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December 2017 | Volume 38, Issue 12


TPIE Offers World-Class Trend Presentations and More! Businesses can’t keep doing things the same old way if they wish to be successful in the future, yet keeping up with changing marketplace trends can be challenging. The Tropical Plant International Expo (TPIE) makes it easy to learn the key consumer and industry trends for 2018 and beyond-- and how to use this information for greater business opportunities. Taking place January 17 – 19 at the Broward County Convention Center in Ft. Lauderdale, TPIE attendees can take advantage of trend insights both on and off the trade show floor. TPIE’s “Opening Session” features Max Luthy, Director of Trends and Insights at TrendWatching, a worldwide organization which shares consumer trends, insights and tools to help companies take advantage of trend knowledge. Luthy is a widely-recognized leader in the world of consumer trends. He is highly sought by top companies around the world seeking to connect their brands and products to the desires and expectations of an evolving consumer marketplace. This presentation offers an exceptional advantage! Not only will you learn from Luthy about future retail and consumer expectations, but you will also hear which trends he sees as the best opportunities for live plant businesses and related products and services. The TPIE “Opening Session” takes place on Wednesday, January 17 at 9 a.m. It is included in the cost of the TPIE show badge. This session is sponsored by LiveTrends Design Group. Breathing Room – “The Home Décor Trend Connecting Nature and Wellness” is the title of TPIE’s Elevating Expectations Session, sponsored by the National Horticulture Foundation. Taking place on Thursday, January 18 at 3 p.m., this informative presentation will be led by Katie McCoy Dubow and Suzi McCoy, principals at the trendspotting firm Garden Media Group. The Garden Media Group is well known for its annual reveal and explanation of the newest national garden trends. Continued on page 3


Ed Bravo, FNGLA 2017-2018 President

Higher Ground: FNGLA is the Pulse of the Industry A chill is in the air and the leaves are beginning to turn vibrant colors here in North Florida. Thank goodness hurricane season is finally over and the Holidays are quickly approaching. I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends and you were able to forget about work and the weather for at least one day. This is also the time of year when Gator fans and Seminole fans alike, eagerly await bowl games and the national rankings. Unfortunately, we are all more likely this year to watch the Hallmark Channel than football bowl games. As part of our chapter outreach, The Three Amigos recently attended FNGLA’s Action Chapter chili cook-off. We ate our weight in chili dogs and Shawn Thomas walked away with a $500 cash drawing, which he quickly donated back to the Chapter’s Scholarship fund. Folks, this is leadership by example! Earlier in the day, FNGLA’s Landscape Irrigation Technician Certification Committee met in Orlando to develop a statewide outline for testing and certifying landscape irrigation workers for knowledge and competency. It will be similar to FNGLA’s other professional certification programs with written and field exams. And, it could potentially lead to higher levels of landscape irrigation certification. On September 28, the new FNGLA Landscape Irrigation Committee met for the first time at FNGLA’s office. The committee roster of 19 members includes landscape/ irrigation contractors and designers; irrigation suppliers and manufacturers; UF/IFAS; and, water management districts. And, it has a fair balance of folks from different parts of the state. There to facilitate the process were FNGLA staff - Ben Bolusky, Merry Mott and Billy Deal. Also, present were the three FNGLA officers to lend a hand when needed. Rick Manley of Juniper Landscaping of Florida (Fort Myers) was elected chair and three task forces were formed: Advocacy; Education; and, Public Relations. Each will wrestle with action items from the priorities and projects identified in FNGLA’s Landscape Irrigation White Paper report back to the full committee in January. We hope to create, strengthen and streamline a statewide uniform set of landscape irrigation


design standards and build Florida partnerships to maximize landscape irrigation efficiency and achieve water savings. On November 6, FNGLA was invited to participate in a meeting with Florida’s major agriculture associations in Gainesville. The meeting opened with a conference call with Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam to discuss the political situation in Washington and the need for flexible, supplemental USDA disaster assistance in the wake of Hurricane Irma’s destruction. This group of ag association leaders also discussed legislative issues at the state and federal levels. We also discussed ways to promote Florida agriculture and the need to meet more frequently as a group. The FNGLA/PAC Annual Meeting was postponed this year along with The Landscape Show in September, so a conference call was held on November 30. As FNGLA-PAC chairman, FNGLA past President Paul Polomsky led the meeting which included a review of FNGLA-PAC finances, as well as recommended contributions to Florida House and Senate allies for their election campaigns. We discussed different ways to generate needed income for FNGLA-PAC given the pivotal election races in 2018 of state legislators and the four Florida Cabinet positions (Governor; Commissioner of Agriculture; Attorney General; and, Chief Financial Officer). We were also informed of two dark clouds advancing through the Florida Constitution Revision Commission. They are proposals to mandate all Florida employers use the federal E-Verify automatic employment authorization, as well as a seeming ‘private right of action’ for anyone or group when their proposed “right to a clean and healthy environment” is perceived to be threatened. FNGLA is watching these initiatives very closely. FNGLA staff and officers are determined to attend as many FNGLA Chapter Christmas Parties as possible - ‘Ugly Sweaters’ and all! I wish to thank Colin Friedrich and the entire FNGLA Palm Beach Chapter for their gracious hospitality. We had a great time and it was well worth the drive to be with the volunteer leaders in your area of our state. Be on the lookout for a band of FNGLA “Gypsies in Ugly Sweaters” at a Chapter Christmas party near you! Respectfully, Ed Bravo Big Trees Plantation (Gainesville, FL)

