Medal Of Excellence: The Panel And Their Nominees

For more than 20 years, Greenhouse Grower has recognized outstanding contributions in advancing flower varieties, and the industry as a whole, through our Medal of Excellence awards program. We will present three breeding awards on July 11 during our Evening of Excellence reception at the OFA Short Course in Columbus, Ohio:

– Industry’s Choice determined by our well-rounded panel
–Editor’s Choice by Editor Delilah Onofrey
–Reader’s Choice determined by you, our readers.

We’ve opened up Reader’s Choice to be more competitive, with breeders and plant introducers submitting their best new varieties for consideration. Entries will compete in categories with winners advancing to face off to win Reader’s Choice.

In addition to recognizing the best new introductions, we recognize long-term contributions. We are pleased to present Adrian Bloom of Blooms of Bressingham with our Industry Achievement award for his life’s work introducing premium perennials and showing how they can be used in landscapes in his famous demonstration gardens. Our Marketer of the Year is Ball Horticultural Co./Burpee for the Burpee Home Gardens program. Congratulations to our finalists and honorees!

Dr. Allan Armitage, University of Georgia
1. Floranova’s Vegetalis program–These new vegetables are part of the change in product mix.
2. Hellebores ‘Pink Frost’ and ‘Cinnamon Snow,’ Skagit Gardens–Definitely breakthrough plants with upright flowers and excellent, handsome foliage.
3. Lady Slippers streptocarpus, Green Fuse Botanicals–Colors were stunning and an improvement, to be sure, on what is presently available.
4. Ornamental corn ‘Field of Dreams,’ Floranova–Great fun and potentially quite profitable. The corn was obviously ornamental, assuming it holds its colors.
5. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–Different enough to be considered in the mix, good colors and lots of buzz.

Vaughn Fletcher, McHutchison
1. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–This is a genetic breakthrough in the osteospermum class. The three colors are unique. Flowers remain open under low light conditions and the flower position is upright.
2. Paparazzi phlox, Pacific Plug & Liner–A genetic breakthrough in interspecific phlox breeding, a very floriferous series, impressive flower presentation above the foliage, long blooming and self branching.
3. Verbena ‘Lanai Twister Pink,’ Syngenta Flowers–This unique color will appeal to consumers and generate impulse sales. It’s a dramatic flower with great potential in mixed containers and baskets. Last but not least, the retail shelf life will be outstanding.
4. Calibrachoa ‘Superbells Cherry Star,’ Proven Winners–We have so much choice in colors, growth habit and specific series, a new color must be so unique and different to attract the consumer. This variety has the power to make this happen!
5. Salvia ‘Summer Jewel Red,’ Takii–An All-America Selections winner for 2012, it flowers two weeks earlier than other coccinea varieties and blooms early spring through fall with great garden performance. ‘Summer Jewel Red’ also appears to be more compact and can be used in containers as an impressive centerpiece or in landscape beds.

Delilah Onofrey, Greenhouse Grower
1. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–A breakthrough as the first double-flowered osteospermums with unique flower form and colors. Love Silver!
2. Candy Drops phygelius, Skagit Gardens/David Kerley–Although they are only hardy to Zone 8, the vivid colors make them attractive as annuals, as well as tender perennials.
3. Darwin Perennials’ echinacea program–While many of the new colored echinaceas have fizzled in landscapes, Darwin Perennials is emphasizing hardiness testing. Hot colors in the Sombreros and Double Scoops should delight consumers.
4. Sunvillea bougainvilleas, Suntory–Suntory has reinvented another crop, taking bougainvillea to bonsai proportions. Sunvilleas were recognized at the Tropical Plant Industry Expo. I look forward to seeing what growers do with them.
5. Lady Slippers streptocarpus, Green Fuse Botanicals–Produced from tissue culture instead of leaf cuttings, the Lady Slippers should be a superior offering. Great assortment of colors for houseplants and shade.

