The 29th International Horticultural Congress | Sustaining Lives, Livelihoods and Landscapes | 17-22 August 2014
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Ornamental Horticulture in the Global Greenhouse

Sponsored by the ISHS Section Ornamentals and Commission Protected Cultivation

Photo details: possible new potted plants, with acknowledgements to Richard Criley.

The International Symposium on "Ornamental Horticulture in the Global Greenhouse" will be held in Brisbane, Australia in 2014 during the International Horticultural Congress (IHC2014).

As fruits and vegetables feed the body, so ornamental plants nourish the soul. They are used in applications that range from the practical and functional to the purely aesthetic. For consumers, ornamental plants are desirable items but they provide the basis of an industry that provides livelihoods for many. This is an industry that spans borders, regions and time-zones being a truly international business. The science and technologies required to deliver the novel, high quality products sought by consumers spans a wide range of scientific disciplines.

The symposium invites contributions in all aspects of floriculture and woody ornamentals, including:

  • germplasm and plant improvement
  • propagation
  • production technologies
  • new crops
  • production physiology
  • economics and marketing
  • post-harvest
  • biotechnology
  • ornamental crop protection.

Themes such as sustainability, bringing native plants into cultivation, and biotechnology will also be addressed insofar as they include ornamental plants.


Ed Morgan has been working on ornamental and other crops at the New Zealand Institute for Plant & Food Research for over 20 years. His research focus is using in vitro breeding techniques for wide hybridisation and ploidy manipulation, though has worked on projects in post harvest, physiology and propagation of ornamental crops.

Dr. Richard Criley is Emeritus Professor of Horticulture at the University of Hawaii’s Manoa campus in Honolulu. His research program principally focused on manipulation of flowering of ornamental crops, and he has taught in 14 different courses over the course of his 42+ years with the university. A former Chair for the ISHS Section for Ornamental Plants (2002-2010), he has also been a convener for ornamental symposia for the congresses of 2002 and 2006. He has edited several Acta Horticulturae volumes for the ISHS and organized the Scripta Horticulturae volume on ornamental Proteaceae. The 2014 Congress marks his 10th consecutive participation.

Dr. Margrethe Serek is a professor and chair of Floriculture at Leibniz University of Hannover in Germany. Her research focuses on physiology and molecular biology of ornamental crops. She is the chairperson of the ISHS Section of Ornamental Plants.

Doris Marcsik is a research horticulturist at the Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries in Darwin, Australia. She has extensive experience in tropical floriculture in new crop development. Over the last 10 years she has been conducting an extensive ornamental ginger breeding programme on the following ginger genera Zingiber, Etlingera and Curcuma mainly focussing on cut flowers.

Vivian Loges is a professor in the Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco and research floriculture at northeast part of Brazil. Over the last 13 years she has been conducting a programme of characterisation and development of new tropical flower crops, mainly with genera Heliconia, focussing on cut flowers and ornamental plants.

Keynote Speakers

Dr Audrey Gerber (Australia) will discuss the native flora of Australia grown commercially, their physiology and the challenges that commercial production presents. An outline of research programmes and objectives will be presented, focusing on Australian programmes and including those in other countries which research Australian and other related genera. Audrey Gerber is an independent Floricultural consultant at Qbloom Pty Ltd. She has extensive experience in crop physiology and agronomy of wildflower products in both Australia and South Africa, particularly on Proteaceae. Dr Gerber currently manages a number of Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) funded projects on monitoring integrated pest management systems, trialling sustainable agriculture on Australian wildflower farms, and preparing a canopy management manual for the main wildflower crops grown in Australia.

Dr Rina Kamenetsky (Israel) will present “Research challenges in geophyte science: from basic science to sustainable production”. Rina Kamenetsky is a researcher at the Agricultural Research Organization (ARO, The Volcani Center) and a professor of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel. Her main research areas are the mechanisms of the internal and environmental regulation of flowering and dormancy in geophytes, biodiversity and the introduction of new ornamental plants and their cultivation in warm regions. She is the author of over 180 publications on geophytes, editor and contributor to the book "Ornamental Geophytes: from basic science to sustainable production".

Dr. Jocelyn Eason (New Zealand) will speak on “Postharvest performance – essential for keeping distant customers satisfied”. Jocelyn Eason is a Science General Manager at the New Zealand Institute for Plant & Food Research. Jocelyn has over two decades of experience in biochemical and genetic technologies associated with postharvest metabolism of horticultural crops. In her current role, Dr Eason manages a portfolio of research which includes investigation into how horticultural products are affected by biochemical changes after harvest, as well as developing systems and technologies that ensure product quality and presentation are maintained from farm/orchard to market.

Dr. Richard A. Criley (USA) will speak on “Alpinia to Zingiber – Zingiberales in Commercial Floriculture”. Richard Criley is Professor Emeritus at the University of Hawaii where, for more than 40 years, he conducted research on the manipulation of flowering of a variety of tropical ornamentals. He is a former Chair of the ISHS Section for Ornamental Plants and twice convener for ornamentals symposia in IHC2002 and 2006.

Scientific Committee

  • Dr. Neil Mattson - Cornell University, USA
  • Dr. William B. Miller - Cornell University, USA
  • Dr. Erik Runkle - Michigan State University, USA
  • Dr. Christopher Currey - Iowa State University,USA
  • Dr. Ken Leonhardt - University of Hawaii, USA
  • Dr. Sonnia Philosoph-Hadas, Volcani Center, Israel
  • Dr. Lynn Hoffman - University of Stellenbosch, S. Africa
  • Dr. Gabriela Facciuto - INIA, Argentina
  • Dr. Keith Funnell - Massey University, New Zealand
  • Dr. Jaap Van Tuyl - Wageningen, The Netherlands
  • Mr. Mark Hoult - Berrimah Research Farm,Australia