FNGLA HAPPENINGS Continued from Page 1 This year’s trends focus on the connection between nature and wellness. Katie and Suzi will give helpful insights on the use of indoor plants as part of the Breathing Room movement, as well as other timely horticulture-related trends which underscore the growing connection between people, plants and wellness. This is an exceptional TPIE opportunity to learn information from two of the nation’s leading trend analyzers which can immediately be incorporated into your business plans. This presentation is included in the cost of the TPIE show badge. Additional trend-related sessions included with the TPIE show badge occur at the Create Theater each show day. Morning and afternoon sessions on Wednesday and Thursday offer ideas on using plants as living décor with opportunities for attendees to create their own pieces! Thursday morning includes a session on the popularity of biomimicry in interiorscaping. Friday morning offers a look at trending tropical plants for use in outdoor landscapes. Additional educational opportunities are available as part of the TPIE Road Show sessions and tours which take place on Tuesday, January 16. These require separate registration. In addition to the several TPIE trend-focused presentations, TPIE also offers inspirational interior room vignettes designed by Anya Cesar, Allied ASID. Anya puts plants in the spotlight as she creates a yoga/meditation room, as well as an indoor/ outdoor patio space. Anya provides a walking session discussing the design elements of each room at noon on Wednesday and Thursday. While TPIE offers the best speakers and presentations, the trade show floor is the event’s main feature. With nearly 400 of the industry’s leading companies on display, TPIE offers the newest and most diverse collection of tropical plants, foliage and related products. This is the place where buyers from around the world flock to find unique and trending products. Exhibitors take pride in creating not only beautiful and inspiring displays, but also stands which are informative and inviting. Now is the time to register for TPIE as prices increase after January 5. A wide selection of available TPIE host hotels offer a range of prices and amenities. Shuttle buses run from each of TPIE’s host hotels to the convention center January 17-19. For more details on TPIE, visit or call 800-3753642.

TPIE attendees crave education -- and its exactly what’s on deck! From Opening Session speaker Max Luthy and TPIE’s elevating expectations session from to Suzi McCoy and Katie McCoy Debow to tropical landscape tips from Tristen Bowen, all will cover emerging trends and how to bring them to your business.




Sponsorships Extend Visibility Well Past Your Show Booth Surviving and thriving in today’s marketplace takes more than just luck; it takes exceptional products, innovation and marketing savvy. TPIE exhibitors have the opportunity to select from an a la carte offering of opportunities for increased exposure and additional brand face-time with TPIE attendees, many of which are potential new clients. Step up your promotional efforts! Opportunities start at as little as $50! And, yes, we can customize an opportunity to meet your specific needs. Contact FNGLA’s Billy Deal for details, or download a selection of opportunities: SponsorFormWeb.pdf.


FNGLA HAPPENINGS TPIE Offers In-Depth Ticketed Learning Sessions & Road Show Tours: Tuesday, January 16

Taking place the day prior to the start of the show, TPIE’s Workshops and Road Shows offer the opportunity to extend your experience past the show. There are four workshops and two road show tours from which to choose. Tradeshow attendee surveys show, education is a top priority when it comes to calculating overall show value. Aiming not to disappoint and on top of TPIE’s already great complimentary sessions, there are four amazing workshops, from cutting-edge trend and knowledge specialists, designed to meet attendees needs. Sessions run concurrently on Tuesday, January 16 from 8:30 to 11:45 a.m. Purchase your seat for just $75 (if registered by January 5), and $90 thereafter.

Vertical Garden Workshop: Design & Maintenance

Presented By Dan Ballay, Debbie Kotalic and Hal Thorne, this workshop takes a closer look at the design, maintenance and installation of green walls. These beautiful works of art are in big demand! Find out how green walls are not just aesthetically pleasing to consumers, but can offer an increase in worker productivity, noise reduction, and lower heating and cooling costs.

Trends & Marketing Workshop

Presented By Sandra Könings-Blokdijk and Andrew Hermann, you’ll discover ways to target new consumers, and how to beat others in the Millennial Gold Rush. This session shows attendees how adding relevant beauty to brands and products is how businesses can drive retail sales. This session is sponsored by Pottery Direct and by Bower & Branch.

Designing with Tropicals Workshop

Presented by Andrew Bunting, Lisa Eldred Steinkopf, and Thomas Guice, this session brings unique perspectives from an educator; a lifelong gardener and houseplant guru; and, a grower-- all of whom are experienced tropical designers. Take home the best of each with this unique blend of expertise.

