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The IFTEX show was recently held in Nairobi, Kenya, amidst great optimism within the Kenyan floral industry, while also clouded by the prospect of insecurity and terrorism threats that plague Kenya. The pro-business, cheerful spirit of the Kenyan people was on full display throughout the exhibition hall as they welcomed the foreign visitors to their country, encouraging us to explore the beauty and wildlife of the countryside while also urging prudent caution and... Read more
In the ever-changing, unstable world of the floral industry, a company that is planning its 125th anniversary in 2015 is a bit of an anomaly. Jan Spek Rozen, a family rose business in the Netherlands founded in 1890 by Jan Spek, and one of the older rose companies in the world, is such a rarity. Although Spek also grew azaleas, rhododendron and other ornamental shrubs, roses have always been of utmost importance. In 1913, Jan Spek received one of a European flower... Read more
Successful retail care and handling of roses is a simple process. A few simple steps assure that roses will open and last seven days or more. Each of the steps is critical and should be followed each time flowers are processed. Share these steps with floral personnel — rose quality will improve and customers will return to buy more flowers. • Purchase wisely. Rose varieties differ in vase life, sensitivity to botrytis, response to ethylene and flower opening. Some... Read more
Flowers have a wonderful impact on the lives of millions of people around the world. For those of us who are part of this industry, they create meaningful, important work, and for those of us who are consumers of flowers, they bring the joy of experiencing beautiful works of nature firsthand. Rosaprima, a leading grower of Ecuadorian roses, is located in the heart of Ecuador’s Guachalá region, on the skirts of the Cayambe volcano. Guachalá is a small region, covering... Read more
George is a Masai giraffe (also known as a Kilimanjaro giraffe — the tallest land mammal on earth) and he is a well-known fixture at Nini Farm, a rose farm near Lake Naivasha in Kenya, Africa, about 55 miles northwest of Nairobi. When in 1974 the late Terry Coulson purchased the land that would eventually become Nini Farm, he noticed a very small giraffe as part of a roaming bachelor herd, and his business partner, Mike Higgins, named the giraffe “George.” There... Read more
“A rose is a rose is a rose” was written in a poem by Gertrude Stein in 1913 and expresses the idea that simply using the name of a thing evokes its associated emotions and imagery. So what are consumers imagining when it comes to roses, and how do we get their full attention with this flower? Surveys on Pinterest found that the rose is the top flower pinned, with the strongest following in the spring garden pins and wedding flower pins. This helps in knowing... Read more
When a consumer thinks about buying flowers, the first thing that usually pops into their head are roses — the queen of all flowers. Roses are the blooms that make our Valentine holidays so profitable and roses are also responsible for making our everyday floral business thrive. How do we promote the flower that consumers believe we hike up the prices on for Valentine’s Day, just because we can? We should provide our customers with quality roses and value whenever... Read more
Roses continue to be the number one flower that American consumers demand and roses are also the top imported fresh-cut flower into the United States. Last year there were 5.109 billion stems of flowers that came into the United States and at least 38 percent of those stems were roses. They can arrive in either straight boxes of roses, in rose bouquets, or in mixed bouquets, and there were over 1.95 billion stems that arrived in 2013 in straight rose boxes or rose... Read more
Today, over 1.6 billion stems of roses are imported into the United States annually. That’s in stark contrast to our country’s domestic production at just over 30 million stems in 2013. Over the past 20 years, there has certainly been a variety of reasons for this dramatic shift in where the supermajority of roses come from, and why they are now being flown into the United States. However, in my role as the chief executive officer and ambassador for the California... Read more
More than 200 exhibitors are expected at the Agriflor show Oct. 1-4 at the CEMEXPO Exhibition Center in Quito, Ecuador, according to a news release from the organizer, HPP Exhibitions in Amsterdam. The business-to-business trade-only show is one of the larger flower grower events in the world and will feature quality competitions among breeders and growers, farm tours and fair celebrations. This year marks the 15th edition of the show, which is held biennially. The... Read more
