Professional Greenhouse Grower Posts
Retail Garden Center Posts

How two growers improved planning with online ordering

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Nov 2, 2015 12:06:51 PM

Growers find success with ePlantSource's online resources

A few short growing seasons ago, Dennis Moore, co-owner of The Flower Farm in Sandpoint, Idaho, had a decision to make. 

Should he continue working with a broker that leaves him dissatisfied or make the switch to ePlantSource?

He chose the latter. 

“The whole idea of the online ordering intrigued me,” Moore said. “Prior to that we worked with brokers via fax, email and telephone, so I thought the idea of having it all done online made a lot of sense.”

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Topics: ePlantSource, Professional Greenhouse Grower

Increase profitability: Tips for filling gaps in downtimes

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Jun 25, 2015 12:50:00 PM

Planning for All Seasons

Tips on filling in gaps during downtimes

While for most operations the primary selling season is in the spring, there are strategies out there for extending that selling period beyond the traditional months. Consider expanding your sales even more, to stay active throughout the year and to ensure your business remains ahead in the marketplace.

An Opportunity to Maximize Sales

Some experts weighed in on what they have learned while extending their seasons for growers. "Probably the biggest benefit to year-round selling is that it helps to contribute some additional dollars to overhead costs," says Joe Moore, head grower for Lucas Greenhouses. "It also provides work needed to help retain employees." At Lucas Greenhouses, which is both a supplier of young plants and a finished grower, activity peaks from February through early June, with mid-October to late November considered as the true "downtime".

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Topics: ePlantSource, Professional Greenhouse Grower

ePlantSource™ Welcomes EuroAmerican to list of Partners

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Jun 9, 2015 11:58:00 AM

Complete assortment from EuroAmerican now available on ePlantSource.com

Westminster, CO, June 9, 2015 — ePlantSource has recently announced a new partnership with EuroAmerican to list their complete assortment on ePlantSource.com. Varieties are available for sale now to customers for the 2015-2016 season.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Partners, Professional Greenhouse Grower

ePlantSource™ Announces New Partnership with Hort Couture

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Jun 2, 2015 11:27:00 AM

Complete Hort Couture collection is now available to growers on ePlantSource.com

Westminster, CO, June 2, 2015 — ePlantSource has announced that the complete collection from Hort Couture is now available to be purchased through ePlantSource.com for the 2015-2016 season.

Hort Couture offers exclusive varieties to be retailed through independent garden centers only. They pride themselves on selecting varieties that will help these garden centers stand apart from their big box counterparts. In addition to wow factor they take many things into consideration before introducing new varieties and have a rigorous genetic evaluation program to ensure success for growers, retailers, and consumers alike.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Partners, Professional Greenhouse Grower

9 questions to consider when considering perennials

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Mar 4, 2015 11:17:00 AM

Whether you're thinking of diving into perennial production for the first time, or are looking to expand your current production, there are several questions you need to ask yourself upfront.

They emphasize really understanding your timing & facility constraints along with the kind of assortment (want to be a niche supplier or someone who has it all?) that you want to offer to your customers.

In fact, Dave Eastburn and Kathy Paige from Gro'n Sell have 9 questions to get you started.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Perennials, Partners

Improving Your Competitive Advantage

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Nov 17, 2014 2:03:00 PM

We recently wrapped up a series on how companies in our industry can improve their competitive advantage by simplyfing your business model, utilizing the right tools, and selecting the varieties that will succeed for your programs. We picked the brains of experts across North America to get their suggestions on each of these topics and wanted to bring them all together in one place for your reference.

