September 15, 2013
The 2013 Industry Auction was as much about celebration and history, as it was raising funds and plant material, when Sheridan Nurseries hosted the Aug. 14 event.

As part of Sheridan’s 100th anniversary celebrations, the company arranged tours of its Georgetown operation, which attracted a large number of industry members. As well, a barn was filled with historical items, with Sheridan’s Larry Sherk providing commentary.

Lunch provided by Sheridan was from local suppliers, with the big hit being assorted pies provided by the local church ladies.

The annual auction helps raise money for horticultural research and scholarships. An exact total was unknown at press time.

The Growers’ Awards of Excellence entries were judged in the morning and the winners announced at the end of the auction. An Awards of Excellence certificate went to each of the 12 winning lots, which were then auctioned. The winners will be recognized during the garden centre event held at the Toronto Congress Centre on Oct. 23, in conjunction with Expo.

Special appreciation goes to the dedicated members of the awards judging panel, who offered their time and expertise: Jen Llewellyn, OMAF; Michael Pascoe, Fanshawe College; Glen Lumis of the University of Guelph; Len Mancini of Holland Park Garden Gallery; Rita Weerdenburg, CNLA; Sean Fox, University of Guelph Arboretum; and Perry Grobe, Grobe Nursery. See the complete list of winners below.

On hand to welcome visitors to the event were 1st vice president of Landscape Ontario Dave Braun, who represented LO and the Growers Sector Group. He was joined by Karl and Bill Stensson of  Sheridan Nurseries.

“I would like to thank our generous host and lunch sponsor, Sheridan Nurseries. We appreciate all of the effort from their outstanding staff, and would like to take a moment to celebrate with them 100 years in this business.
Outstanding!” said Braun.  

“On behalf of Landscape Ontario, I would like to thank Sheridan Nurseries, Karl, Valerie, Bill, Bart, Brenda and all of the staff here for an outstanding event today,” stated Braun, when he presented a special plaque which was accepted by Karl Stensson.

In honour of Sheridan’s 100th, organizers went back to past auctions that had the auctioneer remain inside the building, while skids for bidding were presented one pallet at a time. Sheridan drivers were kept busy removing and dropping the next skid throughout the auction.

Jeanine West from Phytoserve was on-hand to discuss the Canadian Nursery Certification Institute’s Clean Plants program.

Hard working volunteers included Christine Stein, Direct Solutions; Gerwin Bouman, Stam Nurseries; Dave Braun, Braun Nurseries; Harry DeVries, John Mantel, Connon/AVK Holdings; Bill Putzer, M. Putzer Hornby Nursery; Darby McGrath, Vineland Research and Innovation Centre; Jeanine West and Glen Lumis. Special thanks go to John Moons, Connon/NVK Holdings, for again looking after operations at the auction. “The event would not be the same without him,” said Kristen McIntyre, auction coordinator. “Jim McCartney again provided his always humourous addition and a sense of fun to the event.”

Along with some great prices on high-end plant material, those taking part in the bidding process also had a chance to win a Samsung Galaxy Note, donated by Plant Products. The winner was John Albrecht, John’s Nursery.

Auction donors

Products for the auction were generously donated by the following companies: Agrium Advanced Technologies, Braun Nursery, Cameron’s Brewing, Canadale Nurseries, Coivic Specimen Trees, Connon Nurseries/NVK Holdings, Direct Solutions (AAT), Downham Nurseries, Dutchmaster Nurseries, Eagle Ridge Golf Course, Eloquip, Everris, Hillen Nursery, JM Peeters Nursery, Kam’s Growers Supply, Langendoen Nurseries, Mori Nurseries, Plant Products, Proven Winners, Sheridan Nurseries, Somerville Nurseries, Terra Cotta Inn, The Cellar Steak and Seafood Restaurant, Timm Enterprises, Vineland Estates, Willowbrook Nurseries and Winkelmolen
  Caption: Judges Glen Lumis and Jennifer Llewellyn were kept busy judging plants at the annual Industry Auction. A display by Willowbrook Nurseries received the Judges’ Choice Award.