Under the banner “Growing Growers,” the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers will gather for its 2014 National Conference Oct. 19-22 at the Hilton Christiana in Newark, DE. “The focus of the group for over 25 years has been teaching people to grow flowers,” Frank Arnosky, president of ASCFG, told The Produce News. “It’s a grassroots organization and the growers themselves put a lot of energy into putting the conference together.” Conference highlights include... Read more
It’s not too late to plan to attend the Society of American Florists 130th annual convention Aug. 13-16 at the Marco Island Marriott in Marco Island, FL. The convention will feature 30 speakers, a supply chain refresher, and multiple educational and networking opportunities. SAF will also honor seven professionals with induction into the American Academy of Floriculture during the Stars of the Industry Awards Dinner on Aug. 16, according to an news release. AAF... Read more
Serving all segments of the Russian fresh cut flower, gardening and potted plant chain, the industrywide Expo Flora Russia show is planned for Aug. 27-29 in the All-Russian Exhibition Centre in Moscow. More than 200 breeders, growers, shippers and suppliers to the floriculture trade from 17 different countries are already committed to exhibit, according to a news release. The event will once again be paired with Flowers IPM-International Plants Expo Russia,... Read more
Kennicott Bros. Co., headquartered in Chicago, and Nordlie Inc., headquartered in Warren, MI, agreed to merge their companies as of July 31, according to a news release. As the merger is completed, eligible Nordlie employees will become members of the Kennicott ESOP, which will own 100 percent of the combined companies. “We are pleased to join forces with the Nordlie organization and continue the tradition of excellent service and quality to their customer base,”... Read more
A designer’s perspective on roses keeps consumers top of mind
Consumers have emotions tied to their rose purchases. As florists, we must provide the customer with a top-quality product, along with a variety of designs and options, in order to satisfy those emotions. We should always be looking for new ways to entice consumers to make their rose purchases with us and this cannot be accomplished by simply placing roses for sale out in buckets. We need to use fun, themed and colorful displays to feed consumers’ emotions and... Read more
Roses are key to wholesale florists
Roses are a passion for millions of consumers around the world and they are a critical component of a wholesale florist’s daily business. Roses can represent 30-35 percent of the fresh flower sales in a wholesale house and are the top flower category every month of the year. Our customers use roses in all segments of their business — weddings, funerals, special events, weekly commercial business, and cash-and-carry — and they are all affected by the supply of roses. Kennicott... Read more
Rose breeding is both an art and a science for patient, detail-oriented individuals with a clear view of what is going on in the flower industry. The process of bringing a new rose to market normally takes around five years and crosses are made in the following way. • Pollen is collected from the stamens, the male part of a flower that consists of the filament and the anther. The process involves removing the anthers from the chosen parent and placing them in a... Read more
• Roses are considered the “queen of blooms” and are quite possibly the world’s most popular cut flower. • Flowers in the Rosa genus belong to the Rosaceae family and include over 100 species and more than 20,000 cultivars. The Rosaceae plant family has a number of flowering and fruit-bearing members, including plums, apricots, peaches and apples. • The thorns along rose stems are technically “prickles” that grow out of the outer layer of tissue on the stems.... Read more
Take some time to smell the roses
It’s been an extremely rainy summer with widespread flooding around Lake Wobegon, MN, my fictional hometown on the edge of the prairie. Meanwhile, in my real hometown, our normal June rainfall is 4.25 inches but this year we had 11.36 inches, the wettest month statewide in recorded history. July continued the monsoon trend and I’m contemplating building an ark. This abundance of water has made me feel a little guilty because so many of the farms on the West Coast... Read more
Seven top floral designers from around the United States with a connection to mass-market floral took the Happy Hour Center Stage at the International Floriculture Expo in New Orleans to compete for the title of Iron Designer. The contestants were given a limited amount of time and a mystery package of products, along with set instructions and a theme of “New Classic” to create their romantic-gothic-baroque floral design interpretation. A team of judges from the... Read more