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MNP trials, selects and introduces new varieties:

A look behind the scenes at Suntory's European agent

Keeping a novelty interesting and unique remains challenging. Due to the advanced techniques, new varieties are often succeeded quickly by creations with similar appearances and habits. Therefore marketing concepts come in to play more often when introducing new varieties.

Erwin Giezen of MNP with the Sundaville Apricot, a new color in the Sundaville collection.

MNP is such a company that is using marketing concepts. They mainly test, select and introduce new plants and varieties of Suntory Flowers onto the European market and are working with marketing concepts for several years now. Their successful introductions, the Beedance Painted Red in 2015 and the Princettia Pure White in 2016 for example, were all introduced with such a marketing concept. And now, for the 2017 season, MNP introduces their new Sundaville Apricot with a concept too. "We expect this variety to steal the show for the 2017 season", says MNP's Erwin Giezen, the designer of the majority of their concepts.

Sundaville Apricot.

When visiting this company, we had the opportunity to review this novelty along with other novelties during a guided tour through the greenhouse. Here they test and select their new varieties of Japanese breeder Suntory and French rose breeder Meilland. "We've been the agent of Suntory in Europe for more than 28 years now", says Giezen.

Trial garden
The trial garden is part of the testing procedure of the new varieties. "In this garden we test their winter hardiness, their rain and heat resistance, color retention and so on. Every year, new plants are being planted in this garden", says Giezen.

Part of the trial garden at the MNP premises

Another part of the trial garden with the entrance of MNP's greenhouses in the back

In the greenhouse, MNP trials and selects the new varieties. It is divided in several sections, with every part having its own function. One part is being used for trialing new and existing rose varieties, another part is used for trialing the new Suntory plant varieties. There’s a rooting area, a separate blackout greenhouse for Poinsettia trials and of course, a show greenhouse.

The show greenhouse

Let's start with the show greenhouse. In this part existing, new and test varieties are on display. And of course, the new Sundaville Apricot was also presented in this greenhouse. According to Giezen, this plant will be a promising variety for the future.

"During the FlowerTrials in the Netherlands, we gently introduced this variety and the reactions were positive. We expect this variety to become highly demanded in Europe. In addition, in the USA, the Sundaville Apricot -or Sunparasol Apricot as it is called in the USA- was introduced during the Spring Trials in California and this variety is currently in high demand", he says.

The new Sundeville Apricot. As it is in the name, the color of the flower is like an apricot. Next to its striking color, it has a fast vigorous growth, flowers early, is strong and has a good branching.

But before a variety ends up in this show greenhouse it needs to be tested first. And this is being done in another part of the greenhouse. "For this year, all tests are done and the lists of new varieties are made, so all the mother plants are prepared for the winter and are now being relocated in the greenhouse. "We only keep the 'successful' mother plants and the mother plants with potential."

In this area, the cuttings are being rooted.

"In order to achieve a good climate for rooting, the plants are covered in this 'tent'."

The new Princettia varieties are grown in a blackout greenhouse. "We can make this greenhouse completely dark and we usually do this at 5pm. This is needed for the Poinsettias to develop and grow."

And also the rose trials have their own part of the greenhouse.

About half of the roses planted in this part of the greenhouse are bred by Meilland, like the Frou Frou in this bed on the picture, and the other half by Kordes Roses.

Trade shows
The new and existing varieties that have been introduced by MNP will be showcased at several trade shows. This year, for example, they will exhibit at the FloraHolland Trade Fair in Aalsmeer and in January 2017 at the IPM Essen in Germany. Next to their new varieties, which will be the highlight at their booth, their existing varieties will be showcased too.

The Beedance for example. These varieties are currently being grown and will be on display at the FloraHolland TradeFair.

The Senetti’s are being grown to be showcased during the IPM Essen.

For more information
Moerheim New Plant
Erwin Giezen
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