Industry News

Garden Media Group Releases 2022 Trends Report

On Sept. 8, the Garden Media Group released its full trends report for 2022, which outlines eight trends retailers can expect from the gardening industry in the near future. Per the Garden Media Group: "The 2022 report shows the shift that has occurred in the green industry and beyond. It goes past ‘The Great Reset’ of 2021 and guides us through the customer mindset to better fit green products and services...Read More

Strength and Stamina

If grace and flexibility were the key words in 2020, this year’s theme could easily be endurance and adaptability. In last year’s State of the Industry report, we asked you to bend, not break. It’s apparent as we near the end of 2021, the industry has bent and not broken.  And each one of you should be proud of how you’ve handled what has got to be the oddest 18+ months of your professional career. Read More

The Cost of Doing Business

The rising cost of agriculture inputs is not a new phenomenon. The 2017 Census of Agriculture reported per-farm expenses at a record $159,821, up from $155,947 five years previous. Income over the period fell slightly, according to the census, from $43,750 in 2012 to $43,053. While a new census isn’t due until 2022, industry onlookers are not expecting much change on the input side. Burgeoning expenses for seed, fertilizer and plastic containers – combined with a shallow labor pool - has forced owners to raise prices and automate some processes. Read More

Understanding Gen Z

Here’s what we know about Generation Z so far, and why your business should start thinking about appealing to this demographic sooner rather than later. Here’s what we know about Generation Z so far, and why your business should start thinking about appealing to this demographic sooner rather than later. Read More

Houseplant Report: Blooming and Booming

It’s no surprise that garden centers saw stellar sales in their houseplant departments during 2020 as COVID-19 had customers spending more time at home. Building on the momentum driven by plant parents, biophilic design trends and plant collectors, the houseplant craze was driven to new heights last year. Read More

Plant Pricing Truths to Grow By

Let’s get real on a couple of points: First, we need to pay people better (way better) in our industry, and second, consumers are clueless when it comes to understanding how plants are or should be priced. This math does not compute. Low perception of value is still suppressing both plant prices, and thus wages, in the horticulture industry. So, what are we going to do about it? Read More

Together Again

The industry got a chance to reconnect at Cultivate’21 in Columbus, Ohio, and there was certainly plenty to catch up on. From COVID (and post-COVID) gardening trends to merchandising ideas to what’s coming in 2022, there was plenty of excitement. Read More

Bloomin' Easy adds Six Flowering Shrubs for 2022

Bloomin’ Easy is adding six new and improved flowering shrub varieties to its collection for spring 2022. From extended flowering and improved natural form, to fresh colors and strong reblooming, these novelties offer incredible value for young homeowners and plant lovers alike... Read More

Native Stingless Wasp May Benefit ALB Eradication Efforts

For 25 years, USDA-APHIS' Plant Protection and Quarantine program's Asian longhorned beetle (ALB) eradication program has successfully battled back against the pest to significantly reduce its footprint. PPQ experts have established a solid response plan to eliminate the ALB and prevent its spread to other locations. Today, as part of PPQ’s ongoing efforts, scientists are evaluating a biological control (biocontrol) agent—Ontsira mellipes—for its potential to attack and kill ALB larvae. Read More

HRI to Offer $25,000 in Scholarships

The Horticultural Research Institute, Columbus, Ohio, will grant more than $25,000 in scholarships for the 2021-2022 school year. These scholarships are made possible by nine endowed funds that aid students who are seeking a lifelong career in horticulture. HRI and its donor firms consider graduating students in horticulture to be the lifeblood of the green industry. Applications are due no later than September 10, 2021. Read More

The New Gardener

When consumers started spending more time at home in 2020, they headed to garden centers in droves, many for the first time. A National Garden Bureau report found that 18 million Americans started gardening in 2020, and they got hooked on their new hobby. These customers came with lots of enthusiasm, little knowledge and different needs than the traditional IGC customer. While the gardening momentum doesn’t seem to be dying down any time soon, the garden as we know it may be changing due to demands from this new demographic. Read More

Home Services Growth Looks Consistent for Remainder of 2021

Home service management software company Jobber predicts that revenue will consistently grow for landscapers and other home services in the second half of this year, continuing the positive trend that began more than a year ago. “The home service category has demonstrated resilience throughout the pandemic and continues to experience positive growth,” said Sam Pillar, Jobber CEO and co-founder. Read More

Jeffrey Scott Talks Supply Chain with LandscapeHub CEO and Founder

In the latest podcast, The Ultimate Landscape CEO, LandscapeHub B2B online marketplace founder and CEO Lisa Fiora sits down with LM columnist Jeffrey Scott to talk about the grower supply chain and where the supply chain is headed for the B2B consumer. Fiore is a fourth-generation nursery professional. She was previously President of Fiore Landscape and Nursery Supply (FLNS), a century-old nursery...Read More

Grow the Market

Find out what the consumer thinks of you and your services, and why they invest in their yards. In 2020, the green industry rose to the challenge of being an essential part of maintaining our landscapes and green spaces during these pandemic times. We were all learning new skills in technology to stay in contact. We found a way to service the growing population shift from urban households to working from home in larger suburban and rural households in need of more space. Read More

Spring Best-Sellers

Garden centers weigh in on what sold well during another busy spring and their predictions for the future. With another spring successfully in the books, we caught up with two independent garden centers to see what’s hot at their stores, what they expect this summer and their insights into next year’s busiest season. Read More

Why This Year’s Plant Shortage is a Perfect Storm

If you ask people in the green industry about obtaining plants, you might hear statements such as “unprecedented demand” or “the worst shortage in years.” Experts say this plant shortage predates beyond homeowners’ renewed focus on green spaces and the weather in Texas, back to the Great Recession, where many nurseries were left with an oversupply and slashed production, and many went out of business. Read More

High Performance: Why Rising Costs Should Equal Rising Prices

Almost everywhere we look, we see higher costs. The cost of gasoline, for example, has increased dramatically compared to previous years. Labor costs are skyrocketing as the workforce shrinks and demand continues to increase. Raw material costs have seen large increases as the global supply chain struggles to work its way out of a major pandemic-related disruption. Food costs have jumped. Read More

Bayer to Remove Glyphosate from Residential Products

Bayer announced yesterday that the company will replace glyphosate in consumer products with alternative active ingredients starting in 2023. There will be no change in the availability of the company’s glyphosate formulations in the U.S. professional and agricultural markets. Read More

Growing ‘green’ Kids

Before the term “plant blindness” was coined in 1998 by botanists James Wandersee and Elisabeth Schussler, the majority of people in the U.S. had lost their collective ability to notice the plants around them. What was common knowledge to our ancestors has become an obliviousness about where our food comes from, the importance of plants to the health of humans and animals, and a failure to appreciate the role of plants in the very survival of our planet. Seed Your Future has been working tirelessly to turn things around and inspire more people — especially youth — to appreciate the role of plants in our world and perhaps explore a career working with plants. Modest gains were being made. Read More

Crisis to Innovation

At Cultivate’21, Katie Dubow, president of Garden Media Group, shared the 2022 Garden Trends Report: Crisis to Innovation. As the industry emerges from COVID-19 and heads toward a renaissance, customers are responding by spending more money. Retailers can capitalize on the revolution by focusing their efforts on the individual and putting an emphasis on customer personalization, she said. Check out the eight trends that can help your business capture customers’ attention and better serve their lifestyles. Read More

NALP Partners with Caterpillar to Raise Industry Visibility

Caterpillar Inc., Deerfield, Illinois, and the National Association of Landscape Professionals, Fairfax, Virginia, partnered to raise the visibility of the landscape industry and celebrate the impact that 1 million landscape and lawn care professionals have on our nation’s green spaces. Read More

Smart Irrigation Market Size to Reach $2.9 Billion in 2027

The global smart irrigation market size is expected to reach $2.9 billion by 2027 at a compound annual growth rate of 15.5%, according to a new report by Emergen Research, Surrey, British Columbia. Major factors such as rapid advancements in the agricultural sector, increasing demand for good quality food, and rapidly expanding global population are driving global market revenue growth. Read More

PPA Announces 2022 Perennial Plant of the Year

The PPA has announced Schizachyrium scoparium and cultivars as the 2022 Perennial Plant of the Year. The wider selection of Schizachyrium scoparium and cultivars allows the perennial expert in any region to select and promote the cultivars that do best in his or her location! PPA Board members selected top performers in their regions and shared appealing details about each one. Read More

Spotted Lanternfly Found in Indiana

Spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) was found in Indiana for the first time in Switzerland County earlier this week, the farthest west the insect has been found. This federally regulated invasive species has a detrimental impact upon plant growth and fruit production, especially in vineyards and orchards. Read More

Spring Best-Sellers

With another spring successfully in the books, we caught up with two independent garden centers to see what’s hot at their stores, what they expect this summer and their insights into next year’s busiest season. Read More

Giving Bad Advice

I became a volunteer master gardener with our local cooperative extension a year before I became an employee at a local garden center. When I started work at Hyannis Country Garden, one of my fellow master gardeners made it a point to loudly complain about my new workplace. It seemed that the previous spring one of the employees had identified a six-pack of marigolds as tomatoes. Read More

Get Inside Gardeners’ Heads

The plant-buying boom of 2020 drove customers to IGCs all over North America, but what was the motivation behind the gardening craze? Professor Bridget Behe, Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University, dug into the trends, surveying both those who did and did not buy plants from July 15 to Aug. 21, 2020. Funded by the Horticultural Research Institute, the research project compared results from 1,211 Generation Z, Millennials and Baby Boomers, to see what drove their purchases. Read More

A New City Agency May Try To Save Chicago’s 4 Million Trees — And Plant More

Everybody has a tree story. That’s the mantra of Michael Dugan, the Director of Forestry at Openlands, one of the main organizations that helps the city of Chicago plant hundreds of trees a year. As he walked through Douglass Park, an expansive city park on the Southwest Side of Chicago, Dugan rejoiced about the benefits of green space, and the attachments to which Chicagoans place the trees within them. Read More

South Carolina Bans Sale of Invasive Bradford Pear Trees

South Carolina has taken the rare step to ban sales of the popular, but invasive, Bradford pear tree that is still sold in some nurseries as experts across the state fear the damage the spread of the tree has already done might not be undone for decades. Read More

Proven Winners Debuts Compostable Branded Container

To reduce the volume of single-use plastic containers and be better stewards of the environment, Proven Winners is debuting a brand new, fully compostable container called the Eco+ Grande. This 4 ¼ -inch  plant-powered container is made in the U.S.A. from starchy renewable plants like corn, switch grass and sugar beets and has organic nutrients built right into its walls. Read More

Here’s a ‘Hort Truth’ for You: We have a Women in Horticulture Problem

We have a women in horticulture problem. The problem isn’t that we don’t have plenty of women working in the horticulture industry — we do. The problem is one of access to power and adequate representation. Read More

How and When you Should Market to Men

Growing and thriving as an independent garden center means making meaningful connections and engaging with our customers on a level that feels authentic and natural. For our own sake, and that of our audience. When it comes to customer targeting and marketing, what feels natural to women and men often differs greatly. When deciding on whether to cater to one or the other, your choice and strategy...Read More

The Great Conundrum

We’ve moved from the Great Recession to the Great Shutdown to the Great Conundrum, said Dr. Charlie Hall at the State of the Industry presentation during Cultivate’21. “We’re in a period of probably growth but we’re constrained,” he said, “but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.” Pre-COVID, we were in an unprecedented period of 128-month economic growth. Housing was peaking, inflation was in check and consumption...Read More

