German grower: Stefan Boeckstegers:

‘The plants are at their best during FlowerTrials’

‘How is your season going so far?
‘The season is going pretty well. April was good, and trade has been lively in the past two weeks thanks to Mother’s Day. Trade just dropped a little at the start of May when the weather was bad. It always depends on the weather, but these are the busiest months of the year for us, with eighteen employees plus some additional temporary workers.’

What type of sales outlets do you use?
‘We deliver our potted and bedding plants to wholesale and to FloraHolland. We had a slight difference of opinion with Landgard, so we haven’t been a member since then. Because we can supply such large batches, we are an attractive party for a lot of buyers. We produce, for example, 750,000 to 800,000 chrysanthemums on an annual basis, and about 50,000 plants per production of bedding plants.

Do you have time to visit FlowerTrials?
‘I hope so, but it depends on the amount of work within the company. In June, we will start on preparations for the autumn; that’s the time of year we focus on asters and chrysanthemums. Last year, we were so busy, that we weren’t able to visit FlowerTrials, but we’d never missed one up until then.’

What differentiates FlowerTrials from the other fairs and events?
‘During FlowerTrials, all flowers are in full bloom and at their best, which is often not the case at the international plant fair IPM. It’s easier to see how strong the plants are and how they will look in the garden. When planning next year’s assortment, I certainly keep in mind the things that I’ve seen at FlowerTrials. They’re also a perfect opportunity to meet suppliers and colleagues.’

Which FlowerTrials locations are on your list?
‘I always go to Dümmen, Westhoff, and Selecta Klemm. For the past couple of years, it’s also been possible to visit Selecta in the Lower Rhine region; that saves me a trip to the Netherlands. A visit to the Westland area or Aalsmeer takes me a whole day while I can easily visit the German companies in an afternoon. With a bit of luck, I can still work until three o’clock.’

So you will not attend GreenTech?
‘No. I don’t think that GreenTech is of any great interest for me.’

Stefan Boeckstegers
Company: Gartenbau Boeckstegers
Location: Straelen-Holt (Germany)
Specimen: A wide assortment of potted and bedding plants
(e.g. chrysanthemums, asters, daisy bushes, petunias, dahlias, fuchsias, and geraniums)
Size: 4.2 hectares under glass