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In California, Village Nurseries gets busy

BY Ken Clark

Orange, Calif.-based Village Nurseries, a specialty wholesale grower for landscape professionals, is now offering the Sunset Western Garden Collection to California landscape professionals and Southern California Home Depot stores, as well as select other retail garden centers throughout California. 

Village Nurseries is the exclusive grower for the 29-plant Sunset Western Garden Collection under license from Plant Development Services which, in turn, is licensed by Sunset Publishing Corp. The collection is characterized by top-performing plants selected especially for Western gardens with their unique climate, rainfall, year round temperature, wind and humidity.

“We feel the Sunset Western Garden Collection is a natural fit for our continued expansion of water efficient, climatically correct plants,” said Brian Parker, lawn and garden merchant – Southern California for The Home Depot. “Our Southern California partnership with local water agencies has been critical to our development of a more regionalized product mix specific to our geographic area. Saving time, water and money is in everyone’s best interest. As the demand for these types of hybridized plants increase, we want our customers to know they can count on The Home Depot to meet their needs.” 

Village Nurseries CEO David House said the company’s goal is to bring out "new and superior plant materials."

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Hong Kong marketers plan events in NYC and LA

BY Ken Clark

The largest Hong Kong promotion to take place in the United States will be held this summer to showcase Hong Kong’s advantages for American companies looking to tap new business opportunities in Asia, particularly on the Chinese mainland.

“Think Asia, Think Hong Kong” will feature symposiums in New York and Los Angeles, June 11 and 14, respectively. Speakers will include CY Leung, chief executive of the Hong Kong SAR Government, and more than 60 prominent senior executives from global companies. The event is organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), with support from 14 Hong Kong partners and close to 100 US organizations. 

U.S. exports to Hong Kong from 2010 to 2012 grew by 41%, to more than $37 billion. Over the past decade (2003-2012), U.S. exports to Hong Kong have surged 177%.

“As the global economic balance continues to shift to Asia, Hong Kong is the ideal business platform from which to access the myriad regional opportunities now available in the growing ASEAN area and the Chinese mainland,” said HKTDC chairman Jack So. “Our low taxes, free economy, rule of law, English-speaking environment and world-class business services make us the preferred partner for any overseas businesses wishing to tap these growing possibilities.”

There are approximately 1,400 U.S. firms in Hong Kong, concentrated in trading, banking and finance, and transport. As of October 2012, there were 869 U.S. companies with their regional headquarters or regional offices in Hong Kong, more than any other country.

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The Smart Home moves forward

BY Ken Clark

An article in the New York Times examines the improvements in remote control home automation.

Among the companies mentioned in the article titled: “Controlling the ‘Smart Home’ With Tablets and Smartphones,” are Nest, Belkin, Philips and Comcast’s Xfinity Home.

The article examines the issue of stand-alone performance versus whole-home connectivity.

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