Len Busch Roses Preparing Poinsettias for the Holiday Season
The holiday season traditionally kicks off in late November, but in a Plymouth warehouse, Thanksgiving and Christmas have been on their minds for months.
“Roughly, yeah,” said Mandy Bergin, a Len Busch Roses employee.
On a recent Tuesday, Bergin was hard at work getting poinsettias ready for the next step in their growth process.
“Right now, what we’re doing is we’re kind of taking the tallest plant down to the smallest one, and then we put on these little cages to help them grow a little bit bigger than what they are now,” she said.
Once the plants get their cages, Bergin places them on a conveyor belt. Then, a mechanical arm moves them onto a large tray that spaces them out to precise specifications.
Len Busch Roses Planning to Ship Poinsettias by Thanksgiving
With Thanksgiving less than two months away, it’s a task that takes up a lot of Bergin’s time.
“A lot,” Bergin said with a laugh. “I don’t know exactly how many we’ve done so far, but I know we’ve done a lot.”
When she says “a lot,” it’s something you have to see to believe.
“There is 150,000 poinsettias,” said Sara Bacon, Len Busch Roses’ production planner.
Much of the joy that comes from the holidays is derived from the colorful decorations of the season, and poinsettias make up a big part of that.
But getting to that point requires months of tender loving care before they hit store shelves.
‘A Lot of Math Involved’
“There’s a lot of math involved, not just in the spacing, but the timing of the decisions, the decision to spray if needed,” Bacon said. “Also, when these plants move from where they were in the light to out here in the dark.”
Many of these poinsettias were first planted in July, and as long as the technicians give them enough room to grow and provide them with the proper attention, they’ll soon turn the familiar shade of red.
By mid-November, the plants will be ready for the next step of their journey.
“On average, 26 weeks we look at these, so when it comes time to start painting, sparkling, harvesting, it’s kind of like, time to go,” Bacon said with a laugh.
There’s still one more step before the staff members at Len Busch Roses are ready to ship off the poinsettias. That part of the process will begin in mid-November.