AmericanHort Announces the HortScholar Class of 2021

For the past fifteen years, AmericanHort has identified and supported emerging leaders in the horticulture industry through the HortScholar Program. After a rigorous application process, six students are chosen who show qualities such as a passion for the industry, growth mindset, teamwork, and leadership. Read More

Crisis to Innovation

At Cultivate’21, Katie Dubow, president of Garden Media Group, shared the 2022 Garden Trends Report: Crisis to Innovation. As the industry emerges from COVID-19 and heads toward a renaissance, customers are responding by spending more money. Retailers can capitalize on the revolution by focusing their efforts on the individual and putting an emphasis on customer personalization, she said. Check out the eight trends that can help your business capture customers’ attention and better serve their lifestyles. Read More

Building for The Next Decade

A commitment to constant learning, evolving, and keeping a family business feel has catapulted the brothers Van Wingerden to the top of the American horticulture industry. What does the next decade look like at this gigantic greenhouse operation? Since we last checked in with one of America’s largest commercial greenhouse operations, the brothers Van Wingerden (Abe and Art, co-owners of Metrolina Greenhouses) have stewarded a 1,400-employee operation (along with 58 partner growers around the country) through a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic, found themselves front and center on television and have boosted a once $80 million-dollar annual business into today’s $300-million, 162-acre market leader. Read More

Get Inside Gardeners’ Heads

The plant-buying boom of 2020 drove customers to IGCs all over North America, but what was the motivation behind the gardening craze? Professor Bridget Behe, Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University, dug into the trends, surveying both those who did and did not buy plants from July 15 to Aug. 21, 2020. Funded by the Horticultural Research Institute, the research project compared results from 1,211 Generation Z, Millennials and Baby Boomers, to see what drove their purchases. Read More

Build Your Online Community

As if online marketing and social media were not already uphill battles for many IGCs before the pandemic, these responsibilities have blown up over the past year. From Zoom calls to virtual events to Facebook groups, IGCs have done a lot to bring their customers together during the pandemic. Once in-person shopping returns at new-normal levels, how do you build on the digital momentum you have created and continue to leverage your online community? These will be some of the most important questions for IGCs as we move through 2021 and beyond. Read More

Transformative Tech

Just a few years ago, Chris Duckworth, owner of Duck Works Lawn Care in Cobden, Ill., lost something very important. That’s when he knew his dependence on paper needed to go. “Paper got really ridiculous in my life and I was sick of it,” he says. “I lost my calendar one day and realized that 100% of everything I had was in that calendar.” Read More

LANDSCAPES 2021 Registration Opens

The National Association of Landscape Professionals, Fairfax, Virginia, opened registration for LANDSCAPES 2021, an education and networking event for landscape and lawn care contractors. The event takes place Oct. 19-22, 2021, at the Omni Louisville Hotel and Kentucky Expo Center in Louisville, Kentucky, and is held in conjunction with GIE+EXPO. Read More

ASLA elects 35 members to its Council of Fellows

The American Society of Landscape Architects, Washington, D.C., has elected 35 of its members to become ASLA Fellows. The election, according to CEO Torey Carter-Conneen, is based on members’ “exceptional contributions to the landscape architecture profession and society at large.” Election to the ASLA Council of Fellows is among the highest honors the ASLA bestows on members and is based on their works, leadership/management, knowledge, and service. Read More

Why Plant Shortages Are the Hort Industry’s Biggest Problem Today

Whenever I am asked to take part in a horticulture industry discussion, as opposed to a plant customer discussion, invariably the conversation centers on problems. As healthy as our market is, as well as individuals have done, we can’t help ourselves — we are always trying to find a solution to the next big issue. Read More

May Retail Sales Reach Near-Record Level Despite Supply Chain Constraints

Retail sales remained at elevated levels in May despite month-to-month fluctuations that masked near-record performance, the National Retail Federation recently announced. “While May retail sales were down slightly, largely due to supply chain constraints, the more accurate indicator remains in the year-over-year data which, as the NRF calculates, showed growth of over 17 percent,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. Read More

The H-2B Workforce Coalition Applauds the Introduction of Returning Worker Exception Act of 2021

The H-2B Workforce Coalition, comprised of thousands of employers and their representatives from industries such as lodging, landscaping, seafood, restaurants, tourism, equine, forestry, amusement parks, golf courses, and other seasonal businesses, are grateful to Reps. Cuellar (D-TX), Joyce (R-OH), Keating (D-MA) Pingree (D-ME), Chabot (R-OH), and Harris (R-MD) for introducing the bipartisan the Returning Worker Exception Act of 2021. Read More

Not Going Anywhere

According to a recent Cornell University Integrated Deer Research and Management study, the population of white-tailed deer in the U.S. has soared from around a half-million in the early 1900s to around 25 million today. Densities of white-tailed deer may exceed 40 deer per square mile in some rural areas, and over 100 deer per-square-mile have been documented near many eastern metropolitan areas. Read More

On the Dry Side

Nursery Management editor Kelli Rodda talked to Chuck Pavlich, Terra Nova’s director of new product development, about his efforts to breed drought-tolerant plants. In its last Residential Landscape Architecture Trends Survey, the American Society of Landscape Architects revealed the hottest sustainable design elements include native/adapted drought-tolerant plants (83%). Read More

Finding the Sweet Spot

Buying and committing to inventory … it is one of the most important functions of a successful garden center. Yet not all IGC buyers have the training or tools to make smart buying decisions based on hard data and solid marketing strategies. Too often, a lack of buying protocols and promotions leave you with bad buys based on fear. Read More

NALP Applauds the Introduction of The Returning Worker Exception Act of 2021

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) which represents an industry that employs nearly 1 million landscape, lawn care, irrigation and tree care professionals, today applauds Reps. Cuellar (D-TX), Joyce (R-OH), Keating (D-MA) Pingree (D-ME), Chabot (R-OH), and Harris (R-MD) for introducing the bipartisan Returning Worker Exception Act of 2021. This legislation would enact much needed H-2B reforms and cap relief...Read More

NALP Names New Board of Directors

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) has announced its board of directors slate for 2021-2022, with terms beginning October 1. “The nominations team executed a very thorough nominations and selection process that brought some to the best minds in the industry before the committee” said Andrew Ziehler, chair of the nominations committee for NALP. Read More

Inspiring Gardeners

This year’s trio of Green Profit/The Garden Center Group Young Retailer Award finalists go to great lengths to delight new and returning customers. Every year we go through dozens of nomination forms to find our Young Grower and Young Retailer finalists, and every year I’m impressed at the amount of talent out there in our industry. Read More

How to Manage Spotted Lanternfly

Penn State Extension provides suggestions for identifying and managing spotted lanternfly eggs, nymphs, and adults. Sunny skies and rising temperatures have many on cloud nine with anticipation of summertime fun. But for residents in parts of Pennsylvania and beyond, these weather conditions also signal the return of a trespasser that aims to rain on their parade — the spotted lanternfly. Read More

Meeting Consumer Demand

Berns Garden Center and Landscaping is always evolving. When Al and Cherie Berns bought a greenhouse on an acre of land in 1956, they had no idea the business, which was open just eight weeks a year in the beginning, would eventually operate 360 days a year and grow to employ 50 to 135 people annually. Read More

Green Savings

McHale Landscape Design originally started its in-house recycling program to reduce its trash expenses, but now the sustainable decision is saving customers money, too. Like with most businesses in 2020, the coronavirus pandemic certainly impacted McHale Landscape Design, based in Upper Marlboro, Md. Read More

Shipping Woes

In working on the story about garden décor this month, I received an education in the current state of shipping, which, in a few words, is not great right now. It’s not only a fascinating story, but it impacts everyone and it behooves us all to understand why we’re seeing shortages, delays and increased costs. Read More

Yes, We Have No Bananas

Remember last spring when garden centers had an unprecedented year in which sales were up 60000% and we just sold everything we could because there was NO WAY this perfect storm could be reproduced this year? Remember when growers pushed out 2021 product in 2020 because who knew what the future held? Read More

Bayer presents five-point plan to address potential future Roundup claims

Bayer, Leverkusen, Germany, announced a series of actions it plans to implement following the denial of the motion to preliminarily approve the Roundup class settlement agreement, designed to address potential future litigation, by Judge Vince Chhabria of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Read More

2021 Equipment Maintenance Survey

Landscape contractors rely on their equipment to keep them in business. That’s why it’s so important to make sure that each piece is running smoothly at the start of the season and replace older machines with newer models as necessary. We asked our readers for their insights on how they make new equipment purchases and maintain the pieces of equipment already in use. Read More

Mother’s Day gives spring sales a big boost

As the COVID-19 gardening craze continues to pull in more and sales and customers than in years past, Mother’s Day 2021 was a record-breaker. Heather Pariso, owner of The Garden Gurl Shop in New Philadelphia, Ohio, reported that her sales were up compared to last year, despite the “absolutely treacherous” weather. Read More 

Cultivating new vegetable gardeners

One of the positive reactions to the recent pandemic has been a huge upswing in the desire to grow vegetables. All spring garden centers have heard from customers who want to revive long abandoned vegetable plots, build new raised beds or turn lawn under in order to grow edibles. Read More

Native Plant Know-How

Boring. Wild. Temperamental. The problem child of the landscaping world. Despite thousands of years spent adapting to the local soil type, climate and water conditions, native plants still get a bad rap. Read More

5 buying trends that signal good fortune in 2021

Perhaps no one development in our lifetime has shaped and shifted consumer buying behaviors quite as dramatically as the COVID-19 pandemic. Almost overnight, in-person and paper were on the way out, virtual and digital on their way in. Read More

The Drift Dilemma

You’ve tasked crews to scout for pests and diseases. But are you monitoring your crops for another potential problem – one that may be perpetrated by your neighbor? The predicament in question is herbicide drift, and pundits say it’s not a question of if you’ll experience drift, but when. Read More

Pandemic Provides Public Support for Pesticide Regulation

A recent online survey of 1,000 adults conducted by trade association Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment, Arlington, Virginia, shows that Americans are supportive of current measures by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and state agencies to effectively regular pesticide products. Read More

Crisis Looming in Trucking and Shipping; Here Is What’s at Stake for Horticulture

American Trucking Associations President and CEO Chris Spear told the Senate Commerce, Science & Transportation Committee this week that growing pressures on the U.S. supply chain are fast approaching crisis levels, and that immediate action from Congress is needed to ensure our economic recovery is not derailed by further disruptions. Read More

2021 Houseplant Hysteria

Use these stats to help with planning production schedules and marketing houseplants to your independent garden center customers.  It’s no surprise that garden centers saw stellar sales in their houseplant departments during 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic had customers spending more time at home. Building on the momentum driven by plant parents, biophilic design trends...Read More

Job Descriptions & Essential Functions

Choosing not to develop job descriptions fails to recognize how critical they can be to numerous operational and legal workplace issues. Job descriptions can prove invaluable in a wide range of circumstances. Accurate and up-to-date job descriptions are implicated even before the employment relationship begins, at the hiring stage. Read More

Breaking Down a New Demographic

Young homeowners are credited with much of the gardening boost of 2020, and this demographic shows no signs of slowing down in 2021, according to a survey conducted by Axiom Marketing, a Minneapolis, Minnesota-based firm. The survey, “Axiom 2021 Gardening Insights Survey: Gardening in a COVID-19 World,” took a look at how their experience compared to gardeners over 40. Read More

A Lawn & Landscape Economic Update

Harvesters Ed & Allison discuss what green industry professionals should be paying attention to as the economy bounces back from COVID-19. Watch Video

AmericanHort Names New Board Members, Officers

Per a press release, AmericanHort announced the election of three new members to the board of directors, along with the election of a new slate of officers. The official welcome and installation will take place at Cultivate’21 held July 10-13, in Columbus, Ohio. “These individuals are leaders from across the horticulture industry and encompass various experiences, skills, and backgrounds. Read More

Budding Labor Opportunities

When landscaping companies were deemed essential businesses last spring, Phil Steinhauer was relieved to learn that Designscapes Colorado could continue working through the pandemic. But COVID caused another dilemma for the company when national borders closed – shutting off the flow of H-2B workers that Steinhauer has relied on to fill his labor force for the last 15 years. Read More

Will There Be Enough Plants?

