Agricultural research generally, and plant trials specifically, can be both expensive and time consuming. Among the many industry partnerships that help support CSU research is the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture’s relationship with Plant Select, the country’s leading source of plants designed to thrive in High Plains and Intermountain regions.
Over the last five years, Plant Select has provided over $150,000 for new plant trials at the Plant Environmental Research Center, for demonstration gardens at the Remington Street location, and for shrub and tree trials at multiple sites throughout Colorado. In 2014 alone, Plant Select provided over $30,000 to research conducted through the department.
A flourishing partnership
“’Colorado State University’s partnership with Plant Select has flourished from the very beginning of this collaborative program. It has provided revenue for critical plant evaluation research, student research opportunities and demonstration gardens for all the citizens of Colorado to view,” said Horticulture and Landscape Architecture Professor and Extension Landscape Horticulturist, James Klett. “This partnership also provides gardeners in the state and region with the right plants for our climate, meaning a greater chance of overall successful gardening.”
Through this collaboration, CSU researchers have been able to identify and promote perennials, shrubs, groundcovers and trees which are regionally and nationally durable and resilient choices that use less water and fewer resources and have a more positive environmental impact.
Valuable resource for consumers and industry
Not only do these programs benefit consumers by helping them make better choices in planting but the trials are also a resource for local and regional independent horticultural business. Winning plants in the program are produced and sold at the wholesale and retail level throughout the country. Sales reported in 2014 totaled over 1.7 million plants.
Plant Select also provides funding to the Denver Botanic Gardens and has contributed over $170,000 over the last five years for new plant trials at the Chatfield location; for seed collection, germination trials, stock plant production and tissue culture research at the York Street location, and for plant exploration in Mongolia, Kazakhstan and Argentina.
For more information on Plant Select, please visit the Plant Select website.