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Christmas starts in July for Ontario flower growers

Colonial Florists’ popular Frosty Fern

While the rest of us are soaking up the sunshine, enjoying the hot weather and barbecuing on the beach, Ron van der Zalm is thinking about Christmas.

He’s a greenhouse flower grower in St. Catharines, Ontario and the height of summer is when he starts growing popular Christmas plants […]

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From rural Ontario to Alcatraz

Guelph grad leads garden restoration on Alcatraz

I’ve long wanted to visit Alcatraz, the notorious prison island off the coast of San Francisco commonly called simply “The Rock”.

I didn’t make it there during my first trip to the area almost a decade ago; back then, I didn’t realize you had to buy tickets […]

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Locally grown exotic plant opens new markets, creates jobs

An exotic houseplant with pink flowers is turning heads across North America and creating jobs in the Niagara region.

The plant, named Medinilla Magnifica, is helping to expand operations and open up new markets for Ted Oorsprong’s Northend Gardens.

Thanks to some support from Ontario Agri-Food Technologies, Oorsprong is selling the plant in chain […]

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New crops in local soils raising high hopes

Ontario lavender bunches

Lavender, hazelnuts and sweet potatoes are not crops we commonly associate with this province.

Yet they’re starting to emerge in Ontario’s south coast area, the fertile sand plains in Norfolk, Brant, Elgin, Middlesex and Oxford counties where tobacco used to reign supreme.

As the decline of the tobacco industry continued over […]

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Thermal blanket helps lower greenhouse energy costs

Farmers are looking at many different solutions for dealing with rising energy costs. For one greenhouse grower, the answer lies with a new technology, a thermal blanket installation, which is expected to lower his energy costs by about one-third.

Gerard Schouwenaar of Orchard Park Growers, a St. Catharines-area flower producer, retrofitted a 30,000 sq ft […]

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