Posted by: HortAlaska | November 13, 2016

Petal It Forward

A great campaign by the Society of American Florists aims to put a smile on people’s faces by donating bouquets of flowers to strangers, one for them to keep, and another for them to give away. Florists in all 50 states include Bagoys Florist & Home, Anchorage, participated in this event. Lots of smiles out there!

Petal It Forward


Posted by: HortAlaska | September 15, 2016

Alaska Peony Society

A group of peony enthusiasts had an exploratory meeting yesterday  to learn if there was interest in starting an Alaska Peony Society for anyone interested in growing and gardening with peonies. The response so far has been very enthusiastic.  This organizations is to promote education and information about gardening with peonies throughout the state. Connect with them through their FB page:Alaska Peony Society


Posted by: HortAlaska | August 18, 2016

TRV in China

You’d think with the number of years peonies have been growing in China, tobacco rattle virus would have been reported long ago. Not so, according to this article. It seems to be fairly recent and not very severe. Sure wish we could say the same thing in Alaska! It has been imported with the roots. Certain suppliers have more TRV than others. I guess the name of the game is, only buy from suppliers who routinely rogue out the disease before it gets to your fields.

He, Chen. 2016. TRV

Posted by: HortAlaska | August 14, 2016

China trade in flowers

China trade in flowers

Posted by: HortAlaska | July 2, 2016

Alaska Peonies Highlighted

Nice article about Alaska peony farmers!

Alaska Peonies Florist Review June 2016

Posted by: HortAlaska | July 2, 2016

A plea for more growers

Mike Williams was interviewed recently about peony markets. He said one of the biggest obstacles to the Alaska peony industry is not enough peonies and growers. World markets are in the millions of stems. Alaska is still in the thousands.

More farmers, please!

Posted by: HortAlaska | June 9, 2016

Ice encasement, snow loss and more

This article is not about peonies, but is about a major issue facing peony growers: lack of snow, ice encasement and more. It shows that, at least with tree seedlings, ice encasement is the most destructive force in winter injury. We have not completed anything like this research with peonies, but I believe it, as well as soil ice melting with roots sitting in wet, soggy soils, are the main reasons why roots die in winter. The whole article is available for download online: Snow and Ice



Posted by: HortAlaska | May 26, 2016

The world cut flower business

The U.S. doesn’t make the list of top cut flower growers. Maybe Alaska can help put it on the list!

Top cut flower suppliers

Posted by: HortAlaska | May 11, 2016

Flower sales increasing across generations

Read the latest survey from the American Floral Endowment. All ages of buyers are Cut Flower Survey

Here are some highlights as summarized by Green Profits Buzz

  • Flowers are being appreciated more now by all three generations compared to the 2009 study.
  • Local florists are the most widely shopped channel for both self and gift purchases when shopping in person.
  • Farmer’s markets, online and toll-free phone purchasing have increased, while discount/chain stores, local florists via phone and home improvement centers have declined.
  • Among floral matters, Gen X wants convenience, Millennials “want it when I want it,” and Boomers are traditionalists, purchasing flowers for the reasons you’ve been selling them for years and years—special occasions and so on.
  • Fewer folks in 2016 consider pricing to be a barrier to purchasing than in 2009.
  • 60% say being a locally owned business is very important when considering a flower purchase at a florist.
Posted by: HortAlaska | May 1, 2016

Peony flower harvest Holland

Here is a short video showing harvest of peony cut stems in Holland. Notice how many people are involved and how they handle the flowers. The buds look very tight to me. The second is a field of Sarahs.

Peony harvest

Sarah Bernhardt Peonies

Posted by: HortAlaska | May 1, 2016

Flower Muse

Interesting site all about flowers including peonies.

Flower Muse

Posted by: HortAlaska | April 6, 2016

Post harvest handling

The USDA has revised its recommendations for post harvest handling of fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants and last, but not least, cut flowers. This chapter was written by Dr. Michael Reid and gives a very good overview of everything you need to know after the flower is cut in the field. The list of individual flowers does not include peonies, but the general discussion is great. Also, it might not be too far fetched for Alaska growers to diversity and consider other flowers such as delphiniums some time in the future..

2016. USDA ARS No. 66

Posted by: HortAlaska | March 29, 2016

Soils and Soil Conservation

Here is a link to a site full of information on soils and soil conservation. There are lots of webinars, recorded and ones available in the future, that cover everything from transitioning to organic to climate change. It is sponsored by the Natural Resources Conservation Service

NRCS webinars

Posted by: HortAlaska | March 22, 2016

Why buy local?

Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers- Buy local

Posted by: HortAlaska | March 5, 2016

Peony flowers – antioxidant powerhouses!

Peony roots and seeds have been used for centuries as medicine in Asia. If you search for peonies and medicine, the Internet is full of scientific research that is attempting to validate the old medicinal uses. Not much has been researched on peony petals. This research found that petals are full of flavonoid antioxidants that reduce the production of free radicles.

Peony antioxidants

Posted by: HortAlaska | February 17, 2016

The Fickle Flower Markets

Kenyan flowers were once on top of the African market, and now they are moving to Ethiopia. It certainly shows how fluid the markets can be. Alaska growers certainly could face competition from other northern regions. Growers are talking price, quality, shipping concerns and competition as things to look out for as the businesses develop and mature.African flowers

Posted by: HortAlaska | February 17, 2016

Farm Fresh Flowers

Although this article appeared before Valentines Day, it is worth looking at from the standpoint of the farm-to-table movement. Looks like it has spread over seas. Branding and a great farm image seem to be very important. Direct Farm sales

Posted by: HortAlaska | February 17, 2016

Flowers Make You Happy


Big research project. Flowers make you happy. Duh!!!


Happy Flowers!

Posted by: HortAlaska | February 17, 2016

New book on Alaska soils

If you are interested in learning more about what all those numbers mean when you take a soil sample and get a bazillion numbers back that are pretty confusing, this book explains them all in great detail. Want to be a good grower? Then you must be good at managing soils.

Posted by: HortAlaska | January 3, 2016

Peonies in the future

The attached link is a proposal to re-invent the peony, mostly as a year-round horticultural crop that relies heavily on container culture, forced chilling and growth regulators. Although there are several errors that show the author probably has never grown or sold peonies, it gives an interesting peek into what people are thinking about in terms of future peony production.

Peony futurePeony future

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