November 21, 2007

Terra Nova Turns 15

Perennial breeder Terra Nova Nurseries recently celebrated its 15th anniversary. What began as a part-time endeavor for cofounders Dan Heims and Ken Brown in Oregon turned into a passion for perennials with global appeal. Since then, Terra Nova has grown from a backyard breeding project to more than 15 acres of trial beds, greenhouses and a recently completed laboratory for research and production of millions of new plants. Two acres of beautifully maintained display gardens welcome visitors to Terra Nova and showcase its varieties. Segments featuring the nursery have been aired on HGTV, BBC and even Swedish Television. To date, Terra Nova has introduced more than 500 plants to horticulture. Its lab team has “cracked the code” for numerous genera in tissue culture. For more information, visit www.terranovanurseries.com.

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November 21, 2007

Town Rallies Around Knockout Rose

The city of Madison, Ala., has made ‘Knockout Coral Red’ rose its signature plant, as part of its 150th birthday celebration. This news was shared with us by Susan Parker, director of lawn and garden for the Alabama Farmers Coop. The Madison Beautification/Tree Board recently planted the roses around a gazebo to kick off the project during the Madison Street Festival. “We felt that an initial planting on the Village Greens, just prior to the event, would provide residents the opportunity to see Madison’s signature plant up close, while enjoying the festival,” board president Shrail Heinrich told The Huntsville Times. “We are excited about the number of calls and emails received from residents after learning that Madison adopted a signature plant. The comments and questions range from ‘where can the rose be purchased locally?’ to ‘Will the board consider planting roses in my neighborhood park?'” Numerous plantings are planned for […]

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November 21, 2007

Fischer Names Brand Managers

Fischer USA has hired Natalia Hamill as brand manager for seed and perennials and promoted Mark Seguin to brand manager for the vegetative lines. Starting with the 2008-09 season, Fischer will be managing the product development of all S&G proprietary genetics. Hamill comes to Fischer from Skagit Gardens and brings experience in product development and retail management. Seguin joined Fischer in 2005 as director of product development and worked closely with breeders and production teams in coordinating the introduction of new varieties and Fischer’s presence at university trials. Prior to coming to Fischer, he had 20 years experience in retail, wholesale and young plant greenhouse production.

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November 14, 2007

Proven Winners Adds Marketing Coordinator

Proven Winners North America LLC has hired Tabatha Gainey to a newly created position of marketing coordinator. Gainey was most recently a marketing coordinator managing key accounts for the John Henry Co. in Lansing, Mich. Her key responsiblities are managing and implementing all Proven Winners point of purchase programs, as well as to manage key brand development projects, such as Proven Winners professional fertilizers, Proven Winners Water Wise container watering kits and branded container selling programs. She also will act as the lead coordinator for Proven Winners brand partners and licensees. “This continues to be an exciting time for Proven Winners,” Gainey says. “There are so many opportunities that need to be explored and managed, and I’m very happy to step into these key projects and be part of building a great consumer brand.” The opportunity with Proven Winners also has given Gainey the chance to remain in the industry […]

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November 14, 2007

Jelitto In Japan

Perennial flower seed breeder Jelitto has opened a new branch in Japan as part of its golden anniversary. Sakiko Fujii opened the branch after spending several years working for Jelitto at its headquarters in Germany. She is looking forward to assisting Japanese gardeners and with their inquiries and orders while promoting Jelitto’s extensive range of seeds in Japan. In addition to perennials, varieties include wild flowers, grasses, medicinal herbs, alpines and patio plants. Jelitto also has branches in North America and England. 

