Want to keep up with the latest news in commercial horticulture? Check back every Thursday for a quick recap of recent happenings in the green industry.

Scientists Seek Public Assistance In Tackling Rose Rosette Disease
Halfway through a five-year, $4.6 million grant to combat rose rosette disease in the U.S., the national research team studying it is encouraged by the amount of information learned but admits having a way to go before finding how to overcome the deadly problem. Rose rosette was observed on wild roses as early as the 1940s, but it was not until 2011 that scientists definitively identified the cause as being from a new virus in the novel genus Emaravirus transmitted by the microscopic eriophyid mite, according to Dr. David Byrne. Now the virus is killing commercial rose varieties. Symptoms, which can show up as early as 17 days from exposure to infected mites or as many as 279 days after, include “witches’ brooms, excessive thorniness, enlarged canes, malformed leaves and flowers.” Ultimately, the rose plant dies. The team is pursuing three issues: the virus, the mite and rose plant resistance to the disease, according to Byrne, professor of Rosa and Prunus Breeding and Genetics for Texas A&M AgriLife Research, College Station, and Rose Rosette Disease Project director. And now they are soliciting help from people who like to grow roses as well. To help people learn what to look for, Ong published a series of factsheets available. Several other affected states also have information linked on the rose rosette website.

Western Nursery & Landscape Association Fall Wednesday Webinars
The Western Nursery & Landscape Association’s Wednesday Webinars continue through fall with an impressive list of presenters:

  • Green Cities: Good Health
    • October 25, 12-1 p.m.
    • Kathleen Wolf, University of Washington.
    • Wolf’s work is based on the principle of environmental psychology, and studies explore the human dimensions of open space, urban forestry and natural systems.
  • The Health & Well-being Benefits of Plants
    • November 1, 12-1 p.m.
    • Charlie Hall, Texas A&M University.
    • Hall’s expertise in the production and marketing of Green Industry crops is nationally recognized in academia and among the horticultural clientele he serves. He is an invited speaker at many national and international meetings.
  • Biomimicry
    • November 8, 12-1 p.m.
    • Joe Zazzera, Plant Solutions, Inc.
    • Joe is interested in the crossovers between Biophilia, Biomimicry, Human/Nature connection and Integrated Building Vegetation, obsessed with nature. Registered AIA, ASID CEU provider and USGBC educational provider for the programs “Authentically Green Interiors” and “Living Walls and Green Roofs.” LEED accredited professional through the U.S. Green Building Council.
  • Introduction to Biophilic Design
    • November 15, 12-1 p.m.
    • Rebecca Lindenmeyr, Linden L.A.N.D. Group
    • Rebecca is one of the Northeast’s leading designers exploring the intersection between Nature and Human Living Spaces. She specializes in landscapes and interiors that promote human wellness as well as ecological habitat, clean air and water.
  • Legislative Update
    • November 29, 12-1 p.m.
    • Craig Regelbrugge, AmericanHort
    • As Senior Vice President, Industry Advocacy & Research, Craig says: “I lead our highly talented team of four who are responsible for advocacy and research, as well as relationships with our many organization, coalition, and industry partners. The work is sometimes daunting and sometimes rewarding, always fast paced and interesting, and it’s really satisfying to make a difference in the lives and businesses of our members.”