Garden retailers roamed the trade show floor as part of the Retailers’ Choice Awards Awards™ and chose 15 different products that caught their eyes as judges at the 2023 Farwest Show in Portland, Oregon.
The awards chosen by the judges were presented Thursday afternoon (August 24) at the show in a presentation emceed by Danny Summers, managing director of The Garden Center Group. Both live goods and hard goods were eligible.
“Judges based their decisions on whether or not they were interested in carrying the products,” Summers said. “Some of the products were also honored at other trade events, echoing the sentiments of other retailers about the potential popularity of the products with consumers.”
For instance, the Eclipse® Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Eclipse’ PP35544, USPP, CPBRAF) was voted by Farwest Show attendees as the People’s Choice winner in the 2023 New Varieties Showcase.
The plant, bred by Bailey Innovations™ and introduced by Bailey Nurseries based in St. Paul, Minnesota, is one of 59 outstanding new selections on display at the 2023 Farwest Show and available from at least one show exhibitor. The show concludes today —Friday, August 25 — at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon.
“New plants bring excitement to the nursery industry and to gardening,” said Mary Claire Lamm, manager of events and education for the Oregon Association of Nurseries, which produces the show. “We had 59 new plants on display this year at the New Varieties Showcase, so it was a lot of excitement and a great way to see some of the top-performing plants of the future.”
Eclipse is the first true dark-leaf Hydrangea macrophylla on the market. Its intense, dark purple foliage holds its color even in sunny, warm climates. The striking foliage, paired with gorgeous dark-purple- or cranberry-colored blooms, will make a big impact at retail, in the garden, and in a decorative container. Eclipse is a grower-friendly plant that offers excellent mildew and Cercospora fungus resistance, holds up well in a garden center, and is a standout in the landscape. It grows to 3–5 feet wide by 3–5 feet tall and is hardy in zones 5a–9b.
It is available as #2 and #5 containers and JumpStarts from Everde Growers (Booth #14037), Kraemer’s Nursery (Booth #15031), Means Nursery (Booth #15011), J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co. (Booth #19026), Oregon Pride Nurseries (Booth #8032), Robinson Nursery (Booth #18028), Sester Farms (Booth #16025), and Woodburn Nursery & Azaleas Inc. (Booth #14043).