Developments have coalesced making plant sourcing this spring more difficult than in seasons past. Lean on your partnerships and keep an open mind when it comes to substitutes.  The past year has taken many businesses in the green industry to extreme highs and lows. While the pandemic stimulated a huge influx of new customers into the hobby of gardening, COVID strains on supply and freight have hurt many businesses...Read More

Lawn & Landscape - Grow the Market Survey

In 2020, the green industry rose to the challenge of being an essential part of maintaining our landscapes and green spaces during these pandemic times. We were all learning new skills in technology to stay in contact. We found a way to service the growing population shift from urban households
to working from home in larger suburban and rural households in need of more space. He witnessed...Read More

David Hoffman Discusses Plant Supply Issues, Substitutes and Pivoting 

Has Hoffman Nursery felt the impact of the plant supply issues coming out of the Texas winter storms?  Yes. Some of our customers I know are sending material down. And that’s from North Carolina all the way up to New Jersey. I’ve talked to a few people that are sending material down, so I imagine that we will as time goes on. I don’t know if we’ve directly seen anything — honestly, a lot our material has been sold out...Read More

Benchmarking Your Business - 2021 Landscape Industry Report

When the going gets tough, the tough get going. You’ve probably heard this saying many times, but if there’s one thing the past year has taught us, it’s that the landscape industry is tough, and we’re committed to moving forward together. This year’s Benchmarking Your Business report offers a rare glimpse into the different ways landscape industry professionals have adapted their businesses to thrive in the face of the rapidly evolving marketplace. Read More

Sold Out

As the calendar turned to 2021, the green industry was busy making plans and predictions. During last year’s pandemic gardening frenzy, many growers dipped into their stock earmarked for 2021. As pundits were forecasting another strong sales year for plant material, the supply chain was pondering how to reconcile industry-wide plant shortages. Read More

Mother’s Day Spending Expected to Reach New High

Mother’s Day spending is expected to total a record $28.1 billion this year, up $1.4 billion from 2020, according to the annual survey released today by the National Retail Federation. Approximately 83 percent of U.S. adults are expected to celebrate the annual holiday. “There is a lot of consumer optimism around Mother’s Day this year as more people are getting vaccinated and stimulus checks are being...Read More

Seed Your Future Names New Executive Director

Seed Your Future has announced the selection of Jazmin Albarran as its next executive director. After a nationwide search, the organization selected this seasoned nonprofit professional to succeed retiring founding executive director, Susan E. Yoder, IOM. Albarran will join Seed Your Future on May 10. With solid knowledge of associations and philanthropy, she will bring her skills and expertise in planning...Read More

Harmonizing the Relationship

Is it me because I have this need to please everyone? Or is it because, at times, there’s a disconnect between the growers and landscape designers? As growers, are we too focused on garden centers and the needs of the retail consumer while discounting landscapers? Does the smorgasbord of information on the Internet provide designers with too many options for growers to keep up? Read More

NGB Announces Houseplant Category for “Year of the” Program

National Garden Bureau, the non-profit organization promoting gardening in North America on behalf of the horticulture industry and its members, has officially announced the addition of one more category to the “Year of the” program. The new category is: HOUSEPLANTS! Read More

Texas Winter Storm Losses Will Cost Green Industry Millions

Winter Storm Uri, which blasted through the entire state of Texas, caused at least $600 million in agricultural losses, according to preliminary data from Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agricultural economists. In addition to massive losses in citrus and vegetable crops, extended freezing temperatures killed or badly damaged landscape plants, shrubs and trees in nurseries, garden centers and greenhouses throughout the state. Read More

Ten Plants That are High in Demand but Short on Supply

Working with buyers and sellers across the country gives us the unique position of seeing what plants are requested repeatedly, which are widely available, and the ones that are SUPER difficult to find. We pulled our data and polled our team to get their take on which plants, in particular, are going to be high in demand this year but short on supply. We've also offered substitution suggestions whenever possible so you can stay ahead of the competition. Read More

McHutchison, Vaughan’s Consolidate Young Plant Divisions in Chicago Suburbs

McHutchison and Vaughan’s Horticulture have announced their long-term commitment to the Chicago region by consolidating each company’s young plant division into one Chicagoland office in the western suburb of Naperville. “This is an exciting market for us,” said Nathan Lamkey, president of McHutchison and Vaughan’s Horticulture. “From a business and growth perspective, Chicago is an excellent...Read More

LandscapeHub Marketplace Report 2020

There is no mistaking that 2020 has been an unprecedented year that has affected industries worldwide, including the landscaping sector. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted many businesses in our industry. It will continue to do so in the months ahead, but we at LandscapeHub are approaching 2021 with cautious optimism. The industry generates $99 billion annually, with 3.3% growth over the past five years...Read More

Rain Bird CEO Dies

Anthony W. “Tony” LaFetra, 80, president and CEO of Rain Bird Corp., died on Jan. 29. Rain Bird said he will be remembered as a passionate business leader whose work has had a lasting impact on the irrigation industry, generations of employees and the community. LaFetra built the irrigation company in Glendora, Calif., into an international market leader. LaFetra worked hard to promote the company’s guiding...Read More

Southern Nursery Association to Cease Operation

Following the announcement of canceling The SNA Conference scheduled for February, the Southern Nursery Association (SNA) has announced that in a unanimous vote the board of directors has made the difficult decision to cease operation of the 121-year-old organization. Since the conference is the main source of income and with declining membership, the board determined that the association cannot be sustained. Read More

AmericanHort State of the Industry White Paper; Analysis for the Green Industry - CLICK HERE

Survey: 2020 Gardening Boost Led by Younger Homeowners

Despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, younger homeowners brought a big business boost to garden centers during the spring and summer of 2020. All signs point to this age group continuing their interest in gardening this year. These are the findings of the latest Axiom 2021 Gardening Insights Survey that took a look at how their experience stacked up against gardeners over 40. Read More

Arborjet and ISA partner to Support the TREE Fund

Woburn, Massachusetts-based Arborjet | Ecologel through a partnership with the International Society of Arboriculture, Atlanta, have made a $15,000 donation in support of the TREE Fund. The Fund works to sustain the world’s urban forests by providing funding for scientific research, education programs, and scholarships related to arboriculture and urban forestry. Arborjet is working with various ISA chapters across the country...Read More

Seed Your Future Launches 2021 Bloom! Campaign

Seed Your Future has announced the launch of “Plants to the Rescue!” — its 2021 BLOOM! campaign to excite young people about the power of plants and their unique ability to help solve some of the most pressing problems in their communities. In collaboration with Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education and media company, BLOOM! provides free eye-catching, fact-based...Read More

Burpee Releases Garden Trend Forecast

Burpee recently released the 2021 Burpee GardenCast, its first-ever gardening trend forecast. Informed by cultural trends and industry predictions, GardenCast provides valuable information that will inspire novice and expert home gardeners. “We estimate more than 18 million new gardeners entered the category in 2020,” says George Ball, Burpee executive chairman. “As they enter their second year...Read More

Choose Hope

The green industry certainly is used to roller-coaster years. But 2020 was a year like no other. When growers should have been knee-deep in their busiest shipping time, no one was sure if there would even be a selling season. As states began to identify growers, landscapers and retailers as essential businesses, the industry sprang back to life, albeit one with a whole new set of rules...Read More

MANTS Goes Virtual; Still Means Business

The 51st annual Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show was different than any that preceded it. More than 550 green industry suppliers registered for the MANTS Business Hub, the venerable January trade show’s answer to the virtual exhibition hall. If you registered for the online MANTS Business Hub, it will remain open for 90 days. Read More

NGB Collaborates with

In a move to help grow and sustain an even more robust interest in gardening, KidsGardening and National Garden Bureau have created a working partnership to increase the reach of their previously individual messaging efforts. By collaborating, these two non-profit organizations have doubled the number of consumers, families, and educators their materials and messages will reach. “Gardens give kids...Read More

EHR Strengthens Team with Former Gloeckner Reps

Walter Bissex, Jeff Nameth, Matthew Miller, Tom Seibert and David Toohey have all accepted positions with EHR, and are already calling on customers in their new roles. EHR has been successful in helping its customers have profitable years and looks forward to continuing this tradition with its newest members. With the additions of these former members of the Gloeckner organization, EHR is poised to become...Read More

Monrovia Appoints Jonathan Pedersen as New CEO

The board of Monrovia Nursery Company is pleased to announce the appointment of Jonathan Pedersen as the company’s new chief executive officer, effective Jan. 1. Pedersen succeeds Miles Rosedale, who stepped down at the end of 2020 to focus on his role as co-chairman of the board of directors. Pedersen is a highly experienced and well-regarded leader in the horticultural...Read More

Tactical Economics

The green industry is coming off a hot streak as we kick off the new year. Operations across North America, save for a few regions where lockdowns didn’t exempt greenhouse growers, saw historically positive sales volumes last spring, stretching into summer and fall. Now that the wild and seemingly never-ending 2020 is firmly in the rearview, many horticulture operations that are flush with cash find themselves...Read More

Perennial Plant Association Announces Hybrid National Symposium for 2021

The Perennial Plant Association (PPA) has announced via press release that it will follow a new format for its 2021 national symposium. PPA will now be presenting a hybrid national symposium that will showcase world-renowned speakers on a virtual platform to allow perennial plant professionals and enthusiasts to safely connect and learn with colleagues from around the country and world. Read More

Central Garden & Pet Acquires Hopewell Nursery

On Dec. 17, Central Garden & Pet announced it had entered into an agreement to acquire Hopewell Nursery, a leading live goods grower serving retail nurseries, landscape contractors, wholesalers and garden centers across the Northeast. The Hopewell acquisition follows the company’s successful addition of Bell Nursery in 2018. The addition of Hopewell Nursery to the Central portfolio further bolsters...Read More

Calamintha nepeta subsp. nepeta 2021 Perennial Plant of the Year

Like a cloud of confetti, tiny white flowers (sometimes touched with pale blue) appear from early summer to fall on this plant. Undemanding and dependable, it provides the perfect foil for other summer bloomers and foliage. These marvelous characteristics convinced the Perennial Plant Association to take notice and name Calamintha nepeta subsp. nepeta the 2021 Perennial...Read More

2019 USDA Report Reveals Nearly $14 billion in Horticulture Sales

USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service has released its 2019 Census of Horticulture Specialties report. The report highlights comprehensive sales and production data across all aspects of specialty agriculture. The industry survey found that 20,655 U.S. horticulture operations (total number of operations down 11% from the 2014 Ag Census) sold $13.8 billion worth...Read More

