Panoramic Farm (Marshville, North Carolina) is a 20-plus-year-old greenhouse and nursery wholesale grower that “specializes in grasses, perennials, woody ornamentals and material used in green infrastructure.” The Tar Heel State operation leverages 55 total acres of container and raised bed outdoor production and 80,000 sq. ft. of greenhouse space in a quest to highlight the top performing varieties of what they deem “plants with a purpose.”
Panoramic uses Fine Americas’ line of plant growth regulators throughout its propagation efforts, and former grower JC Dawkins (Dawkins has since left Panoramic to start his own growing operation) was involved in setting up side-by-side trials among Panoramic’s many crops to find out which PGR options worked best on which crops, at various rates, timings, and even environmental conditions.
Dawkins says Fine Americas’ Advocate PGR has “made our propagation program more efficient and successful.” As any seasoned grower knows, the propagation stage can often be the most difficult, yet it’s also incredibly important that plants get off to a good start early on in life.
“We used to dip all of our cuttings in hormone before sticking — switching to Advocate has eliminated that step,” Dawkins shares.
He adds that this has made propagation work safer for their employees, as now there is only one person working with the chemical. “And it has made us more efficient by 10 or 20%,” he notes.
How much more efficient? Recently, the Panoramic crew stuck 33,000 cuttings, which, prior to adding Advocate to the rotation, would have “taken us a long time to dip all of those cuttings,” Dawkins recalls.
Additionally, Dawkins and the team at Panoramic appreciate the easier handling characteristics and a more universal growth habit on young plants dipped or drenched in Advocate.
“The liquid solution is much easier and safer to mix than the old powder rooting hormone that we used to use, and it has improved our success rate by its uniformity across the entire crop and slightly sped up our time to root,” he adds.
Crest is another Fine Americas PGR that Dawkins and his team trialed in 2021. Dawkins was thrilled with what he saw from that product on the operation’s coneflower species.
“We saw more top growth, and I’m still not 100% sure what had those plants growing so slow this spring, but that Crest really got those coneflowers moving,” Dawkins says. “It was a really big, noticeable difference between the treated and the non-treated plants.”