Michele Radecki, Walmart
1. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–Double flower and bright colors, a breakthrough that will appeal to consumers.
2. Pot mum ‘Shanghai Red,’ Syngenta Flowers–Full flower head and deep red color, a significant improvement over others.
3. XXL dahlias, Dömmen–Beautiful blooms and a good series for color range. These should appeal to consumers.
4. Double Scoop echinaceas, Darwin Perennials–Double flower and rich color, genetic breakthrough, completely new product and a significant improvement over others on the market.
5. Euphorbia ‘Luv U Pink,’ Ecke Ranch–Completely new color, habit and timing.

Mast Young Plants, Grand Rapids, Mich.
1. Verbena ‘Lanai Twister Pink,’ Syngenta Flowers–Unique, reverse flower color.
2. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–Breakthrough in breeding.
3. Akila osteospermums, PanAmerican Seed–Improvement over current market varieties in seed osteospermums.
4. Dianthus ‘Diana Lavender Picotee,’ Hem Genetics–
Great color!
5. Lobularia ‘Silver Stream’ from Danziger–Looked great in combo baskets.

Metrolina Greenhouses, Huntersville, NC
1. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–First double-flowered osteospermum. Great early season item, nice garden height. The always-open flowers really stood out for us.
2. Calibrachoa ‘Superbells Cherry Star,’ Proven Winners–First in class color. Really unique flower pattern that catches your eye.
3. Verbena ‘Lanai Twister Pink,’ Syngenta Flowers–Unique, eyecatching color. Has the same great Lanai disease tolerance and does well in the heat.
4. Coreopsis ‘Solanna’ from Danziger–Great looking coreopsis. Profuse, bright, large double flowers.
5. Kale ‘Glamour Red,’ Takii–Finally something new in kale. Shiny foliage really stands out in the garden. Did great in our overwintering trial last year.

Raker & Sons, Litchfield, Mich.
1. Ornamental Corn ‘Field of Dreams,’ Floranova–New look and use for corn. Plants are attractive with controlled growth, making them useful in containers and bedding applications.
2. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–New flower form in osteo. The fact they will not close under dark conditions makes them that much cooler.
3. Trixi liner innovation, Selecta–For propagators, solves production problems by not having to stick three different genera in a single cell. This will open the concept to more combination ideas.
4. Dianthus ‘Diana Lavender Picotee,’ Hem Genetics–New, unique color in bedding dianthus. Plants are naturally dwarf (no PGR) and basal branched. Also features extra-large flowers.
5. Under the Sea coleus, Hort Couture–Exotic, new coleus forms and types. Proceeds support research programs at the University of Saskatchewan, where they were bred.

Welby Gardens, Denver, Colo.
1. Ornamental corn ‘Field of Dreams,’ Floranova–Novel appearance with broad application in landscapes and specialty planters. Also has appeal to popcorn lovers.
2. 3D osteospermums, Selecta–A genetic breakthrough that solves the problem of osteospermums that close up under low light. Silver is especially novel as a color.
3. Pot mums from Syngenta Flowers, especially ‘Shanghai Red’–Spectacular colors and flower forms should give a spark to a sleepy pot mum market.
4. Tomato ‘Cherry Falls,’ Vegetalis–Handsome plant and fruit presentation, loads of fruit and improved flavor.
5. Sunvillea bouganvilleas, Suntory–These tidy plants and stacked florets will be very appealing in four-inch or small pots.

Leave a Reply

More From Varieties...
P.Allen Smith Cut Flowers

May 25, 2016

Sakata Seed America And P. Allen Smith Extend Partnership To Add New Cut Flower Collection

Sakata is taking its partnership with plantsman P. Allen Smith a step further to create the P. Allen Smith Home Grown Cut Flowers Collection, a selection of premium cut flower seed hand-picked by Smith and bred exclusively by Sakata.

Read More
Coleus Fancy Feathers Pink (Terra Nova Nurseries)

May 23, 2016

Take A Sneak Peek at Terra Nova Nurseries’ New Coleus Fancy Feather Series

A brand-new collection of Terra Nova Nurseries coleus varieties called the Fancy Feathers Series is now available to growers for online orders. The series produces narrow, feather-like leaves and offers a mounded habit.