SNA Cancels 2021 Virtual Conference

The Southern Nursery Association (SNA) has announced The SNA Virtual Conference scheduled for February 2021 has been canceled. The SNA board made this decision based on current industry and public constraints brought on by COVID-19. The SNA Plant Conference, the SNA Research Conference and the 122nd Annual SNA Business Meeting, to be held in conjunction with The SNA Conference, has also been canceled. Read More

APHIS Changes Approach to Fight the Emerald Ash Borer

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is changing its approach to fight the emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation that has spread through much of the United States. Announced via press release, the agency is publishing a final rule that removes the federal domestic EAB quarantine regulations that have proved ineffective and will redirect resources to more promising methods. Read More

Pantone Names Two Colors of the Year for 2021

Announced via press release, Pantone has named PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating as the Pantone Color of the Year selection for 2021. Read the full announcement, below: Ultimate Gray and Illuminating are two independent colors that come together to create an aspirational color pairing, conjoining deeper feelings of thoughtfulness with the optimistic promise of a sunshine filled day. Read More

The Great Reset

Now in its 20th year, Garden Media Group has released the 2021 Garden Trends Report. Its theme: The great reset. In it, Garden Media Group observes, “This is truly the closest shared experience we as a world will ever have, connected to everyone, whether next door or across the globe. We’ll see many changes, but one overarching shift will shape many of them — collective action. And it’s not just the global...Read More

AmericanHort Lauds Ruling That Horticulture is an Agricultural Commodity

AmericanHort released the following statement after the Department of Transportation issued an Interim Final Rule announcing that horticulture is specifically included in the definition of agricultural commodity as it pertains to transportation: “We are very pleased with the clarification of the agricultural commodity definition,” said Tal Coley, Director of Government Affairs. “Plants are highly...Read More

Spotted Lanternfly Detected in Ohio

The Columbus Dispatch has reported that the invasive spotted lanternfly (SLF) has been detected in Ohio. Read the article, below: It was a flickering neon light that may have attracted it. It’s likely the red and grey distinctive spotted fly hopped from a nearby rail car, which routinely runs about 50 feet away from the shop’s window. Jason Kopras, an auto glass shop owner, found the spotted lanternfly on the windowsill...Read More

TPIE '21 Forced to Cancel

On Nov. 20, the Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association (FNGLA) announced it had reached a reluctant decision to cancel Tropical Plant International Expo — TPIE 2021. The trade show and conference were scheduled to meet Jan. 20-22, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. Although show organizers were hoping the event could take place, it was no longer feasible to hold the annual industry trade show...Read More

Axiom Shares 2021 Gardening Insights Survey Results

The spring and summer of 2020 saw homeowners gardening in record numbers. A new survey released today shows gardeners of all ages will be back digging in the dirt in 2021. The research, conducted by Axiom Marketing, a Minneapolis-based firm, found that 86% of homeowners plan to continue gardening in 2021. Nearly 40% of those surveyed say they will plant about the same as last year, with 47% say they will be planting more...Read More   SURVEY

Crucial Conversations

Despite regional marketing and educational campaigns, consumers in general often have a skewed perception of drought and water conservation techniques. Research from Texas A&M and Michigan State University has revealed data that will allow the green industry to craft targeted messages to consumers that may help stretch a diminishing water supply. Melinda Knuth, who recently earned...Read More

MSU Stresses Need for Vigilance in Fight Against SLF

Dead spotted lanternflies have been discovered in the state of Michigan. The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) announced the first detections of the invasive spotted lanternfly found in Michigan. Fortunately, the specimens were dead and there is no evidence that the spotted lanternfly has become established in Michigan. Read More

Monrovia Announces Miles Rosedale to Step Down as CEO

Monrovia Nursery Company has announced that Miles Rosedale will step down from his role as CEO but remain co-chairman of the Board of Directors, effective Dec. 31. Monrovia’s Board has initiated a search for a new CEO and the company will remain family owned. “While 2020 has been an extremely challenging year, it has also been one of Monrovia’s most rewarding,” said Rosedale. “Now is the right time for this transition...Read More

EPA Documents Show Dicamba Damage Worse Than Previously Thought

Despite its decision this week to allow use of dicamba, the Environmental Protection Agency’s own data shows that the damage from the controversial weedkiller was worse than previously known. Dicamba harmed tens of thousands of farmers, overwhelmed state agriculture departments and damaged research plots across the United States, according to documents the federal agency...Read More

Illinois Team Sequences Miscanthus Genome

An international research team has sequenced the full genome of an ornamental variety of miscanthus, a wild perennial grass emerging as a prime candidate for sustainable bioenergy crops. The genome project — led by scientists at the Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation (CABBI), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Research Center — provides a road map for researchers...Read More

Secretary Perdue Statement on DOL's H-2A Wage Rule

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today praised the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new H2A Wage Rule, which delivers on President Trump’s promise to stabilize farm labor costs and reform the H-2A wage rate. “This rule shows once again President Trump’s commitment to America’s farmers by delivering lower costs when they need it the most,” said Secretary Perdue. “Over the past several years farm wages have increased...Read More

Trump Administration Plans to End H-1B Visa Lottery

The Trump administration has proposed a new rule that would end the H-1B visa lottery, used when U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) receives more petitions than allowed under the annual limit. In its place, USCIS would grant petitions based on the registrations received starting with the highest salary level and working down. Read More

Illinois Department of Agriculture Awards Specialty Crop Grant Funds

The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) received more than $591,000 through the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. Producer groups, trade associations, nonprofits and colleges and universities were eligible to apply for grant funds through the department.  IDOA will split the funds between ten projects that are intended to expand the availability...Read More

WNLA to Dissolve Due to COVID-19 Financial Loss

On Wednesday, Oct. 14, the Western Nursery & Landscape Association released the below announcement: The historic global pandemic has created numerous challenges and great sadness for many. On August 31, 2020, the Board of Directors of the Western Nursery and Landscape Association, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)6, announced that they had unanimously decided to not have a trade show event...Read More

What to Do With Plastics

Hundreds of Pounds of it are in every automobile, truck and tractor. It’s made into millions of straws, utensils and to-go containers for use in the food industry, as well as the disposable, sanitary medical instruments used by doctors and nurses. And it’s everywhere in the greenhouse and nursery industry too, found in everything from drip tube irrigation systems to injection molded pots, trays, flats, poly...Read More

Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show Debuts Business Hub

The Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show has debuted its Business Hub, developed to connect exhibitors and buyers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite not being able to meet in person, the intelligent, searchable business directory will provide opportunities for exhibitors and buying companies to engage in commerce during this year's show, scheduled for January 6-8, 2021. The Business Hub...Read More

2020 State of the Industry Report: Sales and Profits

First, let's take a look at sales and profits. Sales gains in 2020 vs. 2019 were greater than sales losses with 62% enjoying gains and about 11% reporting no change from year over year. Exactly half expect profits to increase in 2021 and 43% anticipate profits remaining the same next year. Read More

USDA to Provide Additional Assistance to Specialty Crop Growers Impacted by COVID

According to a press release issued by the USDA, President Donald J. Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced up to an additional $14 billion dollars for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) began Sept. 21 and will run through Dec. 11. Read More

PPA Announces 2021 Perennial Plant of the Year

The Perennial Plant of the Year program began in 1990 to showcase a perennial that is a standout among its competitors. Perennials chosen for this honor are suitable for a wide range of growing climates, require low maintenance, have multiple-season interest and are relatively pest/disease-free. The Perennial Plant Association (PPA) Board of Directors reviews the nominated perennials and selects three or four perennials to be placed on the ballot. Read More

AmericanHort, HRI Announce New Recommended Terms for Disease Resistance Claims

AmericanHort and its research foundation, the Horticultural Research Institute (HRI), are dedicated to unifying the environmental horticulture industry to cultivate successful businesses and help enhance lives through the benefits of plants. AmericanHort prides itself in listening to industry needs and relies on stakeholder input to drive its focus and efforts, including the recent...Read More

Looking to Apply for CFAP Funding? Here’s What You Need to Know

Last week, USDA announced additional commodities that are covered by the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). That list of crops includes cut flowers and nursery crops, and with the application period beginning this past Monday, now is the time to prepare if you’re looking for apply for funding.  “While this funding won’t solve all your financial setbacks as a producer, any relief certainly helps,” said Craig Regelbrugge...Read More

Arborjet Awards Scholarships to Future Green Industry Professionals

Arborjet has awarded the company’s 2020 Taking Root Scholarships to this year’s deserving students. Now in its seventh consecutive year, the program offers up to $10,000 in scholarships to students who plan to pursue full-time studies in forestry, plant sciences, horticulture, entomology or a related major at an accredited two- or four-year college. Read More

USDA Announces More Eligible Commodities for CFAP

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced on Aug. 11 that additional commodities are covered by the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) in response to public comments and data. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is extending the deadline to apply for the program to Sept. 11, and producers with approved applications will receive their final payment. After reviewing over 1,700 responses, even more...Read More

Willoway Nurseries Joins Forces with Bower & Branch

Bower & Branch, the e-commerce brand consisting of a network of independent growers, service providers and garden retailers across the United States, continues to expand and is excited to announce the addition of Willoway Nurseries Inc. in Avon, Ohio, to the grower network. Willoway Nurseries is a progressive, forward-thinking company known for always being at the forefront of the horticulture industry with technology...Read More

MANTS Shifting From In-Person Show to Alternate Platform for 2021

Due to COVID-19 concerns, ongoing restrictions on large indoor gatherings, and unforeseen unavailability at the Baltimore Convention Center, The Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show (MANTS) announced on Aug. 4 that the 2021 show, initially scheduled for Jan. 6-8, is unable to take place as an in-person event. MANTS organizers are, instead, working to provide an online platform where exhibitors and attendees conduct business.  Read More

SingleOps Publishes Q1/Q2 2020 Green Industry Economic Report

SingleOps has released its quarterly report tracking the health of the green industry. A key takeaway from SingleOps’ Q1/Q2 2020 Green Industry Economic Report is that outdoor service companies, including tree care and landscape specialists, have weathered the pandemic fairly well so far, despite some volatility along the way.  The SingleOps Green Industry Economic Report includes data from hundreds of thousands...Read More

Recession and Recovery

Before the COVID crisis hit, the U.S. economy was in the longest expansion in its history. Housing and housing prices were peaking, consumption was steady, inflation was relatively in check and we were in our 128th month of growth. “Things were rocking along,” said AmericanHort Chief Economist Charlie Hall. “I wouldn’t say we were blowing the top off, but we were rocking along.” Other good signs were increasing...Read More

Green Industry Outlook

Consumer spending is going to be the driver to get the U.S. economy out of the current recession, according to Ken Fisher, CEO of AmericanHort. During the Cultivate’20 Virtual State of the Industry presentation, Fisher explained that this recession isn’t a financial recession — it’s a consumer recession. “This is a recession that’s going to be impacted by stubborn...Read More

National Garden Bureau announces five plant classes for the 2021 “Year of the” Program

The National Garden Bureau has announced the five plant classes that will be featured in the 2021 “Year of the” program. The “Year of the” program chooses crops specifically for the North American market that are easy to grow, genetically diverse, and with a lot of new breeding to showcase. Breeders, brokers, seed companies, growers and garden centers throughout the U.S. and Canada are urged to highlight these flowers and plants...Read More

