Green moments

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September 16, 2015
Karen E. Varga
 

joe jancsurakKaren E. Varga
Editor

 

Getting engaged. Having a baby. Buying a new home. Losing a loved one. These are all important moments in our lives, and we celebrate or mourn many of them with plants. The concept of connecting plants with life moments came up several times in this summer’s travels, including the European FlowerTrials, featured in our cover story this month.

At many of the stops, we saw this theme repeated in different ways. The most obvious example was at Florensis, where the entire stop was based around displays commemorating moments in the life of a 20- or 30-something fictional character, Fleur Longway, who even had her own Facebook page. Fleur had a tabletop “dream wedding” display that incorporated white calibrachoas and New Guinea impatiens, a sports area representing her hobbies, a landscaped cemetery plot giving a nod to those she’s lost and a showcase of the plants she’s put in the front yard of her first home.

I also saw this concept exemplified while in Denmark for the International Garden Centre Association Congress. We were at GASA GROUP, an international trading company that supplies European markets with floral products, where a wide variety of merchandising ideas and point-of-purchase options were on display. I chatted with one of their sales representatives, who told me that they develop some of these concepts with “life moments” in mind. For example, one collection was based around a “New Beginning” theme, while others focused on love and specific holidays.

The cover story in this issue is different than usual in that it incorporates perspectives on European FlowerTrials and other aspects of European horticulture from several women in the North American horticulture industry. I feel fortunate to have experienced this trip, organized by the all-women’s group Luxflora, and learn alongside these professionals for a week. Each woman had her own set of aspirations for the trip, from getting ideas for marketing materials to finding new plants to complement what they’re currently growing, but all of us came out feeling like we had not only learned a considerable amount, but also gained new friends. Turn to page 12 to read more about the trip.

 




Karen E. Varga, Editor
kvarga@gie.net
216-393-0290  |  Twitter: @GC_Editor