Hibiscus syriacus

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					P l a n t                     P u b l i c i t y                            H o l l a n d

UK       Summer 2006

                                                                                                                    Plant Spotlight                                    1

                                                                                                                    Summer fun with impulse sales                      2

                                                                                                                    Promotional Pointers                               3

                                                                                                                    Garden Messenger Plant
                                                                                                                    Promotions in 2006                                 4

Plant Spotlight
Helping you pick the winners!

Hibiscus syriacus
Hibiscus syriacus is a deciduous shrub rightly celebrated for its fabulous
flowers. A wonderful addition to the garden in late summer/early autumn,
Hibiscus syriacus is an eye-catching shrub in flower, with bags of customer-

A recent study by the Royal Boskoop Horticultural       Sell the beauty of flowers
Society (KVBC) highlighted the ornamental value         Hibiscus syriacus is all about flowers so make sure
and commercial potential of 31 cultivars of Hibiscus    that you present them in a sunny position that will
syriacus.                                               show this feature off to the full. Colourful POS is         Hibiscus ‘Hamabo’
                                                        a real asset at the beginning of the promotion as
Flowers and colour                                      flowers are opening and make sure that essential
Up to 12cm across, these come in a range of             information about the needs of the plant are           potential. It was noted that in general, flowers will
beautiful colours and shapes.The flower colours         clearly on show too.                                   open up better in warm and sunny regions than in
of this shrub range from pure white, through red                                                               colder areas. In these areas, growing in sheltered
to dark purple and blue.The hearts of the flowers       Performance                                            walled gardens or in other situations with an
sometimes contrast strongly with the petal colour, in   The trials investigated the factors influencing the    improved microclimate can give the plants a
many cases enhancing significantly the ornamental       level to which the flowers achieved their full         helping hand.                                    >>
value of the plant.

                                                        Results summary
                                                         Single Flowering                      Flower Colour                    Colour of Heart

                                                         ‘Flogi’ (PINK GIANT®)                 Pure pink                        Very dark red
                                                         ‘Floru’ (RUSSIAN VIOLET®)             Violet red                       Dark red
                                                         ‘Hamabo’                              Very light pink                  Dark red
                                                         ‘Monstrosus’                          White                            Dark red
                                                         ‘Oiseau Bleu’                         Light violet blue                Purple-red
                                                         ‘Pink Flirt’                          Lilac pink - purple pink         Red
                                                         ‘William R. Smith’                    Creamy-white to pure white       Creamy-white to pure white
     Hibiscus ‘ Monstrosus’                              ‘Woodbridge’                          Light red                        Dark red
>> Additional information                                    ‘Oiseau Bleu’ has striking flowers which grow up           Filled Flowering
                                                             to 12 cm wide and have a purple red heart.The              As with the single flowering cultivars, a selection of
   Single Flowering Group                                    flowers of ‘Flogi’ (PINK GIANT®) are pure pink             filled flowering cultivars have been selected on flower
   ‘Monstrosus’ at 130 years old is a very successful        with a very dark red heart.This cultivar grows             colour. Please note the flowers are not always fully
   cultivar with full flowers and strong growth.             strongly and has very large flowers.                       filled, half-filled flowers are included in this list.

                                                              Filled Flowering                      Flower Colour                         Colour of Heart

                                                              ‘Admiral Dewey’                       Pure white                            Pure white
                                                              ‘Ardens’                              Light purple/blue                     Red
                                                              ‘Lady Stanley’                        Very light pink                       Dark red
                                                              ‘Puniceus Plenus’                     Dark pink/red                         Dark red
                             Hibiscus ‘ Lady Stanley’         ‘Speciosus’                           Pure white                            Dark red