Who Speaks for Chicago's Trees? Aldermen to Propose New Urban Forest Advisory Board

Chicago’s urban tree canopy is as vital a piece of infrastructure as the city’s roads and sewers, which is why a trio of aldermen is proposing the creation of an Urban Forestry Advisory Board to develop a cohesive management strategy for this valuable resource. Alds. Scott Waguespack (32nd Ward), George Cardenas (12th Ward) and Samantha Nugent (39th Ward) are introducing an ordinance at Wednesday’s meeting...Read More

Home Nursery Promotes Metzger as New Sales Manager

With 100-year anniversary planning beginning to develop, family-owned and operated, Home Nursery, Inc., today announced Hilliary Metzger would be transitioning from sales representative to sales manager beginning July 1, 2020. Her educational background and industry experience continue to play an integral role in the nursery’s strategic plan.  As a senior management team member, Metzger will be...Read More 

2021 Consumer Trends - The Great Reset

At Cultivate’20 Virtual, Garden Media Group President Katie Dubow shared the firms’ annual 2021 Garden Trends Report, The Great Reset, and offered a look into the future of horticulture as part of a panel of speakers on “A Retailers’ Planning Guide for 2021: You asked to be declared an essential business, now choose to be one.” In regard to this year’s report, Dubow said it quickly changed...Read More

Needlecast Diseases: Not Just a Spruce Problem

Many are familiar with Rhizosphaera needlecast of spruce. If you aren’t, please see these two articles by Janna Beckerman and  Megan Haas for more information about the disease and it’s management on spruce. The common name for the disease, needlecast, describes the ultimate fate of the needles: they are cast off. Loss of leaves or needles hurts some trees more than others...Read More

COVID Reflections

I was visiting a retail customer in late May (the place was packed and the parking lot full) and the owner said, “Isn’t it weird that it took a virus for the industry to figure out we are essential?” I would say one of the main things we did well as an industry is convincing ourselves and others that we provide essential emotional nourishment to the world. We are a necessity! We are important! That’s something...Read More

Meet the Leader: Chris Robinson

My dream ever since I was little was to manage the nursery. When I was 8, I started pruning trees to earn a pair of rollerblades. Throughout high school, I worked in propagation on my family’s nursery … in 6 feet of snow, uphill both ways, of course! After high school graduation, I spent two years working every job in the nursery. Following a two-year internship, my parents approached me to let me know...Read More

Native is its Own Brand

Horticulture has become dominated by brands. Some growers have become so enamored with them they have become “brand-a-holics.” I wonder how they choose which of the many brands they should grow and represent, then how they choose from all the plants available under that brand, then the expense of all the swag and royalties. It is certainly understandable considering how it seems everything has someone’s...Read More

New H-2B Visas Suspended Through 2020

On Monday, June 22, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to suspend the issue of new H-2B visas, along with other temporary worker visas, through the end of 2020. This order applies to H-1B visas, H-4 visas, L-1 visas and some J-1 visas. These restrictions will be in place for the rest of the year and can be extended. The National Association of Landscape Professionals issued a statement following...Read More

AmericanHort Leads Coalition Letter Supporting Relief for Horticulture

On June 23, AmericanHort released the following statement after filing official comments urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture to make nursery and floriculture producers eligible for direct relief under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). The comments were signed by over 100 national, regional, and state nursery, floral, landscape, and farm credit organizations and farm bureaus...Read More

Horticultural Uses of Bark and Bark Products

“One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” An idiom we have all heard many times in reference to a product or material unwanted by some but prized by others. In many cases, bark and other tree products fall in this category. The scope of this article (and series) is to provide an overview of some of the more well-known and perhaps lesser known uses of one of nature’s most valuable...Read More

APHIS Declares Elimination of Ralstonia Incidents

On June 11, the United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and its State partners announced they have successfully completed actions to eliminate Ralstonia solanacearum race 3 biovar 2 from U.S. greenhouses. This announcement comes just two months after the pathogen was first detected in a Michigan greenhouse in April. R. solanacearum race 3 biovar 2...Read More

Viburnum Kilimandjaro Sunrise Voted Plant of the Decade

Concept Plants has announced that Viburnum plicatum f. tomentosum Kilimandjaro Sunrise (‘Jww5’) has been selected as the People’s Choice winner for the RHS Chelsea Plant of the Decade. Known for its multi-stemmed, upright, compact, slow growing habit, Kilimandjaro Sunrise sports blush-pink, lacecap-like flowers, blooming in both spring and summer. In fall, the leaves turn fiery autumn hues, providing seasonal interest. Read More

Crucial Conservation

Despite regional marketing and educational campaigns, consumers in general often have a skewed perception of drought and water conservation techniques. Research from Texas A&M and Michigan State University has revealed data that will allow the green industry to craft targeted messages to consumers that may help stretch a diminishing water supply. Melinda Knuth, who recently earned...Read More

Registration Open for Darwin Perennials Digital Days

Darwin Perennials Digital Days is almost here. Guests can sign up for email alerts as new content goes live each day Monday, June 15, through Friday, June 19 at the event website. Each day is filled with information and inspiration, as well as takeaway best-practices to help you build a perennials program on a strong foundation. Darwin Digital Days guests can also register for the live webinar event...Read More

Horticultural Industry Looks to the Future in the Latest COVID-19 Global Impact Survey

A new survey of grower associations, by the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) and FloraCulture International (FCI), reveals nearly three-quarters (71%) believe that most growers will soon recover after this crisis. The positive response from so many of the 27 countries that participated is encouraging considering the bleak outlook highlighted in the previous survey when 70% of respondents...Read More

Understanding Millennials from the Millennial Perspective

Being prepared to connect with our next big horticultural consumer is important, but difficult to manage when we’re simply trying to get through today. Especially in a year with COVID-19 presenting the biggest curveball of most of our careers, looking at future marketing efforts quickly falls to the bottom of our priority list. But understanding the thought process behind younger consumers is no longer...Read More

Celebrate Women in Horticulture Week

Per Garden Media Group, Female entrepreneurs are growing the U.S. economy. In fact, over the past five years, women-owned businesses increased 21%. They represent 42% of all companies, employing 9.4 million workers and generating $1.9 trillion in revenue, according to American Express research. Specifically, 13% of these firms are in the professional/scientific/technical services category, which includes horticulture. Read More

National Audubon Society and Bower & Branch Announce Costco Partnership

The National Audubon Society and Bower & Branch have released a special selection of Audubon-certified native oak trees online at Gardeners can order the eight to 10-foot tall trees online and have them delivered directly to their home, now through June 21. Each purchase supports Audubon’s nonprofit conservation mission. Read More

2020 Farwest Show Canceled

The 2020 Farwest Show in Portland, Oregon has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to show producer the Oregon Association of Nurseries (OAN). The show had been scheduled for Aug. 26–28, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon. “We are very disappointed not to be able to hold Farwest in 2020,” said Farwest Show Chairman Patrick Newton of Powell’s Nursery Inc. “Our show...Read More

PPA announces virtual event for June 2020

According to a press release, the Perennial Plant Association will host its first “PPA: Virtual Edition” event scheduled for June 17, 2020 on New Ways to Communicate. Presented in partnership with GardenComm, this webinar will feature five speakers who will each give a quick, 15-minute presentation on communication and marketing ideas to use. The lineup of marketing experts include Jessica DeGraaf from Proven...Read More

AmericanHort Welcomes New Board Members

AmericanHort has announced the election of three new members to the Board of Directors, along with the installation of a new slate of officers. These individuals are leaders from across the horticulture industry and encompass various experiences, skills and backgrounds. The official welcome will take place during Cultivate’20 Virtual, the online event debuting on July 13.  “We are excited to welcome this diverse...Read More

Penn State Extension Shares Management Tips for Spotted Lanternfly Egg Hatch

An early spring means warmth, flowers and eminent hatching of thousands of spotted lanternfly (SLF) egg masses. Most likely the hatch will begin in southern Pennsylvania in mid- to late-April and lag by a week or so in more northern counties. The majority of SLF hatch (more than 50%) will likely be in mid to late May. Read More

State's Inaugural Native Plant Month Reaps Benefits for Green Industry

April 2020 was Ohio's first official Ohio Native Plant Month, and, according to a May 11 press release from the Ohio Nursery & Landscape Association (ONLA), the organizers have built a platform for consumers to "learn about the plants that support our native bees, birds, butterflies, insects and Ohio wildlife." In addition, according to ONLA, Ohio green-industry businesses are encouraged to be involved...Read More

Darwin Perennials Day Goes Digital

Darwin Perennials has made the decision to re-imagine its annual Darwin Perennials Day event to become a week-long schedule of education and activities. It will replace its single-day live event. Darwin Digital Days will run Monday, June 15, through Friday, June 19, and will include opportunities for virtual tours of its Zone 5 perennial gardens in The Gardens at Ball; educational opportunities with key perennial...Read More

How AmericanHort Supports Critical Horticulture Industry Research

The Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) is a program housed in the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The program supports a range of specialty crops (defined by federal law as including horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture, fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, and dried fruits) by researching, developing, and disseminating science-based tools to address their needs. Read More

Arborgold Joins Forces With LandscapeHub

LandscapeHub, an online marketplace for the green industry, will integrate with Arborgold Software, a national provider of business management software for the green and field service industries. The integration will give Arborgold customers a seamless way to send bids and estimates directly to LandscapeHub for accurate pricing and inventory availability. “Integrating with Arborgold aligns with our mission...Read More

Trade Associations: What’s Their Value?

FNGLA, PNA, AmericanHort, SAF, HRI, NHF, ONLA, NJNLA, CANGC, SNA, GCA, CAL Flowers, etc. OMG—there are so many trade associations and I’m sure I’ve left plenty out. Of course this list doesn’t count the associations I can remember from years past that have been consolidated or dissolved. More importantly, this list doesn’t include the new “non-professional association type groups” found on Facebook or other...Read More

AmericanHort Introduces Cultivate’20 Virtual

On April 20, AmericanHort announced it has made the decision to transform Cultivate, the annual trade show and conference, from an in-person event in Columbus, Ohio, to a virtual event due to the continuing uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic. Cultivate’20 Virtual is a new 100% online event that will connect customers, suppliers, and colleagues across the industry. It will debut the week of July 13, 2020...Read More

Plant California Alliance says Nurseries, Garden Centers and Flower Shops Provide Americans a Safe Way to Celebrate Spring

People are being asked to hunker down even further this week and traditional springtime gatherings are all on hold. During this uncertain time, California nurseries, garden centers and flower shops are adapting, staying open and offering customers a safe way to celebrate the season. “Finding ways to celebrate springtime holidays while quarantining...Read More

Arborjet to Award $10,000 Through Scholarship Program

This year’s “Taking Root Scholarship Program,” from Arborjet Inc., Woburn, Massachusetts, now in its seventh consecutive year, will award eligible applicants up to $10,000.The 2020 program will award scholarships to graduating high school seniors who plan to pursue a forestry related major and career (e.g. forestry, plant sciences, horticulture, entomology, environmental science, biology...Read More

Special Abilities

With historically low unemployment rates and the difficulty of navigating the H-2A process, labor-pinched employers throughout the green industry are looking outside of the usual talent pools to meet job demands. But many of them are overlooking a boon of potential workers with disabilities and special needs. Despite the strong labor market, people with disabilities still face significant barriers to employment. Read More

What Motivates Sales of Pollinator-Friendly Plants?

