As you make plans to visit the largest green industry trade show in North America with roots dating back 90 years, thumb through our Cultivate preview guide to find the nursery-centric educational seminars that fit your operation and crew needs. For additional nursery sessions, as well as greenhouse, interiorscape and retail sessions, go to www.cultivate19.org.

Cultivate’19 takes place July 13-16 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, Columbus, Ohio.

  • Sat., July 13: Education sessions open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., trade show closed.
  • Sun., July 14: Education sessions open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., trade show floor open 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Mon., July 15: Education sessions open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., trade show floor open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Tue., July 16: Education sessions open 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., trade show floor open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Some 10,000 attendees are expected and more than 650 exhibitors will be at the show.


Keynote: Sunday July 14 | 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM | Short North Ballroom

After a career in franchising that spanned 30 years, Kevin Brown decided to retire from corporate America and bring “The Hero Effect” message to as many people and organizations as possible. Attendees will learn how heroes create exceptional experiences, serving others with an authentic passion that turns everyday moments into superhuman experiences.

SATURDAY, JULY 13

Nursery Production Tour |  7:00 AM - 5:30 PM | Union Station Ballroom A
The first stop on this tour is the Ohio Agricultural and Research Development Center in Wooster, Ohio where you will see a demonstration of a new, cutting-edge water and fertilizer injection system for nurseries. From there the bus heads to Willoway Nursery where you will see how the injector system has been integrated into their operations. We will also tour the grounds at both Willoway Nursery and Davis Tree Farm and Nursery where we will learn more about their tree and shrub production. Cost: $125

Biocontrols Workshop: The How-to's of Quality Control and Application Methods | 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM | Eisenmann-Trott Have you ever wondered how many mites are really in that bottle? Do you wonder if those nematodes can really kill fly larva? Come learn how to count, test, sex and many other useful skills in this biocontrol workshop. Attendees will learn skills in a classroom setting that can be used back at the greenhouse, making their biocontrol programs stronger. Kits will be provided with the tools needed to do the testing. We will also head offsite to a greenhouse to learn more about applying beneficials and other real-world skills. This session is eligible for pesticide recertification credits. (See page 46 for more details from the presenter.) Cost: $165

Next Gen Sensors: Using Smartphones for Seedling Quality & Plant Nitrogen Measurement | 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM | A223 Growth and quality are fundamental metrics driving profitability in ornamental industry. Technology available currently to accurately measure growth and quality of ornamental plants is still primitive. The measurements are usually destructive and manual in nature. High plant densities and increased labor and lab costs make manual and destructive measurements less attractive, and in some cases, not practical. In this session, we will show you the next generation sensors that we are developing at Purdue University. These new technologies use cheap cameras and smartphones to measure seedling quality in a flats or nitrogen status of plants in containers. Growers who are interested in the technology are strongly encouraged to attend this session as we are looking for 15-20 facilities in the U.S. where we can test this technology.

SUNDAY, JULY 14

Proven Perennials: Trial Update from Chicago Botanic Garden 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM | Union Station Ballroom A Hundreds of new perennials are introduced each year. Whether landscapers and gardeners are excited or disappointed depends in part on rigorous evaluations to determine their cultural adaptability, disease and pest resistance, and winter hardiness. In this session we will discuss the important of comparative trials and present an update from the Chicago Botanic Garden’s trials—an evaluation program that has been recommending the best garden perennials for 30 years. (See page 50 for more details from the presenter.)

20/20 Vision: See into The Future with Garden Trends | 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM | A223 This year's trends report gives you 20/20 vision into the future of the industry. Let’s connect the dots between the hottest new trends in gardening and consumer behavior and how you can use them to give your customers what they want. In this fast-paced session, learn current and emerging gardening trends and tips as well as examples to take these latest trends and apply them to your business to brand your company, attract new customers and grow sales. When you’re ahead of the curve, your company becomes a trendsetter and you become the go to place for what’s new – whether you are a breeder, grower, or retailer.

The New Way to Communicate in Business in 2019 | 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM | Short North Ballroom A
Business communication continues to evolve at an unbelievable rate. In just 25 years, we’ve seen the evolution from landlines to pager codes to cell phones to smart phones to the cloud. Where are we headed next? How does the next generation prefer to communicate? What are the implications for business in 2019 and beyond? This session will walk attendees through the communication changes and cultural shifts that drive them in the past, present, and future. Attendees will learn how to more effectively communicate with customers and employees to improve every key business metric and utilize better communication to thrive including: the difference between 2-D and 3-D communication conversations and means; how to select the proper channel for conversations to maximize meaning and efficiency; new tools to improve communication in 2019 and beyond. (See page 48 for more details from the presenter.)

