Director David Wales, responsible for sales and marketing, said the range runs from formats ranging from six-packs such as the compact Pinky & Perky to individual two-litre pots such as the vigorous four-colour Spring Titan series, possible additions to which were also on show.
Nearly all have been bred by Norwich-based Howard Lupton, who continues to push the range in novel directions, including selection work on cowslips (P. veris) "to make them more grower- friendly", said Wales.
The compact range coded VRHPCWx63 consists of "nine or ten" shades of ruffled flowers that "have the potential for a series in 10.5cm pots", he added. "But it can take five years to get to a commercial product - you may get lucky or it may be difficult to fix. There are so many boxes to tick and it has to work for the customer and the grower."
Deep-red rosebud-type VRH-PRI-AAU and violet AAX "have a nice strong colour but need work to make them more uniform", he said, while small-flowered VRH23x2 "has some special colour combinations within the same plant and these will be the beginning of a new series". He added: "If you can breed in scent, that's a real plus-point."
Explaining VRH's position in the market, Wales said: "The major breeders are focused on an F1 commodity crop for the volume market. We are focused on providing added-value products for the UK market that will never hit those volumes, but the margins we can offer are so much better."
He said rosebud types "while not unique to the UK, are more interesting for the UK consumer", and added: "Eighty per cent of the plant-buying public is female and they prefer things like (the purple ipomoea-like) Morning Glory, which is quite different to anything else."