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Rosen Tantau taps into 'special variety trend' with Green Island Roses
Letkow's colleague Klaus Wolf at the IFTF in Vijfhuizen, the Netherlands, in November 2017.
The Green Island Roses are T-hybrid roses that are characterized by the green center. Currently, the series consists of three varieties; Green Island Poppy (Tan15 094) and Green Island Samoa (Tan15 058), Green Island Fantasy (Tan15 057). They were bred in 2015, have been under trials for three years and were on display for the first time at the IFTF in Vijfhuizen, the Netherlands. Another characteristic of the series is the long vase life and large flower size. "The flowers should be only harvested when the green center is visible," explains Letkow. "This means they need to stay in the greenhouse a little longer which, in turn, results in a more mature flower with a longer vase life - two weeks or more - and larger head size - the fantasy, for example, has a head size of around 10 cm."
The series is currently grown by three growers in Germany. Each grower has planted one variety on about 1,000 to 1,500 sqm. The Poppy is not ready to be harvested, but first shipments of the Fantasy and Samoa already went to the Royal FloraHolland auction two weeks ago and the buyers seem to be impressed with the varieties. "A couple of hundred stems were supplied to the auction and so far, the reactions are very positive. The green center is not a new invention, but the buyers like something new and special." And Letkow is very pleased as an important holiday still has to come. "On May 13, many parts of Europe are celebrating Mother's Day and we expect the demand to increase sharply."
Green Island Samoa (Tan15 058) and Green Island Poppy (Tan15 094).
In the future, Rosen Tantau is eager, not only to expand the series, but also the regions where the roses can be cultivated. "So far, we have only trialed the roses in Germany, but we received a lot of interest from several other growers in whole Europe."
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