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US (OH): Retailers’ Choice Awards at Cultivate’17

Retailers’ Choice Awards at Cultivate’17 were presented to 14 exhibiting firms in Columbus, OH on July 17, 2017. The Garden Center Group’s Danny Summers and Sid Raisch lead the search as garden retailers selected the best new products, both live goods and hard goods, for their stores. Following is a list of firms and the products receiving recognition:

Decorative Premium Hanging Baskets (ceramic look)
Ainong USA
Jani McConnell
3000 S. Robertson Blvd, Ste 290, Los Angeles, CA 90034
Ph: 310-559-3000, Fax: 310-559-3003
[email protected]

Seeing a glazed ceramic-looking container that also can be a hanging basket is quite unique and that’s why our retail judges saw Ainong USA’s new planters as new opportunities to drive sales. These plastic containers have a wonderful finish to fool you to thinking they are ceramic but they are light weight and have hanger holes available for hanging. Ask Ainong USA for details on all color options.

Coleus Flamethrower Series
Ball FloraPlant
Bill Calkins
622 Town Rd., West Chicago, IL 60185
Ph: 630-231-3600, Fax: 630-562-7790
[email protected]

Our retailers were excited to see this series being used together to create a unique blend. Medium sized tidy series of 5 coleus colors with uniquely shaped leaves perfect for quarts and mixed containers! With excellent garden performance in sun or shade, the FlameThrower series from Ball FloraPlant adds texture in the garden and especially in mixes and patio pots.

Mother Nurture
Braun Horticulture, Inc.
Amadeu Pacheco
PO Box 260, Niagra Falls, NY 14305
Ph: 800-246-6984, Fax: 905-648-4298
[email protected]

Retailers are always interested in helping the consumer have success with plants. Braun’s new Mother Nurture helps insure success with delivering needed mycorrhizal fungi that is easy to use form using granulated zeolite, all in a convenient 1 lb package and 4 lb package for growers.

Calibrachoa as a Tree Form - grafted onto Standard – new Patented Process
Cohen Hishtil Jaldety Nurseries
Eyal Inbar
Hadolev 33, Kfar Hanagid, Kfar Hanagid 76875 Isreal
Ph: 011-97-289-439487, Fax: 011-97-289-421608
[email protected]

Many of our retail judges are also growers and seeing a calibrachoa grown on a standard caught their eyes right away. Cohen Hishtil’s Eyal InBar explained this is a new patented technique on growing certain annuals on a grafted standard. They not only have calibrachoas but also some peppers and more are on the way. So, don’t be surprised when we begin to see this new presentation for familiar plants.

daVinci Decorative Thin-Walled Containers in Many Creative Designs
daVinci – Airlite Plastics
Ron Vandiver
6110 Abbott Dr., Omaha, NE 68110
Ph: 402-341-7300, Direct: 314-971-0984
[email protected]

Judges walking by this huge assortment of decorative thin-walled containers and immediately stopped. DaVinci decorated containers offer USA made in-mold labeled designer grow pots and drop-ins. Designs are inspired by a continual process of gathering feedback from both commercial garden centers and today's home gardeners allowing daVinci to provide both classic and trending designs at a reasonable investment.

No More Twisted Hoses with Dramm’s Brass Hose Swivel!
Dramm Corporation
Kurt Becker
PO Box 1960, Manitowoc, WI 54221
Ph: 920-684-0227, 920-684-4499
[email protected]

Retail staff spends a lot of time watering and twisted hoses add to the time needed. Dramm has solved the problem and it was an “ahah” moment for our judges. This Brass Hose Swivel is a live swivel, meaning it swivels under pressure, allowing unencumbered movement between the hose and attachment.

New Tomato ‘Heartbreaker’ - Dora F1
Fred C. Gloeckner & Co. Inc.
Dave Seitz
550 Mamaroneck Ave., Harrison, NY 10528
Ph: 914-698-2300, Fax: 914-698-0848
[email protected]

Have you ever thought about having a tomato positioned for a Valentines’ gift? Obviously the answer was NO… until now. ‘Heartbreaker’ - Dora F1 is a small fruited cocktail type with a heart-shaped point and bright red color. The dwarf, bushy plants are ideal for patio container or greenhouse and is ideal for decoration in soups and salads or to decorate your dish as a professional chef. Available as seed from Gloeckner.

Bumper Crop Organic Plant Foods
Master Nursery Garden Centers
Gerry Docksteader
190 S. Orchard Ave., Ste B230, Vacaville, CA 95688
Ph: 707-359-2700, Fax: 707-359-2799, Direct: 301-471-7870
[email protected]

Our retailers were attracted to Masters’ new 100% natural organic plant foods in a convenient size package, appealing to the growing demand for organically grown products. They are a high performance blends with state of the industry microbial and fungal species. Bumper Crop Organic Plant Foods are exclusive Master Nursery Garden Center products, available only to MNGC members. They are a direct tie into the Bumper Crop Soil Amendment program.

At Last… a fragrant, disease-resistant rose – Rosa x ‘At Last’
Proven Winners Color Choice
Tony Thom
12601 120th Ave., Grand Haven, MI 49417
Ph: 800-633-8859, Fax: 800-224-1628
[email protected]

It's the dawn of a new day for roses: At Last combines all the romance of a fragrant, fully-petaled tea rose with the no-nonsense practicality of a disease resistant landscape rose. No spraying is required to enjoy a non-stop display of large, sweetly perfumed sunset-orange blossoms from late spring through frost.

