Growing interest in Portugal

The ornamentals sector in Europe reports significant interest in growers of bulbs, cacti, young plants, perennials and grasses and horticultural supply and agtech companies to invest for the long term in Portugal. The International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) will host its spring meeting in Lisbon between 15-17 March, while the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) is checking the feasibility of a horticultural trade mission which could help win horticultural companies win business in Portugal.

In hall 6 at the recently held IPM Essen show in Germany, industry professionals could hear first-hand from Frederico Pinheiro Chagas, general manager of the 30ha ViPlant nursery, how to successfully grow Mediterranean plants and run garden centres in the Algarve. Labour is cheaper, and the Algarve’s climate is benign, but access to irrigation water can be challenging.

Also exhibiting in Portugal’s country pavilion was the 40ha Monterosa Viveiros, situated over five sites across the country, four in southern Moncarapacho and one in Perosinho, Northern Portugal. José Dâmaso and Eduardo Martins run Monterosa, respectively, commercial director and general manager of the firm that offers garden centres and wholesalers an excellent plant range including Mediterranean plants, succulents, potted herbs, gourmet vegetables, climbers, grasses and trees.

The Portuguese climate is well suited to growing ornamental grasses, with Stauden Peters from Germany running a production site – Colossus Plant – in Colos, Portugal. The third-generation producer of ornamental grasses and perennials from Niederrhein, Germany, grows an excessive range of ornamental grasses in 6-packs, and pot sizes 10,5cm, 14cm, 3-litre pots and 6-litre pots, sold under the Elegrass brand.

The fourth exhibitor in the Portugal Fresh pavilion, Schroll Flavours is an offspring of the famed Danish/German Hydrangea breeder and grower Schroll. Founded in 2018 in Lagoa, Algarve, the organic herb grower offers wholesale customers and garden centres a vast range of basil, thyme, mint, dill and chives.

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