Gov't Scrutinizes Container Sizes

anneb(z6 Plymouth, MA)April 21, 2005

Hopefully I will link this article in today's Wall Street Journal properly for anyone who wants to read it. If not I apologize in advance! I found it interesting and thought others might as well...

The article talks of Regulators forcing plant companies to include actual volume information on their labels, ie 1 gallon size that does not hold 1 gallon, etc.,,SB111404209049012684,00.html?mod=todays_us_personal_journal

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It's about time. Not that I'm for additional restrictions, but most of my product goes out the door sight unseen. I relay verbally the container sizes and when I say it's in a gallon is. Then the customer compares it to a "gallon" price they got somewhere else. One time I got a chance to see what they ended up with and the material they got was in FOUR INCH POTS! Four inch pots? How on earth could a vendor even consider calling them gallon containers?

It all boils down to the old maxim, if you don't regulate your own business, then somebody will step in and do it for you.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2005 at 7:50PM
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Here in Pa, you could not give an untrue volume as pot size starting last year. We use unside diameter now. However the box stores, and a lot of nurseries have not found out yet.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 5:01PM
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Yeah, just like labeling. LOL. Ever notice how all houseplants are labeled "house plants" and they all have the same cultural guidelines. All foliage is labeled "foliage". It cracks me up.

One of my hardgoods brokers gave a synopsis of the new truth in container laws on the first page of their catalog. I found it helpful.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 8:38PM
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Calliope, LOL

The same with cacti and succulents. Even the garden centers will bring in euphorbias et al and label them all under 'cactus'.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 10:21PM
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miss_rumphius_rules(z6 NJ)

And that folks is why almost all of the clothing you buy today is labeled 'Dry Clean Only'. It's called low labeling and makes it easier for manufacturers to comply with the clothing care labeling laws. Same thing w/plant labels.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2005 at 7:30AM
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mdaughn(zone 7)

There is an "Industry Guide to Marketing Container Plants" downloadable that is supposed to be a helpful guide. I haven't had time to read it but it looks to be thorough.
Click on industry guide on the Green Profit home page.

Here is a link that might be useful: Industry Guide to Marketing Container Plants

    Bookmark   April 25, 2005 at 12:30PM
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deeproots(8b South Ga)

i despise laws, but this doesn't seem like a bad one.
Lowes sells "gallon" plants that are in what appears to be round quart containers.
hard to compete when I use true gallons for most plants.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2005 at 8:15PM
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Question: Why do they give "generic" labels on plants, is it just to comply with label laws? Is it bad to buy an azalea, for instance, that doesn't give a cultiver? I see this a lot at big box stores and wonder if it's an inferior plant already and they just don't want to bring attention to that fact with the label. I know the arguement,also, about inferior plants anyways at big box stores, but I only buy when the plant meets my criteria. I find healthy plants there, but only when they first arrive. OTOH, I have found sickly plants at prominent nurseries charging top dollar. You just have to know what to look for. Sorry for the off tracking.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2005 at 12:28PM
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AgastacheMan(z7 CA)

ya, rebel people rebel. Its like in the state of Oregon, they are trying to pass terms for selling prune trees as dried plum trees....and when someone is eating filberts and someone else says "How are your hazlenuts",,,or ya, like when you go into the grocery store and see tomatoe's in the vegetable section, ya, that should be outlawed...or labeling that says Proven Winners or Gro-Great, and then they die, whats with that...or when you go to these big name places that are tearing down mom and pop nurseries like Home Depot or Lowes, and you buy a annual and it dies after the year, and there plant guranteee says any plant, and they don't replace it, whats with that( I actually pranked them once and called them up,,,,they weren't nice about it either, and no, I didn't buy an annual either.) or how about people debating on actual gallon size and getting a petition of ideas to bring legislators in on horticultural products and selling thats priceless.....thanks for the comedic blog.......happy gardening and successful gallon measuring....!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2005 at 11:06PM
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Oh yes, Oregon, the state that makes me feel OK about living in Massachusetts. Oregon continually makes laws to protect people against their own stupidity. They either have out of control legislators or helpless people. I thought it was the first, but the way Oregonians defend them, it might be the latter.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2005 at 5:57AM
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The law requires that you label plants with three kinds of information,

1)Declaration of identity, common or Latin name.

2)Declaration of net contents in weight, measure or count. The information has to be in both English and metric units.

3)Declaration of responsibility, who labeled the plant with the information and the location of the vendor, distributor.

These regulations are not new, the courts just recently decided that the label laws should be enforced on our products. I wonder who will enforce the regulations?

I sell plants, not containers. I think that if your sales claim that the container is a 1 gallon nursery container (3 quart) than the container should be a 1 gallon nursery container. If you are selling a dwarf cut leaf maple and do not have the container size and do not advertise the container size but advertise you are selling dwarf cut leaf maples with no claim to container size I cannot see how this would be a problem. I sell plants not containers.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2005 at 4:06AM
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