Interiorscape Tech Workshop

Presented by Dr. Romina Gazis; Dr. Cindy McKenzie; Dr. Lance Osborne and geared specifically for Interiorscape Technicians, this workshop focuses on general maintenance techniques, watering issues and replacement practices. Attendees will spend time understanding how to identify pest and disease issues along with treatments. The importance of pruning, care and maintenance to secure the health of plants and proper techniques for the removal of diseased or non-productive portions will also be covered.

TPIE Road Show Tours

And, when the workshops wrap-up-- TPIE offers two value-packed bus tours, a traditional favorite among education participants. One tour focuses on garden design and the other focuses on production. Taking place following the workshops on Tuesday, January 16, from 12 noon to approximately 5 p.m. Priced at $60 per seat (if registered by January 5) and $75 thereafter. A boxed lunch is included in tour fees. Learn more on each opportunity at


FNGLA HAPPENINGS Florida’s Constitutional Revision Commission From FNGLA’s Tallahassee Desk

By Jim Spratt, President, Magnolia Strategies, LLC Our great State of Florida has a very unique process. Every 20 years, a group of appointed individuals are convened to review our state’s constitution. Known as the Florida Constitution Revision Commission, it’s comprised of appointees named by the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker and the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court. This group of 37 powerbrokers began meeting during the summer and must complete its work by May 2018. Logically, one might ask what exactly can this group do? And, how much can they really “rock the boat” or “upset the apple cart?” Well, the reality is this group not only has broad discretion to propose changes, additions and deletions to our state constitution, it can place any such proposals directly on the November 2018 ballot for voter consideration. The CRC does not need to go through normal procedures to qualify measures for the ballot. Nor are they required to keep their proposals to “singlesubject” criteria. For example, the previous CRC in 1998 proposed nine amendments for Florida voters to decide. Within those nine proposed amendments, there were actually 36 separate proposals! Complicated? Yes. Convoluted? You bet. A little scary? Agreed! Currently, the CRC is working through myriad of proposals and topics. There are three particular proposals which we wish to highlight for FNGLA members:

Proposal 23: Establishes every person has a right to a clean environment. This proposal is sponsored by Commissioner Jacqui Thurlow-Lippish, a self-proclaimed activist from Martin County. As currently drafted, this amendment proposes to enshrine in Florida’s Constitution every person’s right to a clean environment. The right would be bestowed to any “person” anywhere - not even limited to Florida residents! Anyone will have the right to file a legal challenge against any proposed or existing activity under the notion it may impact the air, water, natural, scenic or aesthetic beauty. Taken to the extreme, let’s say you wanted to expand your nursery, landscape or garden center business, or perhaps add a pool to your house, or even seek additional water in your water use permit. At its fundamental base, this amendment allows someone somewhere to exercise his or her new right to a clean environment so as to challenge you in court. Working with a leading coalition of agriculture and business groups, FNGLA has studied the various options for this proposal. Yet, at this point, we are unable to see any reason why Proposal 23 should be added to Florida’s constitution. So, we are focusing our joints efforts to eliminate this well-intended, yet woefully misguided proposal.


FNGLA HAPPENINGS Proposal 29: Requires employers to verify employment eligibility using the Federal Employment Authorization Program (E-Verify) or successor program. This proposal is sponsored by Commissioner John Newsome, an Orlando-based trial attorney. As drafted, this proposal establishes in the state constitution the requirement for every Florida employer to verify the work eligibility of employees with the federal E-Verify program. As Yogi Berra said, “It’s déjà vu all over again!” The reality is mandatory E-Verify will cause many nurseries, landscape firms, and many businesses outside our industry to simply fold up and disappear as there will be no adequate labor supply. It has long been FNGLA’s position to support E-Verify provided there are also meaningful reforms to foreign guest worker programs so there are people who will do the jobs for which Americans are unavailable or unwilling to do. As we all know too well, this issue has become a “third rail” in politics often devolving into emotional vitriol, extreme views and political grandstanding rather than actually trying to solve the complex workforce policy issues. FNGLA does not believe Proposal 29 belongs in our state constitution. The real solution lays with Washington, D.C. to reform and enforce our immigration policies and programs.

Proposal 48: Establishes the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shall exercise the regulatory and executive authorities over habitat and habitat corridors. This proposal is also sponsored by Commissioner Jacqui Thurlow-Lippish. It falls into the category of the “devil is in the details.” As currently drafted, this proposal expands authority in the state constitution for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to regulate and oversee wildlife habitats and habitat corridors. The real implications of this proposal are not yet fully understood. However, its potential impacts may create a duplicative permitting process whereby you may be required to secure permits from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection as well as the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Certainly, the proposal empowers FWC to have direct authority for acquisition of private property under the banner of habitat or habitat corridors. As drafted, the proposal also calls into question local government comprehensive plans, zoning maps, as well as local and state environmental laws, simply by bringing a new agency into the mix with a different litmus test on land and land use.