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November 7, 2007

Ball Buys Darwin Plants

Ball Horticultural Co. has acquired the innovative Dutch perennials company Darwin Plants. The agreement combines Darwin’s expertise in perennials with Ball’s extensive capabilities in research, production, sales, marketing and customer service, giving perennial growers around the world more access to the comprehensive, creative range of perennials and shrubs for which Darwin Plants is known. “One of our goals is for Ball to be known as a perennial company,” says Anna Ball, President & CEO of Ball Horticultural Company. “Adding Darwin Plants to our offering means our customers benefit from specialized expertise and even more innovative products. We’re looking forward to an exciting future of providing growers with the best perennials and shrubs on the market.” Darwin Plants co-presidents Gary Vanburen and Hans Witteman see the acquisition as a very positive move forward for the industry. “This combines the strengths of both companies and allows Darwin Plants to focus on what […]

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November 7, 2007

Ellison’s & Valleybrook Join Hort Couture

Ellison’s Greenhouses in Brenham, Texas, and Valleybrook Gardens in Canada have joined the Hort Couture grower network to promote premium plants as high fashion. Although Ellison’s may be best known for poinsettias, especially at this time of year, the operation is always alive to new crops and opportunities. “I am extremely excited and enthusiastic about Hort Couture,” says CEO PJ Ellison-Kalil, who was our Grower of the Year in 2002. “I believe it is a fabulous positioning vehicle that can revitalize, rejuvenate and take our industry to the next level. The possibilities will just escalate as people of passion and integrity join together in the pursuit of excellence and making a positive difference. I for one think the sky is the limits and can’t wait to make possibilities into realities.” Valleybrook Gardens operates two nurseries in Canada, one in British Columbia and the other near Niagara Falls, Ontario. The company […]

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November 7, 2007

Goldsmith Markets Kieft’s Color Grass Line

Capitalizing on growing demand and interest in ornamental grasses from seed, Goldsmith Seeds will be marketing Kieft’s ColorGrass line in North America. ColorGrass is a collection of 14 highligh decorative ornamental grasses that are cost-effective inputs from seed. All the grasses are easy to grow and germinate as Kieft’s exclusive TunedSeeds. “It’s very exciting to represent the ColorGrass collection in North America,” says Ron Garofalo, Goldsmith’s director of sales and marketing. “We’re looking forward to offering our customers marketing ideas and technical expertise on a collection of grasses that perfectly compliments Goldsmith’s wide range of genetics.” Kieft is based in Holland and represented by Jeff McGrew in the United States. “Goldsmith was looking to expand their product offering and Kieft was interested in expanding our exposure in NOrth America,” McGrew says. “This partnership makes a lot of sense for both of us and we’re looking forward to a long and […]

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October 31, 2007

Roses For Your Favorite Vampira

Who says Halloween isn’t a floral holiday? Dutch cut rose breeder Schreurs has had fun marketing its Vampire! rose through Dracula Roses in The Netherlands. This month Dracula Roses Transylvania has been producing 100,000 stems per week and will produce 250,000 stems per week next year. The elegant, creamy-colored roses look as if they could have been dipped in blood. They are being sold through the main acutions in The Netherlands along with the German auction, Landgard-Herongen. They can also be ordered online at www.versvandekweker.nl. Check out the fun cartoon video created for the campaign. A spurned Dracula uses roses to woo his women. www.dracularoses.com

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October 24, 2007

OFA Hosts Poinsettia Symposium At Ecke Ranch

Would you like to get more out of your poinsettia crop? OFA is hosting a new symposium, “Poinsettias–The Nuts & Bolts And The Dollars & Cents,” Nov. 13-14 at Paul Ecke Ranch in Encinitas, Calif. Deadline to register is Oct. 31. During this 1.5-day symposium, leading experts will give you a better understanding of how to squeeze the very last dollar out of the cost of production while growing a top quality crop. They will introduce you to new forms and presentations, varieties and specialty programs that can help you reap a great margin for your poinsettia. In this intense poinsettia symposium you’ll learn about scheduling, temperature, light, nutrition, media, water, height management, diagnostics and varieties. Tuesday, November 13 7:30 to 7:50 am Registration and refreshments 7:50 to 8:00 Welcome: Paul Ecke III 8 to 9:15 am You Can Still Make Money Growing Poinsettias 9:15 to 9:30 am Break 9:30 […]

