4 TPIE Takeaways

'Blue Diamond' orchid

Looking for the next unusual tropical plants? Northland Floral’s Medinilla magnifica, which blooms multiple times with exotic flowers and was voted Best New Flowering Plant at January’s Tropical Plant Industry Exhibition (TPIE), is a good starting point in flowering plants. On the foliage side, Calathea lancifolia from Stewart’s Greenhouse in Mt. Dora, Fla., is worth a look, as it was voted Best New Foliage Plant at the tradeshow.

What else do you need to know coming out of TPIE? Here are Greenhouse Grower’s top four takeaways after spending three days in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

1. There’s Another ‘Blue Orchid Grower’

Silver Vase is to the Mystique orchids as Plainview Growers is to Colorfuze.
That’s right: The New Jersey grower is also producing three orchids with the dye-infusion technique. Plainview’s dye-infused orchids, known as

Colorfuze, are ‘Blue Diamond,’ ‘Purple Fusion’ and ‘Lavender Mist.’
Silver Vase made the big splash when it launched the Mystiques – Blue, Indigo and Lila – at the 2011 TPIE. But Plainview also launched its line in 2011 and is licensed to use the dye technique by the same company as Silver Vase.

“There will be times we run into [Silver Vase] but there’s plenty of opportunity,” says Arie Van Vugt, Plainview’s president. “This is a big country. Keeping the dye-infused orchids at a minimum of two producers in the U.S. allows us to be able to maintain a price. It’s really a $29.99 product. If you go over $29.99, you may start losing sales.”

Although Colorfuze is still relatively new to Plainview, orchids have been part of Plainview’s assortment for about four years. Pure Beauty Orchids is Plainview’s established line, and Colorfuze is grouped into the Pure Beauty brand.

“We’re used to your standard baskets, flats, mums and poinsettias,” says Tom Van Vugt, Plainview’s vice president of sales. “We’re producing plugs and liners, as well, but compared to those (items), the orchids put us into a totally different industry.”

2. Silver Vase Is Finding New Ways To Present Existing Varieties

While Plainview showcased its dye-infused orchids for the first time at TPIE, Silver Vase continues to innovate with the introduction of Phalaenopsis in a variety of new shapes.

The new Silver line forms Phalaenopsis into hearts, circles, cascades and other shapes. The possibilities with new shapes really are endless. Silver Vase is simply taking an existing product and presenting it in ways in which most consumers have never before seen orchids.

“The key for us is we have to train the product to be that shape,” says Marcella Lucio, Silver Vase’s marketing director.

Silver Vase actually got the idea for the new shapes late last year at a Dutch trade show. Growing orchids into hearts and circles certainly is more challenging, but Lucio says there are price rewards to it.

“We’re taking a Phalaenopsis that’s between $15.99 and $19.99 and elevating the price to $24.99 to $29.99 with these shapes,” Lucio says.

“The value the customer is getting is way more than the $5 difference.”

3. Green Circle Shares Consumer Data On Just Add Ice

Top 100 Grower Green Circle Growers produced a consumer report this year based on data it collected from surveying Just Add Ice orchid consumers. Among the highlights:

• Eighty-six percent of Just Add Ice orchid consumers are female. Forty-two percent are between the ages of 50 and 65, and another 26 percent are 66 and older. A very small percentage (4 percent) is between the ages of 18 and 25, although Green Circle reports it has seen a 21 percent increase in orchid buyers between the ages of 18 and 49 in the last year.

• Nearly half (42 percent) of all Just Add Ice consumers do not have a color preference for their next purchase. Thirteen percent say they would purchase a bicolored variety next; 11 percent would go with purple; 9 percent would choose salmon; and 8 percent would choose yellow.

• About one in three (34 percent) say they prefer traditional pot designs for their orchids; 21 percent want modern/contemporary pots while 18 percent prefer earthy/organic styles. Other pot styles consumers are interested in are country (10 percent), antiques (8 percent), Victorian (5 percent), funky (2 percent) and Bohemian (2 percent).

• Another topic of Green Circle’s research was gifting. The Top 100 Grower learned there’s no clear cut occasion for purchasing orchids. Birthdays (27 percent) are a big reason consumers purchase them.

4. Oglesby Finding New Opportunities In Adenium, Spathoglottis

Adeniums certainly are not new to the market, but few growers and consumers realize the plant commonly known as Desert Rose is capable of being treated like a tropical. Oglesby Plants’ Gary Hennen, who exhibited at TPIE, wants to clear up the confusion.

“We want to treat it more like a tropical,” he says. “We give [adenium] lots of water, fertilizer and light – and it will flower forever. That [misconception] is the biggest problem we find with the professionals.”

Among the new plant highlights at Oglesby this year is the expansion of the Safari alocasias. Oglesby introduced the series last year with two varieties. Now the series features five.

Alocasia ‘Serengetti’ is another new variety that’s bred for drought tolerance. Oglesby introduced five new spathiphyllum, as well, specifically for dark glossy foliage and an improved flower count.

Sphathoglottis is another plant in which Oglesby is introducing new developments. Hennen would like to develop varieties that are suitable for the patio. So far, Oglesby has come out with ‘Groovy Grape,’ ‘Cabaret’ and ‘Snow Angel.’

Leave a Reply

More From Varieties...

October 17, 2017

14 New Shrubs With Fringe Benefits

What’s popular with shrubs? Consumers want varieties that will give them more return on their investment, in terms of long-lasting blooms and multi-season appeal that lasts from spring until fall and at times stretches into the winter months. Here are 14 new varieties of shrubs and sub-shrubs to consider for your product mix in 2018.