Read More
Rotary Botanical Gardens, Wisconsin

May 16, 2016

All-America Selections Summer Summit In Madison, WI, Will Offer Display Garden Tours And Much More

Registration is now open for the 2016 Summer Summit, which takes place in August and features a focus on the locally grown movement.

Read More
Latest Stories
P.Allen Smith Cut Flowers

May 25, 2016

Sakata Seed America And P. Allen Smith Extend Partnersh…

Sakata is taking its partnership with plantsman P. Allen Smith a step further to create the P. Allen Smith Home Grown Cut Flowers Collection, a selection of premium cut flower seed hand-picked by Smith and bred exclusively by Sakata.

Read More
Coleus Fancy Feathers Pink (Terra Nova Nurseries)

May 23, 2016

Take A Sneak Peek at Terra Nova Nurseries’ New Coleus F…

A brand-new collection of Terra Nova Nurseries coleus varieties called the Fancy Feathers Series is now available to growers for online orders. The series produces narrow, feather-like leaves and offers a mounded habit.

Read More
Rotary Botanical Gardens, Wisconsin

May 16, 2016

All-America Selections Summer Summit In Madison, WI, Wi…

Registration is now open for the 2016 Summer Summit, which takes place in August and features a focus on the locally grown movement.

Read More

May 10, 2016

13 New Native Plants And Nativars For Going Green [Slid…

Native plants are becoming a bigger part of living green, as consumers become more aware of the role regional native plants play in promoting biodiversity in the garden, in urban landscapes, and in habitat restoration. Here are 13 new native plants breeders are offering to consider for your product mix.

Read More
Pennisetum alopecuroides ‘Ginger Love’ (Aris Greenleaf Plants)

May 10, 2016

12 New Ornamental Grasses For Low Maintenance Garden Ap…

Nothing says low maintenance like ornamental grasses. They add texture, movement, and all-season color to the garden. Check out 12 new ornamental grasses and grass-like varieties for growing in your greenhouse or the garden.

Read More
Blueberry ‘BrazelBerries Perpetua’ (Fall Creek Farm & Nursery)

May 9, 2016

Why Star Roses And Plants Is Buying The BrazelBerries P…

The purchase includes the brand, variety portfolio, and grower network, and allows Star Roses to capitalize on increased berry consumption among consumers.

Read More
Wave Petunias Team

May 3, 2016

Hot Pink Wave-Rave Van Making Its Way To The Big Apple …

Imagine driving down the road, minding your own business, when you’re passed by two smiling, waving, happy women driving a hot-pink van that’s adorned with petunia and pansy flowers. That’s not something you see every day, but motorists in the Midwest and Northeast may catch a glimpse of the Wave-Rave van this week as Ball Horticultural Co.’s Claire Watson, Product Marketing Manager, and Katie Rotella, Marketing Communications Manager, make their way to a media tour and plant giveaway in New York City. Watson and Rotella visited Cleveland’s WOIO Channel 19 news on Tuesday morning to tell consumers about Wave Petunias and Wave Pansies, and remind them to visit their local garden centers to purchase gifts for Mother’s Day this weekend. Check out this clip on Periscope. After the morning news, the ladies stopped by to visit the Greenhouse Grower staff at Meister Media Worldwide in Willoughby, OH. Next stop: Chelsea Garden Center in Brooklyn, NY, where […]

Read More
National Garden Bureau CAST 2016 Bloggers

May 3, 2016

5 Things Gardens Bloggers And Writers Learned At Califo…

For the second year in a row, the National Garden Bureau hosted five popular garden bloggers and writers on a trip to California Spring Trials. Here’s what each of them had to say about their experience.

Read More
Chick Charms

April 29, 2016

Kelly Norris: Why The Plant Collector Market Is Set To …

In his latest column for Greenhouse Grower magazine, Kelly Norris says there are more plant collectors out there than we think, which opens the way for the gift plant market to explode.

Read More
Pennisetum Fireworks

April 28, 2016

Why Ornamental Grasses Are Great For People In Condos A…

Allan Armitage says breeders need to do a better job of making growers, brokers, and garden centers aware of better ornamental grass cultivars for the increasingly shrinking garden space.