To Sum It Up

The bottom line to all of this is Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission is not something to be taken lightly. Its authority and ability to put things directly “to the voters” should be a bright red light for all of us. FNGLA will continue to work with other similarly concerned groups when appropriate and FNGLA will readily stand on our own merits when needed to protect Florida’s nursery and landscape businesses. For FNGLA members who are interested, here is a link to the Florida CRC webpage: This page gives you the ability to view the various proposals and to see info on the 37 commissioners. As you eyeball the list of commissioners, FNGLA sincerely appreciates your help in identifying any of the commissioners with whom you have a relationship. If so, please let us know at and

Jim Spratt is President of Magnolia Strategies, LLC, a Tallahassee-based lobbying firm with a focus on small business and agriculture issues. Jim is a former FNGLA staff member and has been serving Florida’s nursery and landscape industry since 2004. Jim can be reached at


FNGLA HAPPENINGS Capitol Commentary: Looking To 2018 From FNGLA’s Tallahassee Desk

By Jim Spratt, President, Magnolia Strategies, LLC The beginning of the 2018 Florida Legislative Session is right around the corner. Traditionally, sessions in Tallahassee span the 60 days between the beginning of March and the beginning of May. However, the 2018 Legislative Session convenes in early January and concludes the first week of March. Through three weeks of advance committee meetings, things legislatively speaking, remain calm. FNGLA has been working actively with both Florida Senate and House members exploring potential options for our state to provide some relief from Hurricane Irma’s impacts. To date, state legislators have cast a broad net of ideas including: sales-tax relief on fences and building materials; increased exemptions for Tangible Personal Property (TPP); “bridge” loans to provide cash flow before federal assistance may be available; and, increased funding to deal with invasive pests and diseases. We certainly don’t expect every idea to survive the vetting process, yet FNGLA is optimistic some meaningful state legislation will pass to help production nurseries and landscape companies recover from - and be better prepared for - the next storm. Without question, there are two major funding issues on FNGLA’s plate for the upcoming session. First is the restoration of last session’s vetoed funding for the UF/IFAS Center for Landscape Ecology and Conservation (CLEC) and the Center for Public Issues Education (PIE). The CLEC/PIE working relationship has proven to be a highly useful tool for research and the education of industry professionals, homeowners and regulators on Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ principles and the importance of healthy landscapes to Florida’s environment. Second is the restoration of full funding for the FDACS’ Florida Agriculture Promotion Campaign - widely known as Fresh From Florida. Undeniably, the Fresh from Florida label, TV, cable, print and social media campaigns have become huge and welcomed marketing tools for Florida nursery and landscape businesses. Coupled with the wildly successful Fresh From Florida brand, the value-added advertising and promotions are a leg-up when consumers make their purchases. FNGLA fully expects an assortment of issues - some good and some bad - will arise during session. So, there will be no avoiding the session’s politics. The 2018 election cycle has all of the ingredients to evolve into a blood-sport of sorts with three of four cabinet positions being vacated. With half of the Florida Senate’s 40 seats and all of the 120 seats in the Florida House up for election, it will not be surprising if very little policy actually passes both chambers.

Be A Part of FNGLA - The Nation’s Largest State or Regional Nursery Trade Association With more than 1900 members from across all walks of the industry, FNGLA is a great resource for you and for your business-- and boasts an extended network of chapters, cost-saving member benefits and a network of experts and peers from which you can glean advice and knowledge. Join fellow industry members.. join FNGLA!!


FNGLA HAPPENINGS FNGLA’s Annual Convention: June 15 & 16, Bonita Springs Save the date to attend FNGLA’s 2018 Annual Meeting and Convention, June 15 & 16 in Bonita Springs. This popular association meeting is open to all FNGLA members, family and friends. The FNGLA Convention not only hosts FNGLA’s Annual Business Meeting, it’s the place to recognize the Association’s outstanding volunteers, report on the past year’s accomplishments and shift into a new year of FNGLA leadership. Typically, FNGLA’s Annual Convention takes place in a city near the President’s hometown. Yet for 2018, we step away from tradition and head to Southwest Florida’s Bonita Springs. Known for Gulf Coast beaches and parks, it is the ideal setting to celebrate and ring-in a new FNGLA year. Many FNGLA traditions take place including the passing of the “big shoes.” Many FNGLA members find attending opens doors to increased business success-although the focus of the weekend tends to be FNGLA business and enjoyment. Sponsors are an important part of FNGLA’s Annual Convention, helping to keep registration costs low for more people to attend and the value of the experience high so more people will return year after year. All companies are welcome as sponsors. Contact Linda Adams at to learn more about sponsorship opportunities. Mark your calendar now to attend this fun FNGLA, people-to-people, cherished event. More details and registration information will be available shortly after TPIE in January.

FNGLA Industry Awards Nominations Now Being Accepted Often the intention is there to nominate a hard-working FNGLA volunteer for one of FNGLA’s prestigious industry awards, yet time gets away and other tasks take priority. Make sure this doesn’t happen this year! Nominations are now being accepted. Take the time this week to nominate deserving volunteers for one of FNGLA’s prestigious industry awards and help FNGLA put the spotlight on FNGLA superstars! The nomination deadline is February 15, 2018. Award categories include:


FNGLA’s most prestigious award, which recognizes one who has worked to advance the industry and FNGLA through his or her leadership and service.

