VENLO, the Netherlands, September 27, 2012: The winner of the 2012 International Grower of the Year Award was announced at the world horticultural expo, Floriade on Wednesday evening September13th. At a tension filled awards ceremony, Sheridan Nurseries from Canada beat off the strongest competition ever from five other finalists across the globe to win the coveted accolade. In its 4th year, the International Grower of the Year Award count as among the horticultural globe’s most prestigious
The ceremony was presided over by Doeke Faber, chairman of the international association of horticultural producers AIPH and took place before an audience of over 200 people including finalists, journalists, supporters, honorary guests, invited guests and VIPs.
Former State Secretary of the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Dzsingisz Gabor, announced Sheridan Nurseries as the overall winner of the Grower of the Year Award: the coveted Golden Rose.
Sheridan Nurseries (www.sheridannurseries.com) has nine garden centres in the Toronto area. For almost a century, Sheridan Nurseries has been providing superior products, services and helpful advice. The company prides itself on its selection and quality, exceptional guest service and knowledgeable staff who are trained to answer just about any gardening questions you may have. Sheridan Nurseries was founded in 1913 in a town called Sheridan, Ontario (now known as Oakville). Over the years, the company evolved from a local supplier to today’s chain of garden centres and 900 acres of farmland. Sheridan Nurseries is a major supplier of goods to garden centres in eastern Canada the U.S.A. and has also been responsible for several plant introductions including Green Gem and DeGroot’s Spire Cedar
The other finalists in the contest came from Áustralia, Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. According to AIPH President, Mr Doeke Faber the pre selection was quite difficult as the quality of the this year’s finalists was the highest ever. Faber stressed that all contestants are state-of the-art companies which are exemplary for the ornamental industry.
Australia’s Mansfield Propagation Nursery from Red Skye took the second prize and was presented with the Silver Rose. Mansfield’s Propagation Nursery is Australia’s leading propagation nursery, having won many industry awards including best large production nursery, best propagation nursery, best environmental business and best training organisation. The company has recently entered into the National Nursery and Garden Industry of Australia’s Hall of Fame and supplies the commercial nursery and landscapes industry Australia wide with the highest quality tubestock and young plants. Annually they grow a thousand species consisting of trees, shrubs, grasses and perennials of both native and exotic varieties. Mansfield’s Propagation Nursery produces 2.5 million plants per year and works closely with plant breeders, collectors and plant marketing companies locally and internationally to bring new and exciting varieties to the Australian market as well as supplying large volumes of traditional species.
Although not the biggest company, the Belgium contestant Potplantenkwekerij Dirk Mermans from Wommelgem Belgium took the third price, the Bronze Rose. Owner Dirk Mermans specialises in the production of high quality foliage plants such as Philodendron, Monstera and Clusea. The origin of the company goes back over hundred years with Dirk’s ancestors running a plant nursery serving private gardens and public green spaces. Plants are grown in hydroculture by replacing the soil with a sterile medium of expanded clay. A state-of the art pot plant nursery, is the prime example of a family company run on a solid financial foundation.
Van den Berg Roses from the Netherlands, Trapani Piante from Italy and Lovania Nurseries from the UK took the fourth price and were presented with silver plaques. All prizes, unique pieces of art, were designed by the famous Dutch artist, Jantine Kroeze.
Left to right Silver Rose winner, Mansfield Propagation Nursery, overall winner, Mr William Stensson of Sheridan Nurseries and Bronze Award winner, Dirk Mermans of Potplantenkwekerij Dirk Mermans.