BOA Poinsettia Conference 2023

SAVE THE DATE – BOA Poinsettia Conference 2023

Taking place on Thursday 23rd November 2023 at Bridge Farm Group, Spalding, Lincolnshire, PE12 6RN.

This is the second Open Day of the Poinsettia Growers Group in the UK.  Its aim is to provide a focal point whereby growers and the allied trades can meet to view and discuss relevant aspects of poinsettia production and wider industry topics.  It has been formed to fill the void left by the cessation of the AHDB and its role in co-ordinating R&D within the UK in horticulture. 

The agenda for the meeting will be released soon. There will be presentations featuring a range of current topics as well as a roundup of the variety trials which have been organised by the Poinsettia Growers Group this year. British Poinsettia Growers Group members receive one free ticket per member. Please contact us to receive your discount code prior to purchasing your tickets. Please note, discounts cannot be applied after your order has been placed. Register for your tickets here.


Neil Bragg

Neil is a Soil Scientist, working in the Horticultural sector for 40 years. His main areas of interest include Plant Nutrition, Fertigation and development of new substrates – particularly as we move towards peat-free mixes.

With Ann McCann of Bulrush Horticulture, Neil developed the Poinsettia Monitoring scheme which has now been running since 1998 and has a massive  accumulation of analytical results for both Substrates and plant tissue.

Andy Abbey

Andy has spent all his working career in ornamental horticulture since graduating from Writtle Agricultural College in 1988.

Deciding to specialise in Year round chrysanthemum production following a sandwich year placement during his studies with Southern Glasshouse Produce in Hampshire. On leaving college he worked on a small AYR unit near Boston Lincolnshire, before returning to Southern Glasshouse Produce, where he worked for a period of 4 years in several management roles, including a technical consultant role in The Gambia.

A further role in The Gambia and a return to production in the UK at Copsey’s, where Andy’s hands on growing knowledge increased from Chrysanthemums, into many different ornamental cut & pot plants including poinsettias. Joining Yoder Toddington as a technical sales adviser in 1998 he served for 8 years and then Sakata / Earley Ornamentals for a further 8 years before joining Beekenkamp Plants B.V. in 2015, where he serves customers over the U.K and Ireland.

Rory Paton

Rory Paton is a Director of Pinetops Nurseries, a family business in Lymington Hampshire, the main crops are Lilies, Hydrangeas, Hellebores and Poinsettias. Rory has worked in the business for over 30 years despite as a teenage saying categorically that he wasn’t going to have anything to do with plants.

Graeme Edwards

Graeme Edwards is Managing Director for Woodlark Nurseries, a bedding, pot plant and pot bulb nursery, based in Hersham, Surrey. One of the most important aspects he oversees is the continued investment in production facilities. Graeme is also Chair of the British Poinsettia Growers Group.

Andrew Fuller

Andrew joined Bridge Farm Group in 2014 and has over 20 years’ experience in commercial horticulture, specialising in research & development of protected crop production.  

Andrew has a degree in Commercial Horticulture, is former chairman of the British Bedding and Pot Plant Association Technical Committee and sat on the AHDB Protected Ornamentals Panel committee.

Julian Wilson

Julian Wilson is the sales manager for international trade, export & wholesale for Florensis BV. He has worked in the horticulture sector since leaving school at the age of 16, starting with 7 years working on the family cut flower nursery in South Lincolnshire. After joining Florensis in 1995 as a sales representative in the UK, he then spent 5 years at Florensis BV as a corporate product manager before joining UK flower breeding company Floranova as commercial director in 2009. This latter role involved extensive sales travel in North America, Europe and parts of Asia and in addition to this it also proved to be an invaluable education in various aspects of breeding & seed production. Since re-joining Florensis BV in 2020, he now oversees sales to the company’s main distributors within Europe as well as direct international sales, private stock customers and wholesale clients.

Ton de Bresser

Ton has worked for Selecta since 1992 where he worked to organise the rooting for pelargonium, Impatiens NG and Poinsettia. From there he moved into a combined production and sales role, progressing to sales in pot and bedding. Since 2002 he has been the Sales Area Manager for Holland, Belgium, UK and Ireland.

Andy Bunker

Andy has been involved in retail and the family business for over 44 years and had has managed various departments including the garden machinery department, which he set up from school.

Alton are a member of the Tillington Group where Andy puts together and recommends the offer for real Christmas trees to the group. Travelling to Scotland and Europe frequently to source the best trees available.

Hannah Dunne

Stars for Europe is an international, industry-backed promotion campaign which aims to grow and secure long-term poinsettia sales, active in 22 countries. It is led by Europe’s leading poinsettia breeders, and is supported by the EU. As a member of the project management team, Hannah’s role involves communications, strategy, and partner coordination, as well as EU funding applications, implementation, and evaluation.


Bulrush Horticulture is a leading supplier of high quality substrates to professional and amateur growers. Based in Northern Ireland, Bulrush is a wholly owned subsidiary of Pindstrup Mosebrug A/S. Pindstrup is one of the world’s leading producers of substrates. At the forefront of substrate technology and innovation, Bulrush supply superior quality peat-free and peat-reduced substrates that consistently help our customers grow. Please come and speak to us at the conference to see how we can help you.

Biobest UK, a subsidiary of Biobest Group, seeks to find IPM Solutions for all Pest and Diseases in a broad range of crops. Known since many years for its bumblebees and wide range of beneficial insects, mites and nematodes, the company now offers a complete range of natural solutions including biopesticides, monitoring and scouting tools, pheromones, we stand prepared to provide growers with tailor-made advice.

Southern Trident is a UK company with strong roots in India. We specialise in high-quality, coir and peat-free growing media.

Southern Trident runs a fully managed, seamless end-to-end operation for its constituent brands Coco & Coir and Harmony Gardens.

ICL Professional Horticulture we will proudly feature our Levington Advance range of growing media at the conference. As part of our commitment to sustainability, we are transitioning towards more environmentally friendly raw materials. This includes our innovative custom mix service, Levington Advance Solutions, which seamlessly incorporates our top-selling Osmocote fertilisers as well as our biological additives to increase plant quality.        

Syngenta Ornamentals is fully dedicated to the UK horticulture industry and is part of a global business that is passionately committed to working with the industry and its partners around the world. We are proud to have a leading portfolio of high-quality products that can be tailored together with our local experts to create simpler, more profitable, more sustainable ornamental growing solutions.

OMEX Horticulture help growers grow more sustainably. With a range of crop nutrients and products to boost the efficiency of peat free growing media. Utilise live nutrient management with SAP analysis. With a team of FACTS and BASIS qualified advisors to help you make the most sustainable, and efficient, growing choices for boost crop quality and yield.


This year’s conference is kindly sponsored by: