NL: The Celosia, a colourful appearance

Staff
4 Min Read

Celosia, with its colorful appearance, is a lesser-known but fast-growing product on the market. To strengthen their position, Dutch Celosia growers are working with Royal Flora Holland and breeder Evanthia to raise awareness of their product. This collaboration and associated campaign is called “Crazy About Celosia” (www.crazyaboutcelosia.com). One of the growers involved is Gert-Jan Klop of Kwekerij de Molenkamp, who has been growing Celosia for about eight years.

Developments
“Ten years ago, the crop had a shorter shelf life and was more vulnerable. It was also a fairly unknown product, especially to consumers. Within the trade, it is now a well-known product, but it remains an exclusive flower,” says Gert-Jan.

“Here, the product thrives with 13 hours of darkness and 11 hours of light. You have to adjust your darkening in the hot months, but you can still grow Celosia well in the dark months,” he explains. It takes a lot of knowledge to grow Celosia, as it is not a simple crop. “It requires a lot of time and energy, but in summer it is almost energy-neutral to grow.”

Sustainability
As sustainability and organic products become increasingly important, Celosia cultivation follows the trend. “We are fully committed to organic cultivation and only use chemicals if a pest or disease threatens to get out of control. We also installed hybrid lighting in the greenhouse last year and have plans to go full-LED. We just need to save a bit more,” laughs Gert-Jan. Celosia is an intensive crop that needs extra space in the greenhouse and requires a certain level of growing skills. The crop needs space, resulting in relatively low amount of flowers per square meter. With rising costs, it’s a challenge for growers. “It’s a challenge, but at the same time, that’s the game. We set our prices a year in advance. We do at least 60% direct sales and a maximum of 40% goes to the auction. In this respect, Celosia growers are progressive.”

Collaboration
“For our Celosias, we like to collaborate with Evanthia. Evanthia is the market leader in Celosia, controlling about 90% of the market and providing us with a broad color palette and extensive range,” says Gert-Jan. They currently have six colors available year-round, so they can always offer buyers something. As the only grower in the Netherlands, Kwekerij de Molenkamp grows the variety Ziva, a pink variety from the Act series, which is a nice addition to their assortment and offers a good market position.

Domestic and international
Kwekerij de Molenkamp supplies throughout Western Europe, with England remaining their biggest market. Supply from the Netherlands is from April to December. From Spain and Italy, where smaller quantities are supplied, the delivery period is slightly longer. The majority of the supplies come from the Netherlans, as supplies from Italy, Spain, and Kenya mainly go to the local market.

For more information:
Molenkamp Nursery
https://crazyaboutcelosia.com/
[email protected]

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