Summer 2014 - West Virginia Nursery and Landscape Association

Summer 2014
August 2014
I sit at my desk and enjoy the
many honeybees and goldfinches
that feed on the runaway cup
plant, Silphium perfoliatum.
I love the plant, though it is one
you need to keep under control. A
native to the
tall grass
prairie, it
towers at over
eight feet, like
many of the
plants in the
prairie. The
bees pollinate,
the goldfinches
harvest the seeds and I have seen
warblers drink from the cups that
hold water, formed by the joining
of two leaves at the stem. It is
small wonders like this that make
me realize why I make my living
in the plant world.
I have been placing orders for
bulbs, both for my clients and my
own garden. Every spring I note
what I feel is missing from the
bulb palette and try to fill it in
come fall. This year there will be
hundreds of blue and white
Spanish Bluebells, Hyacinthoides
hispanica. In my woodland I use
the smaller but charming English
Bluebells, Hyacinthoides nonscripta. Their subtle beauty works
well there among ferns and spring
We recently had a WVNLA
Board meeting in Sutton, a small,
sleepy town in Braxton County.
(Continued on page 3.)
WVNLA lends a helping hand
A mobile agricultural science lab, school landscape award
program and horticulture research all benefited from
WVNLA’s board members’ decisions at the July 23 board
meeting to fund their organizations.
Mark Riggleman, program coordinator of the WV Farm
Bureau Mobile Ag Ed Science Lab, said WVNLA’s $1,000
contribution will help keep the lab on the road as it travels to
elementary schools throughout the state.
Instructors in the 40-foot lab bring agricultural and
horticultural lessons and experiments to schoolchildren, with
the goal of interesting students at a young age in horticulture,
gardening and farming.
“We set up on their school grounds for a week at a time
teaching students agriculture-related lessons through
scientific explorations using the scientific method,” Riggleman
said in his application. Leaders read ag-related books to
younger students and follow up with hands-on activities that
reinforce the lessons.
The program also emphasizes the value of land
stewardship and natural resource conservation.
WVNLA’s donation will be recognized in an inscribed
plaque inside the lab.
Board members also voted to fund a school landscaping
award given through West Virginia Garden Club, Inc. The
award is given to a garden club whose members have
achieved excellence with a landscaping project for a public
WVNLA both renewed its membership in and made an
additional donation to the Horticulture Research Institute. In
recent years, the institute has provided funding for research
projects and scholarships and has worked to guide USDA
funds toward Boxwood Blight research.
Schoolchildren listen to "The Tree Farmer" as they sit in front of
individual experiment stations inside the Mobile Ag Ed Science Lab.
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
Member focus
Propagate and protect are bywords at Davis Nurseries
ST MARYS, WV -- When they hit the “empty
nester” stage in the 1980s, Danny and Donna
Davis found themselves with some extra time on
their hands. They eschewed the classic timefilling options such as hobbies and travel for a
more productive option. They started a nursery
near their St. Marys home.
Both kept their day jobs, Danny as
Maintenance Superintendent at Pleasants Power
Station and Donna as a teacher, but they also
carved out time to slowly expand Davis Nurseries,
a business they started on a shoestring in 1981.
“We had kids in school. There was no money
to invest. Somebody would give us a cutting and
we would propagate it. We started cuttings from
plants at home,” Danny said. “We’d hunt around
in the woods for things to dig up. Those were good
Today Davis Nurseries sits on 12 acres along
the Ohio River, just north of St. Marys. Eleven
polyhouses protect the nursery stock from the
harshest of winter’s conditions. The resulting
plants suffer less damage and are therefore more
saleable in the spring.
Danny switched from growing trees in-ground
to a two-pot system years ago, allowing him to
safely pull out the trees and sell year round. He
deters deer from them using a trick he picked up
at WVNLA’s Winter Symposium years ago. He
ties empty plastic pots around the trees’ trunks.
The deer stay away.
Before they
started the
nursery, the
efforts centered
on their homes,
first in Fairmont
and later in St.
Marys. A series of
courses in the
Danny Davis scoops soil that
1970s conducted
he mixes on site in an old
by West Virginia
cement mixer (behind him)
purchased for that purpose.
Extension Service
in Fairmont
provided Danny with some guidance.
“I figured out I was doing everything wrong. I
started paying attention as I landscaped our
home. Pretty soon, people were asking for our
advice,” he said.
He enjoys experimenting with propagation
and said he has gained an unexpected benefit
from it. “It teaches me patience, which I probably
needed to learn,” he said. “I try something and
have to wait a year to see how it works. That
requires patience.”
