Greenhouse Canada

From the Editor: Connections made at 28th annual Grower Day

July 24, 2023  By Amy Kouniakis

Earlier this summer, Greenhouse Canada was honoured to host the 28th annual Grower Day in St. Catharines Ont.

Growers from across Ontario, Quebec and even some from the U.S. made the trek to the event that featured enlightening presentations from eight industry professionals and showcased the latest greenhouse innovations and services on a sold-out trade floor.

The presentation topics were quite varied, as they ranged from surge and lightening protection and health and safety planning to greenhouse lighting, pest management and AI and automation, among others. Ideas were shared, connections were made, good food was eaten, and everyone left having (hopefully) learned something they can use in their operation.


Towards the end of the day, we also took the opportunity to celebrate the winners of Greenhouse Canada’s Top 4 Under 40 and our Grower of the Year for 2023. Both awards look to honour those in the greenhouse industry who demonstrate effective leadership, a strong work ethic and forward-thinking. 

In last month’s issue, we introduced readers to our Top 4 Under 40 winners and in this month’s edition, our Grower of the Year for 2023, Rodney Bierhuizen of Sunrise Greenhouses Ltd., is profiled. Read more about him and his passion for the business on page 14.

Pest management is also top of mind in this edition of Greenhouse Canada as we look at what’s available to Canadian growers to control the Thrips parvispinus pest affecting some crops. Dr. Sarah Jandricic, Greenhouse Floriculture IPM Specialist for the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) discusses what’s available and their impact on controlling the pest on page 18.

We also return to the 2023 California Spring Trials in this issue. Our contributor, Rodger Tschanz, offers a glimpse of some of the stunning perennials on display at the event and shares some details on their cultivation and habits. Coverage and photos start on page 8.

As we head further into the dog days of summer, and garden centres resume a less frenetic pace than that of spring and early summer, we take a step back and analyze what consumers were buying for their home gardens. By all accounts, the COVID gardening trend seems to be sticking around in this post-pandemic world. Garden centres and nurseries share some of their insights on the 2023 spring/summer season on page 24.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone involved in making this year’s Grower Day such a success. Vendors, sponsors and attendees: you all make it possible.

We look forward to hosting more events in the future and welcome feedback from readers on how we can make them better. Please feel free to reach out with your ideas. 

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