Springing For The California Trials

Springing For The California Trials


Greenhouse Grower Editor Delilah Onofrey will
be on the road again this year with the
University of Georgia’s Allan Armitage.

Flower breeders, plant introducers and marketers are gearing up for another big California Spring Trials, April 10-16 at nearly 20 locations between San Jose and San Diego. Although the name has been in transition for some time, the California Pack Trials are now officially renamed the California Spring Trials, reflecting the evolution of the bedding plant industry beyond flats and packs. The lineup of participating companies has reshuffled significantly in terms of who is where this year.

Ball Horticultural Co. is expected to be the biggest destination with displays now encompassing Kieft Seeds and Selecta in addition to Ball FloraPlant, Ball Ornamentals, Burpee and PanAmerican Seed. New attractions include a retail idea center, expanded outdoor displays, technical information and the opportunity to check out the first black petunia and a new cascading pansy series.

GroLink Plant Co.’s trials in Oxnard have expanded to include Green Fuse Botanicals (formerly Bodger Botanicals) and Knox Nursery. Suntory has relocated to Plug Connection in Vista and will exhibit in a separate greenhouse at that site. Plug Connection hosts an independent trial comparing a wide range of breeding lines.

Sakata and Benary will be sitting out of the trials this year, but a new group of company’s will be taking Benary’s place at Imagination Canyon Greenhouse in Santa Barbara, including: Skagit Gardens, Florist de Kwakel, GGG International, Jiffy and Northern Innovators. Hort Couture and Westflowers will be new exhibitors at Island View Nursery in nearby Carpinteria.

Dummen has taken its Garden Party to Edna Valley Vineyard in San Luis Obispo. Greenheart Farms in Arroyo Grande will be celebrating its 30-year-anniversary and showcasing its roses, cyclamen and hibiscus. ABZ Seeds will be a new addition at Speedling in San Juan Bautista. MasterTag will exhibit at Speedling again this year and also at Headstart Nursery in Gilroy with Danziger and Oro Farms.

Here is a complete itinerary from North to South:

NORTHERN TRIALS
–Goldsmith/Syngenta Flowers in Gilroy
–Danziger ‘Dan’Flower Farm, Oro Farms and MasterTag at Headstart Nursery in Gilroy
–Speedling will host ABZ Seeds, Greenex USA, Hem Genetics, MasterTag, Plant Source International, Schoneveld Twello and Thompson & Morgan in San Juan Bautista
–Pacific Plug & Liner, including the Agrexco Companies, in Watsonville
–Golden State Bulb Growers in Moss Landing
–American Takii in Salinas

CENTRAL TRIALS
–Dummen USA at Edna Valley Vineyards in San Luis Obispo
–Greenheart Farms in Arroyo Grande
–Floranova in Lompoc
–Northern Innovators, Florist de Kwakel, GGG-International, Jiffy Products, The John Henry Company and Skagit Gardens at Imagination Canyon Greenhouse in Santa Barbara
–PlantHaven, HIP Labels, Westflowers and Hort Couture at Island View Nursery in Carpinteria
–Ball Horticultural Co. in Santa Paula
–Fides North America in Santa Paula
–GroLink Plant Co., including Knox Nursery and Green Fuse Botanicals, in Oxnard

SOUTH TRIALS
–Proven Winners/EuroAmerican Propagators in Bonsall
–Booman Floral in Vista
–Plug Connection in Vista
–Suntory Collection at Plug Connection in Vista
–Paul Ecke Ranch in Encinitas

for a detailed map and contact information for each location. Spring Trials hosts request appointments be scheduled in advance to help them manage traffic flow.

Can’t make it to California this year? Stay tuned for our coverage from the road through Benchrunner and on GGTV with Allan Armitage.

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