FNGLA/FARM CREDIT YOUNG NURSERY PROFESSIONAL OF THE YEAR Sponsored by Farm Credit Associations of Florida, this award honors an FNGLA member under the age of 39 who has made an outstanding industry contribution.


Awarded to any local chapter member who, through his or her leadership, enthusiasm, time and talent makes a difference in the success of the chapter.


Recognizes one who has contributed faithfully to advancing the industry.


Presented to an educator actively involved in teaching horticulture.

FNGLA HALL OF FAME FNGLA’s Annual Convention will celebrate 66 years of annual meetings. Plan to attend June 15 & 16 in Bonita Springs!

Recognizes the lifetime achievement of an individual who’s given unselfishly to the industry through areas including pioneering, teaching, production, legislation, marketing services, and research.


INDUSTRY NEWS Florida’s Finest Compete at National FFA Convention “I Can. We Will,” was the motto of the 90th National FFA Convention in Indianapolis. And Florida’s FFA students proved they could – and they did – through the recognition they earned in a variety of Career Development and Leadership Development events. The winner of the FNGLA-hosted Nursery & Landscape Event from Florida was Kathleen Senior High School. The team – three of whom are FCHP certified – was Blair Buchanon, Madyson Keim, Nick Lewis and Lauryn Garner. They earned a Silver Emblem Award. The winner of the FNGLA-hosted Floriculture Event from Florida was Lake Minneola High School. Students Lauren Boyette, Riley Hollerand, Amanda Moles and Amanda Rines also earned a Silver Emblem Award. The middle school winner of the above two Florida events, Barrington Middle School’s FFA, shined as National Champion, earning the Premier Chapter Award. Congratulations to Barrington Middle FFA! FNGLA supports the efforts of FFA and its agricultural education and leadership development programs. FFA helps make classroom instruction come to life through realistic, hands-on applications. Today’s FFA has evolved in response to expanded opportunities available in agriculture, and through the need for skilled and competent employees to fill more than 300 careers industry-wide. For more details on FNGLA’s involvement with FFA and youth education, contact Merry Mott at

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INDUSTRY NEWS Florida’s champion Kathleen High completes an irrigation exercise as part of the team activities for the Nursery & Landscape section.

Students demonstrate effective letter writing as part of the activities.

Making a sales presentation is part of the individual activities for Nursery & Landscape.

Plant identification takes on a national look.

FFA believes students whose lives are impacted by FFA and agricultural education will achieve academic and personal growth, strengthen American agriculture and provide leadership to build healthy local communities, a strong nation and a sustainable world. FFA is an integral part of agricultural education by helping to make classroom instruction come to life through realistic, hands-on applications. FFA members embrace concepts taught in agricultural classrooms nationwide, build valuable skills through hands-on experiential learning and each year demonstrate their proficiencies in competitions showcasing real-world agricultural skills. FNGLA is a strong supporter of FFA, its principles and activities recognizing many of these students will be the leaders of tomorrow’s nursery and landscape industry.


INDUSTRY NEWS Saving Water: The Focus of Florida Water StarSM Efficient irrigation systems and well-designed landscapes are the keys to saving water. Florida Water StarSM’s upcoming Accredited Professional training programs aim to deliver these messages while teaching professionals how to have a major impact on lowering water usage. Landscape and irrigation professionals are invited to two upcoming testing/training dates: When: Thursday, December 14 Where: The Alachua County Health Department, Gainesville. Cost: There is no cost for the training; the optional exams are $25 each. When: Tuesday, January 30 Where: University of Florida/IFAS Mid-Florida Research Center in Apopka. Cost: The cost for training is $25; the optional exam is $50.

FWS-AP training focuses on Florida-friendly landscape alternatives and irrigation requirements, to create water-conserving landscapes. Participants who complete the training can then choose to sit for the exam to earn their Accredited Professional designation in irrigation and/or landscape. The St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD) has contracted with FNGLA to administer the FWS-AP exams. More than 350 professionals have earned one or both of these designations since testing began in 2010.

FNGLA offers a variety of landscape certifications to assist you with your business success: • FNGLA Certified Horticulture Professional (FCHP) • FNGLA Certified Landscape Technician (FCLT) • FNGLA Certified Landscape Maintenance Technician (FCLMT) • FNGLA Certified Landscape Contractor (FCLC) • FNGLA Certified Landscape Designer (FCLD) For more information, contact FNGLA’s Merry Mott at 800-375-3642.

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INDUSTRY NEWS Pantone Announces 2018 Color of the Year: Ultra Violet According to Pantone, Ultra Violet is complex and contemplative, suggesting the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own. Enigmatic purples have also long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality, and artistic brilliance. Musical icons Prince, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix brought shades of Ultra Violet to the forefront of western pop culture as personal expressions of individuality. Nuanced and full of emotion, the depth of PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets. As an industry, three of the last six Pantone selections have tipped their hat to the industry: 2014’s Radiant Orchid; 2017’s Greenery and now 2018’s Ultra Violet. Pantone tries to reflect the state of the world with their annual color selection. As an industry, we clearly benefit from the connection. Breeders and other trendsetting market leaders have already launched promotions capturing their many products with a hint of Ultra Violet. Alluding to purple as a mainstay, the last hue of purple to be selected as the color of the year was 2014’s Radiant Orchid. Ultra Violet is a deep hue and a blue-based purple which plays well as a genderneutral anchor in many color palette designs. Pantone has ready-to-implement complimentary color palettes too. See more at

Ahead of the curve, Westhoff, an international breeder, is fully prepared to ‘get your garden in style’ touting an array of varieties with hues of the 2018 Pantone selection Ultra Violet.

