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Speaker Program - Thursday

2019 Program Highlights

The 2019 Canadian Greenhouse Conference will bring expertise from around the world to Niagara Falls.










Conference Preview in Greenhouse Canada Magazine


Find speaker biographies in the September issue of Greenhouse Canada. Click here

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Thursday, October 10th

View the program in a printable, easy-to-read chart format 



9:30 AM - 11:00 AM


This session generously sponsored by  Fafard logo


Josh B. Henry
North Carolina State University

In-House Nutritional Monitoring

In this workshop, several methods used to determine substrate pH and electrical conductivity (EC) will be demonstrated including the PourThru, 2:1 Extraction, Saturated Media Extract (SME), and Squeeze methods. The values determined by these tests will be discussed as well as steps one should take to ensure your crops are being grown with optimal fertility. Lastly, up-to-date resources from e-GRO to help you with crop-specific monitoring will be shared.




9:30 AM - 11:00 AM


This session generously sponsored by  farm credit canada logo

Portia MacDonald-Dewhirst
Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council
Ottawa, ON

Mental health in the Workplace: Creating a supportive environment

This presentation will explore stress, mental illness and the importance of mental health within the workplace. Although it is a sensitive topic, it is extremely timely and important for those in the agriculture industry. The research is alarming; it indicates that agricultural producers, workers and business owners are experiencing extensive and serious mental health challenges and aren’t getting the help they need. This session will review the concept of wellbeing and how best to foster it in yourself and those within your place of work.


Jenna Sweiss
Roderick Barrass
Toronto, ON

Bill 148 - Steering Through Change

Business owners continue to navigate through the changes to Ontario’s employment and labour laws brought about by the implementation of Bill 148 on January 1, 2018.  Additional changes will come in effect in 2019.  This presentation outlines what employers should be aware of and what actions can be taken to mitigate the impact of this legislation.



 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM


This session generously sponsored by  u of g logo

Jessica Pinder
Vineland Research & Innovation Centre, ON

Using Multispectral Image Analysis to Quantify Disease Resistance

Deron Caplan
University of Guelph, ON

Increasing Cannaboids & Terpenes Through Horticulture Management

Yun Kong
University of Guelph, ON

Does "Blue" Light Invariably Cause Compact Plants?

Rose Buitenhuis
Vineland Research & Innovation Centre, ON

Putting Together an IPM Package for Foxglove Aphid

Jasmine Mah
University of Guelph, ON

Light as a Growth Regulator: Recipes for end-of-day lighting

Qinglu Ying
University of Guelph, ON

Optimal Lighting Spectra for Producing High Quality Microgreens

Ashley Summerfield
Vineland Research & Innovation Centre, ON

What's Bugging Growers? Results of the 2018 Biocontrol Survey


Chase Jones-Baumgardt
University of Guelph

Optimal Light Intensities for Different Microgreen Productions

9:30 AM - 11:00 AM


Christie Pollack
Christie's Gardens and Greenhouses
High Prairie, AB



Collaborating for Success

Flex your collaborative skills during this workshop designed to provide specific tools to grow your business. Learn how to assess your industry to find the right partners that will result in growth and unexpected opportunities. Business is no longer about working alone; it’s about finding the right people to work with and growing together.


Judy Sharpton
Growing Places Marketing
Atlanta, GA

The Top 5 Investments You Can Make in Your Store in 2019

So many ideas! So many plans for upgrading your store presentation. And, then spring just slips up on you. Out of all the ideas you can consider, this program describes ?ve that you can accomplish without a bulldozer of a bank loan. And, each one meets one or more marketing goals: increasing customer count, increasing frequency and/or increasing average sale.

Come with your store improvement to-do list and compare your ideas to these ?ve speci?c store development projects that you can get done and track the results.

9:30 AM - 11:00 AM


This session generously sponsored by  OSRAM logo 

Corey Ellis

The Growcer
Ottawa, ON

Is Vertical Farming Right for You?

This presentation will touch on best practices and lessons learned from our experience supporting the launch of vertical farms across North America and some tips to help you assess if vertical farming is the right business decision for you.

Murat Kacira
University of Arizona

Environmental Uniformity & Climate Control in Plant Factories with Artificial Lighting

The operational costs and resource-use efficiency of multi-tier-based plant factory systems can be improved by appropriate production-system design modifications for key technologies and control strategies while considering the crop-specific minimum environmental requirements such as light, air temperature, air velocity and flow pattern, CO2, and uniformity of these variables.  This presentation will discuss about some of the challenges and opportunities for growing food in indoors with artificial lighting, with special focus on climate control and environmental uniformity. 

