Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maritime Provinces, Ontario, Quebec

Mark your calendar for the Northeast Regional Meeting at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY on July 27. The meeting will coincide with the Cornell Floriculture Open House and Field Day. We will have talks directed at cut flower growers in our region. Watch your mail for information on the program and lodging (if you plan to spend the night). I hope we can also have a short organizational meeting to discuss possible replacements for me as Regional Director and what we can do in the Region to promote networking and better meet membership needs.
    
This is my last year as Northeast Regional Director. I would encourage interested members to run for this position. There is a lot to learn by being on the Board. There are two Board meetings a year in which you get to network with an interesting group of growers. Members of the Board always have interesting takes on both the ASCFG and the growing cut flowers. At Board meetings, you often get to visit local cut flower farms. You can also have a significant influence on the future of the organization.  
    
When I joined the Board about 2 ½ years ago it was making a transition from what was an essentially educational organization to a trade organization. I think that the Board overall felt that the ASCFG had to go beyond just offering information and had to offer it members more marketing information and marketing opportunities. The ASCFG has had a problem throughout its history of attracting and retaining larger growers.  The mix of larger and smaller growers is essential to the health of the ASCFG. A robust national conference, a meaningful trade show and access to the cultural and postharvest information we all need depends on this mix.
    
Last year we published a Buyers’ Guide in order to open new marketing opportunities to our growers who ship or want to ship flowers to customers.  I think the guide was a moderate success. Its chief problem was that it was not easy for potential buyers to use. The number of fruitless calls buyers made to find a particular flower on a particular date frustrated them.  We are trying to remedy this in the new edition by including availability dates.

Ed Pincus, Third Branch Flower, LLC Box 72, 111 Pincus Road Roxbury, VT 05669-0072 (802) 485-8428 phone (802) 485-8429 fax [email protected]