Greenhouse Canada

Busy schedule with CanWest: Previewing the largest hort show in the West

August 27, 2008  By Dave Harrison

The CanWest Hort Show is Western
Canada’s largest horticultural trade show, welcoming more than 3,500
industry professionals and hosting some 425 booths over a two-day
period in mid-September each year. This year’s edition, the 27th annual
event, will be held Sept. 17-18, with bus tours on Sept. 19.

The CanWest Hort Show is Western Canada’s largest horticultural trade show, welcoming more than 3,500 industry professionals and hosting some 425 booths over a two-day period in mid-September each year. This year’s edition, the 27th annual event, will be held Sept. 17-18, with bus tours on Sept. 19.

In addition to seminars and an expansive trade show, highlights include a New Product Showcase, Exhibitor Presentation Stage educational sessions, the 2008 B.C. Landscape Awards of Excellence, the People’s Choice Floral Design Competition, a bookstore and
cappuccino bar, and a silent auction.


The educational program will feature both morning and early afternoon sessions this year. Topics will include:

Where Have the Gardeners Gone?, by Kip Creel of Standpoint Marketing Research. It’s clear that gen X and gen Y consumers have different expectations than their baby boomer parents, and their views on gardening require new approaches.

Bus tour hosts last year included Darvonda Nurseries managers Tamara and Byron Jansen, and Randell Jansen.

In a second presentation later in the day, Creel will tackle the topic, Becoming a Garden Centre Crossover: New Visions for a Modern Garden Retailer. As the lines blur between do-it-yourself and do-it-for-me projects, garden centres are ideally placed to be the crossover vehicles for indoor and outdoor living.

Container Crazy (and Plants for Small Space Gardens), by Dan Heims of Terra Nova Nurseries Inc. Breathe new life into container gardens with these suggestions. Heims will also provide the cultural requirements for optimum performance.

Dot Common Sense: Does Your Website Stand Out?, by Steve Cissel of 10-20 Media. When two out of three consumers use the Internet to research before they buy, how does your website measure up? Cissel will offer common sense approaches to developing winning web sites that generate sales.

National Trends and How They Affect You, along with Tracking Hot Retail Trends, both by Chris Beytes, editor of GrowerTalks and Green Profit magazines. Beytes travels extensively and has made a study of the current hot trends and how they impact growers and garden centres. In the second part of his talk, Beytes has catalogued many key resources to help him stay attuned to consumer trends. He will tell you where can you access this information.

Paridon  Horticulture had a Wollemi Pine display in 2007

Sustainable Landscaping Materials: Improving Your Environment Quotient, by Owen Dell of Country Landscape & Design. Learn how the proper choices in materials can reduce fossil fuel use, preserve natural areas, conserve resources, transform waste into valuable and creative landscape elements, protect the health of workers and users, and support local, vibrant economies.

Control Your Worklife: What Do You Do With Your 86,400 Seconds Each Day?, by Ann Max of Productive to the Max. She says we are tormented by backlogged projects, endless to-do lists and conflicting priorities, not to mention, cellphones and “instant” communication. She will outline how to prioritize your busy lifestyle, meet deadlines, deal with interruptions and time wasters, and be more productive.

Fossil Free Landscaping: Landscaping for a Different Future, by Owen Dell of Country Landscape & Design. Veteran landscape architect and contractor Owen Dell will present a provocative session on the challenges and opportunities that face landscape professionals.

The educational program includes bus tours. Included are two tours with a focus on growing.

Smit Nursery Ltd., produces 1.8 million cut flowers while operating state-of-the-art movable greenhouses that can be repositioned to cover different crops at different times of the year. Thanks to these greenhouses, they produce almost double the amount of cut flowers as a stationary greenhouse of similar size.

Stan and Wilma Vander Waal launched Rainbow Greenhouses Inc. in 1985. It has grown to 110 full-time employees and 1.1 million square feet of growing space in five different locations.

Nestled against 7,000 foot Mount Cheam, Minter Gardens is one of the most spectacular show gardens in the world! Enjoy a gourmet lunch buffet and then dazzle your senses as you wander through 12 amazing themed gardens.

Techni-Gro Greenhouses Inc. has been owned and operated by William and Heleen Stolze since 1990. One of Canada’s foremost cut gerbera growers, they harvest more than three million stems annually.


VanBelle Nursery Inc. was established in 1973 with 10 acres by Bill and Grace Van Belle. Today, it is recognized as an industry leader in the propagation of flowering shrubs, producing more than 2.5 million 4” liners annually. 

At its inception in 1986, Nordic Nurseries specialized in 4” annuals and their vegetative propagation. In 1993, the company joined the Proven Winners network to offer more than 300 varieties and exclusive collections from that program.

In 28 years of business, Valleybrook Gardens has become a leader in plant marketing and branding. It is the home of various successful brands including Rock Stars, Jeepers Creepers, and its best-known Heritage Perennials that are sold in trademark blue pots.

Kato’s Nursery Ltd., established in 1952, is a third-generation family-run business offering a host of small fruit, flowering shrubs, vines, conifers, perennials, groundcovers and evergreens to Canadian and Washington state retailers under the Touch of Nature label.

Complete registration information is available at . ■

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