Ornamental Horticulture Research Endowment Fund

Responding to a request of need from the University of Maine, the Ornamental Horticulture Council has developed the Ornamental Horticulture Endowment Fund, with a mission to provide a solid financial funding base to aid current or new research pertinent to the horticultural industry in Maine.

This fund, established with the University of Maine Foundation, would spend only the interest generated by the principal. This research would be performed through the Maine Agricultural Research Center, in affiliation with the University of Maine and its Cooperative Extension Service.

A combined group of University of Maine personnel and representatives of the Ornamental Horticulture Council will administer the fund. The fund will be launched publicly in Spring 2003, and has a goal of $2,000,000.00 for the fund endowment. Funds will be generated through donations from the horticulture industry and the public sector.


January 2006 Awards

"Evaluation of Native Grasses for Use in Landscape Plantings" - Lois Berg Stack and Donglin Zhang

Description: Seed will be collected from natural stands of Maine's native grass species that have landscape potential. In addition, seeds of grass species native to other areas of the Northeast will be obtained from the NRCS Big Flats Plant Materials Center, Corning NY. Plants grown from these seeds will be established in plots at Rogers Farm, Stillwater ME. In future years, these grasses will be evaluated for hardiness; seed formation; and disease susceptibility. Sod types will be evaluated further for sod formation, traffic tolerance and mowing tolerance. Clump types will be evaluated further for clump development and ornamental value.


Cut Flower Production in a High Tunnel - Barbara Murphy

Description: The focus of this project is to determine if a superior cut flower crop (both in term of numbers of flowers produced and length of stem) can be produced in an economically viable manner using an unheated high tunnel under western Maine conditions.

Donating to the Endowment Fund: To donate money to the fund, you can either send a check made payable to "UM Foundation" with "OHC" in the memo section and mail it to: Buchanan Alumni House, Two Alumni Place, Orono ME 04469-5792. The second way to send money is to go to website: On the left side of the homepage, click on "online giving" and follow the guidelines.


Projects by Issue:

Include horticulture in the Maine state government's definition of agriculture.

OHC is working with MDAFRR representatives to create uniform legal definitions. Work toward greater collaboration among the sectors of the ornamental horticulture industry.

OHC maintains a website that serves as a hub connecting the webpages of its member associations.
Increase awareness of the ornamental horticulture industry's size and scope.

Using data from a New England-wide survey that the OHC partially funded, OHC members continue to educate the public and private sectors about this industry.