Heritage and Metro Lawn Showcased at GIE

Heritage Propane and Metro Lawn were showcased at the 2011 GIE+EXPO. Heritage promoted propane as a proven engine fuel and alternative fuel in conjunction with the Roush Drag Team. Susan Roush-McClenaghan appeared at the show along with her ROUSH Stage 3 Mustangs to explain the advantages she has experienced with propane. She also presented a forum to the attendees, sharing her personal story with racing and how she came to use propane.

Direct Solutions Adds Gooch to Team

Direct Solutions announced the addition of Bryan Gooch as North American marketing manager. Gooch and his team will have responsibility for management of all products Direct Solutions carries across North America. Previously, Gooch worked as a marketing product manager for Agrium Advanced Technologies’ Turf & Ornamental Wholesale product lines, and also worked in progressively senior sales and marketing roles with Bayer CropScience.

Brandon Vaughan’s winning project involved creating a large outdoor entertainment space alongside a home undergoing a complete remodel.

New Holland Announces Extreme Dream Winner

New Holland Construction and Turf magazine named Brandon Vaughan, Toms Creek Nursery & Landscaping, Denton, N.C., as the winner of the 2011 Extreme Dream contest. Vaughan received an L218 skid steer loader. Mike Dasilva, Paradise Views Landscaping, Etobicoke, Ont., and Brett Parks, Not Just a Garden Center, Mishawaka, Ind., were the other semifinalists chosen from the monthly winners in the contest.

Grasshopper Presents Food Fight Bowl

Grasshopper Mower presented the Sam Wyche Food Fight Bowl in Easley, S.C. A charitable partnership was announced during the opening field presentation. Four new schools in the Pickens County School District will have the opportunity to use new Grasshopper equipment for all their lawn care needs. The Food Fight Bowl, a competitive football game between Pickens High School and Easley High School, raises money for Meals on Wheels. Grasshopper presented a check for $4,500 to Meals on Wheels, helping the two towns to reach a total of more than $60,000.

Fockele Manager Earns PLANET Certification

Brad Mitchell, maintenance manager for the Fockele Garden Co., has received the Professional Landcare Network’s Landscape Industry Certified Lawn Care Manager certification. To earn it, Mitchell passed exams covering the principles of warm and cool-season turfgrass establishment, growth, maintenance and troubleshooting. He also had to show a thorough understanding of essential turfgrass management practices and procedures that are a standard in the green industry.

PERC Displays Propane Engine Fuel Technology

The Propane Education & Research Council demonstrated the ease of refueling, sustainability and high performance of propane-fueled equipment through an in-booth presentation series at the 2011 GIE+EXPO. Lawn and landscape industry professionals also had the opportunity to get behind the wheel of the latest propane-fueled technology in the Outdoor Pavilion.

ROUSH Unveils Latest Offering

ROUSH CleanTech announced its latest propane autogas product offering with the unveiling of the new 2012 Ford F-250 and F-350 at the 2011 GIE+EXPO. These new trucks are designed to suit the needs of a wide variety of industries while providing a significant reduction in both fuel costs and carbon footprint. Denison Landscaping & Nursery, Inc., in Fort Washington, Md., was ROUSH CleanTech’s first landscaping customer to commit to purchasing the 2012 models once they become available.

Case Supports Habitat, Honors Hubbard

Case Construction Equipment has provided direct and indirect contributions totaling $5,000 to support home-building projects by Habitat for Humanity of San Antonio. The company paid $1,000 to sponsor recent participation of more than 20 Construction Writers Association members in building a new home for the organization. Case also donated $4,000 directly to Habitat for Humanity to buy building materials for this and other home-building projects in San Antonio.

Case announced Hubbard Construction, Winter Park, Fla., as a monthly winner of the Case Community Challenge. Hubbard received the award for donating labor, materials and the use of equipment in helping build 28 “mud volleyball” courts for the 19th annual Mudd Volleyball Challenge for the March of Dimes. The company received a $1,000 parts and service gift card, and Case also made a $1,000 cash donation to the March of Dimes.

Ewing Opens Branch, Offers New Courses

Ewing Irrigation Products opened a new location in Charleston, S.C. Managed by Lee Hinton, the branch is the fourth Ewing location to open in the Carolinas since 2010, with one in Columbia, S.C., and two in Charlotte, N.C.

Green industry professionals can learn new skills, get CEUs and gain business ideas with Ewing’s new classes for 2011-2012. The new course lineup includes affordable, half-day courses that offer busy contractors a convenient way to build their skills and get trained in new technologies. Courses will be offered through April at various locations throughout the U.S. Interested professionals can search for courses by state and register at

Joss Named LiveRoof Distributor

LiveRoof, LLC appointed Joss Growers, Inc., Georgetown, Texas, as a new licensed regional grower and distributor for its hybrid green roof system. Joss is a family-owned and operated wholesale nursery established in 1993.

