Westerlay Orchids expands assortment with Bromeliads

“Our goal is a triple growth in space and crop size”

Californian orchid grower Westerlay Orchids in Carpinteria recently decided to broaden their assortment with bromeliads. Currently, they have allocated 1 acre of new greenhouse space for the cultivation of this crop, particularly the newer breeds, and their goals is a triple growth in space and crop size in the next couple of years.

Why bromeliads?
“At Westerlay, we meticulously evaluate new products before determining if an item is an appropriate fit for the organization”, says Jeff Karpman, Westerlay’s Director of Sales and Marketing. “At its core, Westerlay aims to provide high-value houseplants with a décor aesthetic aligning with our goal to “Inspire Your Home”. We also consider where the needs are in the market, as well as growing conditions, supply chain, customer/client engagement. We found Bromeliads to be the perfect fit for Westerlay as they are tropical plants with both flowering and  non-flowering varieties, grow and ship within a similar climate as phalaenopsis, and are currently in demand within our core customer base.”

A new challenge for the growers at Westerlay
Bromeliads require a similar greenhouse environment to orchids which has allowed Westerlay to advance the development of this new program within an expedited time frame, explains Karpman. However, blooming them is a new challenge for them. “We are therefore working with experts from Europe to fine-tune the output.  We are learning valuable information while still striving to support our initial partners in this crop with an excellent finished product.”

Newer breeds with unusual, architectural forms
So what makes Westerlay’s Bromeliads special? We are focused on newer breeds with unusual, architectural forms not currently widely available in the North American market.  With the increased exposure of Bromeliads and all houseplants for that matter, the variety selection, fit & finish are very important in earning the customers' business.  Our goal is to balance price, quality, originality & value to engage a higher-end niche within the current market we feel uniquely qualified to support.”  

Triple in size and production
Westerlay has allocated 1 acre of new greenhouse space for the cultivation of this crop.  Our goal is a 3x growth in space and crop size within the next couple of years as our share of the market expands to accommodate the demand. 

More new products in the pipeline
Annually they explore new product opportunities by visiting growers and breeders in the US and Europe and by trialing select products in their greenhouses. “We let the trials and market analytics determine the appetite for expansion and are always looking at new opportunities to expand the business within the core focus of the organization.  Westerlay’s main objective is to always meet our customers where their needs are and grow the operation to fill those needs.”            

For more information
Westerlay Orchids
www.westerlay.com  


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