June 15, 2008
The following is a report on the Provincial Board meeting held March 13, 2008 at Canada Blooms in Toronto.


Gerry Ginsberg, general manager of Canada Blooms, informed the board about new initiatives at Blooms, including Industry Night, the partnerships with VIA Rail, CN Tower, City of Toronto and Communities in Bloom.

Josie Wintersinger of the Christmas Tree Growers Association presented her organization’s request to be brought under the umbrella of Landscape Ontario as a commodity group. The Christmas Tree Growers feel they would benefit from closer integration with LO. Initially, the Christmas Tree Growers are to be a sub-group of the Growers Commodity Group.

Donald Ziraldo and Debbie Whitehouse presented plans for the new Vineland Centre for Innovation and urged LO to take a leadership role in the project. One of the focuses of the rejuvenated centre is to promote and advance the ornamental horticulture industry, which ties in with LO plans. The Vineland centre received $12.5 million in funds from the provincial government this year, with another $12.5 million allocated in the new budget. The business plan is available at www.vinelandontario.ca.

Branding Committee update

Laurie Scullen from Floragem was introduced and presented a consumer branding proposal for LO. The challenge of the program is to develop a public message that all members from all commodities may adopt and co-brand along with their own company. The message will be tested on the public this spring, and formally launched at Canada Blooms in 2009.

Prosperity Partners

Jacki Hart gave the board an update on the Prosperity Partners initiative. Representatives from 50 companies attended one of her introductory seminars. There are now 20 mentors available. The goal of the program is to improve business skills in the green industry.

Membership Committee

Paul Doornbos, chair of the membership committee, explained the review of membership categories. The committee hopes to streamline and simplify the membership process and remove any redundancies.

Garden show at Ontario Place

LO is involved in the planning and promotion of a world class flower and garden show on the lakefront in Toronto, proposed as the catalyst for the renewal of Ontario Place. The proposed event would coincide with the 40th anniversary of Ontario place in 2011.