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October 24, 2007

Gulley Produces Rock Stars

Gulley Greenhouses in Fort Collins, Colo., has joined the network of Rock Star grower licensees. In addition to growing the the finished line, Gulley’s will be a network propagator for other licensed growers. Founded by perennials powerhouse Valleybrook International Ventures in British Columbia, Rock Stars are a branded line of rock garden and alpine plants. “We are delighted to have Gulley’s join the Rock Star network,” says John Schroeder, president of Valleybrook. “Gulley’s is a well-respected propagator and grower with experience growing a wide range of perennials, including alpines. As a propagator, they will help us achieve our goal of licensing additional growers throughout the United States.” Schroeder also indicated he is pleased to see progressive growers everywhere are recognizing the value of branded products coupled with complete merchandising solutions. “It’s becoming more and more important for growers to differentiate their product to get an edge in the marketplace and […]

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October 17, 2007

OFA Brings Pack Trials To Michigan

Through a special outreach program, OFA has partnered with Michigan State University (MSU) and leading trade press editors to bring the California Pack Trials to the Michigan Greenhouse Growers Expo on Nov. 6. There is no place like the California Pack Trials to be captivated by new plants and the potential they could bring to your bottom line. But not everyone has the opportunity to go, adn those who do are often overwhelmed by the range and volume of options. Join editors Delilah Onofrey of Greenhouse Grower, Dave Kuack of GM Pro, Catie Evans of Green Profit and Tim Hodson of GPN along with MSU’s Dr. Art Cameron and Ball Horticultural Co.’s Will Healy as they highlight the “Cream of the California Pack Trials Crop” in your own backyard. Instead of paying the expense to fly out to California for a week, this bargain is yours for $60. Registration deadline […]

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October 17, 2007

Zylstra & Riverbend Join Hort Couture

Zylstra Greenhouses in Kalamazoo, Mich., and Riverbend Nursery in Virginia and Georgia have joined the Hort Couture grower network. Hort Couture is a new line of branded plants founded by Jim and Jennifer Monroe of Greenbrier Nurseries, a leading grower-retailer in Virginia and West Virgina. Inspired by the fashion industry, Hort Couture is focused on an upscale look packaged with premium plants. Product lines so far include Avant Garde Annuals, Pret a Porter Perennials, Runway Ready Grass, Tres Chic Tropicals and Sunny Succulents. Future product lines include Four Seasons ColorCrops and Lifestyle plants for the mind, body and spirit. The company is licensing about 100 growers in the United States and Canada to produce the Hort Couture line. The national campaign will begin in 2009 and growers will have cobranding opportunities. Zylstra Greenhouses is owned and operated by Steve and Joy Zylstra with three locations in Kalamazoo. In addition to […]

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October 10, 2007

2007 Fall Gardening Trends

The Garden Writers Associaton Foundation (GWAF) has released its “2007 Fall Gardening Trends Research Report,” revealing insights on consumer gardening attitudes and expectations for the current season. Conducted in August by TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence, a national consumer polling organization, the survey statistically represents the attitudes of 110 million households with an accuracy of 95 percent (+/- 3.1 percentage points). Homeowners were asked what activities they believed were “appropriate” for the fall season. The survey offered choices for activities that were and were not generally recommended for the fall season. Related to plants, almost one in three households (29 percent) reported they believed gardening should stop at first frost. Households that plan to make fall plant purchases primarily with the stpring season in mind grew by 10 percent from 35 percent in 2006 to 45 percent in 2007. Fifteen percent chose sowing flower seeds as a fall activity. The number of […]

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October 3, 2007

University Field Trials

University field trials across the country yielded great results for both new and tried-and-true varieties. See the varieties that were Best In Show at each trial in the October 2007 issue of Greenhouse Grower. Check out the full field trials results from the following universities by clicking below: Colorado State University Oklahoma State University Ohio State University Penn State University University Of Georgia