An analysis out of the University of Georgia details the relationship between consumer awareness and the attentiveness and care given to pollinator-friendly plant purchases. Benjamin Campbell and William Steele studied the decline of pollinators, the factors that can be recognized as potential contributors to said decline, and a common-sense approach for combatting it. Their findings are revealed in their article...Read More

Freight Frights

Heading into spring, the horticulture industry appears to be faring quite well and industry members are optimistic, says Tal Coley, director of government affairs at AmericanHort. However, the trucking industry, which has an impact on growers, has been hurting. Payrolls declined for the third straight month in September 2019 — that time by 4,200 jobs — and layoffs are continuing in 2020...Read More

Encourage Education

Have you heard any of these phrases? “Don’t go swimming right after you eat, or you may drown.” “It takes seven years to digest a piece of gum.” “If you cross your eyes for too long, they will get stuck that way.” Most people know or even have said these statements, but they are, in fact, inaccurate. Swimming after you eat at worst just causes a cramp, gum does get digested and your eyes don’t get stuck...Read More

Breaking: U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Mexico Suspend Visa Processing

The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Mexico announced yesterday that in response the COVID-19 pandemic it will suspend routine immigration and non-immigration visa services starting March 18, 2020 until further notice. The move could have a major impact on the H-2A program, which many controlled-environment greenhouse operations in the U.S. rely on for labor. “We have been in touch with...Read More

The Ash Tree's Last Stand, and Why it Matters

Chicago has given up on its ash trees. The Department of Streets and Sanitation is no longer inoculating parkway ash trees against the emerald ash borer, the mass-murdering beetle that’s laid waste to tens of millions of ash trees across 35 states. Instead, the city will focus on removing dead and infected ash and replacing them with other species, according to Marjani Williams, department spokeswoman. Read More

The Treasured Hydrangea

Our nursery has been growing hydrangeas since I was 16 years old. We started with garden plants, then got into cut flower breeding. Gardeners love the large flowers and the flower colors. We found that consumers really loved the antique colors (we call them classic colors in Europe) and the hard flowers. We started working with another breeder, Horteve Breeding, who was breeding gift plants. And that’s a market...Read More

AmericanHort Praises Funding for Programs Funded by APHIS

In a press release, AmericanHort issued the following statement as USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced projects funded under the Plant Pest and Disease Mitigation and Disaster Prevention Program. “The Plant Pest and Disease Mitigation and Disaster Prevention Program has a complicated name but adds great value for the horticultural industry; $70 million...Read More

Take “The Future of Gardening” survey from the National Garden Bureau

What's to come? Robots, drones, automation...will these be a part of future gardens? The National Garden Bureau (NGB) is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2020 by looking to the future and they want your input! Last fall, the NGB conducted a survey among consumers and got some very interesting results. Now the NGB is asking you, the industry, to tell them where you think gardening...Read More

Building Solid Relationships

While we all share the same end customer, as growers, retailers and landscapers, we don’t always prioritize building solid partnerships with one another to best serve those customers. That said, when it comes to the relationships between grower and retailer, co-dependence is a reality and relationships of trust are necessary. Making meaningful partnerships across the industry is how we all thrive. Read More

USDA Offers New Crop Insurance Pilot Program for Nursery Crops in 2021

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency has released a new crop insurance pilot program, Nursery Value Select, for crop year 2021. NVS is another crop insurance option for nursery crop producers in addition to the Nursery crop insurance program. NVS is available in select counties in Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Michigan, New Jersey, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington...Read More

Putting the ‘Green’ in Green Industry

I know we can be a better green industry. Does the amount of single-use plastic our industry uses bother you? Have you ever been to a large landscaping firm and seen a mountain of assorted empty pots? In the spring, as you rip a huge amount of single-use overwinter film off your cold frames, do you wonder if it really gets recycled or ends up in the landfill? Have you looked for alternatives for any of this plastic at all? Does trucking...Read More

Want to Seed your Future in Horticulture? New Tool Makes it Easy

One of the best ways for horticulture students to get professional work experience is through internships. The opportunities often can be hard to find though. To help remedy that, Seed Your Future has announced the launch of its new free online Horticulture Careers Internship Search Tool to help students find internships within the hort profession. This is the latest resource from the coalition comprising more than...Read More

Horticultural Research Institute Announces 2020 Grant Awards

On Jan. 29, the Horticultural Research Institute (HRI), the foundation of AmericanHort, announced the portfolio of research projects to be funded in 2020. Projects fit into the cadre of research priorities established in support of the new strategic vision. Research priority areas include quantifying plant benefits, creating innovative solutions, gathering consumer insights, and producing practical and actionable solutions. A total of $345,800 will...Read More 

Seeing 20/20

According to GMG’s report, 70% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050. With such a dense urban population, people will be longing for nature. Cities must continue to create and preserve urban forests and parks. Developers and businesses should provide tranquil, plant-filled environments. Researchers from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology...Read More

What's a Business Worth?

“This is the most frequently asked and hardest to answer question,” says Gene Redlin, operator of Byron Nursery and a certified appraiser at Redlin & Associates that provides Horticultural Expert Valuation Services. “We have to tell people the hard truths. There’s no guaranteed formula that works for every situation or every time period.” Here are some valuation methods...Read More

Clemson Extension Working to Uproot Invasive Bradford Pear Trees

The Clemson Cooperative Extension is partnering with the City of Clemson and the S.C. Forestry Commission on the Bradford Pear Bounty program, which gives homeowners the option to remove Bradford pears and replace them with native trees. Clemson area property owners are encouraged to exchange up to five Bradford pear trees for an equal number of free, healthy, native, young replacement trees. Read More

#TeamTrees Meets, Exceeds Goal of Planting 20 Million Trees by 2020

In October 2019, the YouTube star Jimmy Donaldson, also known as MrBeast, reached 20 million followers on his channel. After receiving continued feedback from his followers on how he should commemorate this achievement, Donaldson began the #TeamTrees campaign to raise money for the purpose of planting 20 million trees. “I personally haven’t...Read More

Urban Trees and Climate Change

It’s time to really pay closer attention to the impacts of changing climate on our urban forests. Generally speaking, changes will vary across the Midwest and will be challenging to determine exactly what can be done to protect our trees.  Also, the once simple task of selecting what will be considered a sustainable tree species in the midst of these extreme changes in weather will be equally challenging. The current urban and suburban...Read More

Strategies for Buyers and Sellers

Clear understanding of another person’s perspective brings efficient closure for mutual benefit. The other party isn’t dreaming your dreams. At the 2019 Green Industry Show Conference in Calgary, Alberta, economist Todd Hirsch emphasized, “Clarity is power.” Equal information doesn’t mean equal power. Clarity, as opposed to information, is what’s needed when buying or selling a business. Read More

Engaging a Modern Workforce

The most critical issue facing our industry today is attracting and retaining people. At least this is what we continue to hear. However, I think the issue is more nuanced than that and it’s important to identify the correct problem in order to solve it. I believe the specific challenge today is with understanding the emerging expectations of a new generation and engaging this generation, which leads to higher retention....Read More

2020 is All About Plant Health

A few weeks ago, I told you that Seed Your Future has declared 2020 to be the Year of the Plant as part of its effort “to promote horticulture and inspire people to pursue careers working with plants.” Well, I also wanted to let you know that 2020 has been designated the International Year of Plant Health according to the United Nations. In December 2018, the United Nations General Assembly passed...Read More 

U.S. Postal Service to Issue Wild Orchids Forever Stamp Feb. 21

The U.S. Postal Service celebrates the beauty of Wild Orchids with stamps of flowers that grow in the United States. The stamp art highlights photos taken by photographer Jim Fowler. Art director Ethel Kessler designed the stamps. Each stamp features a photograph of one of these nine species: Cypripedium californicum, Hexalectris spicata, Cypripedium reginae, Spiranthes odorata, Triphora trianthophoros...Read More

Improve Your Recruitment Efforts, Culture

Paid sick and parental leave, pay history bans, predicable scheduling statutes, mandatory E-Verify, compensatory time off, an increase in the guaranteed salary level for white collar workers; and the list goes on. While it is yet unknown which of these employment regulations will impact your business, one thing is certain — it will be challenging to find and hire qualified workers, regardless of your revenues, location, or number of employees. Read More

New Free Horticulture Careers Internship Search Tool Connects Students to Practical Job Experience

On Jan. 30, Seed Your Future announced the launch of its new free online Horticulture Careers Internship Search Tool to help students find internships across the broad diversity of the horticulture profession. This is the newest resource from Seed Your Future, a coalition of more than 200 partners — including horticulture companies, gardening organizations, schools, colleges, universities, public gardens, youth organizations, nonprofit organizations...Read More

Garden Trends and New Plants for 2020

Smaller garden spaces, a growing number of younger people starting to garden, and increased environmental concerns are behind many of today’s garden trends. Succulents, pollinator attractors, and container gardens continue to be popular as ornamental edibles, and plants that sport colorful foliage get more notice. Another trend that’s crossed my radar is creating personalized outdoor...Read More

Horticulture Heroes and Plant Champions - Allison Pillar, Chicago Botanic Garden

How does a soon-to-graduate student with a degree in Biology find her way to a career working with plants, when “...horticulture wasn’t even on my radar when I was applying for jobs”?  The journey is a bit like a plant growing from a small seed. Allison Pillar, an Assistant Grower at the Chicago Botanic Garden (CBC), found her way to the green-collar career she loves by first accepting an internship in plant propagation...Read More

MANTS' 50th Anniversary Attracts Highest Attendance Numbers in Over a Decade

The Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show (MANTS) celebrated the show’s 50th anniversary at the Baltimore Convention Center from Jan. 8-10, 2020. This milestone year was marked with giveaways, a raffle that distributed 80 prizes and record attendance numbers, the highest in the past 12 years. MANTS 2020 was excited to welcome over 12,000 total registrants (including exhibitors) through the doors...Read More

Highs, lows: Ag Director Reflects on Whirlwind Year

2019 began at the Illinois Department of Agriculture with a rush to have industrial hemp rules and applications in place for the growing season, then came the floods, delayed or prevent planting and dicamba issues. The year concluded with preparations for legalized marijuana. Director John Sullivan, who resigned on Jan. 13, reviewed the whirlwind year that was his first at the helm to open...Read More

#PlantsDoThat for Pollinators, Fire, Water, Soil and Cities and Suburbs

A series of infographics developed by the National Initiative for Consumer Horticulture (NICH) highlights the importance of landscape plants in conserving and protecting the environment. “These five infographics help spotlight relevant facts from over 30 sources. The infographics point to ways that #PlantsDoThat to enhance pollinator conservation, protect our water...Learn More

Fresh Approach

For several years, Bailey Nurseries successfully used the First Editions brand as a vehicle to introduce new plants to the marketplace. It was a utilitarian brand of sorts. The plants were thoroughly tested before their introduction, and the marketing behind the brand was something growers and garden retailers understood. But there was somewhat of a disconnect with the consumer. The brand is made up of trees and shrubs...Read More

More than Cash Flow

There is a mistaken idea that value for a company relies solely on its operating statement to demonstrate positive cash flow. Certainly, that is essential to show the company has value, but how to determine the multiple of that cash flow is where value is developed. There are factors in valuing a horticultural business which people cite that have little effect on its value. “We have a long history.” A nursery...Read More