Davis Nurseries includes a garden center with
some annuals, but most of the stock is shrubs and
Like many nursery and garden center owners,
Danny says customers buy lots of tried-and-true –
boxwoods, barberries, hollies. Most prefer plants
that consistently perform well and suffer less from
deer damage. But he
stocks much more
than that. Wander
along the rows and
see flowering shrubs
that are Danny’s
favorites. Customers
come from well
beyond St Marys –
Belmont, New
Pennsboro and
After he retired
from the power
company 18 years
ago, Danny was able
to really concentrate Plastic pots tied on the
on the nursery and
trees discourage deer.
plans to continue the
business as long as health allows.
Contact Davis Nurseries at 304-684-2324 or
email [email protected]
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
Greenspaces enhance
state fair tent entrances
FAIRLEA, WV -- Visitors to the Arts and Crafts
Tent at the State Fair of West Virginia walked
through entrances softened by landscaping
provided by Cole Nurseries, Greenbrier Valley
Dreamscapes, Groundworks and Tally Ho
Landscaping. The four companies combined efforts
to landscape either side of both entrances, creating
four “plantings” of weeping purple beech,
hydrangea and hosta.
Appreciation goes to Chris Chanlett of
Groundworks, Norman Cole of Cole Nurseries,
Rudy Horst of Tally Ho Landscaping, and Curtis
Dowdy of Greenbrier Valley Dreamscapes for their
time and efforts. The Arts and Crafts Tent is one
of the most popular and heavily trafficked areas
on the fairgrounds. Special thanks goes to Chris,
who organized the effort among the four
President's message
(Continued from page 1.)
The 2010 census notes a population of 994. Before
the meeting, we all sat overlooking the banks of the
Elk River. It was
difficult to go
indoors. The
bulk of the
meeting was
spent in
discussion about
supporting the
WV Botanic
Garden by
consultants to
help them move
forward with
their master
plan. The
botanic garden
board members
will be selecting
a candidate to
Birds and bees flock to Silphium
bring in for an
perfoliatum, or Cup Plant.
interview and
we have selected Bill Noble, who recently retired
from The Garden Conservancy, as a second
candidate to interview. Both will share their
observations, and one will be selected.
It is exciting to watch the botanic garden grow.
The dam at the garden is being breached and the
Solar House that West Virginia University has
donated will be moved onto the property soon.
We are always looking for those who are
interested in joining WVNLA’s Board. We are a
very diverse and committed group. The reward of
your commitment is in seeing things
accomplished, not just discussed.
Enjoy the end of summer!
Bill Mills
WVNLA President
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
Cross over to an early chill to heat up pre-Spring sales
Grueber suggested that these “crossover plants”
COLUMBUS, OH -- Garry Grueber of
provide a smoother transition from the traditional
Cultivaris urged audience members attending his
abrupt swing from winter to summer sales. Many
presentation at the Cultivate’14 in July to
will bloom into fall. If their
consider cultivating
lengthened bloom time does not
“crossover plants” to
extend into fall, they provide an
boost early spring
opportunity for additional sales.
sales. With the right
“Think of them as seasonal,
treatment, “half
disposable color,” he said.
hearty” perennials,
Grueber said that the much-hyped
plants such as
Digiplexis, a shrubby foxglove lives up
to expectations and performs well as a
crossover plant, producing non-stop
Calceolaria and
Primula, can be set
out in full bloom
weeks before the
frost date required
of true annuals.
The key to these
early blooms is to
give them the cold
shoulder, or expose
them to a chill period Primula 'Ooh La La' series is a good early
of short-day, lowspring container plant. Photo courtesy of
light conditions of
generally 6 to 8
flowers until
weeks, after they are planted in liners in late
a hard frost.
summer/autumn and grown in greenhouses.
To view
The process, called vernalization, gives the
details of
plant the ability to flower in the spring, by
exposing it to prolonged cold (frost-free.) When
created artificially, the process allows growers to
stock blooming annuals that should withstand
Digiplexis 'Berry Canary.' Photo
cold outdoor temperatures and boost early spring
and click on courtesy of Walters Gardens, Inc.
Plants, or
email [email protected] and request a copy.
Cultivaris suggested plants for
"Crossover" success
Digiplexis 'Illumination Flame' was named Plant
of the Year 2012 at Chelsea Flower Show. Photo
courtesy of Cultivaris.
Erysimum (wallflower)
Pericallis (cineraria)
Calceolaria (pocketbook plant)
Leucanthemum (Moroccan daisy)
Primula (primrose)
Digiplexis (shrubby foxglove)
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
Plants, pests and pollinators took center stage at workshop
Nearly 30 licensed pesticide applicators
earned 11 hours of continuing education credits
during a mid-summer session hosted by WVNLA
in Flatwoods. The July 14 event featured
speakers from West Virginia State University and
West Virginia University Extension Service as
well as from co-sponsor West Virginia
Department of Agriculture.
