Jean-Yves Coulbaul, Sicamus:

EU: 'Deko Pot allows earlier hydrangea sales'

Selling your plants early in the season. It is a desire of many growers, but has become challenging due to the change in consumer preferences. The product should be 'ready-to-use' or directly display how it will look like when it is in full bloom. French breeder and grower of half finished hydrangeas Sicamus tapped into this latter demand and recently introduced it's so-called 'Deko Pots'; a five liter pot that displays the flowers.

Jean-Yves Coulbault and Christophe Camus, President of Sicamus, at the IPM Essen 2018 in Germany.

Why supplying a pot?
According to Commercial Director Jean-Yves Coulbault, the main reasons for introducing the Deko Pot is not only to enable growers to add more value to their product, but enable them to sell it earlier in the season as well. "Nowadays, growers are already adding value to their hydrangeas by re-potting them into a new and clean pot. However, before putting them on the market, they often have to wait till the buds of the hydrangeas starts to color. Now, with the Deko Pot, the grower will still re-pot the flowers in a clean pot, but as the pot is printed with the flower on two sides, the consumer can quickly see the color and how it will look like in full bloom and they will more likely sell their products earlier in the season."

The pots are 5 liter pots available in several designs, consisting of three of their collections - «Rendez Vous», «Dutch Ladies», and «You and Me» -, and the more classic pots, that have a blue, white, red or pink flower on the pot. "For some consumers, simplicity is the key. The name of the collection does not always do the job, they just want to see what the color of the flower will be in full bloom."

The designs.

How to use it?
Growers can use the Deko Pot in a similar way as they are used to. "We supply the half finished hydrangeas in a 14-17 cm pot and we supply a similar amount of empty Deko Pots separately. Then, at arrival, the grower can directly transfer the Hydrangea in a clean pot; the Deko Pot for the short forcing of about 3.5 to 4 months.” Many growers are already re-potting their hydrangeas upon arrival in a clean pot, but having a small number of pots in a certain print is usually quite difficult as growers usually have to order large quantities. "We order the large quantities, so we can offer our grower exactly the right amount of pots they need, even in small quantities."

Good reactions
Sicamus mainly exports its half finished hydrangeas to growers all over Europe. Last year, Sicamus started to sell their first test varieties and they were pleased with the demand and reactions. "We produced 50,000 test pots and they were all sold." At the IPM Essen, last month, they showcased the pots for the first time and also there, their existing and potential customers were pleasantly surprised. "Many people asked for more information."

For more information
Sicamus Productions
Jean-Yves Coulbault

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