                                                                                                                        function at the centre of your display. Perhaps use
   Summer fun with impulse sales                                                                                        seating in and around the display to let customers
                                                                                                                        sit and enjoy the fragrance and riot of flowers
   Summer sales are all about flowers and fun in the garden                                                             around them. Surrounded by scented roses, exquisite
                                                                                                                        Buddleias with their butterfly guests and the sub-
   It’s the heart of the year, the heat is on and now’s your chance to go for                                           tropical feel of the Hibiscus - how can your customers
   impulse sales. Give your customers some summer fun in the garden. On a                                               say no!
   hot day in July or August many customers are visiting centres for a wander
   and a browse. Often they aren’t looking for anything in particular. Make sure                                        Successful retail deals with detail
   you take the opportunity to make their minds up for them.                                                            It’s one thing to create a great display area, it’s
                                                                                                                        another to maintain it effectively. Consistent sales
                                                             generous, flamboyant blooms that Hibiscus brings.          success will come from attention to detail. Your
                                                                                                                        offer should be an attractive, healthy, fresh looking
                                                             Be careful not to clutter the display and confuse the      product that your customer cannot resist. With a
                                                             eye. Using consistent colour is a useful approach.         product like plants, presentation and attention to
                                                             Pinks, purples, blues and whites look stunning to-         detail is everything. Keep plants looking fresh and
                                                             gether.There are plenty of pink floribunda and patio       fabulous, keep displays tidy and well stocked. Go
                                                             roses to choose from; consider including tried and         round your shop floor and make sure that the
                                                             tested cultivars such as Rosa ‘Queen Elizabeth’.           basics are addressed. Product should look well
                                                             Buddleia ‘Pink Delight’, ‘Nanho Blue’ and ‘Nanho           cared for, ideally raised off the shop floor, (although
                                                             Purple’ will add to the stylish palette of colour.         this is not an unbreakable rule, it depends on the
                                                             Finally the pure white filled flowers of Hibiscus          display), clearly labelled, clean compost, nothing pot
                                                             ‘Admiral Dewey’ or the super-sophisticated violet          bound. Plus, don’t let the elements beat you. If it’s a
                                                             ‘Oiseau Bleu’ with its purple heart will help finish       windy day appoint a ‘wind damage supervisor’ and
                                                             a display to dress the shop floor and boost the            get them tidying displays and straightening plants.
                                                             saleability of the plant area.                             The overall impression needs to be one of quality
                                                                                                                        to give your customers the confidence to buy.
                                                             Use fauna - Wildlife in the garden is high up the
   Mix plants for promotions                                 fashion charts these days. Buddleia, or the Butterfly      Apply a high standard of basic retail principles and
   Use more than one plant family in a mixed display         bush as it is commonly known, help bring in our most       put nature’s charms to work for you. Aim to make
   to create a visually exciting, interactive, stimulating   visual and beautiful garden insect - the butterfly.        it so hard to choose between the three plants you
   space for customers. Buddleia, Rosa and Hibiscus are      Make sure your customers know that it is more              inspire customers to buy one of each!
   three very different plant families each of which is      than just a name.You can cut out and laminate
   a summer show stopper. Challenge yourself to use          different species of butterfly and attach them to
   the attributes of these plants to get the plant area      the plants to give your customers a taste of what
   sizzling this season.                                     the buddleia can do for them in their garden. You
                                                             could even include a bit of printed information on
   Make it interesting, interactive                          butterflies likely to be seen in the area.
   and irresistible
   Use flora - Flowers of course are the central             Use fragrance - Shop floor trials last year showed
   attraction for summer in the garden.There’s some-         how well fragrant roses sell when put next to seating
   thing for everyone in these three families of plants      areas around the centre. Increasingly visitors to
   – the classic flower shape of the rose, the exquisite     garden centres use the trip as a morning, afternoon
   clusters of flowers produced by Buddleia and the          or day out. Patio roses in attractive pots could

Harnessing Pester Power
Its summer, it’s the middle of the school holidays
and ‘Pester Power’ can be your best friend for
helping to get customers in and boosting sales.
Keeping the kids happy is busy parents’ top
priority and as a local garden centre you can
have it all to offer.

If you’ve got a children’s play area then all the
better. But putting on activities is a great way to
appeal to mum and get them in the door. Help
mum and dad by putting on an activity to do,
focus the kids’ attention, plus there needs to
be something to take away. The sale is agreed
before you start!

Getting started                                             Along with the plant sales there are lots of         a plant to go with it? It doesn’t have to be
Have a brain-storming session with your staff to            retail opportunities on Jurassic toys too.           ambitious to work well – in fact the simpler
get together some bright ideas for marketing plants                                                              the better. Go for inexpensive product.
to appeal to children. Here are a few suggestions        q Potty perennials :These are great plants              Remember a little can go a long way for a
to get you started. A supervised ‘Kids Potting Table’      for children to grow. Pick perennials that are        child. Be clear about products included in the
or ‘Make and Take’ tables can work very well. Use          brightly coloured and easy to grow such as            activity and pricing upfront.
different themes to stimulate interest and create          Echinacea or Rudbeckia.
something new. A seasonal focus is one approach –                                                             q Create a mini-garden : Try small Geums
patio pots for the summer, soft fruits in the autumn.                                                           and other rock garden favourites to help
There is lots you can do with this and regular                                                                   children create their own mini-alpine paradise.
activities in a Children’s Corner could be well
worth getting a reputation for with your family                                                             When targeting activities to children look for the
customers. Other ideas include:                                                                             opportunity to create appeal and interest for them
                                                                                                            - plant names, plant colours, growth habits, plants
  q Fun with ferns : Bring Jurassic Park to your                                                            which attract insects, exotic plants, indigenous plants,
    centre with these plants. Use a large area, add                                                         plus there’s pot painting, plant quizzes.When working
     models of dinosaurs, try getting adventurous                                  Echinacea purpurea       with children planning is everything.Take a step-by-
     with props to create atmosphere - fossils, even                                                        step approach. Make it easy for them. You're
     old bones. Could you make a trail around the                                                           building a customer base for the future.
     display area with a kids quiz highlighting the      q Water world : What about a small water
     plants as well as the dinosaurs and other props?      feature – perhaps a simple pebble pool and

