Hartford Conference Tours
Hartford is the venue for the 2016 annual IPPS Eastern Region Conference. The host hotel is the new Hartford Marriott Downtown, overlooking the Connecticut River. The morning program will have a distinct New England flavor and in that spirit we will be visiting some top notch operations throughout the state with two half day afternoon tours.
Thursday, September 22
On Thursday, we will head south towards the Connecticut shoreline. We will visit Summer Hill Nursery in Madison, Connecticut, one of the oldest container operations in the country. Mike Johnson and his daughter Holly offer a diversified selection of high quality plant material. They propagate nearly all of the plant material they sell and will be able to offer those who attend a great opportunity to see both container production practices and diversified plant propagation. Mike joined IPPS in 1957 making this his 60th year of membership!
Another stop on Thursday’s tour will be Broken Arrow Nursery owned by Dick Jaynes, famed Kalmia breeder and author of the book “Kalmia”. Dick, along with Andy Brand and Adam Wheeler operate a unique destination nursery that offers rare and unusual plant material to the public in addition to being a very successful Christmas tree farm. Broken Arrow incorporates all facets of propagation techniques to support their line of plant material.
The final stop of the day Thursday will round out the day’s tours to three unique growing operations with a visit to Casertano’s Greenhouse and Farms. Casertano’s is a state of the art greenhouse operation specializing in annual plant material, seasonal plants, hanging baskets, perennials and groundcovers.
Friday, September 23
Friday’s tour will head into the eastern Hills of Connecticut. The first stop of the afternoon will be to Prides Corner Farms where lunch will be served in the nursery’s arboretum. While at Prides the attendees will be able to see the nursery’s sprawling propagation department as well as the new shipping system implemented in 2015 that uses carts to shop and ship their plant material. Tours of the nursery will be offered as well as self-guided tours for those who want to wander off on their own.
From Prides Corner Farms the tour will head to The Plant Group, which is a unique herbaceous perennial nursery on 50 acres in beautiful southeastern Connecticut. They specialize in providing wholesale perennial flowers and perennial plants to distributors in the New England area, New York State and New Jersey, offering about 1500 varieties.
The last stop will be Canterbury Horticulture. This fairly new wholesale operation is tucked into the rural hills of eastern Connecticut and offers a large selection of container grown shrubs and perennials to local retailers. In just 11 years, their 85 acre site has grown from 8 hoop houses to over 75, and their production area under irrigation has more than tripled. Guided and self-guided tours of the nursery will be offered as well as of their propagation area.
This year’s IPPS Eastern Region Conference will have a lot to offer those who attend and will be packed with great and useful ideas, valuable techniques and practical information that just can’t be found at any other conference. We hope to see all of you in September for a conference that shouldn’t be missed!