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Member Update: 03_25_15
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OAN Member Update: March 25, 2015
Welcome to the Oregon Association of Nurseries weekly Member Update
March 25, 2015    |      EVENTS     |     ADVERTISE

Walden, Government Relations Committee discuss immigration

U.S. Rep. Greg Walden (R-Oregon) met with members of the OAN Government Relations Committee on Friday at Woodburn Nursery & Azaleas. Walden, who represents the bulk of eastern and southern Oregon, is in his second term as chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee and as such is Oregon's highest-ranking member of the House.

Walden acknowledged the need for a legal immigration system that provides an adequate workforce, but blamed the president for the lack of progress. "The executive order poisoned the well," he said. He added that the Republican caucus will not permit any reform without first tackling security, including the highly probable imposition of an E-Verify mandate.

Committee members gave him pushback on the issue. Several mentioned it is very difficult to hire sufficient workers right now. Rod Park of Park's Nursery mentioned that prior reforms created the framework for a declaration of a worker shortage, but no shortage was ever declared. Meanwhile, Kathy LeCompte of Brooks Tree Farm told Walden that a national E-Verify mandate would require reauthorizing the entire workforce in all industries.

Walden was open regarding how the immigration issue plays at town halls around his district, indicating opposition to his vote and funding of the Department of Homeland Security (which enforces immigration laws). The statewide vote on the driver's card certainly causes a pause on the electorate's tolerance for comprehensive reform. "I think you can get to (a system that allows) legal workers," he said. "I think there is a path."

OAN Executive Director Jeff Stone urged Walden and the Congress to work together and do what is in the best interest of the nation and for the agricultural industry – provide a pathway for obtaining workers.

Retail-Greenhouse Chapter to meet on April 22

The Retail and Greenhouse chapters will host their first meeting of the year on Wednesday, April 22 at McMenamins Old Church & Pub, 30340 S.W. Boones Ferry Road, Wilsonville. Join your friends and colleagues for dinner followed by a round-robin presentation detailing the newest plant introductions on the market for 2015 and what's coming down the pike. Presenters include Terra Nova Nurseries, Fisher Farms, Van Essen Nursery and more!

Social hour begins at 5 p.m. with dinner at 6 p.m. followed by the presentation and an EXTRA BIG raffle you don't want to miss. Cost is $25. For more information contact Lisa Barnett, 503-509-8755,

Register online » | Download the flyer »

Gov. Brown declares drought in Malheur and Lake counties

On March 17, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown declared a drought emergency in Lake and Malheur counties in southeastern Oregon. Brown's declaration came after Washington Gov. Jay Inslee issued a drought declaration the previous week for three regions of that state.

"In addition to creating an increased wildfire risk, this drought presents hardships to crops, agriculture, communities, recreation and wildlife, all of which rely on Oregon's water resources," Brown said. "I will continue working with federal, state and local partners to help Oregonians in this part of the state through this challenging situation." Officials in three other counties — Crook, Harney and Klamath — are considering whether to ask the governor to include them in the drought designation.

Terra Nova Nurseries expands management team

Terra Nova Nurseries announced the hiring of Nathan Lamkey as director of sales and marketing/assistant general manager, and Steve Flickinger as sales and marketing manager.

Lamkey (pictured below, left) moved over to Terra Nova from Shemin Landscape Supply, where he oversaw the turf and ornamental hard lines division. Prior to Shemin, he was at Ball Horticultural Company, managing the sale of seeds, cuttings and liners to production greenhouses in eastern Michigan. He also worked at PanAmerican Seed as assistant breeder, supervising breeder technicians and coordinating breeding efforts.

Prior to joining Terra Nova, Flickinger (right) was key accounts sales manager for horticulture companies including Paul Ecke Ranch, Simple Pleasures Flowerbulbs and Perennials, MasterTag and Norwood Plastic Printers.


Wilbur Ellis

Lane Forest Products

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Leonard Adams


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Neonicotinoid pesticide not sole cause of bee die-off, according to new study

A newly published study suggests imidacloprid, the neonicotinoid pesticide that has become the world's most common insecticide, is just one of several factors contributing to colony collapse disorder.

The study, appearing in PLOS ONE, was conducted by Galen Dively, emeritus professor of entomology at the University of Maryland. Dively acknowledged that neonics and other pesticides are causing trouble for bees around the world. "It contributes, but there is a bigger picture," Dively said in a news release . Other factors include parasites such as Varroa mites, Nosema fungus, viruses, drought and loss of habitat.