D. Garth Hetz, Former President and CEO of Fairview Evergreen Nurseries, Dies at 81

According to industry-wide announcement from the Western Nursery & Landscape Association (WNLA), D. Garth Hetz, age 81, passed away in his sleep on Dec. 21. He was born in his parents' home on Water Street, in Fairview, on Oct. 2, 1938, the first born and only son of Clifford Burton Hetz and Estella Mae Lamb Hetz. Garth was the grandson of Frank C. Hetz, the founder...Read More

APHIS Works to Protect U.S. Agriculture in 2019

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is celebrating the agency’s many successful efforts over the past year. “It’s been a challenging but productive year, with our dedicated employees working tirelessly to meet our mission of protecting American agriculture and natural resources,” said APHIS Administrator Kevin Shea. “But our work benefits...Read More

Create Community With the Next Generation

Grabbing the interest of younger customers and new plant enthusiasts has proven a tricky endeavor for many traditional garden centers. You may have found yourself frustrated with the younger generation’s seeming lack of interest in your idea of gardening, while your existing customer base may be aging out. If you aren’t seeing an influx of new younger customers the way your business needs...Read More

Green Instinct

Biophilia is our instinctive love of nature and it is influencing a design movement in buildings that make people healthier, improve their mental state and make them more productive. Plants — both inside and outside the building — play a starring role in biophilic design. The green industry has the chance to let plants be an everyday part of peoples’ lives, including where they work, live, heal and learn. Read More

A Shift from One-Dimensional Landscapes

Having a degree in Landscape Design, I’ve always had a bit of a different perspective on introducing new plants. For years, I’ve been commenting and been quite worried about the future of gardens. For 18 inches in height does not a good garden make. A good garden is composed with plants of differing heights, textures and colors. As an industry, we have been keeping up with the textures and colors, but we have gotten ourselves...Read More

Industry Insights

The overall feeling in the industry is positive, with growers reporting good profits, an optimistic outlook and increasing sales. While unpredictable weather and hardships with hiring continue to hinder success for many, profitability is looking good.With a recession looming on the horizon, next year’s survey may have some different results. Experts are predicting that the possible recession to come won’t...Read More

9 Not-So-Mainstream Annuals to Consider for 2020

Sometimes when I am wandering around gardens and retail outlets, I notice something quite ironic. It appears that the more we breed, the less we have. There are a ton of fabulous annuals out there, but the trend in the last 10 years seems to be less, not more, choice than ever before. I don’t mean there are fewer cultivars of petunia or calibrachoa (good grief, they could pave the streets of New York). Read More

Infertile Fountain Grass

In the past, finding long-flowering Pennisetum that wouldn’t reseed has been a challenge, but no more. We’ve looked high and wide for infertile fountain grass varieties and working with the University of Georgia’s acclaimed ornamental grass program, we finally found them. We’ve selected five P. alopecuroides that complement any palette with their vigorous growth and long-lasting blooms...Read More

Ambitious Louisville Study Seeks to Understand Impact of Trees on our Health

Trees can add beauty and serenity to a neighborhood -- but can they also improve the health of its residents? In Kentucky, the University of Louisville — with help from the National Institutes of Health and The Nature Conservancy — aims to find out. Called Green Heart Louisville, the initiative involves a large-scale scientific study of how greenspaces affect public health. John Yang reports. Read More

U.S. House Passes Farm Workforce Modernization Act

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed H.R. 5038, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, with a 260-165 bipartisan vote. The bill now moves to the Senate to be voted on, and if passed there, will require President Trump’s signature to be signed into law. If signed into law, the act would change the H-2A temporary worker program and establish a “certified agricultural worker (CAW) status,” according...Read More

Can the USDA Count on You?

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will conduct its 2019 Census of Horticultural Specialties this winter to provide a comprehensive picture of the U.S. horticulture industry. Survey codes will be mailed this month to more than 40,000 horticulture producers to respond online. Collected just once every five years, the Census of Horticultural Specialties...Read More

Grow It! Houseplant Report 2020

Grow It! is a digital plant community that helps people connect with other local plant people, education them on how to grow their plants and inpsire them to grow more. With nearly 900,000 members in North America, it has become the premier place for plant conversations.  Through the use of this mobile technology and member engagement, Grow It! is actively collecting consumer preference data...Read More

USDA Will Conduct 2019 Census of Horticultural Specialties

According to an announcement, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will conduct the 2019 Census of Horticultural Specialties this winter to provide a comprehensive picture of the U.S. horticulture industry. Survey codes will be mailed this month to more than 40,000 horticulture producers to respond online. Collected just once every five years...Read More

AmericanHort Introduces Plant Sentry as Newest Affinity Program Partner

According to a press release, AmericanHort announced the newest addition to its lineup of affinity business program partners, Plant Sentry. Plant Sentry is a software program pioneered by Nature Hills Nursery that provides a comprehensive plant compliance tool designed to ensure that wholesale...Read More

IGIA Receives Urban Forestry Award From the Chicago Region Trees Initiative

The Chicago Region Trees Initiative (CRTI) has honored the Illinois Green Industry Association with an Urban Forestry Award for providing students with an opportunity to experience the nursery and landscape industry in Illinois with a “hands-on” approach to prepare them for careers in horticulture. The awards, presented at CRTI’s sixth annual Partner Recognition Celebration, recognize people, public and private organizations...Read More

Sharing Ideas at the Grassroots Level

Most of the time, our focus in this industry is on providing more education for the growers growing the plants and the owners who run the greenhouses and garden centers. But what about the ones who are helping to hire the staff, filling out all of the benefits paperwork and making sure our industry’s businesses are in compliance with the laws on seasonal workers? Read More

10 Plant Trends to Watch Out For in 2020

In a recent blog post from the University of Florida/IFAS extension, the university compiled a list of the hot plant varieties and trends on the horizon for 2020. Check out their predictions and read the blog post, below: Expect to see more eco-conscious and unconventional plants in homes and gardens for 2020, according to horticultural experts with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural...Read More

Finding a Needle in the Haystack

It’s doubtful that finding and interviewing candidates is at the top of your list of fun job activities. It is, however, a necessity that can make or break an organization. Identifying talent is tough, especially considering that industry estimates tell us for every eight grower jobs that need to be filled, there’s most likely one candidate. What’s the best way to navigate these challenging odds? We talked...Read More

A Man With Star-Studded Ideas

Why does someone who’s rubbed elbows with Ariana Grande, mingled with Nicki Minaj and texted with Mariah Carey want to work in our boring, old industry? Because to Ryan McEnaney, our industry is anything but boring. At least, he’s made it that way while he’s been on the marketing team at Bailey. In case you hadn’t heard, Bailey’s promotion of their products—most notably for their Endless Summer...Read More

2020 Trends in Garden Design

Owners and renters of small homes, condos, and apartments are finding creative ways to incorporate green into their lives—no matter the size of their space. Portland-based garden designer J.J. De Sousa calls these small gardens “micro-sized spaces with big impact.” One of the best and easiest ways to add green to a small space is through vertical gardening. Vertical gardening...Read More

Longwood Gardens Plans $200-Million Expansion

According to bond documents, Longwood Gardens Inc. is planning for an extensive expansion. Longwood managers said that previous expansions attracted more visitors, spurring further projects. Per a story published on Longwood Gardens Inc., the late DuPont Co. chief Pierre S. du Pont’s intensively planted Chester County estate that has become a top Pennsylvania tourist attraction...Read More

Creative ways to combat labor issues

As we do each year, we surveyed greenhouse and garden center owners across North America to get a closer look at the industry. Amongst all challenges, the common problem was of course, labor. In Greenhouse Management’s 2019 State of the Industry Report, labor issues ranked No. 3 in the top three challenges.  In Garden Center’s 2019 SOI Report, staffing issues took two of the top three spots on the list of IGCs’ biggest problems. Two-thirds...Read More

Plant California Alliance Launches New Website

According to a press release, the Plant California Alliance has unveiled a new website, and it can be found at The Plant California Alliance, launched in March 2019, represents a unification of farmers, wholesalers, retail garden centers, landscape suppliers, manufacturers and other experts who work together to advocate for nurseries...Read More

AmericanHort Urges Congress to Save H-2B

On Nov. 13, AmericanHort Director of Advocacy and Policy Communications Tristan Daedalus sent an industry-wide email urging the public to support members of Congress in endorsing H-2B cap relief. “Congress continues to debate annual spending bills to fund the federal government, ‘must do’ appropriations bills offer the best opportunity to pass temporary relief for the H-2B cap...Read More

Cultivating the Next Generation of Green Collar Professionals

We are reaching a defining moment in horticulture. The greenhouse growers, garden center owners and, in fact, most of the horticulturists of today are aging and retiring. What should be a fountain of opportunity for others to step into their positions, finds us instead with a people-pipeline that is a mere dribble. Employers across all of horticulture cannot find enough qualified candidates to fill their open positions. Read More

Recession Watch

One major question continues to loom over the U.S. economy right now: How much longer will the record-long expansion last? The 2-year, 10-year Treasury yield curve – a closely followed recession indicator – inverted Aug. 14 for the first time since the Great Recession. Manufacturing in the U.S. is in contractionary territory. Meanwhile, business investment has slowed, and confidence...Read More

Generation Gaps

According to a Pew Research Center study conducted in January, millennials are expected to eclipse the baby boomer population as America’s largest generation. The millennial generation is edging out the boomers — particularly in the workforce — and IGCs will soon have to reckon with the divide. Pew analyzed the trends between the young adults of 2019 to their silent generation, baby boomer...Read More

Horticultural Research Institute sets Priorities for a Thriving Industry

Horticulture is a key player in specialty crops and agriculture. The industry generates one-third of both all specialty crop revenue (over $19 billion each year) and its workforce. However, the horticulture industry receives only 12% of federal funds earmarked for specialty crops from the USDA Agricultural Research Service and USDA’s Specialty Crop Research Initiative.  Read More

Invasive Plant Liability

It is a beautiful drive from Carolina Native Nursery to Lake Lure through the mountains of Western North Carolina. Takes about one and a half hours. Lake Lure, home of Chimney Rock State Park, is the location where Dirty Dancing was filmed, as well as the final scenes from Last of the Mohicans. It is a truly spectacular place. The only drawback is the obscene amount of exotic invasive...Read More

Japanese Maple Scale Attack's Missouri's Trees

Per the Missouri Department of Agriculture, shipments of oyster-shell shaped insects called the Japanese maple scale (Lopholeucaspis japonica) are being transported to Missouri on nursery trees. They live underneath a protective waxy covering and can be difficult to spot because they do not stir, and they do not have legs. They attach onto tree trunks and branches...Read More

University of Illinois Breaks Ground on Research Greenhouse

On Oct. 23, representatives from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation broke ground on a new, state-of-the-art greenhouse in the Research Park. The planned greenhouse will support a research project, “Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency” (RIPE) for sustainable increases in crop yield, led by Illinois researchers Steve Long and Don Ort. Read More

Spotted Lanternfly: Large Potential Range in U.S. and Beyond

As the invasive spotted lanternfly wreaks havoc in the mid-Atlantic United States, scientists and a range of tree and fruit growers around the world are concerned about where the pest could show up next. A new habitat-modeling study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture may not put those minds at ease, as findings show large swaths of the United States and beyond are likely to be vulnerable...Read More

