Medal Of Excellence: The 2012 Nominees

The nominees for the Greenhouse Grower Medal Of Excellence For Industry’s Choice are selected by our well-rounded panel of greenhouse industry experts. Here are their 2012 nominations.

Dr. Allan Armitage
University of Georgia

1 Calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice,’ Proven Winners – Calibrachoas are mainstream plants, and this is quite a different color. It is excellent as a stand alone but also comports very well with others in combination plantings. Plants appear compact, floriferous and subtly eye-catching.

2 Surfinia Summer Double series, Suntory – This new series of double petunias appear to have all the attributes one looks for in a series. They are uniform in flowering time and habit, occur in many colors, and are compact and well branched for the grower.

3 Euphorbia ‘StarDust SuperFlash,’ Dümmen – The euphorbias have had a profound impact on the landscape market, and this one appears to be beautifully branched and as good a clean white as I have seen. The many branches result in hundreds of flowers; they literally covered the plants.

4 Dianthus Everlast series, Selecta – A group of good-performing dianthus that continues to flower much of the season is difficult to ignore. I liked the colors, the habit and the promise. That an entire series is available is most impressive. All in all, this series is an excellent addition to this important group of plants.

5 Pansy, Cool Wave series, PanAmerican Seed – A trailing pansy is something we have seen far too little of, and this series should be a wonderful gift to landscapers, designers and consumers. The number of colors is most impressive, but the tightness of growth and flower power were outstanding.

Vaughn Fletcher

1 Pansy, Cool Wave series, PanAmerican Seed – Large and unusual flowers, multi-dimensional use as groundcover, in combos and hanging baskets. Vigorous trailing habit, sales extension – spring and fall. Blooms early and withstands rain and cloudy weather.

2 Petunia, Crazytunia series, Westhoff – Uniform and compact growth habit, unique flowers. Only one color is available in the U.S. for 2013 – ‘Cherry Cheesecake.’

3 Petunia ‘Glamouflage Grape,’ Hort Couture – Eye-catching variety, strong retail sales potential. Variegated foliage and dark flower color creates a great contrast, unique to the industry.

4 Begonia, Arcadia series, Ecke Ranch – Seven colors, large double flowers, shade, floriferous, uniform growth habit in the series.

5 Begonia boliviensis ‘Santa Cruz Sunset,’ Benary – Alternative to vegetative varieties, bench run, drought-tolerant, sun or shade. Economic crop – no royalty. Heat-tolerant and well-branched.

Richard Jones
Greenhouse Grower

1 Calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice,’ Proven Winners – This eye-catching variety has a really nice – and unique – yellow pinwheel pattern, a mounding habit and a good earliness to flower.

2 Pansy, Cool Wave series, PanAmerican Seed – A trailing pansy that holds up in adverse weather and offers multiple uses for the consumer. This variety will attract serious attention in 2013.

3 Strawberry F1 ‘Toscana,’ ABZ Seeds – A plant that works equally well as an ornamental as it does an edible. With large rose-colored flowers and beautiful – and tasty – fruit, this variety could encourage new customers to try gardening.

4 Chrysanthemum, Mystic Mum series, Fides Oro – Mystic has great colors and a nice mounding habit, and maybe more importantly, easier scheduling for growers in this pot mum program with various cultivars flowering from very early to very late under natural conditions.

5 Begonia boliviensis ‘Santa Cruz Sunset,’ Benary – The first Begonia boliviensis from seed, which – along with the fact there’s no royalty – makes this an economical alternative for growers. Oh, and it’s a great-looking variety.

Raker & Sons
Litchfield, Mich.

1 Begonia boliviensis ‘Santa Cruz Sunset,’ Benary – This variety solves an issue for growers. B. boliviensis is a notorious problem crop when propagated from unrooted cuttings. Being able to produce this item from seed solves numerous problems with this crop.

2 Petunia ‘Glamouflage Grape,’ Hort Couture – Truly unique item. Variegated bright-purple petunia currently doesn’t exist in the marketplace.

3 Primula ‘Zebra Blue,’ Hort Couture – Truly unique flower form in the primula product class.

4 Pepper ‘Cayennetta,’ Vegetalis – AAS winner, so proven performance. Vegetalis continues to do good breeding work in the patio vegetable section of the industry.

5 Verbena ‘Lanai Candy Cane,’ Syngenta – Unique flower in the verbena product class.

Michele Radecki

1 Begonia boliviensis ‘Santa Cruz Sunset,’ Benary – The most bang for the buck. Great color and huge value to the consumer.

2 Verbena ‘Lanai Candy Cane,’ Syngenta – Clean bicolor, very polarizing.

3 Impatiens ‘Sunpatiens Electric Orange,’ Sakata – Terrific bright-orange color signifies a summer performer to the customer.

4 Dahlia ‘Hypnotica Tequila Sunrise,’ Fides Oro – You need a pair of 3-D glasses to appreciate the color and depth of this plant.

5 Begonia ‘Solenia Dark Pink,’ Ecke – Tough-looking plant with full dark blooms … what more can I say?

Mast Young Plants
Grand Rapids, Mich.

1 Lobularia ‘Lavender Stream,’ Danziger – Big hit with its controlled habit. By adding a new color to the line, it expands options for growers.

2 Petunia ‘Crazytunia Cherry Cheesecake,’ Westoff – The flower caught our eye! Very clean and clearly defined star bicolor flower with a great name.

3 Verbena ‘Lanai Candy Cane,’ Syngenta – The flower is striking, and our experience with it in field trials tells it has great garden performance as well.

4 Euphorbia ‘StarDust SuperFlash,’ Dümmen – Of all the new euphorbias out there, this flower is unique and shows
off a nice burst of color.

5 Dahlia ‘Hypnotica Tropical Breeze,’ Fides Oro – The Hypnotica series has proven itself over time and this new bicolor adds a designer color to a great garden-performing series.

Welby Gardens
Denver, Colo.

1 Calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice,’ Proven Winners – Simple yet
elegant, but wow, what a dazzler! This really is an eye-catching intro.

2 Geranium ‘Calliope Lavender Rose,’ Syngenta – This is going to make us all a lot of money. The Calliope series is an exceptional landscape winner. Guaranteed not to fail. The new colors make the series become a real workhorse in the trade.

3 Impatiens ‘Patchwork Cosmic Orange,’ Ball FloraPlant – Ball does it again with eye-popping intro. The gingerbread man marketing will make it a real hit, and it will add some real excitement to shady places.

4 Calibrachoa ‘Double Rose Chai,’ Selecta – This is outstanding – a very exciting color combination. It will be a real lady-pleaser and a spectacular addition to Selecta’s double calibrachoa line.

5 Verbena ‘Lanai Candy Cane,’ Syngenta – appears to be the champion of the bicolor verbena world. ‘Lanai Candy Cane’ will find its way into many borders and baskets for years to come.

Huntersville, N.C.

1 Calibrachoa ‘Lemon Slice,’ Proven Winners – Unique flower pattern on a very bright yellow. We think this will be a big seller next year.

2 Dahlia ‘Hypnotica Tequila Sunrise,’ Fides Oro – Bright orange color with a great-looking habit.

3 Geranium Great Balls of Fire series, Dümmen – Very nice series with heat tolerance and excellent garden performance.

4 Verbena ‘Lanai Candy Cane,’ Syngenta – Great color that caught everyone’s attention.

5 Petunia ‘Good and Plenty Yellow,’ Green Fuse – Great-performing yellow petunia that propagates easily.

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