Pro-Tech Launches Online Ordering

Pro-Tech Mfg. & Distribution now allows customers to purchase its latest line of products – the Sno Blade, Sno Blower and Sno Broom attachments – directly from its website at Online purchases are offered with free freight within the U.S., and products will be shipped directly to the customer. Pro-Tech plans to have the rest of its product line available for online purchasing by the summer of 2012.

Musser Foundation Launches Website

The Musser International Turfgrass Foundation launched a website,, to make information about the group’s mission and graduate student award program easily available to all interested parties. In addition to information on the mission, history and application process, the site also includes a list of previous Award of Excellence recipients dating back to 1989. The foundation also created a Facebook page and a Twitter feed.

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SUPERthrive Inventor Celebrates 100th Birthday

Dr. John A. A. Thomson, inventor of SUPERthrive, celebrated his 100th birthday Nov. 23, 2011. Thomson developed the SUPERthrive formula in 1939 and founded Vitamin Institute to market and sell it. Seventy-two years later, he is still active in the operations. Thomson holds a doctorate degree in biochemistry and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Lawn & Garden Marketing & Distribution Association in 2006, as well as Sustainable Environmental Education’s Environmental Awareness Award in 2009.

Dr. John Thomson

Dow AgroSciences Welcomes New Personnel

Dow AgroSciences named Andy Kaler to the position of product manager for the U.S. Turf & Ornamental business division. Kaler was hired in 2008 as a T&O sales representative and holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from Cornerstone University.

He is replacing Patrick Bell, who was named product manager for the U.S. Fungicides and Specialty Crop herbicides business. Bell has been with Dow since 2005 and holds a bachelor’s degree in animal and poultry sciences and a master’s in agricultural and resource economics from Tuskegee University.

Brett Garrard, product manager for chlorpyrifos insecticides, has accepted the position of T&O sales representative in the eastern district, replacing Kaler. Garrard, who has a business degree from Ohio State University, began his career with Dow in 2005.

Gil del Rosario was named T&O sales representative for southern California. Previously he served as a sales representative in Kansas and Illinois. He holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics from Oklahoma State University and a master’s in landscape architecture from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.

In the northwest, Greg Webster was named T&O sales representative for Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah and Washington. He earned a degree in agricultural business management and economics at the University of Wisconsin.

Harsco Expands Marketing Efforts

Harsco Minerals is ramping up efforts to expand its agriculture and turfgrass branch through silicon product business sectors in North America as well as globally. With growing acceptance of silicon as a beneficial element included in fertilizers and commercial successes in Brazil and China, the company is committed to expanding its presence in turf and agriculture markets in the U.S.

The company is focused on product formulation improvements and committed to expanding markets through field development and cooperative field trial efforts. To further strengthen the company’s technical development capabilities, Mary Provance-Bowley, Ph.D., recently joined Harsco as global technical development manager.

PLANET Gives Back to Louisville

The Professional Landcare Network held a community service project, “PLANET Gives Back,” during the 2011 GIE+EXPO in Louisville, Ky. PLANET teamed up with Metro United Way and a group of volunteers to enhance four facilities in downtown Louisville. They planted shrubs and flowers, pruned, mulched, installed water features and planted turfgrass.

Syngenta Ranked as Top 10 Employer

For a second consecutive year, Syngenta has ranked among the world’s top 10 biotech employers, according to an annual survey conducted by Science magazine. The company finished as the No. 8 employer in this year’s survey. The results mark the third straight year that Syngenta has ranked as one of the 20 best biotech companies to work for in the world.

Maynie Joins Propex

Propex Operating Co., LLC announced that John Maynie has joined the company as director of marketing. Maynie comes to Propex with more than 20 years of experience in marketing, business development, sales and market research. Most recently, he served as director of marketing for Invensys Rail.

Turfco Announces Giveaway

Turfco is giving away five Apple iPod touches leading up to a grand prize drawing for a TurnAer XT5 aerator for the Making it Easy Giveaway. Owners, managers or licensed professionals who provide lawn care services are eligible to register at any time during the giveaway. The grand prize drawing will take place in March 2012.

Terex Equipment Available Through Compact Power

Terex PT-30 and PT-50 compact track loaders, TSR50 skid steer loaders and TC16 compact excavators are available for rent at Compact Power Equipment Centers located in 280 select locations of The Home Depot Tool Rental. Compact Power Equipment Centers have partnered with The Home Depot to provide commercial contractors with towable rental equipment for many projects.

Agrium Enhances Sustainability Focus, Adds Dekok

Agrium Advanced Technologies announced the establishment of a corporate Sustainability Team, designed to coordinate the variety of sustainable initiatives currently under way across the organization. The new team features the addition of Sarah Fox as the first sustainability initiatives specialist. She has almost two decades of leadership experience in nonprofit and governmental environmental legislation and policy innovation.

Ron Dekok has joined the company’s Turf & Ornamental Wholesale division as North America marketing manager. Previously, Dekok served as marketing manager for Direct Solutions, and he also worked for Canadian ProHort.

