Grasses at Hoffman Nursery
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In this issue:
  • Native grasses in Florida preserve
  • Hoffman Nursery in Greenhouse Grower TECHNOLOGY
  • Checking in on the Piedmont prairie
  • Planning for Spring: the EverColor® series
  • IPPS Home and Away
  • Industry Insights with Greenhouse Management
  • Upcoming Events
Native Grasses in Florida Preserve

Perico Preserve

On a beautiful, recent fall afternoon, we were enchanted by the Perico Preserve in Florida. A stroll in the preserve took us through coastal scrub, salt marsh, freshwater marsh, stands of seagrass, and coastal hammocks. We saw Tri-colored Herons, Osprey, Roseate Spoonbills, Blue Herons, Snowy Egrets, and Great Egrets. 

We also spotted some beautiful native grasses, including Pink Muhly, Cord Grass, and Purple Love Grass, along with several species of rushes and bulrushes. It's a magical place, so who would imagine it was fallow farmland just a few years ago?

That's one of most exciting aspects of the Perico Preserve, a successful restoration project on Florida's central Gulf Coast. Rather than letting this 175-acre site be turned into condos, local officals decided to restore coastal habitat and provide support for wildlife.

Read more about Perico Preserve and its grasses in our blog post.
New trays on production line
Hoffman Nursery in Greenhouse Grower TECHNOLOGY

With increased demand for grasses, our nursery has been expanding. We completed new greenhouse space earlier this year and have started construction on a second section. New technology and automation is taking on a larger role at Hoffman Nursery, allowing us to be more efficient while maintaining high standards. 

Greenhouse Grower Editor Laura Drotleff visited us earlier this year and wrote a profile about our use of technology. It appears in the September/October issue of their Greenhouse Grower TECHNOLOGY magazine. Catch it in print or browse it   online.

A big thanks to Laura and her team for sharing our story.
Checking In on the Piedmont Prairie

Last year we shared a story about the new Piedmont prairie at Sarah P. Duke Gardens. Horticulturist Annabel Renwick and Curator Stefan Bloodworth have been hard at work with their team to complete the outdoor classroom for the prairie and manage the plantings.

We check in often with the project, and it's going really well.  The garden's team planted additional areas to expand the prairie footprint.   Hoffman Nursery grew out another round of grasses for those plantings. Renwick is planning additions to existing areas, too, with spring wildflowers at the top of the list. 

The outdoor classroom, recently completed, fits the site beautifully and offers a lovely view over the prairie.

Piedmont prairie additions
New areas around the main prairie were added in late July.

Prairie in late August
In late August, the prairie was dense and full. Birds, butterflies, and other pollinators were taking full advantage of the new habitat.

Outdoor classroom
The outdoor classroom is elevated for clear views out over the prairie. A stone-lined border includes labeled plantings of species that grow in the prairie.

We look forward to seeing the results of this season's additions. We'll keep you posted on the prairie as it progresses. 
EverColor sedges
Planning for Spring:
The EverColor® Series

Want a sure bet for quick, beautifully finished plants for spring? The EverColor® series of sedges are just right.

We've been offering them for several years, and we continue to be impressed with these stylish sedges. Th ey're standouts for containers, ground covers, specimens, or borders.  They were developed by Pat Fitzgerald of Fitzgerald Nurseries, Ltd., in Ireland from long-time favorite, C. oshimensis 'Evergold'. 

What do we love about EverColor®?
  • Year-round color
  • Smart, stylish habit
  • Outstanding in containers
  • Vigorous but well-behaved
They're fantastic growers and will finish quickly. We have a few selections still available this fall. Bring them in now for overwintering so you can get a jump on spring sales. Or, bring them in early in 2017 and be ready when the demand hits. Book yours now to ensure you're ready to go.

For more details, see the EverColor® collection on our website. To book your plants, contact our sales team via email or phone (800-203-8590)
group pix at nursery
Our team had a great time showing Lance Russell (top left) and Brie Arthur (bottom left) around the nursery.
IPPS Home and Away

The Southern Region of IPPS held its annual conference late this month in Virginia Beach. We got an early start on IPPS with a visit from member and garden communicator Brie Arthur. She was hosting Lance Russell, an IPPS European exchange representative. They went on a multi-day tour of regional nurseries and gardens. 

Russell is the assistant technical manager at Fleurie Nursery in West Sussex England. He is interested in herbaceous production techniques and the new plants market, so we had a great time showing him around the nursery.

It was truly an exchange, as Russell shared techniques he uses in England with our production team. He and Arthur visited the production facility, our propagation house, and the nursery gardens.

Brice and Lance
Hoffman Nursery's Production Supervisor, Brice Davis (left), and Russell (right) shared insights.

After their visit, Arthur and Russell headed to Virginia Beach for the regional conference.

John and Jill Hoffman also headed to the conference.  So far, the word is it was very well organized and offered useful insights into what other nurseries were doing.  We'll share their adventures at the conference with you next time. 
Grenehouse Management Oct 2016
Industry Insights with
Greenhouse Management

Greenhouse Management unveiled their annual State of the Industry Report 2016 in the October issue. Data in the report come from an online survey of individuals who own or work for a greenhouse.

It's a comprehensive look at the industry, covering revenues, crops and production, management and marketing, labor, the economic outlook, and more. Magazine staff interviewed Hoffman Nursery owner Jill Hoffman and others for their insights. You can read Jill's thoughts on creating a succession plan for the nursery and positioning our industry for the future.

Thanks to the Greenhouse Management team for the report and for including Hoffman Nursery.
Upcoming Events

November 7, 2016
North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, NC

This all-day event is aimed at those in the horticultural trade. Marketing Director Shannon Currey will talk about how to create more interesting, wildlife-friendly landscapes with grasses and sedges. Also on the agenda, author and landscape architect Thomas Rainer, Audubon representative Kimberly Brand, and NC Botanical Garden Greenhouse Manager Matt Gocke.

Native Plant Symposium
Nov. 12, 2016
Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, Cincinnati, OH
Native Plants at Cincinnati Zoo

The fourth annual Native Plant Symposium, hosted by the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, is an all day adventure into the beauty and joy of native plants.

Hoffman Nursery's Shannon Currey will discuss grasses and sedges and highlight example projects that illustrate their capabilities. She's joined by a great roster of speakers, so don't miss this one!
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