Kenya: Mount Elgon expands Charmant rose acreage

It is a difficult rose to grow, but Mount Elgon Orchards managed to master it. They've been growing it for about two years, have exclusivity on the variety and are now expanding the acreage of it. The rose in question is Charmant, and is sold under the company's brand name "Elgon Collection".

Guido Zwart at the FlowersExpo in Moscow, Russia. According to Guido, the Charmant is doing well in Russia.

Charmant is a creme colored rose variety from German breeder Kordes Roses. "It is a rose with a nice color opening and vase life of twelve days", says Guido Zwart, Sales Manager at Mount Elgon Collection. This Kenyan farm grows the variety on 8 ha in their 38 ha greenhouse in Kitale, at an altitude of 1950 meters above sea level. "Charmant has a medium head size and a stem length between 40-60 cm and is often used for weddings."


According to Zwart, Charmant is a difficult variety to grow. "Several farms tried it, but many stopped after trialling it. The edges of the flower turn brown quickly, and that is what makes it a difficult crop to grow." Also the owner of Mount Elgon Orchards, Bob Andersen, found it a difficult crop at first, but after a year of trialling, he discovered a way to master it. Right afterwards, he asked for exclusivity on the variety and received it. "We would like to expand our assortment with exclusive varieties. In this way, we can diversify ourselves from the competition."

Mount Elgon Orchards started with growing the Charmant on an acreage of 2 ha. Over the last years, it rapidly increased to 8 and they are currently adding more. "We are planning to reach about 10 ha in total. Also in the Netherlands, at their affiliated company Rose Handling Services where the roses are prepared for delivery to the customer and undergo a quality check again, they are expanding and vacancies are open."

For more information:
Mount Elgon Orchards Limited
Guido Zwart

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