Nursery Work

Nursery Work

On a daily basis Nursery Workers and Team Leaders are allocated to Supervisors and Crop Growers in order to carry out a wide range of nursery work. This includes pest and disease identification and control, grading to maintain quality, trimming, watering and testing irrigation, as well as propagation, potting, despatch, crop protection, maintenance and laboratory work, which are explained in more detail here.

  • Rooted lavender plug
  • The Prop Team inspect a batch of Sedum Rose Carpet being weaned
  • Batch labels being checked on rooting lavenders
  • The new seed sowing machine 2013
  • Bergenia Appleblossom, a perfect specimen from the Lab
  • Bergenia Appleblossom
  • Tunnel venting to reduce humidity
  • Lobelia Russian Princess stock plants soon after trimming
  • Catananche germination
  • Euphorbia in the weaning phase
  • Filling trays with compost to propagate stock plants into
  • Lavender propagation
  • Next year's stock plant production
  • Atheta homes. Atheta feed on scairid larvae which attack young plant roots
  • Propagation trays fresh out of the steamer, ready for use
  • Seeds being agitated in the new seed sowing machine 2013
  • The Prop Team (left to right), Colin, Trish and Mike
Rooted lavender plug1 The Prop Team inspect a batch of Sedum Rose Carpet being weaned2 Batch labels being checked on rooting lavenders3 The new seed sowing machine 20134 Bergenia Appleblossom, a perfect specimen from the Lab5 Bergenia Appleblossom6 Tunnel venting to reduce humidity7 Lobelia Russian Princess stock plants soon after trimming8 Catananche germination9 Euphorbia in the weaning phase10 Filling trays with compost to propagate stock plants into11 Lavender propagation12 Next year's stock plant production13 Atheta homes. Atheta feed on scairid larvae which attack young plant roots14 Propagation trays fresh out of the steamer, ready for use15 Seeds being agitated in the new seed sowing machine 201316 The Prop Team (left to right), Colin, Trish and Mike17

PROPAGATION - Close to half a million plants are propagated annually in-house, about 50% of our total plant production. Three specialist propagators undertake this work with additional support during our busy spring period. The humidity and temperature controlled Propagation house contains up to a maximum of 150,000 cuttings at any one time. Propagation techniques utilised include cuttings, division and grafting.

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  • Potting Crinodendrons
  • Liner potting tunnel
  • Pot forks enable even lifting and spacing of potted product
  • Setting down freshly potted Heuchera
  • Bare root Dicentra being potted on the Javo Optima
  • The Javo automatically filling pots with compost
  • Potting Lavenders
  • Bare root Dicentra getting trimmed prior to potting
  • Clear-up after potting
  • Potting Crocosmia bulbs on the new potting machine
  • New Javo 'Optima' potting machine
  • Potting stops in the snow!
  • Liner potting machine
  • Potting Crocosmia bulbs on the new potting machine
  • 3L pots get automatically filled with compost and a hole drilled prior to potting
  • Quick hands keeping pace with the Javo potting machine
Potting Crinodendrons1 Liner potting tunnel2 Pot forks enable even lifting and spacing of potted product3 Setting down freshly potted Heuchera4 Bare root Dicentra being potted on the Javo Optima5 The Javo automatically filling pots with compost6 Potting Lavenders7 Bare root Dicentra getting trimmed prior to potting8 Clear-up after potting9 Potting Crocosmia bulbs on the new potting machine10 New Javo 'Optima' potting machine11 Potting stops in the snow!12 Liner potting machine13 Potting Crocosmia bulbs on the new potting machine14 3L pots get automatically filled with compost and a hole drilled prior to potting15 Quick hands keeping pace with the Javo potting machine16

POTTING - Almost all of Walberton’s one million plants are potted on one of three potting machines. The Javo potting machine can pot 1-3L products and a team of four can pot and place on the ground on average 1,400 pots per hour. Our growing media are peat-reduced with a minimum of 25% non-peat materials and are supplied in ‘big bale’ format. Mixes are tailored to meet crop specific requirements.

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  • A trailer full of plants being transported to the Finishing Centre
  • Abutilons going down the A-Z processing line
  • Walberton's  loading bay
  • Preparing Verbenas for Despatch
  • The Finishing Centre is capable of processing 1700+ trolleys each day
  • Goods Out bay at the Finishing Centre
  • Trolleys loaded ready to go to the Finishing Centre
A trailer full of plants being transported to the Finishing Centre1 Abutilons going down the A-Z processing line2 Walberton's  loading bay3 Preparing Verbenas for Despatch4 The Finishing Centre is capable of processing 1700+ trolleys each day5 Goods Out bay at the Finishing Centre6 Trolleys loaded ready to go to the Finishing Centre7

DESPATCH - The Despatch teams lift product in bulk onto Danish trolleys. They are delivered to the Farplants Finishing Centre (FC), accessed by internal road using a tractor and 12 trolley trailer. The FC Team clean the plants and apply colour and customer specific retail price labels. On a busy day up to 330 trolleys may be delivered from our main site and a further 100 trolleys from our rented sites at The Haven and Strathmore.