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Hunter Industries Turns 30

Hunter Industries was founded in 1981 by irrigation industry pioneer and entrepreneur Edwin J. Hunter, with the help of his children, Paul, Richard and Ann. In 1983, the small Hunter team introduced the PGP gear-driven rotor to the world of irrigation. This proprietary product started what is now referred to as “The Rotor Revolution.” Its success as an efficient, reliable product quickly put Hunter on the map as a well-respected irrigation equipment manufacturer. This year Hunter Industries will turn 30. Throughout Hunter’s first 30 years, the company has gone from start-up to industry powerhouse.

Hunter Industries celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2011.

Donohue Joins Brinly Hardy

Matt Donohue was appointed to the position of sales director for commercial products at Brinly Hardy Co. He will be responsible for managing the product, sales strategies and related activities of the commercial products group. Donohue has over 15 years of business experience and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Louisville and a master’s in business administration from Indiana University.

Horizon Announced as Distributor for Rain Bird, Jacobsen

Horizon Distributors, Inc. announced it has become a distributor of Rain Bird turf irrigation products and Jacobsen turf maintenance equipment in both Florida and the Caribbean islands. Additionally, Horizon is now a distributor of Rain Bird Golf and Rain Bird International irrigation products throughout the Caribbean. The Jacobsen and Rain Bird distributor partnerships are the result of Horizon’s expansion into Florida and the Caribbean earlier this year, part of the company’s continued growth plans.

ASLA Names Six Honorary Members

The American Society of Landscape Architects selected six new honorary members for their work in education, activism and dedication to the landscape architecture profession. This year’s honorees are Shaun Saer Duncan, co-chair of The Cultural Landscape Foundation; Robert Harris, director of landscape architecture studies at the University of Southern California School of Architecture; Julia McFeely Lent, director of government affairs for ASLA; Ann Looper Pryor, managing director of publishing and resource development for ASLA; Nathaniel Reed, conservationist; and Stan Skalka, co-founder of Victor Stanley, Inc.

CNG and Include Exhibit at GIE

Cabinet NG and Include Software jointly showcased their products at the 2011 GIE+EXPO. Demonstrations of how Include Software’s Asset business management tool integrates with CNG’s document management software, CNG-SAFE, took place in the New Products Arena.

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PGMS Celebrates Successful School of Grounds Management

The Professional Grounds Management Society hosted its 2011 School of Grounds Management in Louisville, Ky. Attendees enjoyed a preconference field trip, educational programs focused on industry hot topics, entertaining social events and more, and in doing so helped PGMS celebrate its centennial year.

Gerry Dobbs, landscape services manager at Michigan State University, received the PGMS President’s Award from outgoing president Joe Jackson. Dobbs has actively participated on the PGMS board for several years, where he currently serves as a director at large.

Don Bottger, General Growth Properties, Inc., Chula Vista, Calif., was elected and installed as the new president of PGMS. Members elected John Van Etten as president-elect, Walter Bonvell as vice president and John Burns as secretary/treasurer.

The regional directors are John Doiron, Dennis Baker, Gerald Landby, Marion Bolick, Joe Payne and Ron Hostick. Directors at large include Diana Bramble Rudolph, Mark Feist and Dobbs. Thomas C. Shaner continues to serve as PGMS executive director and Kelly Mesaris continues to serve as associate director.

Incoming PGMS president Donald Bottger, left, receives the president’s gavel from past president Joe Jackson.

Underhill Signs Spartan Distributors

Underhill International named Spartan Distributors of Sparta, Mich., as a master stocking distributor for the north central region. Spartan, which has been in business since 1947, offers a broad range of irrigation and maintenance products for sports fields, golf courses, parks, and commercial and residential sites.

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New Leadership and Award for Jacobsen

David Withers was promoted to president of Jacobsen. He had served as managing director of the Ransomes division of Jacobsen in the United Kingdom since 2005. Withers joined Textron in 1992 as a regional sales manager.

Jacobsen received the 2011 Environmental Excellence Gold Award from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utility Department. This award honors companies for environmental excellence in protecting the local community’s water quality.

David Withers


###PHOTOS DOWN (2)-Eric Blevins 1211; Kevin Hazelgrove 1211###

Blevins and Hazelgrove Return to Ruppert

Ruppert Landscape announced the return of Eric Blevins to the position of branch manager for the company’s landscape management branch in Raleigh, N.C., and Kevin Hazelgrove to the position of branch manager for the landscape management branch in Richmond, Va. Blevins has been in the landscape industry for over 15 years, including two years with the former Ruppert Landscape Co. He holds a bachelor’s degree in botany/biology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Hazelgrove has been in the industry for over 25 years, including two years with the former Ruppert Landscape Co. He is a Virginia Certified Nurseryman and holds a commercial pesticide applicator’s license.

1. Eric Blevins
2. Kevin Hazelgrove