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, ‘Ice Punch’ took first and grabbed the second-place prize in the overall category.
Pink plants were a huge hit at Mitchell’s, with ‘Luv U Pink’ winning among pinks and in the overall category. ‘HC 18B Pink’ took the silver in pink and third overall.
“I got lots of positive feedback on ‘Luv U Pink,’” says Judy Mitchell, a co-owner of Mitchell’s. “I had 100 6.5-inches, and they were gone by December 3, before our open house.”
Mitchell adds that red is still the customer’s color of choice and that the ‘Shimmer Surprise,’ ‘Red Glitter’ and ‘White Glitter’ varieties also sold well.
“The poinsettia market is still alive and strong,” she says. “We all have to find our niche and work to develop it. I’m a small grower and want to remain that way.”