2018’s Hurricane Season Ended December 1 With the 2018 hurricane season in the rearview mirror, it is time to jump right in to winter preparations-- as Florida’s temperature readings drop. The 2018 hurricane season brought the costliest season of all time-- with an estimated $320 billion in damages primarily due to three major hurricanes—Harvey, Irma, and Maria. In total, there were 17 named storms, seven of which directly impacted the United States. Hurricane Irma was, by far, the most impactful in Florida, taking a lethal path so far as Florida’s ag commodities are concerned. The estimated economic agricultural damages, according to the Florida Department of Agriculture and In South Florida alone, Hurricane Irma’s winds caused major Consumer Services’ preliminary report, show a total for Florida damage to nursery structure and to crops. agriculture as $2,558,598,303. The top three industries with the most significant losses were: Citrus: $760,816,600; Greenhouse, Nursery and Floriculture: $624,819,895; and Forestry: $261,280,000. Florida’s agriculture community continues to struggle to reach pre-storm conditions.


There has been much push from Florida’s collective commodities and the Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services related to disaster assistance. And FNGLA will continue to keep its members advised as opportunities become available for relief. For details, visit FNGLA online at or at

INDUSTRY NEWS UF to Host First Annual Ornamental IPM Workshop The University of Florida will host a one-and-a-half day event promising to be the most comprehensive source of information relevant to arthropod pests and their associated pathogens of ornamental plants in Florida. The program takes place February 7 & 8 in Gainesville. During the first day, a diversity of experts present about the latest research and management strategies for Florida’s most important exotic pests of trees and shrubs. There will be discussions led by an expert panel and a poster presentation session where select workshop attendees will be able to present their latest contributions to this field. During the second day, a hands-on workshop and interactive demonstrations about the latest pest identification, scouting, and management strategies will take place. County faculty, landscape professionals, nursery growers, urban foresters, master gardeners, regulatory professionals, and university faculty are encouraged to attend. FDACS and ISA CEUs will be available for eligible attendees. This event will also be offered to county Extension faculty as an IST through UF/IFAS. For more details and registration information, please visit

New Transportation Rule: Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) The phase-in period for the new rules requiring many truck drivers and operators to use electronic logging devices (ELD) instead of paper logs goes into effect on December 18 for those who ship plant material more than 150 air miles (or 172 road miles) -- with trucks hauling agriculture products receiving a 90-day extension. Essentially, the rules require an ELD to synchronize with a truck’s engine to automatically record driving time. The intent is to generate more accurate hours-of-service record-keeping. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration finalized the rule back in December 2015. An initial two-year window gives truck drivers and carriers until December 17, 2017 to become aware of the new digital requirements. Yet, many still don’t know about the rules. The second two-year phase beginning on December 18, 2017 focuses on compliance. There are a number of partial exemptions and waivers regarding agriculture, as well as hours-of-service. Unless fully exempt, these truckers now have until mid-March to adopt an ELD. For a list of exemptions, visit FMCSA’s factsheet on exemptions at gov/sites/


INDUSTRY NEWS Florida’s Job Cuts Increase, Economy Remains Strong, Skilled Labor Hard to Find

Farm Credit of Northwest Florida Offering Scholarships

Florida’s economy remains solid; job growth takes a slight dip and we’re sporting a low unemployment figure-- under four percent. However, Florida’s agriculture producers, the second largest economic segment in the state, still struggles to find skilled labor.

Farm Credit of Northwest Florida is providing scholarship opportunities to six High School seniors within its chartered territory including 18 counties in the Florida Panhandle totaling $9,000.

“It’s a tight labor market-- those who are skilled in the industry should have no issue finding placement,” said Ed Bravo, FNGLA President. To assist its members with locating skilled workers, FNGLA offers a career center where member businesses can list open positions for 30 days at no cost. Nonmembers can opt to list too-- for just $99 per listing. To post your positions, go to: careercenter.

