January 26, 2012

The Newest Trends For Blooming Potted Plants

The operative phrase in 2012 for blooming potted plant producers is “what’s new?” be it new genetics, new uses for familiar plants or new ways to market products. “What we’re seeing is that sales of your more traditional pot plants have probably declined over the past two or three years,” says Kevin Roethle, head of new product development at Ball Seed. “We can pretty confidently say we’re looking into different types of opportunities, some different plants and really trying to find the next new pot plant.” Roethle cites celosia ‘Intenz,’ a Ball Seed/Ball Ingenuity introduction, as a successful example of a new pot plant that pleases both consumers and growers. “I think the selling point we’ve seen consumers gravitate toward is the color. It’s very distinct – it’s a bold color, it’s a bright color. It’s easy to maintain. In that aspect, ‘Intenz’ has really resonated with consumers.”Roethle adds that […]

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January 26, 2012

How Growers Fared With Poinsettias

Some independent retailers won’t admit it, but the product quality box stores are pushing these days is becoming yet another challenge for those competing against them. Angelo Petitti sees the improvement. Petitti, a grower-retailer with Casa Verde Growers and Petitti Garden Centers, cites last Christmas as an example. He says box stores in Northeast Ohio greatly affected the independents’ cut Christmas tree sales because they offered a vastly improved selection. Couple the improved quality with a price that’s even more attractive than the independent retailer’s, and grower-retailers like Petitti will have to devise new strategies this year. Box stores weren’t just offering an improved selection of cut Christmas trees, though. Poinsettias are yet another item in which box store quality is becoming comparable to independents. “It used to be you could (only) get a big beautiful poinsettia at a garden center, and the cheap ones were at the box store,” […]

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January 26, 2012

Why Growers Avoid Poinsettias

In addition to surveying growers who produced poinsettias this past season, Greenhouse Grower connected with a handful of growers who at one time produced poinsettias yet no longer do. We asked growers why they stopped producing them. We received a variety of responses, but a number of growers cite competition or the availability abundance as key reasons why they don’t produce their own or deal with the crop at all. “We can buy them for less money from Canadian growers, plus they deliver on a weekly basis,” says Jerry Rosso, owner of Washington state’s Rosso Gardens. Adds Mark Ruibal, a grower-retailer at Ruibal Plants of Texas: “Availabilities from other experienced growers close to us make it easier to buy them in. We never grew them and have heard horror stories.” Grower-retailers like Ruibal probably won’t take on poinsettia production anytime soon, either. When we asked the non-poinsettia producers if they […]

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January 26, 2012

‘Luv U Pink’ Poinsettia The Hit At Mitchell’s Open House

Mitchell’s Nursery & Greenhouse, like Greenhouse Grower, conducted its own poinsettia research this past season. Those who attended Mitchell’s open house December 4 in King, N.C., were asked to vote for their favorite poinsettias out of 67 varieties featured. Mitchell’s grew more than 8,000 poinsettias, and three of each variety were selected for judging. Judges were asked to choose their five favorites in five different judging categories. In addition to selecting the top five red, white, pink, marble and novelty poinsettias, judges also had the opportunity to write in their three favorites overall. Among reds, ‘Red Elf’ took the gold with ‘Christmas Feel Select’ and ‘1055 Tikal’ winning second and third place, respectively. ‘Polar Bear,’ ‘Whitestar’ and ‘Christmas Carol White’ earned the top three spots among whites. With only three marble poinsettias to choose from, ‘Marblestar’ was the favorite followed by ‘Winter Blush’ and ‘Mars Marble.’ Of the novelty bunch, […]

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January 6, 2012

How To Differentiate In Poinsettias

About a half dozen Top 100 Growers are located within 90 minutes of Lloyd Traven’s Peace Tree Farm in Kintnersville, Pa. The finest poinsettia grower Traven says he’s ever seen (Lederer’s Greenhouses) is also nearby. So growing a large volume of the standard 4 ½-, 6 ½- and 8 ½-inch poinsettias really wouldn’t be a wise move on Traven’s part. While Peace Tree does grow a few poinsettias in those respective sizes, its approach with poinsettias is to supply some of the most unique forms around. In this interview, Traven explains why Peace Tree is looking away from 4 ½ and 6 ½ inch and creating new poinsettia looks that consumers are unlikely to find anywhere else. GG: Is the industry effectively driving consumer success around the winter holidays with such a large volume of commodity poinsettias being made available year after year? LT: Well, I see potential in some […]

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December 20, 2011

Grower Donates 800 Poinsettias To Seniors

Eight hundred seniors in the Sherwood, Ore., area will enjoy a poinsettia this Christmas donated by Al’s Garden Centers. The poinsettias were grown in Al’s Greenhouses, and delivered to local seniors this week by members from the Beaverton Lions Club, the Mulino Lions Club, the Hillsboro Senior Center, the Gresham Loaves and Fishes and several other local agencies. “Christmas is a time to be thankful for family and friends,” says Jack Bigej, owner of Al’s Garden Centers. “We are blessed to be able to share the holiday spirit with those in our community. Al’s grows 50,000 poinsettias for the holidays. Learn more about Al’s at Als-GardenCenter.com.

