Every other year, the Northeast Greenhouse Conference & Expo takes place, providing horticulture enthusiasts and employees with a trade show to network and educational sessions to learn more about the industry.

Otto Kaufmann with Lambert has a variety of peat moss blends for your plants. Photos by Kelsi Devolve and Becky Veldman

Formerly known as the New England Greenhouse Conference, this event first occurred in 1972, and has expanded ever since. On Nov. 8 and 9, 2023, the expo took place in Manchester, NH, with over 60 exhibitors at the trade show, 40 educational sessions and hundreds of attendees.

Texpak featured label printers that will make quick work of tagging plants at your nursery.

Exhibitors sign up for this trade show not only to speak to potential new customers and spread awareness about their company, but also to collaborate and meet other professionals in the horticulture industry. Don Ward, with Chestnut Hill Marketing, explained how beneficial the trade show was for him and his company. He created “strong relationships with the leaders of other companies” while at the show, which is valuable in the present and future.

Griffin Greenhouse Supplies Inc., headquartered in Tewksbury, MA, had plenty of help on site to answer attendee questions.

Margery Daughtrey from Cornell University led a session titled “Stopping Xanthomonas and Other Plant Spotters.” Although she talked about a wide variety of plant spotters, one she focused on was powdery mildew, a fungal disease found on a wide variety of plants. As Daughtrey explained, “Powdery mildews are the most damaging when they fool you” and they grow “where the humidity is high.”

Sarah Mancini with D.S. Cole Growers shows her new varieties grown right in New Hampshire.

During the second day of the conference, a unique educational session was led by Dr. Bridget Behe from Michigan State University focusing on the differences between online and in-store plant shopping. With the rise in online shopping, it’s important to know how to make both the customer’s and the seller’s experience productive in the store and out of the store. Through various studies, it was determined that people are “willing to spend more on seeds online than in store – the opposite of herbs.”

The main points to remember if you are selling plants online is to think about what you can and can’t ship successfully, consider the added costs of shipping and make sure your online images of products are accurate.

Both days of the show were buzzing with people asking questions and learning about the latest new products and technology.

The Northeast Greenhouse Conference & Expo is a beneficial experience for everyone involved. Attendees, speakers and exhibitors all walked away with connections and information to improve their success in the industry.

For more information about the 2025 Northeast Greenhouse Conference and Expo, visit negreenhouse.org.

by Kelsi Devolve