The AgVocator Scholarship is given to encourage young AgVocators to use their talents to create stronger communities in the rural areas where they live. Preference will be given to students who are pursuing a degree in Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture or Veterinary Medicine. In addition to area of study, consideration will be given to each applicant’s academic aptitude, vocational promise, personal attributes, and leadership qualities. “This year’s scholarship recipients should aspire to make a difference in their communities and be well on their way to becoming agriculture’s forthcoming leaders and entrepreneurs,” CEO Rick Bitner. Richard Terry, Farm Credit of Northwest Florida Chairman said. He continued, “The Farm Credit Board of Directors is very supportive of the opportunity to invest in the future of deserving students and their families, and hope for a prosperous education experience.” Two students in each of Farm Credit of Northwest Florida’s territories will receive a scholarship including: • The Eastern region, made up of Franklin, Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Taylor, and Wakulla counties. • The Central region, made up of Bay, Calhoun, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, and Washington counties • The Western region, made up of Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, and Walton counties Applications are due no later than February 12, 2018. To receive a copy of the application and to learn more about the guidelines and eligibility, visit Farm Credit of Northwest Florida is a member-owned financial cooperative headquartered in Marianna serving 18 counties throughout the Florida Panhandle. Farm Credit offers highly competitive credit to meet the financing needs of farmers, agri-businesses, rural landowners and homeowners. At Farm Credit, we are AgVocators, meaning we actively support the well-being of agriculture and rural America. Every day, we are “Helping Rural America Grow,” not only food and fiber, but also stronger rural communities. Our desire through these scholarships is to encourage new AgVocators to use their talents to create better communities where they live. For more information about the types of financing or how cooperative lenders share their profits with borrowers, go to


CHAPTER SPOTLIGHT FNGLA’s Manasota Chapter Celebrates Successful Golf Tourney Nearly 60 FNGLA members from Manasota Chapter took to the putting green last month in the spirit of friendly competition – and giving back. The Manasota Chapter’s 29th Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament took place at the Rosedale Golf and Country Club in Bradenton, Florida. The effort raised thousands of dollars, once again, to benefit the future of the horticulture industry. “Last year, we were able to provide six scholarships, totaling $6,500 to students pursuing a career, or continuing their education in horticulture or a horticulture related field,” Chapter Vice President Ellie Ohlman Fuesser said. “Due to the success of our 29th Annual Golf Tournament, we hope to be able to match or exceed this amount when our scholarship recipients are selected and awarded in July of 2018.” The Manasota Chapter includes members from Manatee and Sarasota counties. The event is the chapter’s largest fundraiser of the year, according to Chapter President Edwin Scott. “We have a lot of people on our board who really do their part to make the event successful,” Scott added. “We were really happy with the turnout.” Scott also offered praise to the more than two dozen companies who helped support the event through sponsorships. “Our sponsors are always really good to help us out,” Scott said. Organizers are already looking forward to next year’s event, and are eyeing “exciting, exclusive” location possibilities, according to Fuesser. They plan to announce their pick in 2018.

Time to Catch Up on All Things FNGLA? We know your time is valuable-- and sometimes there’s no time for seeing the great things this industry does. With the holidays approaching, you may find the time to look back and see what’s been going on. FNGLA has the monthly newsletter, Greenline, archived for your convenience. Go to for a digital archive of this newsletter and a few other great FNGLA-produced items.



Welcome New Members BROWARD All Natural Environment, Inc. Victorino Collazo 816 NW 7th St Hallandale, FL 33009 302-323-8186 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck Bio Global Group Pedro Medina Carrasquel (Associate) 18900 Stirling Rd Southwest Ranches, FL 33332 954-440-9949 Bob’s Barricades Gabriel Gastano 921 Shot Gun Rd Sunrise, FL 33326 954-423-2627 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck Pro GPS Tracking, Inc. Joey Gabriel 300 E Oakland Park Blvd #284 Oakland Park, FL 33334 954-275-6954 Rubyflo Media Group Dwayne Bennett 2366 W 80th St Hialeah, FL 33016 954-858-6566 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck Wright Scapes, Inc. Erik Wright 4839 SW 148 Ave #229 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33330 954-914-3952 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck MIAMI-DADE Lorna Bravo Lorna Bravo Stu 7075 NW 173rd Dr Hialeah, FL 33015 954-515-9376

The following are new FNGLA members from November 1 - November 30, 2017:

Discount Rock & Sand Ediberto Lopez 10500 Aviation Blvd Marathon, FL 33050 305-743-5680 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck LAKE REGION Arts Golf Cars Arthur Hobson 29630 US Hwy 27 Dundee, FL 33838 863-439-5431 MANASOTA Tropical Gardens Lawn and Landscape LLC Ryan Empey 2137 Worrington St Sarasota, FL 34231 941-993-2442 NORTHEAST Beard Equipment Company John Baker 6870 Philips Hwy Jacksonville, FL 32216 904-347-9466 Rec’d by: Justin Williams, Williams’ Plant Nursery, Inc. Sandee Sod, Inc. Sandy Gibbs 14493 Denton Rd Jacksonville, FL 32226 994-751-0830 OUTSIDE FLORIDA Johnson Fediw Associates Kathy Fediw 6 Gold Leaf Place The Woodlands, TX 77384 281-687-6966 Pro Packaging LLC Albert Gates 2054 Second St Ste 151 Cuyahoga Falls, OH 44221 330-256-1777

1. Action 2. Big Bend 3. Broward 4. Central East Coast 5. Coastal Springs 6. Miami-Dade 7. Frontrunners 8. Highlands Heartland 9. Polk

10. Manasota 11. Northeast 12. Palm Beach 13. Panhandle 14. Pinellas 15. Royal Palm 16. Space Coast 17. Tampa Bay 18. Treasure Coast

