Sawaya Trials 2019: A Snapshot of Best Blooms for Ontario
Every summer, more than 300 flower growers, breeders, buyers, suppliers and folks who simply love to stop and smell the roses all descend on Simcoe, Ontario, for the Sawaya Garden Trials – a calendar highlight for North America’s flower industry. Why? Well, for the good company of course, but also to discover the varieties to watch and which ones to avoid.
Owner Mel Sawaya, a horticulturalist by training, estimates he has 3,750 different varieties on the premises. Members of the A.M.A. team had the opportunity to walk through the rows of fresh blooms and see which ones were taking off in Ontario’s growing conditions.
“Mel does an incredible job with this event and we’re proud to attend every year,” said Janan Alles, Manager, Containers, Soils and Equipment at A.M.A. “Not only is it a great opportunity for our team to learn what’s new, it’s also a chance for us to meet with the growers we serve, see which varieties resonate, and put together programs that will help them succeed in the coming season.”
The trials play a key role in the decision-making process for growers in Ontario and across the Northeast. While the California and European flower trials are great opportunities to spot trends, the Sawaya trials give growers an objective look at the performance of new cultivars in our own climate and conditions.
“This is the industry’s chance to see how new varieties will look when they’re planted in the gardens of Ontario home owners,” said Kasi Coulter, Customer Service and Sales Support at A.M.A. “All the plants are treated equally in terms of water, care and fertilizer, giving growers a truly objective snapshot of how these flowers will grow here.”
A.M.A. is proud to provide the Sawaya trials with Al’s Flower Pouches each year to be included in the displays. At the close of the trials, 100 per cent of the flowers are donated to the Norfolk General Hospital in Simcoe, Ontario.
A.M.A.’s Favourite Blooms from Sawaya Garden Trials
This year, four A.M.A. team members attended the Sawaya trials. These blooms were their personal favourites.
- Agapanthus ‘Whitney’ – Janan Alles
- Senecio Angel Wings – Kasi Coulter
- Hypoestes – Alex Frew
- Agapanthus – Craig Willett