Redheaded Flea Beetle, Systena frontalis, the Native Invasive Insect | 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM | Live For Growers
This presentation will briefly cover insect phenology for the mid-Atlantic and how it has provided some guidance with management in the southeast. There will also be discussion regarding larva and adult activity in relation to growing degree days and plant phenological indicators. Host plants fed on by the beetle will be discussed, and recent observations in the selection from different species and cultivars of hydrangea. You will hear about feeding preference trials conducted in the field and laboratory between different species of plants other than hydrangea. In addition, challenges facing management of the insect will be shared.

Winning the Battle with Rose Rosette Disease | 10:45 AM - 11:45 AM | A115
Rose rosette has destroyed thousands of roses and threatens the survival of the U.S. rose industry. However, all is not lost. Detection of the disease is critical for successful management at propagator, nursery and landscape levels. This session will focus on how to successfully develop best management plans for rose rosette and update research efforts toward resistant roses. (See page 52 for more details from this presenter.)

Perennial Production: Better Baptisia and Problem-Free Panicum | 10:45 AM - 11:45 AM | A213
Baptisia and Panicum are bright stars among native North American perennials. Both are beautiful, strong, and resilient in the landscape, but each poses challenges for growers. Join two professional growers from experienced nursery operations for this combined session. Learn about best cultural practices for baptisia from both liner and bare root inputs including scheduling, planting depth, and forcing. Boost your switchgrass smarts with best management practices for Panicum virgatum, including cultural regimens, timing, and cultivar selection.

Ship Plants Legally With Ease | 11:00 AM - 11:20 AM | Knowledge Center
Plant Sentry offers a positive approach to controlling the spread of invasive plant species, pests, and diseases. This program can help alert the grower to plant issues and the impacts certain pests and aggressive plants can have on the environment. The Plant Sentry model is a simplistic approach that aligns with other common risk assessment programs (i.e. HAACP, SANC). This application can be audited like that of the SANC program and is the only e-commerce systems approach to date that ensures the standard meets current state and federal regulations. This systems approach offers a wide array of valuable information personalized to your inventory that is essential in growing your business efficiently the right, legal way.

Demystifying E-commerce: Selling Plants Online | 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM | A210
Selling plants online is one of the most challenging markets within the E-commerce space. Inventory tracking, boxing and transit, shipping compliance, online marketing, content creation, search optimization... the list of challenges can seem endless and daunting. This session’s speaker is from one of the first companies to sell plant material online and has tackled online selling challenges for more than 17 years. Come learn some of the key strategies for growth and success in the digital marketplace.

Transplanting Cuttings by Hand and Robotics | 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM | A213
Transplanting cuttings is one of the most labor-intensive operations in propagation. Find out if staff at your operation meet the industry benchmark of cuttings transplanted per hour. Learn about research on both manual and automated transplanting.

Irrigation Basics | 2:30 PM - 2:50 PM | Knowledge Center
Discuss the basics of irrigation as it pertains to overhead and micro-irrigation in nursery and greenhouse production including design, hydraulics, uniformity, audits, and scheduling.

Mealybug Management: What Can You Do to Avoid Problems with this 'Sneaky Pest?' | 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM | A210
This session’s expert will discuss the biology, feeding behavior, and plant protection strategies that must be implemented to manage mealybugs in a production environment. As more plants are being shipped in various stages, mealybugs are becoming a very important insect pest. More importantly, mealybug populations are difficult to deal with using insecticides or biological control agents (parasitoids and predators). He will also present results from his latest research indicating that systemic insecticides are not effective against mealybugs. This presentation will really "bug" you!

Nitrogen Management for Nurseries | 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM | A210
Nitrate contamination of groundwater has become a serious environmental issue in some areas of the nation. In this session come learn about methods being used to reduce excessive fertilizer use and what is involved in developing a N Management Plant (NMP). Learn more about the health hazards of high Nitrate-N levels. You will hear about research being conducted at UC Davis that examines the fate of applied N to improve the tracking of N fertilizers in nursery production. Discussion will include the issues with N management, the reporting that CA requires, and the experiments conducted to characterize N movement in ornamental plant container crops.

MONDAY, JULY 15

The Importance of Cultivar Testing for Boxwood Blight | 9:45 AM - 10:45 AM | A213
How tolerant are cultivars to boxwood blight? Does it matter? 2018 saw a record number of boxwood blight diagnoses, including reports in new locations. At the same time, AmericanHort's Horticultural Research Institute (HRI) started a new initiative to better understand the range of tolerance and susceptibility of cultivars common in U.S. production. Come to this panel discussion to learn about the research underway as well new developments, from the researcher and grower perspective.

