Throughout the United States and Canada, demand for special local cut flowers has increased, and production has increased. To accurately assess industry needs, John Dole, Cristian Loyola and Rebecca Dunning electronically surveyed 1,098 producers and cut flower handlers regarding current cut flower production and postharvest problems and customer problems.
Enlightening survey results received careful analysis and were detailed in the article, "North American Special Cut Production and Postharvest Surveys," as found in the open access journal Technology Horta.
Production of cut flowers in the United States and Canada has increased in recent years. Because of this revival, more information is needed about current and post-production problems. This research effort and the resulting article determine the nature of these issues and provide guidance on how to best overcome them using 31 major plant species as templates.
The article also included 99 additional cut flower species and categories planted by active local farmers.
Dole added, "Local involvement with consumers, and cut flower growers have responded by producing hundreds of beautiful and fertile types of flowers. Our research shows that growers and flower handlers face a number of challenges in getting those flowers to their customers."
Of the 1098 surveys sent, the authors received 210 responses, resulting in a response rate of 19%. From that, cross-section data is extrapolated.
The analysis shows that the main production problem that is felt is the management of insects. Harvest time proved to be the second most important problem, and disease management was ranked third.
Harvest time includes a variety of related problems, such as determining the correct harvest stage, harvesting windows that are too short, flowering at once, or lack of control when plants are ready for harvest.
The main postharvest problems are temperature management, hydration, and flower food management. Regarding postharvest handling on agricultural land, hydration and vase life are two of the most mentioned problems.
For postharvest during storage and transportation, damage and hydration are the most frequently reported problems.
Customer complaints were also mapped, by measuring the age of the vase and broken flower petals as the most mentioned problem.
This survey proves the revelation because it will enable researchers and businesses to focus on the main cut flower production and postharvest problems and on the plants that need the most repair in North America.
Material is provided by American Society for Horticulture Sciences. Note: Content can be edited for style and length.