WVNLA members who attended took
advantage of free admittance through the
Doug Jolley with WVDA presented information
on invasive plants.
membership, while non-members paid $50.
Barbara Liedl, an associate research professor
of Plant Breeding and Genetics at WVSU, spoke
on “Biocontrol Options in Protected Cultures” and
“Pollinators and Neonicotinoids.” Mahfuz
Rahman, a plant pathologist with WVU
Extension Service, spoke on “Disease
Management in Turf and Landscape
In the afternoon session, Daniel Frank, an
entomologist with WVU Extension Service,”
provided information on “Invasive Insect Pest
Management in Landscape Plantings.” Mira
Danilovich, who heads WVU Extension’s
Consumer Horticulture program, gave a
“Pesticide Safety Review,” with plenty of good
reminders about safety on the job.
Mike Arnold with WVDA’s Plant/Pest
Regulatory Programs, presented “Plant/Pest
Regulatory Changes,” with sobering reminders of
the dangers of non-compliance such as the
devastation wrought by the Emerald Ash Borer
and the coming threat of Asia Long-horned
Doug Jolley,
a plant
officer with
WVDA, finished
the day with a
look at “Invasive
Plants in the
Some may be
controlled while
others such as
the dreaded
kudzu are not
dissuaded from
The next Pesticide Applicator’s Recertification
Workshop sponsored by WVNLA will be held Jan.
22, 2015, in Charleston.
WVU Extension Service will offer a session in
Morgantown in October. Contact Daniel Frank at
304-293-8835 or [email protected] for more
information on the Morgantown session.
WVPlants provides license check
As the not-so lazy days of summer slip away,
pesticide applicators might take a minute to see
if they are up to date on continuing education
credits required for certification -- if they can find
their paperwork, that is.
If not, the West Virginia Department of
Agriculture invites you to visit the WVPlants
website, which will provide applicator’s
certification status.
Index.aspx to get to the WVDA’s Regulatory and
Environmental Division, and then click on the
Pesticide Programs to view your options. You’ll
need a WVPlants ID number and PIN number,
which may be obtained by contacting Kathy
Martin at [email protected] or 304-558-2209.
Once into the system, you can:
• search for continuing education
• request CEC credit for a meeting or
• check your current status.
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
New member note
We are pleased to welcome Watkins Nurseries
in Midlothian, VA, to WVNLA as an Association
Member. Founded in 1876, Watkins Nurseries is a
landscape design build firm and wholesale grower
of large field-grown plants. At Watkins Nurseries,
trees and plants are propagated and grown on 750
acres of farmland south and west of Richmond.
Watkins offers individual landscape
consultation, design development, and complete
landscape project bidding.
Watkins Nurseries
Robert Watkins
101 Dry Bridge Road
Midlothian, VA 23114
[email protected]
Summer 2014
Certified Professional
Horticulturist prep
Earn the distinction of adding Certified
Professional Horticulturist to your qualifications
by preparing for and passing the exam, next
offered by WVNLA on Jan. 22, 2015. A CPH
designation indicates that the holder is a trained
horticulture professional with demonstrable
knowledge of the industry. He or she is qualified
to offer sound scientific horticultural advice on a
variety of industry-related subjects.
If you’d like to hit the books now and avoid
cramming later, order a CPH manual for $50.
This informative resource is an excellent study
Topics covered include plant nomenclature,
trees & shrubs, lawn establishment and
maintenance, interior and bedding plants,
fertilizers, composting, insect, weed and disease
control as well as landscape contracting and
management, and regulations.
Email [email protected] or call
304-553-1234 or visit for additional
Robert Barnitz receives hall
of fame honors
Watkins Nurseries, Midlothian, VA.
Upcoming events
Sept. 17 -- Greenhouse & Nursery Growers
Tour, Toledo, OH.
Sept. 24 -- A Gathering of Plantsmen,
Kirtland, OH.
Sept. 25 -- S. Carolina Nursery and Landscape
Fall Field Day, Columbia, SC.
Oct. 25-29 -- International Plant Propagators'
Society Annual Meeting, Hickory, NC.
Jan. 5-7 -- Green & Growin', Greensboro, NC.
Jan. 7-9 -- CENTS, Columbus, OH.
Jan. 14-16 -- MANTS, Baltimore, MD.
Jan. 22-23 -- Pesticide Applictor's
Recertification (Jan. 22) and WVNLA Winter
Symposium (Jan. 23), Charleston, WV.
