Greenhouse Grower’s 2017 Evening Of Excellence Will Rec…

Registration is now open for the 2017 Greenhouse Grower Evening Of Excellence, which takes place Monday, July 17, during Cultivate’17.

Read More
Plantpeddler Variety Day

June 14, 2017

Plantpeddler Hosting Variety Day on Aug. 4 in Cresco, I…

The free event will allow attendees to tour Plantpeddler’s trial gardens, which include more than 1,200 varieties of vegetative annuals displayed in large containers, baskets, window boxes, and beds.

Read More
Iron and Manganese toxicity in geranium

June 13, 2017

Are Your Geraniums Showing Signs of Iron or Manganese T…

Zonal geraniums with low pH can exhibit iron and manganese toxicity symptoms, including marginal chlorosis, leaf speckling, and upward-cupping of the leaves, according to Michigan State University experts.

Read More
weed sanitation

June 13, 2017

New Research Explores Potential of Using Steam or Hot W…

USDA-Agricultural Research Service horticulturist Dr. James Altland is exploring an alternative method for controlling weeds in greenhouse propagation systems by using steam or hot water to kill weed seeds.

Read More
Paul Fisher Fertilizer feature

June 12, 2017

How to Improve Customer Success by Adding Residual Fert…

Even if it costs a few cents more per pot or extra labor, your customers will thank you with repeat sales.

Read More
Jonathan Babikow, Emerald Coast Growers

June 9, 2017

New Head Grower at Emerald Coast Growers is Excited abo…

Jonathan Babikow, Emerald Coast Growers’ new general manager/head grower for its Lancaster, PA, location, talks about his favorite perennials, the advantages of growing in Pennsylvania, and his future hopes for his career.

Read More
Petunia 'Amore Mio' (Danziger)

June 8, 2017

AmericanHort Update on Genetically Engineered Petunias

AmericanHort is actively assisting affected plant breeders, distributors, growers, and retailers as the genetically modified petunia regulatory response continues. Since the last update, there have been several changes to the list of petunias confirmed or suspected of being genetically engineered and therefore unauthorized to be imported or sold. Also, the list of recognized laboratories for petunia variety confirmation testing has expanded. Most importantly, petunia varieties on the USDA-APHIS Biotechnology Regulatory Services (BRS) list require an APHIS Form 2000 for importation. APHIS also began requiring that any Petunia spp. Shipments, not including regulated GE varieties, must be accompanied by a list of variety names. This resulted in some inspection delays at the USDA-APHIS plant inspection station in Atlanta over the past two weeks. In response, AmericanHort has negotiated a more flexible approach with APHIS, and new guidance has just been posted for importing Petunia plants, cuttings, or seed. The new guidance allows […]

Read More