Keeping up with trends

2021-05-26T12:41:54-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower Midwest|

Carla Varner has been taking over the business founded by her parents Jack and Mary (pictured) more than 35 years ago. There are now more than five acres of greenhouses on site. Photo courtesy of Varner’s Greenhouse

by Sally Colby

For nurseries and garden centers striving to remain viable, change is key. Although Varner’s Greenhouse and Nursery in Niles, MI, (more…)

Adding value with cut flowers

2021-05-26T12:39:03-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower, Grower East, Grower Midwest, Grower West|

Betsy Busche of Spongetta’s Garden, working on an arrangement for Art in Bloom at Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute. Photo by Courtney Llewellyn

by Tamara Scully

Bouquets are everywhere – in grocery stores, at florists, alongside the vegetables at the farm stand and even the gas station checkout counter. Those hoping to profitably grow and sell market bouquets (more…)

Perennial appeal

2021-05-26T12:36:00-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower West|

Jesse Eastman had to consider taking over Fort Collins Nursery from his father on several occasions, but since he kept working with plants, eventually it just made sense. Photo courtesy of Fort Collins Nursery

by Sally Colby

When Jesse Eastman started college, his plans didn’t include returning to the greenhouse and nursery his parents started. Although the Fort Collins Nursery, (more…)

After accidentally discovering new water mold threatening Christmas trees, work continues

2021-05-26T10:52:01-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower, Grower East, Grower Midwest, Grower West|

by Courtney Llewellyn

As Christmas trees, Fraser firs are prized for their rich color, pleasant odor and their ability to hold onto their needles. However, they’re also highly susceptible to devastating root rot diseases caused by water molds in the genus Phytophthora. There are about 170 species of Phytopthora, which can affect everything from cucurbits and fruit trees to berries and potatoes, and even firs and pines. (more…)

Growing local grains for local brews

2021-05-26T10:47:47-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower Midwest|

by Courtney Llewellyn

At the recent MI Ag Ideas to Grow With virtual experience, one sprouting idea was about growing barley and rye for the brewing and distilling industries. Craft breweries and distilleries are still popular for those involved in the local foods movement – Michigan is ranked fifth nationally for the number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs in-state – and they need locally-sourced supplies to meet demand. (more…)

Trends in foliage

2021-05-26T10:45:09-05:00May 31, 2021|Grower, Grower East, Grower Midwest, Grower West|

Millennials seem especially interested in houseplants. Social media has also helped to boost houseplant popularity, with Instagram influencers marketing unique varieties and colors. Photo by Sally Colby

by Sally Colby

Nearly everyone remembers houseplants as part of the décor in their parents’ or grandparents’ homes. But houseplants are back, and stronger than ever. (more…)