FloraStar Announces New Winner

May 14, 2004 - 08:37

FloraStar announces Oglevee's kalanchoe 'Midi Twilight' as the most recent FloraStar winner. To receive the FloraStar Award, plants must pass a trialing period evaluated by the FloraStar Board of Directors.

Midi Twilight has three colors of flowers open at the same time. The flowers open yellow, then change to cream and then to light pink. The flower clusters reach full bloom faster than most kalanchoes and provides quality in retail and home environments, according to FloraStar.

Kalanchoes grow 8-10 inches tall and will last 5-7 weeks in the home if purchased with 10-20 percent of the flowers open. They do well in full light or in shade and do best in moderate temperatures.

In order for a new variety to receive the FloraStar award, it is evaluated for plant habit; flower color and form; foliage color and form; tidiness; ease of culture; earliness; fragrance; holding and shipping ability; post-harvest color retention and longevity; unforeseen unique characteristics; and overall impression.

The FloraStar Trialing and Awards Program was established in 1988. According to FloraStar, the purpose of the program was to use independent trailing locations and judges to evaluate new varieties that were sold as containerized plants. There are 20 trialing locations around the United States that consist of commercial growers, industry suppliers and universities with well-known horticulture departments.

To enter the FloraStar trial, the fee is $200, which allows amateur breeders to test their new varieties and receive written comments from the 20 trial judges. Twenty-seven trials have been conducted, and 17 of them have had winners.

The awards are announced once the breeder has adequate stock to supply the industry for retail introduction. Commercial introduction is done one year prior to consumer announcement. Winning varieties are patented by the introducer, who then pays an assessment on the sales of winning plants for five years after introduction. The revenues to FloraStar are used to administer the trials and for the promotion of the winners.

For more information on FloraStar, visit www.florastar.com.

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