Cultivate’18 in Columbus, OH, kicks off in just a few more days, and as usual, the schedule is packed educational sessions, workshops, and other presentations covering the latest in greenhouse production and technology, plant marketing, business management, and much more.
Our team of editors at Greenhouse Grower has pored through the schedule, and we’ve noted 10 highlights you’ll want to make sure are on your schedule.
1. Start Your Experience With a Tour
This year, AmericanHort is offering four different tours: Greenhouse Production, Garden Retail, Hydroponics, and Nursery and Landscape. Each tour takes place on Saturday, July 14, and details can be found on the “Add-On Experiences” page on the Cultivate’18 website.
2. Point Your Career in the Right Direction
If you can’t make a tour, you can still sign up for a couple different workshops being offered on Saturday. One of them is CareerUp, an AmericanHort program tailored to the unique situations young horticulture professionals might encounter. CareerUP provides access to best practices and the opportunity to learn the soft skills that can make or break many young professionals and entry-level managers. Attendees will be introduced to experts who will share practical skills that will help them succeed in a career in horticulture.
3. Learn to Identify Key Pests
Another Saturday event is the Biocontrols Workshop, which will show you how to ID key pests found in the greenhouse. The workshop will continue at on offsite location after this session, where attendees will discuss advanced release techniques. Hands-on demonstrations and discussions will be done with a top biocontrol specialist from the industry.
4. Check out the Ohio State University Cultivar Trials
Unleash your inner plant nerd and assess 700 annual and perennial varieties on display at The Ohio State University Cultivar Trials. See how they grow in typical Central-Ohio environmental conditions and evaluate their growth in containers, landscape beds, and hanging basics. Also, be sure to check out Howlett Hall’s green roof. Free shuttle rides from the Convention Center are available on Saturday and Monday.
5. Sign up for the Luxflora Flower Run on Sunday Morning
The third annual Luxflora Flower Run will kick off the start of Cultivate’18 on Sunday morning, July 15, at Wolfe Park in Columbus, OH. Be sure to pack your running shoes!
6. Get Inspired at Two Keynote Presentations
No matter your place in the horticulture industry, the keynote is always a must-attend part of Cultivate. This year that tradition continues on Sunday morning with Scott Greenberg, a noted businessman and speaker who will give a talk on “Elevating Performance for Leaders and Their Teams.” For more than two decades, Greenberg has captivated audiences with his high-energy presentations on leadership and peak performance mindset. His diverse client list includes Nike, Amgen, Merrill Lynch, the Wyndham Hotel Group, the U.S. Air Force, and countless other businesses, franchises and associations.
The Monday morning keynote is a State of the Industry update from AmericanHort’s Ken Fisher, Craig Regelbrugge, and Charlie Hall. Fisher, AmericanHort President and CEO, will discuss key green industry trends and efforts from AmericanHort. Regelbrugge, Senior Vice President, Advocacy and Research, will give his “Inside Washington” perspective on political order and outlook on horticulture industry policy priorities from workforce to tax and small business issues. Finally, AmericanHort Chief Economist Charlie Hall will report and explain current economic indicators, policy implications, and help set the stage for strategic thinking for the rest of the year.
7. Never Stop Learning
Whether you’re looking for the latest information in pest management, crop production, technology, marketing, or new varieties, the Cultivate’18 educational program is stacked with presentations from experts in the field.
8. Get Engaged at the Town Hall Forum
One of the most thought-provoking sessions each year is the Cultivate Town Hall, which takes place on Sunday, July 15, at noon. This year, some of the sharpest minds of horticulture from a diversity of segments and ages examine the real key to purchasing, and it might surprise you. It comes down to the emotion, desire, and benefits, not the flowers or the pretty. A diverse group of panelists representing some of the sharpest minds in the industry will offer ideas and pathways to get your results going in the right direction.
9. Carve Out Time for the Trade Show
With hundreds of exhibitors packed into several rows, the trade show at Cultivate can be daunting. Take a close look at the list of companies at the show, and make notes on who you need to connect with.
10. Attend Greenhouse Grower’s Medal of Excellence Awards
Greenhouse Grower’s Medal of Excellence Awards have become an annual tradition for Cultivate attendees. The 2018 Medal of Excellence Awards will once again shine a spotlight on the top new varieties that emerged from this year’s California Spring Trials, as well as the head growers and greenhouse operations that are paving the way for a great future for the entire industry. New this year are the Gamechanger of the Year Award and the Technology of the Year award. The traditional Industry Achievement Award also has a new twist.
This year’s Greenhouse Grower Medal of Excellence Awards take place Monday, July 16, in Union Station B (formerly Ballroom 2) of the Columbus (Ohio) Convention Center. Registration is now open, so sign up today!