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Meilland Kenya - Fit for the Future

There are lots of exciting developments at Meilland (Kenya) that should make it easy for growers to visit and select the right varieties.

By: THURSD. | 01-05-2024 | 6 min read
Roses Floral Events
Alina Neacsa with Meilland rose bouquet

Meilland (Kenya) is running into 2024 at pace, with lots of exciting developments and the team has been busy getting ready for IFTEX! With a showhouse at Penta Flowers in Thika (approximately 45km from Nairobi, Kenya) they want to make it easy for growers to visit and select the right varieties. There are lots of developments to see in the showhouse that the Meilland team is excited to share. Meilland is really trying to go that extra mile for its growers! Here's how.

Meilland Kenya & Meilland International

To get a better understanding of the role Meilland Kenya plays, its Area Manager Rowan Godfrey explains:

"Meilland Kenya represents the major cut rose business for Meilland International. Beyond first selections which are carried out in France, all selections for cut roses are carried out in Kenya. If there is an interest in planting Meilland cut rose varieties in other countries, particularly in Africa, that material will often come from Kenya.

There are regular visits from the French breeding team to Kenya to undertake selections, and the strategy for Meilland (Kenya) is agreed upon at a top level within Meilland.

I have been the Area Manager for Meilland (Kenya) since September 2023. My job is to ensure our showhouses are maintained in good order at all times, represent us with the growers in Kenya, and drive the selection of our varieties. I regularly visit growers to keep up to date on our trials and commercial crop performance, and to keep up with the general developments at a farm level and at an industry level so that we have a holistic picture of what is happening at any given time.

In short: it is my responsibility to understand what our growers and their customers want, and try and help tailor our selections to those trends. I am fully available to our growers and work hard to keep them up to date with developments at Meilland."

 

Rowan Godfrey from Meilland Kenya
Rowan Godfrey from Meilland (Kenya)

 

New Ways of Working

Coming from a background in the supply of retail roses, Area Manager Rowan Godfrey brings a different perspective to Meilland (Kenya), and that influence carries forward into this breeder's selections.

Rowan:

"Part of maintaining a show house is renewing the selection of varieties to maintain a level of novelty and excitement and developing the presentation of the showhouse. I like varieties to be type and color blocked, and to follow a strict development process. We have been replanting the showhouses both at Penta Flowers in Thika and Uhuru in Timau to align with these objectives.

We are also in the process of updating the presentation of the showhouses with additional labeling for greater clarity and other initiatives."

 

Rose Lady Forte by Alina Neacsa
Rose Meichneder Lady Forte® by @Alina Neacsa

 

Popular Kenyan Meilland Varieties

You might recognize many famous rose names that come from Meilland. Take, for instance, the Rose varieties Meiwangy Lovely Pink® or Keimassay Cerise Success®, both highly productive intermediate Roses. Or the pure white and highly scented garden-style Rose, Meichneder Lady Forte®. And don't forget their wonderful spray roses, such as AyaNo4 Gypsy® Rose with her many small delicate pink flowers and, the light pink Meidjanot Baby Folies® which has a garden-style opening.

 

Spray Rose Baby Folies by Meilland Kenya
Spray Rose Meidjanot Baby Folies®

 

Meilland is moving from a 'flushing' system to a 'continuous harvest' for most varieties. But what does this mean?

Rowan:

"The idea is that when it is convenient for you to visit the showhouse — you are in Nairobi and have a couple of hours to spare — there should be flowers to see. While varieties will come in and out of production, most days of the year there should be a solid selection to view and select from. The areas of commercial and pre-commercial varieties planted are also larger, allowing for quicker reactions to budwood requests."

 

Spray Rose Alina Perfumella
Spray Rose Meirvingaye Alina Perfumella in a box by Alina Neacsa

 

Continuous harvesting also gives a clearer view when walking through the showhouse on varietal performance, as with some exceptions the majority of commercial roses are grown on continuous harvest.

So, there should always be something to see at the Meilland showhouse at Penta Flowers in Thika.

 

Rose Eureka bouquet in vase by Pauline Arkesteijn
Meilland's Rose Meinipura Eureka® design by Pauline Arkesteijn

 

A Clear Route to Colors and Varieties

The next improvement is that there are now clear areas within the showhouse for the different Rose types. If you are a grower interested in spray roses, you go directly to the sprays, without spending time passing the standard or garden roses first. Meilland wants to maximize the efficiency of your visit!

The same applies to your color selection. Did you know that many wholesalers and florists in the floral industry work more with colors rather than with varieties? It makes sense, right, to start creating floral arrangements based on a color palette. Meilland understands this and has, therefore where possible blocked colors together to allow for clear navigation through the selection.

 

Rose Honey Colorama bouquet by Tarmo Noormets
Rose Meimustrad Honey Colorama® bouquet by @tarmonoormets

 

The Meilland Kenya team has been busy replanting through the early part of 2024, with the aim of being ready for IFTEX and they are truly excited to share all the developments with you!

 

Spray Rose Gypsy Rose bouquet in vase by Lisa Casta
Meilland's Spray Rose AyaNo4 Gypsy® Rose bouquet by Lisa Casta

 

Come & See the Next Level Meilland in Kenya

It's almost time for IFTEX 2024, so a great opportunity to show your face at Meilland's booth D3.12 from Tuesday 4th to Thursday 6th of June.

 

Rose Moshi Moshi by Meilland Kenya
A sneak peek at Rose Meilomeilo Moshi Moshi® at Meilland (Kenya)

 

Before, during, and after the IFTEX, Meilland invites you to come and see what all this means for yourself, at its showhouse at Penta Flowers in Thika. There are plenty of new and interesting varieties to see, a real treat for any grower or floral adept.

Rowan:

"We are making quite a significant change to our IFTEX display for 2024 – come to the stand and find out. Our showhouse is open throughout (with prior notice) and either myself or our greenhouse supervisor will be available to accompany you during your visit."

A few sneak peeks already, perhaps?

 

Rose Lovely Pink by Meilland Kenya
Rose Meiwangy Lovely Pink®

 

Please contact Rowan Godfrey (Area Manager, Meilland Kenya) to arrange visits to the Meilland Showhouse, and for all other queries:
Rowan Godfrey
P: +254 793 522 984
E: [email protected]

 

Header and feature of Garden Rose Alina Perfumella image by @alina_neacsa.

 

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