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December 19, 2011

‘Luv U Pink’ Poinsettia The Hit At Mitchell’s Open House

Participants were invited to pick their favorite poinsettias out of 67 featured varieties at the Mitchell’s Nursery & Greenhouse open house December 4 in King, N.C. Mitchell’s grew more than 8,000 poinsettias, and three of each variety were selected for judging. Judges were asked to choose their five favorites in five different judging categories. In addition to selecting the top five red, white, pink, marble, and novelty poinsettias, judges also had the opportunity to write in their three favorites overall. In the red category, ‘Red Elf’ took the gold with ‘Christmas Feel Select’ and ‘1055 Tikal’ winning second and third place, respective. ‘Polar Bear,’ ‘Whitestar’ and ‘Christmas Carol White’ earned the top three spots for whites. With only three marble poinsettias to choose from, ‘Marblestar’ was the favorite followed by ‘Winter Blush’ and ‘Mars Marble.’ Of the novelty bunch, ‘Ice Punch’ took first and grabbed the second-place prize in the […]

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May 26, 2011

The Potential Of Poinsettia Trees

Tree form poinsettias offer a sales opportunity to a new generation of consumers that does not associate the traditional potted 6-inch poinsettia with the Christmas holiday. Young adult consumers are more likely to be interested in non-traditional novelty cultivars and poinsettias used as an interesting form or as color in a mixed combination planter. In other words, consumers are interested in poinsettias as a design element versus a traditional holiday purchase. Tree form poinsettias have been produced for many years as a high-end item for retail sales, primarily for offices and businesses. For three- to five-foot trees, varieties such as ‘Peterstar,’ ‘Prestige,’ ‘Snowcap,’ the Christmas Angel series, the Classic series, ‘Independence’ and ‘Infinity Red’ have been used. They have strong stems and large bracts. For the more recent miniature or tabletop trees (up to 18 inches tall), cultivars such as those in the Premium series, ‘Strawberries N’ Cream,’ ‘Enduring’ and […]

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May 2, 2011

Global Warming Mums

[imageviewer] Vermont Organics Reclamation specializes in recycling organic materials to make products like potting soil, but it also recently introduced five mums in a Global Warming series that it’s touting as mums that bloom late in the season after others have passed. The late-blooming mums provide food for bees and beneficial insects still looking for food due to warmer, extended fall seasons. Sinclair A. Adam Jr. is the breeder of the series. The five varieties are: – ‘Autumn Moon’–’Glowing Ember’–’Pink Dawn’–’Purple Mist’–’Rustic Glow’ Check out descriptions of each variety in the slideshow below.

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April 27, 2011

Record Ecke Plant Sales Help Raise $28K For Charity

Ecke Ranch once again donated its Spring Trials plant material to Community Resource Center (CRC), which saw record attendance and raised more than $28,000 in critical funding at its 10th Annual Garden Tour & Plant Sale on April 9. The popular event included five residential garden stops in North County San Diego, plus exclusive admission to Ecke Ranch for a private plant sale that included an incredible selection of blooming spring plants at below-market prices. The event attracts gardening aficionados from all over Southern California.  All proceeds from ticket and plant sales go to CRC programs for women, children and families in crisis. The exclusive plant sale at Ecke Ranch was added to the garden tour five years ago and has become the most popular part of Community Resource Center’s charity tour. The tour is consistently responsible for more than half of the event’s earnings. This year, the plant sale […]

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March 20, 2011

‘Aideen Red Fire’ Chrysanthemum morifolium From Syngenta Flowers/Goldfisch Vegetative

Lead red for start of fall sales, ‘Aideen Red Fire’ chrysanthemum features a compact habit with uniform flowering. Use it as red with ‘Jacqueline’ and ‘Ursula’ in shaded and  West Coast programs.

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March 18, 2011

Ecke Ranch Hires New Key Account Sales Manager

Ralph Zendejas has joined the Ecke Ranch sales team as key accounts sales manager for the central region. In this role, Zendejas will assume responsibility of the central area of the U.S. sales territory reporting directly to Tom Hennessey, national sales director. Zendejas offers a wealth of experience having worked in the industry for 11 years. He graduated from Texas A&M University with a bachelor’s of science degree in horticulture. Before joining Ecke, Zendejas was account manager with Hines Nurseries. His experience includes working with key account buyers, managing large sales territories and developing value-added programs.   “I am eager to supply new ideas and solutions for Ecke and its customers,” Zendejas says. “I look forward to meeting and providing great service to our customers in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska.”   Ecke Ranch is happy to have […]

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