Tuesday night during IPM Essen in January was the International Grower of the Year Award ceremony, which I was emceeing for the third year in a row (I haven’t pulled a wrong envelope yet, knock wood!).
The big winner? Ter Laak Orchids of the Netherlands, who also earned the Gold in the Finished Plant category, Silver in the Young Plant category and a new Sustainability award for their amazing energy-saving efforts.
The other big winner was Canada’s own Van Belle Nursery, who earned the Gold prize in the Young Plant category and Silver in the Finished Plant category. Owner Dave Van Belle was noticeably moved when he came up on stage—twice—with his son and colleagues to accept the awards.
The Cut Flower Gold went to JUB Holland, which exports flower bulbs to more than 30 countries. There were also finalists from Israel, Colombia and China, making it truly an international evening.
It’s got to be one of the biggest evenings in horticulture, with over 200 of the most influential business people present. GT