Congratulations to Robert Barnitz, owner of
Bob’s Market and Greenhouse in Mason, WV, who
was recently inducted in the West Virginia
Agriculture and Forestry Hall of Fame. Robert
was one of five inductees who were chosen for the
honor because of the outstanding contributions
they have made to the establishment,
development, advancement and improvement of
the agricultural, forestry and family life of West
Other inductees were Mark Alan Metz
(posthumously), Roscoe Kessler Plumley, Richard
McClung and and Jack Sturgill.
Norman Cole named SNA officer
Congratulations to Norman Cole III of Cole
Nurseries in Pipestem, WV, who was elected as a
Southern Nursery Association officer. Norman will
serve as Director, Chapter 1, for the 2014-2015
year. He was elected at the Annual Business
Meeting on July 24 in Atlanta.
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
Aspen historic renovation project hits a hole-in-one
DANIELS, WV -- Golf Inc. recently awarded
Aspen Corporation, a WVNLA member in Daniels,
WV, as Renovation Project of the Year. The
national magazine selected Aspen’s renovation of
The Country Club of Buffalo, NY, in the category
of Projects Topping $1 Million.
Aspen Golf, a division of Aspen Corporation,
specializes in golf course renovation, restoration
and full-service golf course construction. It is one
of only 36 certified golf course construction
companies nationally.
The course at The Country Club of Buffalo
was first designed by Donald Ross and opened in
1926. A design architectural firm drew up plans to
restore the Ross design, based on historic maps
and photographs. Aspen implemented the design,
which included the restoration of original bunkers
and fairways, recreation of greens and draining,
irrigation and tree work.
Aspen has been involved in numerous historic
golf course restorations, so the company brought
those experiences to the project, according to
Aspen Vice President Ronnie Adkins. Still, they
faced more than a few obstacles along the way.
“Weather was quite a challenge at times as
the first phase went into late fall and of course,
Buffalo winter can arrive early, as it did,” Ronnie
said. “Other challenges included getting an
to a few holes at a time.
“Aspen is pleased and proud to have its work
recognized by industry peers and experts. It is very
gratifying to our organization to be recognized for
A picture perfect day on the links.
our efforts and results on this project,” Ronnie
said. “This project was in competition with many
other U.S. and worldwide projects that were being
considered. We are humbled to have the project we
did to be selected as number one in its category,
but also as Best in Show among all of the projects
being considered.”
Aspen Corporation has three divisions: Aspen
Golf, Aspen Irrigation and Aspen Landscape. Visit or
Renewal reminder
Golf Inc. recently recognized the renovations at The
Country Club of Buffalo, NY with a Best in Show award.
enormous amount of restoration work completed
in a relatively short time so the course could be
utilized by its members.”
The Country Club of Buffalo project was also
selected as Best in Show. The course remained
open during the construction, as work was limited
The deadline to renew annual
memberships, as set forth in WVNLA
bylaws, has passed, but 2014-2015
renewals and dues will still be accepted for
a brief time. All members should have
received a renewal letter with a selfaddressed and stamped envelope enclosed
for your convenience. If you did not receive
one, please email [email protected] or
call 304-553-1234 to request one.
We appreciate all of our members and
want each one to enjoy the benefit of an
accurate listing in the Member Directory,
which is distributed to potential
customers, and of free or reduced
admittance to Association events. Ensure
these benefits, as well as others, with your
membership renewal.
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Summer 2014
P.O. Box 20284
Charleston, WV 25362
Winter Symposium
Officers & Board of Directors
Mark your calendars now for WVNLA’s 2015
Winter Symposium on Jan. 23 at the Holiday Inn
& Suites in South Charleston. We’re bringing topnotch speakers such as the team of Ed Laflamme
and Bill Arman, two landscape and green
industry business veterans who will present their
keys to competitive success, and Kevin Kehoe who
will talk about successful job estimating and
pricing and about managing costs and schedules.
Acclaimed garden designer and
preservationist Bill Noble, most recently of The
Garden Conservancy, and Tres Fromme, whose
designs include Atlanta Botanical Gardens, Tulsa
Botanic Garden and Longwood Gardens’ 2000
master plan, will get creative juices flowing, as
will other design-related speakers.
On Jan. 22, we’ll sponsor a Pesticide
Applicator’s Recertification Workshop, in the
same location.
Watch for upcoming registration details, but
save the dates Jan. 22 and 23 now.
Bill Mills – [email protected]
West Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association
Vice President:
Norman Cole – [email protected]
Tim Forren – [email protected]
Mark Springer – [email protected]
Past President:
Pat Biafore – [email protected]
Board Members:
Bud Cottrill – [email protected]
Scott Barnitz – [email protected]
Mike Bartholomew - [email protected]
Chris Chanlett – [email protected]
John Jett – [email protected]
Stephen Saunders – [email protected]
Executive Director:
Julie Robinson – [email protected]
[email protected]