Thursday, January 15, 2009

Trade Show Tidbits

Green industry trade shows feature acres of hot new plants and products from all around the world. This is a B2B environment - wholesalers selling to retailers, landscapers, garden centers, etc. Lots of orders are placed; much wining and dining occurs between client and vendor. Many gardeners would give their eye teeth to walk the floor of these behemoths to see the latest and greatest; it's actually not that hard to get in - I've given tips on this before in various seminars and talks. The bummer is you can't "shop" the show per se; nothing can leave the floor until the trade show closes. But if you're willing to hang around, you can buy an entire booth of product at wholesale prices - trees, shrubs, perennial plugs, etc., because the vendor's really not interested in lugging it back to wherever.

Here's a few cool things I saw last week at MANTS - the Mid Atlantic Nursery Trade Show, held in the Baltimore convention center (not to be confused with PANTS - the Pennsylvania show). Virginia Tech always has a great presence there - tons of our alumni exhibit at the show, and we always represent with some faculty and staff from Horticulture and CALS.

A flock of Aloe, all in perfectly synchronized bloom just for the tradeshow. From the fabulous Carolina Nurseries, way down near Charleston.

A whacky little thing called Synogonanthus chrysanthus 'Mikado'. Cute but apparently fussy - moderate temperatures, lots of moisture but not water-logged = certain death on my windowsill.

A gorgeous new coleus from the Ball Seed empire - this one's 'Henna'. The darned sales guy would not move away from it long enough for me to brush up against it and...well, never mind.

1 comment:

Gotta Garden said...

I attended one of your lectures where you gave tips..hehe...too bad I can't quite remember them...although as a garden blogger, perhaps I could get in as a 'journalist'...ha.

Love the HHG and try to swing a visit at least once a year while either moving in or moving out my daughter around Blacksburg.

Wish I lived closer...would surely take advantage of all the lectures and educational opportunities. You all do a good job!