Read more »

NY Times op-ed points to E-Verify as way out of immigration impasse

"Mandate E-Verify for all employers — and make it the vehicle for legalizing unauthorized workers," stated an op-ed that appeared in the March 18 edition of the New York Times. The piece was co-penned by Alan K. Simpson, Republican senator from Wyoming from 1979–1997, and Bruce A. Morrison, Democratic representative from Connecticut from 1983–1991.

Currently, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee is marking up the House Resolution 1147, the Legal Workforce Act, which would mandate the use of the E-Verify system by all employers to confirm the legal status of prospective employees. E-Verify is a flawed system, according to others, and would have a disastrous effect on the agricultural workforce.

"Enforcement-only immigration bills are not helpful," OAN Executive Director Jeff Stone said. "They are doomed to failure because they don't solve the entire problem. To fix our broken immigration system, we need all three legs of the stool — border enforcement, status adjustment for the people already here, and a pathway providing for an adequate workforce." Among Oregon's delegation, all members have said that they will oppose the bill, with the exception of Rep. Greg Walden (R-2nd District).

Prohibition of H-2B processing temporarily lifted

On March 18, a federal district court in Florida issued an order effectively permitting the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to restart its processing of H-2B applications under the 2008 rule and to continue processing applications under that rule through April 15. Under the terms of the court's order, any application for certification or prevailing wage determination that has not completed DOL processing by the time the stay ends as of April 16, 2015, may no longer be processed under the 2008 H-2B rule.

AmericanHort has issued an action alert, asking members of the green industry to urge federal officials to fix the H-2B program. "Even if you don't use the program, it hurts the whole green industry when we suffer from labor shortages resulting from bureaucratic dysfunction and visa program chaos," said Craig Regelbrugge, AmericanHort's senior vice president in charge of public policy and government relations.

To voice your support for the H-2B program, AmericanHort recommends calling your members of Congress through the U.S. Capitol switchboard at 202-225-3121. If this issue directly affects your company, you should set up an appointment with your representative or their staff.

Read more »

Renew your OAN Nursery Guide listings

It's time to renew your OAN Nursery Guide listings! Each OAN member gets a free profile and one free listing.

On, you can add, drop and update listings at will throughout the year. All listings that are renewed by May 1 will appear in the annual OAN Nursery Guide book that is mailed to members and subscribers and distributed at the Farwest Show and other industry events.

Renew your listings today »

Final week to apply for ONF scholarships

The Oregon Nurseries Foundation (ONF) awards scholarships to students preparing for a career in ornamental horticulture and related fields. In all, 16 different awards — ranging from $500 to $1,500 — are sponsored by individuals and OAN chapters as a way to support the next generation of green industry professionals.

Applications must be postmarked by April 1.

Read more »

Friday is final day to submit plants for Farwest's New Varieties Showcase

Do you have one or more exciting new plant introductions? The New Varieties Showcase at the Farwest Show is the place to show them off to garden centers, growers, landscape designers and architects, trade publications and garden writers.

The showcase is now accepting submissions for the 2015 show. We're looking for plants with such characteristics as new colors, better manners, increasingly compact shape, extended seasons of interest, and improved landscape and production performance. To be eligible, all plant selections must be:

  • new to the market for 2015 or 2016;
  • available for order from a Farwest Show exhibitor; and
  • have different attributes than plants currently on the market.

The submission deadline is Friday, March 27, 2015. Contact Crystal Cady with questions at 503-682-5089 or

Learn more »

In case you missed it

USDA declares two drought-stricken Oregon counties as natural disaster areas

OAN supports updated state nursery license bill

Court won't expedite review of Obama's immigration action

City of Portland surveying growers on availability

HRI funds pollinator research projects

ODA prohibits use of four neonicotinoids on linden trees

OAN offers health, dental coverage through Leonard Adams Insurance

Agricultural Labor Laws Forum — March 31

Farwest debuts fresh website

ALERT: Farwest exhibitor hotel booking

Free trainings on invasive plants scheduled for this March and April

Energy Trust posts updated rebate forms for 2015

Scholarships offered to Clackamas County students — Applications due April 3

Save the date: Soil School 2015 — April 4

Farwest Show will host the 2015 International Trials Conference

Farwest signs customer service expert for keynote address

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OAN Publications and Events: Plant your brand and watch it grow

Looking to grow your business? Want to make the most of your marketing dollar? OAN offers a full portfolio of respected publications, events and electronic media that help you reach your targets, your way. As an OAN member, you get exclusive discounts on ads and sponsorships, and you can save even more by buying into multiple publications or issues. Download our 2015 Media Kit today for all the details. To schedule your ads for 2015, contact the OAN at 503-682-5089 or

The 2015 OAN Media Kit is now available
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