Meadowcroft festival hosts the world premier of trailing pansies

The world's first trailing pansies were introduced by Ball Colegrave at this year's Meadowcroft Pansy and Viola festival.

Hanging pansies Balconita. Image: HW
Hanging pansies Balconita. Image: HW

At a special evening presentation the seed raised Pansy Plentifall and cutting raised Pansy Balconita were unveiled by their breeders.

Introducing Plentifall, Pan American Seed global product manager Scott Rusch (see also p48) said: "This really is a product that will allow growers to give consumers what they want; a basket that will be fully covered in pansy flowers."

Plentifall is a compact early plant that branches well and trails. It has medium-sized flowers and a well branched bushy plant.

It will be available this autumn in Lavender Blue, Purple Wing and White, or as a four-colour mix including yellow. The single-colour yellow will be available for samples later this year.

The introduction was broadly welcomed by growers at the festival who were eager to see a product that could open new markets.

WD Smith & Son owner Roland Smith said: "It's a different product so it will widen the market. It is undoubtedly very promising."

Ball's other major launch was the Balconita, the world's first true trailing Pansy propagated from seed, introduced by renowned breeder David Kerley.

For finished sales in spring 2011 Balconita will be offered in the Balconita Box - a novel hanging presentation format.

It is designed to convey to consumers that this is a premium trailing pansy for containers and hanging baskets and distinct from seed raised pansies.

Kerley said: "It's a new product; a new variety with a new way of marketing it. We hope it says grab me and it is very easy to grow; if you can grow a seed pansy you can grow this."

The Balconita pansies will be available in four colours - meridian blue, cheeky yellow, deep red and white surprise.

The hanging box is made from weather-stable plastic and weather resistant printing on all four sides.

Strong rope handles make it an impulse carry-home package that is ready for instant hanging.

- See p12.

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