Times are Rapidly Changing

As Bob Dylan said, “The times they are a-changin’.” Who would have believed 10 years ago that marijuana would be legal for recreational purposes in 11 states and Washington, D.C., and for medical use in 33 states, D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands? If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to update your employee...Read More

EPA Offers Spanish Translation guide for important pesticide safety information

On Oct. 17, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) improved risk communication by expanding the agency’s Spanish language resources that assist with translating the health and safety portions of agricultural product labels. The Spanish Translation Guide for Pesticide Labeling resource is available for anyone to use, including pesticide manufacturers, and provides a resource...Read More

Avoiding Days of the Living Dead

Zombies in the workplace are soul-sucking, money-draining, productivity-killing entities that chip away at an organization’s spirit and its engagement levels one convert at a time. These creatures often look like the rest of us, but deep down they’re cancerous beasts that can potentially drive a business to ruin. Although zombies come in many varieties...Read More

Times are Rapidly Changing

As Bob Dylan said, “The times they are a-changin’.” Who would have believed 10 years ago that marijuana would be legal for recreational purposes in 11 states and Washington, D.C., and for medical use in 33 states, D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands? If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to update your employee policies and procedures. The following are things to consider...Read More

The ‘Why’ and the ‘How’

Phil Gwoke’s daughter just wanted to know why he was mad at her. She wanted to know why Gwoke, a speaker from generational consulting firm BridgeWorks, would act cool with her in person but seemed frustrated via text. Gwoke had no idea what she meant – he certainly wasn’t mad at her, and he couldn’t figure out why she believed he was upset. Read More

California Bans Popular Pesticide Linked To Brain Damage In Children

Beginning in early 2020, California will ban the sale of the pesticide chlorpyrifos which state environmental officials say has been linked to brain damage and other health defects in children. Under an agreement reached with Corteva Agriscience, the maker of chlorpyrifos, sales of the pesticide will end Feb. 6, 2020, and agricultural growers will not be allowed to possess or use it after Dec. 31, 2020. Read More

Former PLCCA President Passes Away

Louis J. Wierichs Jr., founder of Pro X Lawn Care in Wisconsin and former president of the Professional Lawn Care Association of America (PLCCA), died last month. Wierichs started his company in 1997 and became PLCCA (now the National Association of Professional Landscapers) president in 1994. Industry colleague and friend, Bob Andrews of the Greenskeeper in Indiana, said Wierichs was always...Read More

NALP establishes Women in Landscape Network

The National Association of Landscape Professionals announced the creation of its Women in Landscape Network to establish a community within the landscape and lawn care industry for female professionals and those committed to issues impacting women in the field. With the creation of the Women in Landscape Network, NALP will connect, empower, and advocate for women in the landscape industry; recruit...Read More

AmericanHort Expands Consulting Options With K·Coe Isom

AmericanHort has announced an expanded service agreement with K·Coe Isom, a food and agriculture consulting and accounting firm. “We’ve partnered with K·Coe Isom for years, in a more informal relationship and focused primarily around tax issues," said Ken Fisher, president & CEO of AmericanHort. "We look forward to offering our members access to their in-depth expertise in a variety of advisory...Read More

16 Perennials Your Customers Will Love in 2020

One of the highlights of the Perennial Plant Symposium each year is the “New to the Market” Forum, which allows perennial breeders and suppliers to highlight their hottest new offerings. Greenhouse Grower has already featured several of them, and here are a few more you should be considering for 2020 (check out the slideshow above for images of each). Read More

National Association of Landscape Professionals names new CEO

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) announced that Britt Wood has been named chief executive officer. Wood will assume his new role on Oct. 7 and will represent NALP at Landscapes in Louisville, Ky. “Britt’s depth of leadership experience and proven track record of delivering results across various industries throughout his career will be huge assets as he focuses on building on NALP’s many successes...Read More

Women in the Green Industry Conference Equips Attendees With Best Practices

SiteOne Landscape Supply hosted the 24th annual Women in the Green Industry Conference (WIGI) in Tucson, Arizona, on Sept. 19-22, providing tools to increase attendees’ leadership abilities, renew their confidence and build their network. “All of our attendees, no matter their role, are leaders in this industry,” said Amber Baker, division marketing manager – West for SiteOne Landscape Supply. “Even if they’re not managers...Read More

Garden Media's 2020 Garden Trends Report: Seeing 20/20

Eight Trends that are reinventions from a bygone era, helping to reconnect us with nature, the soil and leading a more thoughtful approach to life.
Garden Media Group’s 19th Garden Trend Report predicts the green industry will be at the forefront of urban growth and development in 2020 and beyond.  In this report you will find out why green collar jobs will revolutionize the four-year college degree...Learn More

Vineyards Facing An Insect Invasion May Turn To Aliens For Help

Walking around a park near Allentown, Pa., I didn't even notice the bugs at first. Then Heather Leach arrived. She's an insect expert from Penn State University. She pointed me toward the trees, and suddenly I realized they were everywhere: spotted lanternflies. An army of gray bugs, each one about an inch long, black spots on their wings, was climbing the trees' trunks. They marched slowly along branches...Read More

Beekeepers Confront the EPA Over Pesticides

Honeybees and other pollinating insects are crucial helpers in putting food on American tables. But the bees’ colonies have declined over the years, leading concerned beekeepers and scientists to speculate about the causes. A new lawsuit by leaders in the beekeeping industry against the Environmental Protection Agency highlights one often-cited worry: that pesticides are playing a role in those losses. Read More

Dealing with Burnout in the Workplace

Dedicated and hardworking employees can be hard to find, and once you do find them it’s important to hang on to them. Some days in the office will be more hectic than others, but when employees find that their everyday workload has them running for the door, it’s important to know how to help them out. When even just one employee experiences burnout from too much stress at work...Read More

2019 State of the Industry Report

Each year, Garden Center magazine reaches out to IGCs all over the U.S. and Canada to take the industry’s pulse and discover the biggest opportunities and challenges garden centers are facing. And each year, we find something new. This year, we also checked in with individual garden centers around the U.S. and Canada to see how they’re faring and what they’re seeing in their markets...Read More

Industry Growth Depends on Standardizing Plant Names Instituting UPCs

Botanical names are mostly standard (as long as they aren’t misspelled). We all learned about Carl Linneaus, the Swedish scientist who invented binomial nomenclature (Genus species), which was widely adopted after his publication of Species Plantarum in 1753. Today, is considered a definitive resource for botanical names and includes synonyms or “otherwise known as” names...Read More

Screen Time Sway

Social media influencers have the power to propel a brand, product, design, service or lifestyle into a realm of superstardom. People with millions of followers or subscribers on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, or their own blog, for instance, share likes and dislikes, what they’re eating and drinking, the exercises they’re performing, the clothes they’re wearing and the hobbies they’re enjoying.  Read More

TreeTown USA to Showcase Plants Inspired by Nature

TreeTown USA's annual Horticultural EncounterA(R) and Open House, September 16-27, 2019, at their Winters, California, nursery, the first time that nursery will be home to the event, will launch a new focus: "Designs Inspired by Nature." The goal is to introduce guests to plants and applications that go beyond beautifying the environment by serving greater purposes: from earth-cooling groundcovers...Read More

Professor Doug Tallamy Urges Homeowners to Cut Lawn Area in Half

For many homeowners, weekends are synonymous with mowing, fertilizing, and watering. “Lawn has been a status symbol for centuries, and we have bought into the commercials that tell us if it’s not a perfect lawn, our neighbors will hate us and, you know, we’re just not good citizens,” says Doug Tallamy, an author and professor at the University of Delaware. Read More

Trump Administration to Drop Water Rule

The Trump administration is revoking an Obama-era regulation that shielded many U.S. wetlands and streams from pollution but was opposed by developers and farmers who said it hurt economic development and infringed on property rights. Even before the official announcement, scheduled for later Thursday, environmental groups blasted the administration’s action, the latest in a series of moves to roll back...Read More

Bur Oak Blight

The U of I Plant Clinic has received several tree samples suspected to be infected with bur oak blight (BOB). So far, for 2019, the plant clinic has confirmed BOB on two samples, originating in Cook and Henry counties. While still considered a relatively newly pathogen, we have seen an increase in awareness of this disease compared to just a few years ago.  Bur Oak Blight is a leaf disease caused...Read More

A Legacy of Growth

The seeds of Danish-born Peter Orum’s success in the U.S. horticultural industry were sown in 1969 on 5 acres of growing fields in St. Charles, Ill., and cultivated with two pairs of hands and a unique idea. With his wife, Irma, by his side, Midwest Groundcovers was ready to take root. Today – as his family-based company celebrates its 50th anniversary with year-long programs, special events and a new book on its history...Read More

The Arbor Day Foundation Initiates Tree Campus Healthcare Program

The Arbor Day Foundation launched its new Tree Campus Healthcare program. The program is made possible through financial support from professional partner Davey Tree and the collaboration of the Professional Grounds Management Society, Practice Greenhealth and the USDA Forest Service. “Healthy trees generate so many benefits for both healthcare campuses and the communities...Read More

Ready and Waiting

At first glance, on-demand apps can seem the same, but each has components that differentiate one from another. The on-demand model continues to grow in the industry with new apps being developed every year. If you have ever thought about signing up with one of these companies as a service provider, this round-up is designed to give you the basics of what some of these organizations provide. Read More

A Fresh Start

When Pam Dooley first started the process of a rebrand in 2016, she simply wanted to redesign her website. Its outdated appearance made navigating the site an exercise in patience. But after a few conversations with some experts, she realized her company’s problems were rooted deeper than just the website. “They were like, ‘Who are you?’ and I said, ‘What do you mean, ‘Who are we?’” Dooley says. “They made me realize...Read More

The Move to Manager

Do you know someone very talented at their work and promoted to management without receiving any guidance or training? Maybe you’ve promoted a worker who really shined above the rest yet seemed to struggle with the transition. It’s not so different from playing baseball and coaching baseball. The best player on the team doesn’t always make the best coach. However, with some really simple tools, you can help your workers...Read More

The Cost of a Bad Hire

We need to do a better job on the front end by making sure we get it right the first time around when hiring new team members. Our good employees can get burnt out when they keep picking up the slack.  At one point, we had an account manager not cutting her weight. Our VP of sales had to keep rescuing her accounts until finally he became so frustrated because he was doing two jobs that we almost lost one...Read More 

Ball Seed Enters New Partnership With ForemostCo Inc.

Ball Seed, North America’s leading horticultural distributor, is delighted to announce a new co-exclusive agreement with ForemostCo, Inc., a premier young plant supplier for foliage, tropical and succulent plants. The partnership meets the growing market demand for houseplants and other trending plant genetics. ForemostCo is a family-owned company that has delivered consistent quality...Read More

National Garden Bureau Announces 2020 "Year of the" Crops

The “Year of the” program has added four new plant classes for bulbs, annuals, edibles, perennials and flowering shrubs. The National Garden Bureau has announced the four plant classes that will be featured in the 2020 “Year of the” program. Read More

You Should be Concerned When This Plant Goes Vertical

The sycamore tree was so smothered by a dense vine that its white trunk appeared green. The campus of St. Louis Community College-Meramec (STLCC) had been invaded by Euonymus fortunei ‘Coloratus’ (commonly known as wintercreeper euonymus or Climbing Euonymus), and if the facilities department didn’t do something soon, the problem would get worse. They tasked groundskeeper...Read More