Don’t miss the 2006 shows!                                                         Increase sales with FREE high
                                                                                   quality POS
Visit Plantarium,
23rd to 25th August,                                                               Time and again feedback from
Boskoop, The Netherlands                                                           retailers has confirmed
See you at the premier hardy nursery stock trade show.                             the value and increased
                                                                                   sales performance from
                    Four Oaks,                                                     using Garden Messenger
                    5th and 6th September                                          promotional materials in
                    Come and see us at the Dutch Pavilion.There’ll be top          hot spots around the shop
                    quality product and the opportunity to speak with the          floor. This summer make
                   exporters. Plus look out for this year’s PPH seminar            sure you are getting the
‘Leaner Meaner Marketing and Merchandising’. No business can afford to miss        most out of your seasonal
these promotional ideas. Here’s your chance to hear about the new features         retailer POS pack. For more
in our promotional campaign for 2007 and what’s in it for you!                     ideas and information visit

    Get motivated, get creative, get results… Get going with

                          July                                               August                                              September
    ‘Summer Flowering Climbers’ with Clematis,                       ‘Patio Perfect’ with bamboo &                   ‘Garden Harvest’ with small fruit trees and
              Lonicera and Campsis                                          flowering grasses                                    soft fruit plants

Highlight fabulous flowering climbers in your pro-         Dwarf bamboos and grasses add style and instant        Show customers how to enjoy a ‘Garden Harvest’
motions this month! Climbers are a great choice:           impact to the garden.This is the time for outdoor      this September! Fruit and vegetables in the garden
economical on space, great for flowers and effective       entertaining so appeal to customers who are            are back in vogue and we’re getting towards the
at masking unsightly features. Our selection includes:     looking for ways of reviving the patio. Show them      peak time for planting. On the small fruit tree side,
‘Trumpet creeper’ (Campsis), vigorous, tolerant of         how to create an exotic feel with bamboos and          apples, pears, plums and damsons are all fabulous
most soils, wonderful trumpet-shaped flowers;              grasses. Ideal for container growing, they bring       options. Soft fruit plants can bring that fashionable,
honeysuckles (Lonicera), best known for their whorls       texture and colour to hard surfaced areas.             more natural feel, (think blackberries and rasp-
of attractively shaped, often fragrant flowers; Clematis   Bamboo (Pleioblastus) produce wonderful woody          berries). Promote on the basis that there’s room
is another garden favourite with its striking flowers      canes and pointed leaves.They thrive in sheltered      for soft fruits almost anywhere. Even for small
and wonderful range of colours. Offer a range of           patio situations.There are lots of flowering gasses    town, balcony and patio gardeners, pots and
trellises and use your display to get the message          to choose from too. Look out for favourites such       containers can be an effective way of growing
across that growing climbers is easy and fun!              as Pennisetum and Miscanthus.                          soft fruit.

                  October                                                 November                                                December
    ‘Green fences and walls’ with hedging plants                    ‘All year appeal’ with Elaeagnus                   ‘Christmas cheer’ with Ilex and Skimmia

Everyone needs to define their property and what           Great gardens look wonderful all year round and        Outdoor decoration is the way to go in the plant
better way to do this than with living boundaries.         it’s easier to achieve than people think. Promote      area this month.There are some wonderful products
Show customers how hedges can provide privacy,             evergreen Elaeagnus this month as a winter interest    on offer now that just beg to be bought. Make sure
shelter, security, cover for wildlife and a buffer to      plant.With their wonderful leaves, which can be        that you present an attractive range of ready-to-
pollution. Hedging packs are a great way of offering       silvery, variegated or attractive, olive green, they   take-away products that customers can give as
plants in a convenient, accessible way. See what           have the potential to enrich the garden at this end    gifts, or use immediately on their own patios.
your supplier can offer you. Some basic categories         of the year, as well as adding valuable structure at   Skimmia japonica ‘Rubella’ is a wonderful plant that
will help. Look at the following examples: thorny          other times. Use the free A4 Garden Messenger          stands out whatever the weather. It’s compact size
plants (Crataegus, Berberis, Ilex); decorative evergreen   ‘Inspiration Boards’ for creating the right mood and   makes it perfect for container growing. Ilex is a
(Buxus, Aucuba); deciduous (Fagus). Now is nature’s        the A5 ‘Clincher Cards’ are great for communicating    classic with so many connections with Christmas
planting time; make the most of it to boost autumn         the essential information to customers and help        that it’s essential stock at this time.
sales in the plantarea.                                    to seal the deal.

                                  “Up to Date” appears twice a year (July and January) and is published by Plant Publicity Holland,
                    PO Box 81, 2770 AB, Boskoop, Holland,Tel: 0031 172 217550, Fax: 0031 172 218350, Email:,Website:
                   UK & Rep. Of Ireland Bureau, PO Box 252, Carlisle, Cumbria CA6 6YA Contacts: Mark and Amanda Long,Tel/Fax: 01228 577277,
                              Email:,Websites: or
                                                  Design and production: KopArt, Amstelveen,The Netherlands

                                                                                                                                            Campaign financed with the assistance
                                                                                                                                            of the European Community