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  • The Crop Protection Team use hand lenses to inspect crops for pests and diseases
  • Applying Naturalis-L in Propagation house
  • 400L boom sprayer at the Haven
  • 400L boom at the Haven
  • Sticky traps are used across the nursery to trap common pests
  • Bed preparation – applying Jet5
  • Pheromone lure to trap brown apple tortix moth
The Crop Protection Team use hand lenses to inspect crops for pests and diseases1 Applying Naturalis-L in Propagation house2 400L boom sprayer at the Haven3 400L boom at the Haven4 Sticky traps are used across the nursery to trap common pests5 Bed preparation – applying Jet56 Pheromone lure to trap brown apple tortix moth7

CROP PROTECTION – A service department comprising two highly skilled NRoSO accredited operators. As a BOPP accredited business we work to a strict Integrated Crop Management Programme (ICMP), which ensures that the minimum of pesticides are applied to a crop. Our aim is to be good growers working within clean, healthy environments, where the risk of pest and disease is reduced.

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  • Freshly subcultured Coreopsis Walberton's Flying Saucers
  • Grading through a customer order in the Isolation House
  • The Lab Team (left to right), Ray, Victoria and Christine
  • In vitro propagules in tubs under lights in specialist growth room
  • Jars of media in the autoclave
  • Young Lavender Munstead initiations
  • Sisyrinchium stock plants in the Isolation House
  • Lavender Hidcote Clones awaiting flower assessments
  • Scabious 'Butterfly Blue' held in vitro
  • Media being poured into jars
  • Media ingredients being agitated on the hot plate
  • New Crocosmia initiations in test tubes
  • Sisyrinchium Rocky Point initiations in test tubes
  • Subculturing of Coreopsis Walberton's Flying Saucers
Freshly subcultured Coreopsis Walberton's Flying Saucers1 Grading through a customer order in the Isolation House2 The Lab Team (left to right), Ray, Victoria and Christine3 In vitro propagules in tubs under lights in specialist growth room4 Jars of media in the autoclave5 Young Lavender Munstead initiations6 Sisyrinchium stock plants in the Isolation House7 Lavender Hidcote Clones awaiting flower assessments8 Scabious 'Butterfly Blue' held in vitro9 Media being poured into jars10 Media ingredients being agitated on the hot plate11 New Crocosmia initiations in test tubes12 Sisyrinchium Rocky Point initiations in test tubes13 Subculturing of Coreopsis Walberton's Flying Saucers14

LABORATORY - The Lab develops and supports our nursery breeding programme, producing elite propagation stock and initial multiplication of new plants. Much of our work is to test for virus and to clean up stock where needed by meristem culture techniques. We also undertake work for other members of The Farplants Group. The Team develops protocols for a number of our exclusive introductions including Helleborus ‘Rosemary’. We also send micro-propagated material around the world in order to supply our elite stock to other countries and to support our plant breeding programme.

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  • Bed 17 revamp 2013
  • Beginning to lay a pad for our new garden benches to sit on
  • Former mixing shed receiving an overhaul 2014
  • Freeing a tunnel cover to be replaced
  • Former mixing shed turned into large vehicle storage 2014
  • Glasshouse fan being fixed and tested in the workshop
  • Good as new - G10 revamped with brand new frame, glazing and vents, 2014
  • Routine grading of the gravel roads 2014
  • Trailer being built for trimming machine transportation 2014
  • Welding work in the pumphouse, 2011
Bed 17 revamp 20131 Beginning to lay a pad for our new garden benches to sit on2 Former mixing shed receiving an overhaul 20143 Freeing a tunnel cover to be replaced4 Former mixing shed turned into large vehicle storage 20145 Glasshouse fan being fixed and tested in the workshop6 Good as new - G10 revamped with brand new frame, glazing and vents, 20147 Routine grading of the gravel roads 20148 Trailer being built for trimming machine transportation 20149 Welding work in the pumphouse, 201110

MAINTENANCE – Our highly skilled Team designs, constructs, maintains and repairs many of the facilities and machinery required for the smooth running of our business.

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