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Cultivate ’18 Recap

January 2020 | Raegan Garlitz

Each summer, for a few days in July, thousands of horticulture professionals and enthusiasts gather in Columbus Ohio to attend the Cultivate trade show. According to AmericanHort “The Cultivate trade show and conference came to be in 2014, when the well-known OFA Short Course international convention and trade show, which was first held in 1929, was renamed. Presented by AmericanHort, and now known as Cultivate, this is the largest all-industry trade show and convention for the green industry. Cultivate continues the long tradition of being the event to attend to make industry contacts, learn new practices, tour area businesses and conduct business transactions.”

Cultivate’18 marked RainSoil’s fourth time exhibiting at the trade show and we had our best year ever on RainSoil Island (our booth theme). Each year we strive to launch one or two new products. For Cultivate’18 we went above and beyond. Not only did we release two new products, we were also joined by our new sales team members and invited guest speakers.

New sales team members included Mr. Danny Brooks and Mr. Tim Meyers. Danny’s family owned and operated a general store turned garden center in Georgia from 1928 to 1996 and he brings over 20 years of professional horticulture and sales experience to RainSoil and its customers. When he’s not working you’re likely to find Danny spending time on his farm with his wife Jody, their dog, Tanner, their horses, Dusty and Rado, and their donkey, Taco. You may even hear Danny playing the guitar. Tim lives in Rockwall, TX and brings over 15 years of horticulture sales experience to RainSoil. When he’s not working you’ll likely find him with his wife Shelley and their dogs Dakota and Lola; tending to their horses Crouton, Wild Fire and Aspen; spending time with their children and grandchildren; or all the above.

Education was plentiful on RainSoil Island at this year’s Cultivate trade show. We held our inaugural RainSoil Rendezvous. During all events where we had a booth, we invited researchers and industry experts for quick meet-and-greet, FAQ sessions, and short presentations on some of the latest findings in the horticulture industry! At Cultivate’18, our invited speakers included Dr.’s Peter Konjoian and Wendy Zellner.

For nearly three decades, Peter has combined the best of both worlds, working in his family greenhouse as well as helping fellow growers find new ways to increase their productivity and take their operations, and their crops to the next level. He earned a bachelor’s degree in plant sciences from the University of New Hampshire, then his master’s degree and PhD in horticulture from the Ohio State University. He created his research and consulting business, Konjoian’s Horticulture Education Services, Inc. in 1992 in Andover, MA. He stopped by the booth to address questions on conducting successful trials at the grower level.

Dr. Wendy Zellner has pioneered silicon research in North America, devoting her career to understanding and developing this beneficial plant nutrient – and helping growers leverage its benefits across a range of crops. She earned her bachelor’s degree in biology and her PhD in cellular and molecular biology at the University of Toledo, served as a research plant physiologist for USDA-ARS and currently studies silicon and its role in stress responses as a research associate professor for the University of Toledo. Wendy spent quite a bit of time on RainSoil Island and allowed attendees to pick her brain for the best ways to maximize the use of silicon for crop production. 

Last, but certainly not least… new products. For Cultivate’18, we introduced RainSoil SS (Super Soil) and InvigoRoot. RainSoil SS is a powerful proprietary soil ingredient blend that contains premium expanded coconut coir, a surfactant and a superabsorbent polymer. In RainSoil SS, we designed a blend of our professional grade ingredients to provide plants with optimum water-retention, drainage and nutrition. Along with 100% coconut coir, this powerful potting soil leverages some of RainSoil’s revolutionary ingredients, including beneficial silicon from Sitality™ fertilizer and water-saving technology from AcceleWET® surfactant and Retain superabsorbent polymer. Use it as a superior growing medium for flowers, edibles, turf and more.

Whether from seed or vegetative cuttings, successful cropping requires both rapid and uniform rooting. Poor or delayed rooting can increase crop variability and timing of both starting and finished material. Additionally, poor and/or delayed rooting can increase problems from pest, diseases and nutrition. RainSoil introduced InvigoRoot, a powerful new root enhancer that promotes early root establishment and transplant stress tolerance without hormones or growth stimulators. InvigoRoot uses a specific amino acid complex to initiate root activity and plant development during the crop’s early growth stages. InvigoRoot works by activating the plant’s SAR (systemic acquired resistance) pathways. It advances the initial stages of development, so plants flower faster, and helps maintains the balance between above and below ground parts of plants—between root and shoot growth. An added benefit: InvigoRoot does not stimulate leggy shoot growth and will not leave unsightly residue on leaves.

Thank you to everyone who spent time with us at Cultivate’18. We appreciate the opportunity to earn your business. What’s in store for Cultivate’19? You’ll just have to wait and see. Keep growing and make it a good day!

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