Read More

October 14, 2017

PlantPeddler Hosting Poinsettia Variety Day in December

The event will feature side-by-side comparisons of more than 100 commercial and pre-released varieties from seven breeders.

Read More

October 10, 2017

Coastal Callas Is a Dream Fulfilled for Founder Adrian Espinoza

Adrian Espinoza and his family founded Rancho Espinoza Inc. and Coastal Callas in California seven years ago with a mission and purpose to provide consistent quality and reliable supply of calla lilies to the marketplace.

Read More
Latest Stories

October 17, 2017

14 New Shrubs With Fringe Benefits

What’s popular with shrubs? Consumers want varieties that will give them more return on their investment, in terms of long-lasting blooms and multi-season appeal that lasts from spring until fall and at times stretches into the winter months. Here are 14 new varieties of shrubs and sub-shrubs to consider for your product mix in 2018.

Read More

October 14, 2017

PlantPeddler Hosting Poinsettia Variety Day in December

The event will feature side-by-side comparisons of more than 100 commercial and pre-released varieties from seven breeders.

Read More

October 10, 2017

Coastal Callas Is a Dream Fulfilled for Founder Adrian …

Adrian Espinoza and his family founded Rancho Espinoza Inc. and Coastal Callas in California seven years ago with a mission and purpose to provide consistent quality and reliable supply of calla lilies to the marketplace.

Read More
Azalea Encore Autumn Bonfire

October 4, 2017

Big Changes on the Horizon for Woody Ornamentals

The future looks bright for the woody ornamentals market, with exciting new varieties in the pipeline that will offer greater disease resistance, cold hardiness, bloom capacity, and more.

Read More

October 3, 2017

25 New Blooming Potted Plants for Luxury Sales

Consider these new blooming potted plant varieties that offer full blooms, unique foliage, and a touch of extravagance and easy maintenance for time-strapped customers who want to pamper themselves.

Read More
Hydrangea 'Berry White' (Bailey Nurseries)

October 2, 2017

Woody Ornamentals Market Set for Growth

The woody ornamentals market is looking up. Now, out-of-the box thinking about product offerings and consumer education will keep things moving in the right direction.

Read More

September 27, 2017

New Mum Intros From California Spring Trials 2017

For fall gardening product selection, you can't go wrong with offering mums. Here are a few of the new introductions that we saw at California Spring Trials 2017 that will be making their retail debut in 2018.

Read More
Hydrangea ‘Endless Summer BloomStruck’ (Bailey Nurseries)

September 26, 2017

Bailey Nurseries Enhances Product Development Program, …

Plant Introductions, which Bailey purchased almost three years ago, is being rebranded as Bailey Innovations, an entity that will breed and trial new varieties in Georgia.

Read More
Green Fuse Lupine Staircase Pink

September 24, 2017

How to Effectively Grow Staircase Lupine

The Staircase Lupine series, part of Green Fuse Botanicals’ First Light Perennials collection, has the potential to put on a great display with solid and bicolor hues.

Read More
Terra Nova 2018 Catalog

September 23, 2017

Terra Nova Nurseries’ Latest Plant Catalog is Now Avail…

The new 2017-2018 plant catalog, which features hundreds of varieties, series, and collections from Terra Nova Nurseries, pays homage to the company’s 25th anniversary.

Read More
Armitage GWA Buffalo Tour 5

September 21, 2017

Tour of Buffalo Gardens Reveals Hidden Gems And Communi…

This past August, Allan Armitage joined the Association for Garden Communicators on a tour of Buffalo. It was a reminder that that we can make a difference in neighborhoods, in cities, and in people’s lives.

Read More
Suntory Grandessa argyranthemum - feature

September 18, 2017

Breeders Open Availability for Unrooted Cuttings; Here&…

With new avenues for buying young plants for vegetative production, growers should have an easier time finding availability and receiving shipments of unrooted cuttings for the coming seasons.

Read More
Ball, Tagawa Succulents Partnership

September 14, 2017

Ball Seed to Partner With Tagawa Greenhouses on New Suc…

The new program includes in-demand retail products that are popular with younger shoppers, allowing growers to easily build a comprehensive succulent program and stay on-trend in the marketplace.

Read More
Strait-Laced Elderberry

September 10, 2017

Check Out the Top Varieties On Display at Farwest 2017

A panel of plant experts, along with show attendees, selected their favorite offerings during the Farwest 2017 New Varieties Showcase.

Read More

September 5, 2017

Hort Couture Announces New Propagation and Broker Partn…

The new grower-propagator partners are deeply vested in the independent garden center channel with propagation expertise, as well as finished production focused on the independent grower.

Read More
Helianthus Sunfinity (Syngenta Flowers)

September 3, 2017

Growing Tips for Helianthus Sunflower ‘Sunfinity…

This annual sunflower is a profuse bloomer with strong branching that produces multiple flowers per plant from spring to fall.

Read More
Ball Seed Field Day 2017

September 2, 2017

Highlights from Ball Seed’s Annual Field Day and Landsc…

Attendees of the one-day event had the opportunity to see new plants in up-close-and-personal trials, and engage with speakers and product experts.

Read More
Bidens Popstar (Kientzler)

August 31, 2017

Allan Armitage: Why I’ve Become a Fan of Bidens

The rather boring plant with mundane daisy-yellow flowers has morphed into a vigorous plant carrying colorful flowers that seems to be comfortable in most of the country.

Read More