All-America Selections Celebrates Milestone Anniversary, Releases Annual Report

AAS 85th Anniversary logoAll-America Selections (AAS) has had a busy and productive year so far in 2017, and there’s a lot more to come. In addition to launching a new website last fall and continuing to introduce new AAS Winners, there are several special events and announcements of note, including an 85th anniversary celebration, an office move and open house, the release of the 2017 Annual Report, and the appointment of three new directors.

85th Anniversary

When the idea for All-America Selections was conceived in the early 1930s, there were only a few flower or vegetable testing locations around the country. If a person or company wanted to introduce a new variety, the plants were usually tested in just one geographic area. There was no national, independent testing program, nor a uniform standard for evaluation of new varieties.

Founder W. Ray Hastings proposed a national network of trial gardens where new, unsold flower and vegetable varieties could be tested in various climates by impartial, volunteer horticultural experts. He presented his proposal to the Southern Seedsman’s Association, his idea took root, and All-America Selections was established. Hastings guided AAS from 1932 to 1971, serving as Executive Secretary.

Celebrating its 85th year in 2017, All-America Selections remains true to the original mission: to test and introduce new varieties that have proven their garden performance. With more than 85 years and almost that many trial grounds, AAS continues as the oldest, most established, international organization testing ornamentals, edibles, and herbaceous perennials in North America. In fact, Europe’s Fleuroselect and Japan Flower Selections duplicated the successful AAS model for their respective regions.

AAS will be at Cultivate’17 and is inviting all attendees to stop by booth #1313 to help celebrate the 85th anniversary.

Office Move and Open House

After more than 30 years in one office space, it was time to celebrate an 85th anniversary and move into a more modern, updated building.

The new AAS address is 5201 Walnut Ave., Suite 3, Downers Grove, IL 60515. The phone number stays the same: 630-963-0770.

For anyone in Chicago the end of July, All-America Selections and National Garden Bureau will be hosting an open house on July 27 from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Please RSVP by emailing Diane Blazek.

2017 Annual Report

AAS also recently released its 2016-2017 Annual Report, reflecting the group’s activities over the past 12 to 18 months.

The Annual Report can be downloaded from the AAS website and is designed to bring new awareness about the organization’s activities and progress. A few key points in this year’s report are:
• Recognition of AAS’ 85th Anniversary
• New and unique marketing projects for all AAS Winners
• A close look at the newest 2017 AAS Winners

Three New Directors

So far in 2017, AAS has welcomed three new directors to the board. They are:
• Chelsey Lenczyk, Bejo Seeds
• Vaughn Fletcher, Fletcher Consulting
• Jessie Liebenguth, Reiman Gardens

They join the board to serve with:
• Connie Dam-Byl, President, Dam Seeds
• Angus Mellish, Past-President, Vesey Seeds
• Jenny Kuhn, Vice-President, C. Raker & Sons
• Patty Buskirk, Treasurer, Seeds By Design/Terra Organica
• Mark Gross, PanAmerican Seed
• Jenny Wegley, Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens
• Justin Hancock, Costa Farms

All-America Selections and its breeders, judges, and staff thank all ten directors for their work and dedication in continuing to build AAS into a strong and viable industry association.

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

More From Varieties...
Suntory Grandessa argyranthemum - feature

September 18, 2017

Breeders Open Availability for Unrooted Cuttings; Here’s How Growers Will Benefit

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 Succulent Offerings

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
Latest Stories
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

August 29, 2017

27 New Impatiens for Spring Color in 2018

Gardeners love impatiens because they are one of the few plants that offer stand-out, splashy blooms for shady areas, and in some cases full sun. There's no shortage of new introductions this year to choose from for your 2018 product mix. Here are 27 new and improved varieties to consider offering to your customers.  

Read More
Calandiva kalanchoes (Dümmen Orange) Feature

August 28, 2017

Lifestyle Plants Are in Full Bloom for Consumers

The latest decorating trends indicate consumers want hassle-free, colorful plants with big flowers — and growers are finding unique ways to cash in on these luxury-item sales.

Read More
Cuphea Fairy Dust Pink (Proven Winners) feature

August 26, 2017

Kelly Norris: Noteworthy Plants That Caught My Attentio…

Imagine the modern consumer getting so excited about a new plant that they shared the experience with a friend, perhaps not even a fellow gardening consumer.

Read More

August 20, 2017

Proven Winners and Kentucky Nursery and Landscape Assoc…

This year, KNLA is combining its summer outing with the Proven Winners Landscape Roadshow for an informative event that will take place on September 21.

Read More
Four Star 2018 Catalog

August 18, 2017

Four Star Greenhouses’ 2018 Catalog Includes New Variet…

The new catalog is available in both print and digital formats, and features information on new trays that allow for more plugs per square foot.

Read More
Francis Kwong, PanAmerican Seed

August 15, 2017

Ornamental Seed Scientist Francis Kwong Dies at Age 65

Kwong was most recently the Director of Seed Technology for PanAmerican Seed, and his research was instrumental in the development of calibrachoa, angelonia, and other plants.

Read More
Candy Tops Snapdragons Series (Sakata Ornamentals)

August 3, 2017

Five Characteristics Breeders Want in Top-Performing Sp…

New spring annuals have to provide something for everyone — longevity, durability, performance, and more — if they want to meet breeders’ high standards for market-worthy plants.

Read More
Petunia 'Headliner Pink Sky" (Selecta)

August 3, 2017

Why Eccentricity is the New Black in Spring Annuals

Consumers judge plants by appearance, color impact, and ease of maintenance, which is why retailers want new spring annuals that are novel standouts.    

Read More

August 1, 2017

39 New Vegetables and Herbs for 2018

New vegetable and herb introductions for 2017 offer unique shaped fruits, distinctive foliage, intense flavors, improved disease resistance, high yields, and more. Here are 39 new vegetable and herb varieties to consider for your product mix in 2018.

Read More
2018 Griffin Catalog

July 31, 2017

Griffin Releases Print and Digital Versions of Its 2018…

The 250-page print catalog features more than 350 new varieties from leading breeders, while the enhanced digital version has extra features on crop culture, grower tools, and more.

Read More
Emerald-Coast-Growers-Guide-Feature-Image

July 27, 2017

Emerald Coast Growers Offers Updated Guide on its Newes…

This year’s guide features new varieties while maintaining Emerald Coast’s ornamental grass program and expanding its perennial plants line.

Read More