Southeast Growers Report Minimal Damage, But Declined Sales From Hurricane Florence

Hurricane Florence view by satellite

Image courtesy of NOAA

Hurricane Florence appears to have spared many North Carolina-based greenhouses from significant damage, at least based on initial reports compiled by the Greenhouse Grower editorial team.

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“We are far enough inland that we didn’t get the wind or rain that others farther East did,” says Dana Massey of Plantworks Nursery in Rougemont, NC. “We did have some minor flooding in a few greenhouses where we lost some plants, but compared to what could have been, it was very minor.”

Massey says her team at Plantworks was able to prepare ahead of time.

“We secured items around the nursery that the wind might blow over, and we prepared our generators to run pumps just in case we were without power for a few days. Fortunately, we lost power for only a few hours.”

There were a few boxes of unrooted cuttings that arrived a few days late, so they were a complete loss, Massey says.

“Our bigger issue is our sales for this fall,” Massey says. “Some of our customers that were hit the hardest will spend this fall rebuilding and not ordering to stock the shelves.”

Jason Roseman of Rockwell Farms in Rockwell, NC, says the company fortunately did not experience any damage to its facility, although there was some flooding in outdoor production areas.

“However, Hurricane Florence has negatively impacted our fall mum sales,” Roseman says. “September was very soft, and sales are down 30%. Slow mums sales also had a ripple effect on our poinsettia crop. The unexpected excess mum inventory forced us to delay and alter our poinsettia spacing program.”

Help is Available

The NCFB is lending its assistance to any growers who experienced significant damage as a result of Hurricane Florence. Go to the NCFB website for more information.

Has your operation felt the effects of Hurricane Florence? Let us know in the comments section below.