Patent and Trademark Monitoring Program Expands

December 7, 2012 - 16:29

Major nursery brands expand patent and trademark monitoring program across the country.

Proven Winners Color Choice, Encore Azaleas, Endless Summer Collection, First Editions, The Knock Out Family of Roses, Drift Roses and Southern Living Plant Collection have expanded the Plant Watch nursery inspection program aimed at protecting their plant patents and branded programs across the country.

Inspections currently are underway from New Jersey to Oregon and from Michigan to Louisiana.

“Each year we do this inspection program, the value of the brands and patents becomes more clear to growers. We’ve worked hard to establish our brands and spend tens of thousands of dollars on patents. Enforcing these Intellectual Property rights is necessary to support our customers and licensees and ensures that compliance is improving,” said Jacques Ferare from Star Roses and Plants/The Conard-Pyle Company, the developers of the The Knock Out Family of Roses brand.

Nurseries across the country have undergone a polite inspection by Plant Watch representatives to see how they are meeting the requirements of these branded programs and respecting the patents.

Growers who comply with patent and branding requirements are at a disadvantage when infringers undercut prices. To support their network of compliant growers, Spring Meadow Nursery, Bailey Nurseries, Conard-Pyle and Plant Development Services have hired Plant Watch to inspect nurseries, report on their findings, and collect fines where warranted.

According to Plant Watch Managing Director, Peggy Walsh Craig, “It’s obvious our industry needs to sell more plants to more and different kinds of people. Marketing new varieties helps make consumers aware of exciting new colors and sizes of plants and homeowners have more satisfying ways to beautify their gardens. When a few growers unfairly take advantage of the investment made by other nurseries in new varieties, the whole industry suffers from depressed prices.”

Growers found to be non-compliant are assessed a significant fine based on the number of unauthorized plants discovered, and the destruction of those plants will be required. 

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