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News roundup: Village Nurseries donates plants for irrigation trials
Jill Odom | December 4, 2017
plant trials

Photo: UC Davis

Village Nurseries has donated 300 plants to the University of California Plant Irrigation Trials to help determine the water needs of various plants.

There will be two trials with one at UC Davis and one at the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) South Coast Research and Extension Center in Irvine. The goal is to collect information on the water use of landscape plants in both locations.

The plants will be evaluated for their potential as good performers in low-water-use gardens that have to meet California’s mandatory landscape ordinances for water conservation.

“These trials were initiated to develop information of landscape plant water use under experimental conditions and to fill a void of information on urban water conservation regarding how to irrigate landscape plants,” said Lorence R. Oki, UC Davis CE specialist and co-director of UC Nursery & Floriculture Alliance. “With recurring drought in California, this information can be used to develop specific and detailed irrigation programs.”

The plants are installed in the fall and are allowed to get established on regular irrigation. The second summer after planting, the plants are exposed to different irrigation treatments. Measurements are taken every month, and growth and quality is evaluated. These evaluations and measurements are used at the end of the second year to determine the irrigation recommendations for each plant.

“Village Nurseries has always been about providing the very best plants to landscape architects, designers and contractors; we’ll be there,” said Nicholas Staddon, Village Nurseries plantsman. “It’s not just about the end result; it’s also about observing the plants throughout the trial period. The University offers regular dates where the design community and other interested parties can examine how plants are faring in the field.”

The varieties donated for the plant trials include Cotoneaster d. ‘Coral Beauty’; Cotoneaster d. ‘Lowfast’; Rhaphiolepis umbellata ‘RutRhaph1’ PP# 20730 Southern Moon; Muhlenbergia capillaris ‘Irvine’ Plumetastic; Rosa ‘Meiradena’ Icecap; and Acacia cognata ‘ACCOG01’ Cousin Itt.

“Our goal is to bring the very best landscape plants suited for the region,” Staddon said. “Work with the University of California will greatly aid in making this happen.”

The project’s principal investigator is Karrie Reid, the UC Cooperative Extension Environmental Horticulture advisor in San Joaquin County, along with project manager Jared Sisneroz. The information gathered from the trials can be viewed here.

Ariens partners with Green Bay Packers to sponsor hill at Titletown

The community development that is across the street from Lambeau Field now has a sponsor for its tubing hill, thanks to Ariens partnering with the Green Bay Packers.

Titletown has a large public park, winter skating rink and a tubing hill. Ariens Hill will be used as a tubing hill during the winter, but in the summer months it will serve as a sloped green space for visitors to relax on.

“Our partnership with the Green Bay Packers and our sponsorship of Ariens Hill is a great fit for our brands and our company,” said Dan Ariens, Ariens Company chairman & CEO. “We’re looking forward to Ariens Hill becoming a destination for families and the community to come together, enjoy the outdoors and have fun.”

The hill is 46 feet tall and has three tubing lanes that run 300 feet from start to finish. Tubes are returned to the top of the hill via an automated system and riders can reach the top via stairs or elevators. Three snow-making machines and grooming equipment will maintain optimal tubing conditions.

Ariens Hill also houses 46 Below and Rockwood Terrace. 46 Below is a restaurant that can serve 80 guests and Rockwood Terrace can accommodate 200 guests for events such as weddings.

“We’re excited to partner with Ariens Company for the hill in Titletown,” said Mark Murphy, Packers president/CEO. “Ariens is well-known in Wisconsin and around the world for its snow blowers and lawn mowers. People will benefit from the use of Ariens Hill year-round.”

The opening date for the hill will be determined in the upcoming weeks. A ribbon cutting ceremony will be held as soon as weather is favorable for making snow on the hill.

ASV adds to dealer network in Ohio

ASV Holdings Inc., a manufacturer or compact track loaders and skid steers, has added National First Equipment, LLC, to its dealer network.

logo for national first equipmentThe company is based in Berea, Ohio, and rents, sells and services a number of compact construction equipment including skid steer, dozers, mini excavators, backhoes and wheel loaders.

“We’ve always focused on providing high-quality equipment and after-sales support to landscapers, do-it-yourselfers and small contractors,” said Larry Mahnen, National First Equipment general manager. “The ASV equipment was a natural fit. The line allows us to expand into offering new equipment while staying true to our focus on serving our customers’ compact equipment needs.”

National will offer all ASV Posi-Track compact track loaders as well as the company’s full line of skid-steer loaders.

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