January 15, 2015

(EDISON, NJ) – The landscape season is just around the corner, and the 5th Annual NJ Professional Landscape & Nursery Trade Show (NJ PLANTS) is set to showcase the region’s leading horticultural and landscape experts on January 27 – 28. The prestigious trade show and conference is slated for the New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center in Edison, New Jersey.

“This event, which has expanded every year, is a destination for everyone in the industry,” said Kevin McLaughlin of MAC Events, the show’s producer. “It provides not only unparalleled business-to-business networking, but also a wide-ranging and relevant program of educational seminars.”

The show draws together landscape professionals, garden center owners, nursery growers, suppliers and commercial groundskeepers to exchange ideas and develop connections that could make the season ahead more profitable.

Landscape contractors and designers will have a chance to preview the spring inventories of more than three dozen wholesale nurseries, many with useful specialties. Chief Mountain Farms from Port Deposit, MD focuses on native and wet land plants; Pleasant Run Nursery in Allentown specializes in new plant introductions and unusual woody ornamentals and Blue Sterling in Bridgeton has an expansive catalog of unique conifers.

Although commercial horticulture leads the state’s agricultural sector, the show’s regional reach stretches beyond just New Jersey. The Perennial Farm, with locations in six Northeast states, has a huge inventory and a “Custom Grow” program to give designers exactly what they want.

Snow removal, for instance, is a major off-season revenue generator for many landscape professionals. Independent garden centers are also a big focus of the show since these businesses are where retail consumers often look first for plants, landscape supplies and expert advice. “Industry professionals can come to this event and find everything they need in one place,” McLaughlin says, stating a primary goal of NJ PLANTS.

Knowledge is key as well in this burgeoning industry, and MAC Events is partnering with the New Jersey Nursery and Landscape Association and Rutgers Continuing Education to present an extensive program of educational seminars. Scheduled speakers include world-renowned horticulturalist Dr. Alan Armitage; Lloyd Tavern of Peace Tree Farm; natural stone and ornamental grasses expert Bruce Crawford; landscape consultant Marcus vandeVliet; Jeff Weld of Bayer CropScience; Internet marketing expert May Ly; pesticide safety expert Patricia Hastings; Mike Reed of Holganix; Paul Kurtz of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture; to name a few.

“Our seminars have multiple tracks focusing on a wide range of issues, everything from attracting more customers, to understanding turf grass pests, best business practices, new and unique annuals and perennials,” said Dominick Mondi, Executive Director of the New Jersey Nursery & Landscape Association. “The educational program will also offer New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Delaware Pesticide License Credits, as well as Continuing Education Credits [CEUs] for attendees.”

Another highlight of NJ PLANTS will he the New Jersey State Board of Agriculture’s annual North Jersey Open Meeting, scheduled for 1 p.m. on Wednesday, January 28. Members of the public are invited to attend the meeting and bring up any issues of concern. The session, the first time the Board will be holding the North Jersey meeting at NJ PLANTS, will be immediately followed by the Board’s regular monthly meeting, devoted to Board business and reports.

MAC Events, a division of Townsquare Media, has been producing trade and consumer shows, including home shows, flower and garden shows, and women’s expos for more than 40 years. For more information on NJ PLANTS, or to register for the event, visit www.njplantshow.com, call (732) 449-4004, or e-mail kevint@townsquaremedia.com.

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