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October 3, 2007

Fall For Poinsettias In Massachusetts

The University of Massachusetts and Massachusetts Flower Growers have put together a day of education and tours peeping at poinsettias on Tuesday, Oct. 16. The day will begin with poinsettia grower open houses from 8 to 10:15 a.m. at The Flower Hutch and King Farm in Townsend and Quality Plant Growers in Leominster. Then seminars will follow at King Farm featuring: John Bell of Green Leaf Perennials on “Must Have Perennials For 2008” Emeritus Professor John Bartok of University of Connecticut on “Preparing Your Greenhouses To Save Money On your Heating Bill” A catered lunch with an association business meeting and raffle Douglas Cox of University of Massachusetts On “Late Season Use of Growth Regulators on Poinsettias” Tina Smith of University of Massachusetts on “What’s This About Q Biotype Whiteflies?” And Jerry Gorchel from PanAmerican Seed on new seed items for 2008 For more information, contact Bob Luczai, Massachusetts Flower […]

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September 26, 2007

Takii Buys Sahin

Japanese flower and vegetable seed breeder Takii will strengthen its positioning in Europe and enhance its product offerings with the purchase of Dutch flower breeding company, K. Sahin Zaden B.V. Sahin was founded by Kees and Elisabeth Sahin 25 years ago. He loved plants and she was a botanist. Together, they introduced award-winning varieties, including achillea ‘Summer Pastels’ and the first F1 hybrid delphinium, ‘Centurion Sky Blue.’ Kees died one year ago and Elisabeth has been managing the business. Here, Elisabeth is pictured at Greenheart Farms displaying Sahin varieties during the California Pack Trials. “Sahin has bred exciting new classes of professional products, which are ready for introduction,” she says. “Takii’s strength in sales and technology would be a strong party to take these products successfully into the international market.” Denichi Takii, president of Takii & Co., says, “I am quite positive about the acquisition of Sahin. I am confident […]

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September 26, 2007

Germania Offers Organic Plugs

Germania Seed Co. will offer organic vegetable and herb plugs delivered in biodegradable pots made from rice hulls next year. Hot off the presses, Germania’s 2008 Plant/Plug Catalog brings growers more than 12,500 varieties of flowers, vegetables and herbs in plant and plug form. To request a catalog or download it online, go to www.germaniaseed.com.

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September 26, 2007

Fischer/S&G Restructuring Opens Markets

Syngenta just announced a dramatic realignment on the flower side of the business. Fischer USA will manage the entire genetics portfolio encompassing Fischer, GoldFisch and Syngenta-bred vegetative and seed products. S&G Flowers will just be a full-service broker/distributor firm. Before becoming part of the Syngenta conglomerate, S&G Flowers was Sluis & Groot, purely a breeding company based in Holland, and Vaughan’s Seed was a broker company. Together, they became S&G Flowers. The breeding dynamics changed when Syngenta purchased the Fischer group in June. In addition to being the largest geranium-breeder producer in the world with key lines in poinsettias and New Guinea impatiens, Fischer produces and markets all the vegetative Goldsmith products under GoldFisch. Because S&G Flowers had an internal breeder-broker relationship, certain S&G lines were exclusive through its own distribution. This includes the A Cut Above vegetative varieties and select seed varieties. With the new arrangement, All the genetics […]

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September 12, 2007

Yoder Plants Field Day And Mum Fest

Yoder will host its garden mum and aster fall field day on Sept. 27 at Lucas Greenhouse in Monroeville, N.J. Then that weekend, Sept. 29-30, Yoder’s home town, Barberton, Ohio, will be ablaze with 20,000 mums at Lake Anna Park during the 17th annual Mum Fest. At the field day, growers can learn about new garden mum and aster varieties and see how they compare with existing Yoder and competing varieties. It’s a great opportunity to learn how to be more successful growing and marketing mums. To register, contact Deb McGuinness at 800-232-9557, Ext. 2471, or email [email protected] The Mum Fest offers free admission and family fun from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. In addition to the amazing mum plantings, visitors will enjoy musical entertainment, historical displays, water ski shows, log carving, canoe races, arts and crafts, sand sculpting and ferris wheel rides. Potted mums also will be […]

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