Kawahara Nurseries spans 1,500,000 square feet of controlled environment agriculture at its two facilities in Northern California. The company is highly regarded for reliably producing more than 10,000 varieties of premium annuals, perennials and edibles in quart and gallon sizes.
Grower Assistant Amanda Goldsmith, who grew up in a greenhouse as a member of the Goldsmith Seeds family, recently gave Bluelab team members a tour of the Morgan Hill, CA site.
By Caroline Nordahl Wells, General Manager North America Bluelab.
Amanda Goldsmith of Kawahara Nurseries pictured with Bluelab North American Sales Manager Cindy Farnsworth
During our tour, we stopped to examine a wide variety of gorgeous plants, including calibrachoa, lavender, succulents and zinnias, all with impressive uniformity and hardiness. Across species, the common theme is quality, and there is nothing accidental about this.
Amanda, who acts as a liaison between Kawahara Nurseries’ growing team and sales representatives, keeps close tabs on inventory and quality issues. She described the tools and processes in place to preserve the nursery’s heritage of quality, which started with its founding by the Kawahara family over 70 years ago.
Kawahara Nurseries greenhouse
First, a quality tester rapidly records pH, nutrient (EC), soil moisture and temperature measurements throughout both facilities. Bluelab meters take these measurements in seconds, saving hundreds of hours of labor time and enabling a far more complete picture of crop health than previously possible with time-intensive pour-through methods.
The quality tester’s measurements auto-populate on her Android tablet, and then she adds any notes that will be helpful to the growers. For the Kawahara Nurseries growing team, Bluelab meters are an early warning system, detecting crop stress before it can be observed. Any out-of-spec readings help shape the weekly grower walks, a longtime tradition that keeps the growers in touch with plants that most need their attention. Quick corrective action by the growing team preserves Kawahara's famous quality and prevents costly crop loss.
Putting quality first with good crop management practices and simple-to-use Bluelab meters reduces growers’ costs, both in terms of allocating labor efficiently and avoiding crop loss.
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11650 Mission Park Blvd., Suite 107
Rancho Cucamonga, CA, 91730