IR-4 Program: New Products and Upcoming Actives for Disease & Pest Management | 9:45 AM - 10:45 AM | A210 Learn about how the IR-4 Program coordinates research activities to develop data for new active ingredients and existing products. Outcomes for new products and upcoming new actives will be presented for Botrytis, thrips and more.


Putting Success in Your Succession Plan | 9:45 AM - 10:45 AM | Short North Ballroom A
Is your business at a time and place when you are wondering what's next? For you. For your family. For your team. For your customers. For your company.

This session’s speaker and strategist will navigate this vital subject with a unique insight into our industry. He will pose two key questions--build to sell or build to last? Your answer will guide the discussion and the decision you will need to make moving forward, and you'll be given the steps you need to consider on your journey.

Join others that are on a similar path and share your fears, faith, and fortitude during this exciting and important time.

(See page 54 for more details from the presenter.)

Nutrient and Water Management in Field, Nursery and Greenhouse in the 21st Century | 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM | A213
Agriculture is one of the largest contributors to non-point source water pollution (EPA, 2012). Controlled environmental, as well as nursery and field agriculture, requires a closely defined balance between inputs and outputs to remain sustainable. Learn about a precision ion specific injection system that achieves real-time precision nutrient scheduling to provide an integrative and mechanistic understanding of plant and water requirements for the various production systems. During this session we will discuss the accuracy of applied nutrient recipe formulations, the control of nutrients on an individual basis, which is a key component to optimizing yield throughout crop growth stages and using proper scalability to match various facility production sizes and growing conditions, as well as increased resource efficiency.

Impact Washington: Advocacy Overview and You | 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM | C170
Not sure about what's going on in Washington and how it impacts our industry? Want to become more involved in shaping our industry but not sure on where to start? Join Tal Coley, AmericanHort's director of government affairs, to gain a better insight into what is going on in our industry and leave with knowledge and skills to take action.

Labor-Saving Swap Shop | 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM | A210
Hear directly from fellow nursery growers regarding ways they've found to save on labor.

IP Protection Strategies for Novel Cultivars | 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM | A210
Due to recent decisions at the patent office and the upcoming changes to plant variety protection (PVP) that are included in the 2018 Farm Bill, there are now multiple types of intellectual property (IP) that can be used to protect novel asexually reproduced plant cultivars. This presentation will discuss the three main types of IP protection that are available to protect novel plant cultivars (plant patents, utility patents, and PVP protection), the advantages and disadvantages of each, and how multiple types of IP protection can be used to build a strong picket fence of IP protection around your new cultivar.

Substrate Science | 2:45 PM - 5:00 PM | A213
Experts will discuss foundational principles of basic soilless substrate science informed by current research as well as practical on-farm evaluations. The workshop will use the dual platform growing systems of nursery and floriculture to illustrate the importance of substrate hydrology, biology, chemistry, plant-atmosphere interactions, and their subsequent impact on water and fertility management. After attending the workshop, growers will have a better understanding of the science behind the physics and chemistry of their substrates, the importance of processing that occurs before they receive the product, be able to create better on-site handling procedures, and most importantly, deploy strategies to rethink production systems that optimize substrate performance. The workshop will finish with a question and answer session.

Japanese Maple Scale | 3:30 PM - 4:00 PM | Live For Growers
In this session, learn about a scourge from the orient, Japanese Maple Scale, and how to bring this major pest under control with new systemics.

TUESDAY, JULY 16

The Ornamental Plant Trials at Louisiana State University | 9:15 AM - 9:45 AM | Live For Growers
This session will give a brief overview of the Ornamental Plant Trials at the Louisiana State University AgCenter's Hammond Research Station.

Push Back Against Armored Scale in Nurseries, Landscape, and Cut Woody Plant Operations | 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM | C210
Invasive armored scale populations are increasing on plants across the United States. The damage from armored scale can be extensive in your nursery, cut woody plant operation, or in the landscape.

Field research conducted by the University of Maryland and University of Delaware Extension evaluated several new classes of low risk pesticides to control these pests. Timing is everything in scale control. Learn how to identify, select the correct timing, and choose the best materials to deal with armored scales.

What to Do in a Crisis and Managing Difficult Employment Issues | 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM | C170
Are you prepared for the next emergency? Many companies have no plan for a crisis. In this session, attendees will discover practical solutions to the most challenging employment issues including employee drug use, sexual harassment, light duty, I-9’s and ICE raids, employee leave, criminal background checks and much more. Discover practical solutions to handling employee drug use and drug testing to ensure that their employees are safe and productive and learn how to respond to a Notice of Inspection (I-9 audit) or an ICE raid. You will also understand the different types of leave that an employee may be entitled to, how the various leave laws intersect, and practical steps that HR can follow to respond to any employee leave situation.