Stone Age Creations (SAC) Karen Mehringer 1000 South Saint Charles Street Jasper, IN 47546 419-929-2250

Forestry Resources Inc. James L. Myers (Associate) 24266 Golden Eagle Ln Bonita Springs, FL 34135 239-287-4734

PALM BEACH Sun Electric Works Robert Biscardi 6451 E Rogers Cir Ste 1B Boca Raton, FL 33487 561-277-3758 Rec’d by: Steve Weiss, Tri County Truck

Proscapes Lawn Maintenance Julio Cruz 838 97th Ave Naples, FL 34108 239-233-1068 Rec’d by: Tom Scott, Steele Truck Center

ROYAL PALM Azteca Lawn Service, Inc. Avelino Ramirez PO Box 10624 Naples, FL 239-465-99 239-465-9919 Rec’d by: Tom Scott, Steele Truck Center Inc. Castillo Lawn Service, Inc. Carmelo Castillo 621 20th St NE Naples, FL 34120 239-793-7762 Rec’d by: Tom Scott, Steele Truck Center, Inc.

SPACE COAST Fischer & Fisher Landscaping, Inc. Ray Fischer 6852 Babcock St Palm Bay, FL 32909 321-288-0937 TAMPA BAY Mccalister Tree Farm Michael Mccalister 3201 Fox Den Ln Plant City, FL 33565 727-641-4873

Flowers Infuse Interiors with Feel Good Vibes, says SAF to Magazine Editors Editors at some of the nation’s most popular magazines have newfound appreciation for the power of flowers in interior spaces. The Society of American Florists’ Vice President of Marketing Jennifer Sparks brought this message to Manhattan in early November with celebrity interior designer Kelli Ellis to talk up flowers’ ability to enhance any room — not just as beautiful accents, but also as living things which increase physical, mental and emotional wel-being. Over the course of two days, Sparks and Ellis, the project’s main spokesperson, held desk-side briefings with editors at Good Housekeeping, ELLE Decor, Veranda, House Beautiful, LUXE Interiors + Design, Everyday with Rachael Ray, Martha Stewart Living, American Spa, and Real Simple touting their message. The two women referenced research studies conducted at Harvard, Rutgers and Texas A&M Universities highlighting the various ways flowers improve people’s lives; decrease worry and anxiety; and, increase creativity and strengthening feelings of compassion. “It’s about planting key ideas, as well as establishing SAF, its members, and as resources for any floral content moving forward,” Sparks said. More on SAF:

SAF’s Jennifer Sparks (second from left) and interior designer and spokesperson Kelli Ellis (center) meet with editors of ELLE Decor, Veranda, and House Beautiful magazines.


Calendar of Events

Contact Us

See and submit events at, under calendar


December 14:

Green Industries Best Management Practices, UF/IFAS Orange County Extension Service, Orlando

January 4:

Pesticide Applicator License Exam, UF/IFAS Orange County Extension Service, Orlando


SNA Research Conference, Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Boston, MA

Phone: 407.295.7994 Toll-free: 800.375.3642 Fax: 407.295.1619 E-mail: Web:



9-11: Landscape Ontario Congress, Toronto Congress Centre, Toronto, Ontario 10-12:

MANTS, Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Boston, MA


Green & Growin’, Greensboro, North Carolina


TPIE Workshops and Road Shows, Broward County Convention Center, Ft. Lauderdale

17- 19: Tropical Plant International Expo, Broward County Convention Center, Ft. Lauderdale 18:

National Horticulture Foundation’s Annual Reception, Broward County Convention Center, Ft. Lauderdale


IPM Essen, Messe Essen, Essen, Germany


GGIA’s WinterGreen Trade Show & Conference, Infinite Energy Center, Duluth, Georgia


NALP Leaders Forum, Hard Rock Punta Cana Resort, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic


President Ed Bravo Big Trees Plantation, Inc. 104 SW 131st St Newberry, FL 32669 (352) 332-2150

President-Elect Will Womack, FCLC Tampa Bay Landscaping 5821 Maple Lane Tampa, FL 33610 (813) 368-9891

Past President Robert Shoelson, FCLC Getting Green Plant Services & Betrock Information Systems PO Box 840107 Pembroke Pines, FL 33084 (954) 680-1819

Secretary/Treasurer Shawn Thomas Southern Green Chemical Lawn Care 9456 Phillips Hwy Ste. 10 Jacksonville, FL 32256 (904) 598-4358

Connect with us: About FNGLA This publication is produced by the Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association (FNGLA) as a service to its members and the industry at large. The statements and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the views of the Association, its staff, Board of Directors, Greenline or its editors. Likewise, the appearance of advertisers or their identification as members does not constitute an endorsement of the products or featured services. The mission of the Florida Nursery, Growers & Landscape Association is to promote and protect the interests of Florida’s nursery and landscape industry.


1533 Park Center Drive Orlando, FL 32835-5705

Read the latest FNGLA news inside & visit Greenline online at

FNGLA's 2017 December Greenline  
FNGLA's 2017 December Greenline  

FNGLA's official newsletter for association members and Florida's nursery and landscape industry's members.