For the first in the series, we have input from Gary Falkenstein, President/CEO of ePlantSource and industry vet sharing his top three best practices for running a streamlined, profitable and flexible business in the ever-changing landscape of the floriculture industry.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Industry Trends, Variety Selection, Annuals, Professional Greenhouse Grower

Jumping Into Perennials: 7 Things Annuals Growers Need To Know To Get Started

Posted by Sara Tambascio (Guest Blogger) on Oct 21, 2014 11:50:00 AM

Jumping Into Perennials: 7 Things Annuals Growers Need To Know To Get Started:

A perennial boom is definitely upon us – so should you begin producing crops in this category? There are a few things annuals growers should take into consideration before making the leap into perennials. Terra Nova Nurseries’ Sales Manager Scott Christy shares his advice on how to decide if it’s the right move for your operation.

1. Don’t start growing perennials without an established customer base. Perennials are hot right now, but Christy doesn’t recommend getting into growing them just because everyone else is. There are many niches to investigate with perennials, so make sure your customers are interested before you start producing. 

“If you don’t have a marketplace to take your product to, you can be in some serious trouble right up front,” Christy says. “Just because you're selling annuals to a client base doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily buy your perennials, too.”

2. To do it right, you need to see first-hand what consumers want. Knowing what retailers know (or should know) helps growers understand what consumers want. Christy says he’s amazed at how few retailers have gone into the retail setting to see how consumers react and respond to products. Taking a field trip like this can help because of regional differences and preferences for plant material.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Perennials, Professional Greenhouse Grower

The headlines and surveys agree: Edible gardening is trending up

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Oct 16, 2014 11:53:00 AM

Locally Grown:

Locally grown is catching on across the country and nothing tastes better than fresh, local produce especially if you grow and produce your edibles in your own back yard. Breeders are creating new varieties every year that add color, unique flavors and spice to your evening meals. The headlines and surveys agree vegetable gardening is trending up.

"Vegetable gardens have exploded in popularity since the 2008 recession, but 2014 might see the biggest boom in backyard veggies, yet. Rising costs of food sends many to the soil to grow their own vegetables, fruits and herbs.
Food prices rose by 0.4 percent in February, the largest increase since September 2011, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported earlier this month. Cold weather in California and a crop disease in Florida have devastated crops like oranges and strawberries, according to USA Today. Orange prices increased 3.4 percent in February, while strawberries cost 12 percent more than last year."
~Nicole Paitsel (March 29, 2014)

"Among the 78 million gardening households that have a lawn, garden or grow plants in containers, more than half (54%) grew vegetables this year according to this the 2013 Garden Trend Survey by the Garden Writers Association."

~2013 October Gardening Trends Research Report

So I surveyed our suppliers of Edibles to find out what they had for 2015 that is new, hot or unique. I hope you find this interesting and valuable information.

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Topics: ePlantSource, Industry Trends, edibles, Professional Greenhouse Grower

My trip to the IGC in Chicago

Posted by Gary Falkenstein on Sep 30, 2014 10:27:54 AM

My trip to the IGC at the Navy Pier in Chicago:

Chicago is my favorite large city (besides Denver) and when the opportunity came up to visit the IGC Trade show on Navy Pier, I jumped at the chance. So my wife Peggy and I spent 3 glorious days in Chicago touring the show and of course the city.


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Topics: ePlantSource, Marketing, Professional Greenhouse Grower, Retail Garden Center, Events

How To Get Started Selling Online

Posted by Suzanne McKee on Sep 16, 2014 12:45:00 PM

In our first article in our series on e-commerce in horticulture we explored the question "Should you be selling your plants and products online?", below we've assumed that you have already answered this question in the affirmative and are ready to look at next steps.

Our latest article in Greenhouse Grower, "How To Get Started Selling Online" looks at how to get an effective business plan going, options for e-commerce, pros and cons, and other ideas for inspiration.

Article excerpt:

Thinking about adding eCommerce to your distribution model? Let’s assume you’ve already decided that yes, this is the right choice for your business. Here are the four steps you need to take.

1. Make a plan (with a realistic budget)
2. Decide on the direction of development and design
3. Staff and support it
4. Market it

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Topics: ePlantSource, technology, Professional Greenhouse Grower

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