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Niagara Pack Trials draws attracts many U.S. growers


July 24, 2008
By Dave Harrison


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The Niagara Pack Trials, a mini
version of the more famous California industry tradition, attracted
well over 100 people in June to a pair of locations in the Niagara
Peninsula. Attendees came from Vermont, Illinois, Ohio, Québec and
throughout Ontario.

The Niagara Pack Trials, a mini version of the more famous California industry tradition, attracted well over 100 people in June to a pair of locations in the Niagara Peninsula. Attendees came from Vermont, Illinois, Ohio, Québec and throughout Ontario.

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 OMAFRA floriculture specialist Wayne Brown, with Fernlea Flowers production manager Peggy Nigh and head grower Bill Leighfield, touring Vineland.

Sponsored by the Canadian Ornamental Plant Foundation (COPF), and Greenhouse Canada and Greenhouse Grower magazines, the program highlighted new flower varieties from Dümmen USA, Ball, Syngenta and Proven Winners.

The trials were hosted at the Vineland Research Station and at Jeffery’s Greenhouses.

“Connecting new breeding to the needs of growers is a large part of the COPF mandate and we are pleased with the support from a number of breeders, especially Dümmen and Ball, as we look to replicate a small part of the California Pack Trials in June,” said COPF managing director Peggy Walsh Craig.

Highlighted this year were a new zinnia series and an exciting new heat-loving annual (Tecoma) from Ball; the Potunia breeding breakthrough in petunias by Dümmen with its “bubble of colour;” the much talked about ‘Calliope Dark Red’ trailing geranium from Syngenta – a cross between an ivy and a zonal geranium; and a host of impressive gaura varieties from Proven Winners gently swaying in the breeze in an amazing show of colour.

“Consumer product packaging is a new frontier and this event focuses on how growers can assist retailers in a mix of genetics and packaging,” noted COPF board member Laurie Scullin from The New Product Group. 

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‘Calico F1’ ornamental pepper from Ball features eye-catching
variegated leaves. The fruit is glossy black. It works well in
landscapes and mixed containers. The Ball displays were hosted at
Jeffery’s Greenhouses.
  'Mayan Gold’ from Ball is the only tecoma from seed. The brilliantly
gold-coloured flowers are well accented by the bright green leaves.
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Gaura varieties are always attention-getters, especially on a windy
day! ‘Stratosphere Pink Picotee’, at left, and ‘Karalee Petite Pink,’
both from Proven Winners, drew considerable attention at Vineland.
   
Superbells is an impressive new line of hybrid calibrachoa from Proven
Winners. The flowers are quite large and the range of colours equally
impressive, as visitors to the Vineland trials discovered.
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You’d hardly call ‘Americana® White Splash’ shy! It quickly attracted
attention from visitors to the Vineland trials. New for 2009 from
Syngenta, ‘White Splash’ featured improved vigour and larger, brighter
flowers.
  Coaxed by a little breeze on the day of our trials visit, ‘Sanvitalia
Sundance Yellow’ was indeed dancing about. This Syngenta offering
features larger flowers, thicker stems and a more vigorous habit than
its predecessor.
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Dümmen
regional sales manager Diane Surette, looks over Silver Shadow,’ at
left, and ‘Silver Fog,’ two impressive euphorbia varieties. They bloom
all summer and create a lace effect when used in a mixed container. D
ümmen has both rooted and unrooted cuttings available.
  Dümmen’s
Potunia lineup is daylength neutral, ideal for high density pot and
basket production. It requires no growth regulators, and naturally
maintains its ‘bubble’ shape. ‘Lobster,’ shown in this photo, is new
for 2009, as is ‘Dark Red.’
     

 

 






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