Belgian floral fair: Magical snowqueen wins golden Florall award

For the first time in eighteen months, the floriculture trade fair Florall was able to physically take place in Belgium. There was a large turnout, which, according to the company, was even larger than previous editions. Apart from Belgium itself, there were many visitors from the Netherlands and France. In addition, quite a few Germans and Swiss visited the fair, as well as some visitors from Luxembourg and a notable delegation from Norway.

Among the exhibitors, there were 70 growers, 10 supply companies and 1 exporter/wholesaler. A professional jury again presented awards to potentially interesting novelties. Callicarpa bodinieri 'Magical snowqueen' was awarded gold, Cortaderia 'Tiny pampa' received silver and Echinacea 'SunSeekers Apple green' was the winner of the bronze.

A detailed description of the novelties can be found below this message.

Composition of jury:

Lucien Verschoren, AVBS chairman of the arboricultural section
Marc Verachtert, green journalist
Surrender Roelands, PCS
Elias De Boeck, VLAM
Bart Verelst, AVBS Consultant Garden Layout

Gold: Callicarpa bodinieri 'Magical snowqueen
De Nolf tree nursery, Waregem

Karel and Laura De Nolf

This plant is, given the size it eventually reaches, particularly suitable for borders. The jury emphasised as positive points the good growth, the healthy leaves and the ability to branch easily. It is true that the flowering is not very spectacular, because the flowers are hidden between the leaves, but the plant does offer a beautiful autumn colour. The great ornamental value is expressed after the leaves have fallen. The berries remain to decorate the garden for a whole winter. The birds do not like them because they are bitter. A new feature of the Magical snowqueen is that the berries are completely white, whereas most C. bodinieri have purple berries. This also gives them possibilities for indoor decoration and even to use some winter twigs in flower arranging.

Silver: Cortaderia 'Tiny Pampa'
Plants Stevens vof, Wuustwezel

Kris Stevens

This Cortaderia can be used as a houseplant but also does well in the garden: from the terrace to the border. It shrubs extremely well, but remains very compact, and is also perfectly winter hardy. This plant is awarded for its new presentation: Plants Stevens now offers it in a large pot, so that the plant will stand out beautifully in the trade channels.

The jury was charmed by the decorative leaf and the inflorescence, which is already very attractive even unopened. The plant has potential for indoor decoration, but also for the terrace and certainly for the garden. It grows nicely in clumps, is easy to maintain and can stand drought very well.

Bronze: Echinacea 'SunSeekers Apple green'
DS Plant, Zwevezele

Anje of DS Plant

The group SunSeekers distinguishes itself with a compact habit for Echinacea and with strong thick stems that branch abundantly. They have a double flower layer, where Echinacea usually has only one layer of petals. Thus the green flower looks a bit like a gerbera. It lends itself well to home use as a cut flower in mixed bouquets. It flowers from July to October. Also noteworthy is its hardiness, which is often a weak point with Echinacea.

The jury was charmed by the beautiful white-green colour, which is somewhat reminiscent of chicory leaves that received too much light. The flower bud is already attractive when it is not yet open. It is a valuable Echinacea, which certainly enriches the range and can come into its own in window boxes, on the terrace or in the garden. It is also positive that it lends itself to use as a cut flower in one's own living room. The sturdy stems and stocky growth are an added value.

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