Read More
Andropogon gerardii Blackhawks (Intrinsic Perennial Gardens)

April 27, 2016

Know Your Market When Choosing Ornamental Grasses

Growers have no shortage of choices in the ornamental grass market. Narrowing down the selection comes down to finding the right plant for the right purpose.

Read More
Bee on Bidens

April 25, 2016

Breeders Go The Distance To Bring New Plant Varieties T…

Breeders are meeting the demand for new varieties that perform and sell well by extending trialing to engage the grower community, using advanced technology, and encouraging international collaboration.

Read More
Dr Allan Armitage

April 20, 2016

Growers And Breeders Are Always Looking For A Better To…

While edibles become more diverse, there's one goal that hard-core gardeners and urban foodscapers share.

Read More
Syngenta Pentas

April 20, 2016

Syngenta Flowers Opens Its Perennial Genetics To The Ma…

California Spring Trials 2016 visitors to Syngenta Flowers found the breeder company and its employees happy and excited for the future, in the wake of the announcement of its acquisition by ChemChina. Now Syngenta Flowers is ready to move forward with its breeding efforts in geraniums, pentas, and other crops, and it is opening its perennials offerings to the whole supply chain for a better chance to get those plants to retail.     Syngenta Wants To Revolutionize Geranium Breeding The big news in this year’s trial, says Karl Trellinger, Technical Services Representative at Syngenta, is the change in Syngenta’s breeding efforts in geraniums and pentas. The Calliope geranium series, long considered a premium line in the market, is getting a makeover. Growers have told the breeder that they love the colors available in the Calliope series, but the plants are just too vigorous for smaller containers and combinations. As […]

Read More
Petunia Vista Bubblegum (Proven Winners)

April 20, 2016

Proven Winners Funds Gardening “It Couple,” Names Plant…

Since 1992, Proven Winners has been changing the gardening game, and it’s not stopping now. With new plants, improved series, and interesting retail customers, the brand aims to make planning easier for growers, and make gardening easier and more fun for consumers. At its new 2016 California Spring Trials location at Kirigin Cellars in Gilroy, Proven Winners had the space and a beautiful setting to lay all of its offerings out, from new and improved varieties in annuals, perennials, and shrubs, to marketing and retail programs. Check out the slideshow below for highlights.   Proven Winners Is Flexing Its Marketing Muscle One of the ways Proven Winners is working toward better use of its products and gardening in general, is by supporting the gardening authorities that gardeners of all ages trust on social media. Director of Marketing Marshall Dirks says while searching for influential gardeners, he came across a young […]

Read More
Scaevola 'Purple Haze' (Danziger 2016)

April 19, 2016

Allan Armitage Picks His Favorites From Proven Winners,…

From “crazy” petunias to container pentas, there was plenty that caught Allan’s eye during the final day of 2016 California Spring Trials.

Read More
CallaFornia Red

April 19, 2016

Golden State Bulb Company Shows Off New Concepts In Cal…

There’s no question that Golden State Bulb Company’s specialty is in breeding virtually any color of Calla Lily, available in about any habit — cut flower, bouquet pot, upright pot type — the list goes on. But now, the bulb specialist is focusing on making calla lilies more accessible to the masses, for use in combination planters and the landscape, with calla six-packs. Calla breeder Peter Beckman showed us the shrunken-down version of these beauties, and they’re certainly perfect for patio pots, planting along paths or at the front of the garden, or en masse for an elegant statement. This presentation makes it easy for consumers to pick up and use callas, without the intimidation they might feel from a bulb crop, says Dr. Allan Armitage.   They’re also versatile for growers to plant in early to mid-February to add to finished containers in the spring, or to sell in […]

Read More
Disney Trial Garden

April 17, 2016

Mark Your Calendars For Florida Flower Trials In May

The two-day event, which takes place in Orlando, is held in conjunction with the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival and offers educational seminars, tours, and open houses.

Read More
[gravityform id="35" title="false" description="false"]