During this years annual show week in Holland, our staff had the opportunity to visit our growers, greenhouses and suppliers to understand and ask questions about the entire process from bud to bloom.
Grower: Berg Lisianthus
It all starts in Japan where the seeds are brought and transported to a propagation company to start the process. This can take between nine and twenty weeks. The difference in speed depends mainly on temperature -the warmer, the faster- but growers need to pay attention to many more aspects. Berg Lisianthus purchase the cuttings and the process can begin.
Cuttings are planted every week to create a continual flower production for 52 weeks of the year, increasing the volumes for special occasions such as Mother’s days.
The cuttings in glasshouses are heated to a shocking 27-30 degrees (Celsius). In Holland, the plants are lit during the night in the summer months and 24 hours a day in the winter months by sodium lights. The plants are watered by a misting process to help create a humid atmosphere in the glasshouse and not saturate the soil.
The complete growing cycle from cutting to flowering is approximately 6 to 8 weeks.
Once the Lisianthus is ready, the pickers pull the stem including the root out of the soil and organise into bunches of 10 stems. The bunch is put onto the conveyor belt and it travels from the glasshouse into the packing area.
Once the Lisianthus reaches the packing area, staff are on hand to check the quality, quantity and sleeve the stems into wraps. If the roots remain on the end of the stems, they are removed at this stage.
The bunches of Lisianthus are then added to the auction buckets. There is normally 6 bunches (10 stems each) per bucket resulting in 1,080 stems per trolley. Interestingly, 80,000 stems are produced per day, 40% are sold directly with the other 60% sold at auction.