The New Pugster Buddleia Series – short, stocky, and colorful!
Proven Winners Color Choice
Tony Thom
12601 120th Ave., Grand Haven, MI 49417
Ph: 800-633-8859, Fax: 800-224-1628
[email protected]

Judges were taken back by the Pugster series - a whole new look for butterfly bush. It's a compact plant that reaches just 2 ft tall and wide but has the large, full flowers normally seen on a much larger plant. The name "Pugster" comes from these plants' resemblance to a pug - short, stocky, and it comes in four colors: Pugster Blue, Pugster Periwinkle, Pugster Pink, and Pugster White.

Hydrangea arborescens ‘Invincibelle Mini Mauvette’
Proven Winners Color Choice
Tony Thom
12601 120th Ave., Grand Haven, MI 49417
Ph: 800-633-8859, Fax: 800-224-1628
[email protected]

Put your judge’s cap on for a moment: a new compact hydrangea that has the classic and much-loved 'Annabelle' features but instead of plain white blooms, the flowers are a deep pink-mauve, and they're held up on strong, sturdy stems. The show begins in early summer and because Invincibelle Mini Mauvette is a rebloomer, it continues clear through frost for an endless supply of flowers for the landscape or vase (both fresh and dried!). Available in spring 2018.

Dragon’s Breath Red Celosia
Sakata Seed America, Inc.
Brad Smith
18095 Serene Dr., Morgan Hill, CA 95037
Ph: 408-778-7758, Fax: 408-778-7768
[email protected]

While Dragon’s Breath is not new this year, our retail judges said it is just becoming more recognized for a dramatic statement. One judge said he planted it in front of his center this spring and it was the most talked about plant. It’s unique green-red foliage and blazing-red, long-lasting flowers of Dragon's Breath celosia exhibit even more red foliage and flowers under adverse garden conditions like heat, humidity and infrequent watering. It is great in containers, beds and large landscapes for dramatic effects.

Bloomin’ Easy Hydrangea paniculata Lavalamp Series – Flare, Candleabra, and Moon Rock
Van Belle Nursery
DeVonne Friesen
34825 Hallert Rd., Abbotsford, BC V3G 1R3 Canada
Ph: 888-826-2355, Fax: 604-853-6282
[email protected]

This new Lavalamp Series of Hydrangeas from Bloomin' Easy caught our judges’ eyes by offering unique colors and improved form with each player having different assets. Candelabra (shown) offers candle-like flowers and form, with an incredible upright form, Flare turns the brightest red of any compact Hydrangea paniculata we've seen, and Moonrock features large funky blooms with a bold lime-green center.

Sunfinity Sunflower – It’s re-blooming!
Syngenta Flowers Home and Garden
Mike Murgiano
2280 Hecker Pass Hwy, Gilroy, CA 95020
Ph: 408-847-7333, Fax: 408-848-5429
[email protected]

The judges are very impressed by all the attributes of this new hybrid Sunflower from Syngenta. Check these stats out: continuous blooms all season long (over 100 on one plant per season), easy care as deadheading and pruning is not required, fast growing to 3-4’ tall and 2-3’ wide in the garden, and does great as a cut flower! Now that’s a great new team player for both containers and garden color!

Terra Nova Nurseries
Chuck Pavlich
10051 S Macksburg Rd., Canby, OR 97013
Ph: 503-263-3150, Fax: 503-263-3152
[email protected]

These new series of Coleus from Terra Nova are unique in today’s market. The TIDBITS series includes three color combination plants (Tammy, Terry, and Timmy) all having small tight habits, small lobed leaves, and short flower spikes. They are self-branching and slow to flower. FANCY FEATHERS series forms a mounding tuffet of narrow feather-like leaves. It also includes three colors (Pink, Copper, and Black). All three looks adorable in a 4" pot and drapes beautifully in a 10 inch hanging basket. Self-branching. TIDBITS Tammy is shown here.

Assorted Succulents in Creative Containers
Van Bloem Gardens
Mark Hopkins
8079 Van Zyverden Rd, Meridan, MS 39305
Ph: 800-683-2852, Fax: 601-474-3064
[email protected]

The judges were drawn to this wonderful display of 2’, 4”, 6” assorted premium succulents presented in 6 unique artisan metal pots, including 2” zinc, 4” duo and trio pots with handles and a triple 2’ window sill tray. All are presented on a mini rack with colorful point of sale material that illustrates the simplicity of growing succulents indoors or out. An instant display for retail!

The awards at Cultivate’17 was a joint presentation by AmericanHort/Cultivate’17 and The Garden Center Group. The Garden Center Group focuses on business solutions designed to help garden centers increase sales, improve operations and retain more profit. With a support team of leading industry professionals offering business management, financial, marketing, HR services and more. The Group offers retailers innovative resources to maximize their potential to succeed.

For information about The Garden Center Group and the services it provides visit: or call Danny Summers at 678.909.7770.

For more information about AmericanHort or Cultivate’17 visit: or call AmericanHort at 614.487.1117
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