Gregg M. Curwin
TruLeaf Smart Plant Systems
Bedford, NS

 Grower Experience:  Vertical Farming 

Gregg Curwin, CEO and founder of one of the largest and fastest growing vertical indoor farms in North America, will share his thoughts and experience on the state of food security, the need for tremendous growth in vertical indoor growing, the challenges that arise with this growth and where the industry is headed. He will draw on both empirical and anecdotal knowledge and experience of his past 10 years in the industry.

Stephanie Cook
Joan Niquanicappo
Opaskwayak Cree Nation, MB

Grower Experience: Opaskwayak Smart Farm

Residents of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN) in northern Manitoba are enjoying locally grown, fresh crunchy vegetables from their own smart farm operation.  This pilot project offers accessibility to affordable, healthy food for those living in remote areas. Hear the successes and challenges faced by the OCN as they work with this pioneering  technology.



 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM


 This session generously sponsored by  BAll Seed logo

Colleen Warfield
Ball Horticultural Co.

The Latest on Impatiens Downy Mildew

It is an exciting time for garden impatiens. On the horizon are new genetics that naturally resist downy mildew giving this long-time favorite an opportunity for a strong comeback in the market place. 

Sarah Jandricic
OMAFRA, Vineland

Lessons Learned: Microbials for disease control in ornamentals

Microbial fungicides are a growing set of products that can be incorporated into disease IPM programs.  Here, case studies from on-farm trials in ornamental crops in Ontario are discussed.  This includes the importance of proper disease Identification when forming a disease strategy plan, re-evaluating your chemical plan by comparing to microbials, and how different media may affect outcomes.

Colleen Warfield
Ball Horticultural Co.

Keeping Calibrachoa Diseases at Bay

A number of diseases can cause production challenges when growing Calibrachoa. As with all plant diseases, prevention is key. Are you taking the necessary steps to protect and manage your Calibrachoa crop?


2:00 PM - 3:30 PM


This session generously sponsored by     Form Flex logo

Christian Nansen
University of California
Davis, CA

Use of Imaging Technologies to Detect & Diagnose Insect Stressors

Crop monitoring for detection and diagnosis of emerging pest outbreaks is being revolutionized by developments in machine vision, data processing, and robotics! In the foreseeable future, we will see more and more examples of automated systems being deployed to monitor crops and being used to precision-apply inputs when and where they are needed. Nansen works with entomologists, mechanical and electrical engineers and software programmers – all working together to develop machine vision- based systems to detect and diagnose emerging arthropod pest outbreaks. This presentation will provide some insight into the potential applications and cast light on some of the challenges constraints. Due to this technological revolution unfolding – digital agriculture – the types and demands for education and training of both future growers and researchers are changing. 

Saber Miresmailli
Vancouver, BC

Extending Growers' Presence & Knowledge Through Artificial Intelligence & Robotics 

It is quite possible for a grower to visit all of the plants in a small operation but in larger operations, the grower can not be everywhere at once and they need to rely on other staff to provide them with information about their crop. Read more…


Rodney Bierhuizen
Sunrise Greenhouses
Vineland, ON

Grower Experience: Computer vision with iUNU

Luna is the first computer vision platform designed to work hand-in-hand with growers, empowering them to see and control more. It offers plant-level data analysis combining sensors with its revolutionary greenhouse rail track network coupled with high-definition imagining. The result? Growers can identify potential problems proactively through real-time visibility and insights, improving response rates, increasing labor efficiency, reducing scrap and dump, optimizing supply chain management and dramatically impacting outcomes. It’s designed to integrate seamlessly with your growing team, improving business outcomes and give you time to do other things….


2:00 PM - 3:30 PM


Christie Pollack
Christie's Gardens & Greenhouses
High Prairie, AB

Short & Sweet:  What headlines can tell you 

Learn how to steer your business decisions and forecast your future by reviewing headlines in the news. Be ahead of trends and create a plan by learning what to focus on. Discover the art of skimming headlines to grow your business the way you want.

Marlene Mastronardi
Anna's Flowers
Kingsville, ON

3 Ways to Grow a Business - Creating a Destination

Everyone wants a simple formula to grow their business fast.  Anna’s Flowers started as a small roadside vegetable and flower stand 44 years ago.  Today, it encompasses a 30, 000 Square ft showroom greenhouse, with home décor, giftables, food and local produce, and health and wellness items. Mastronardi will share 3 approaches with corresponding strategies that have helped their business grow over the years. 

John Vanderwees
Vanderwees Garden Gallery
Thunder Bay, ON


Changing with the Times

Vanderwees Garden Gallery, located in Thunder Bay, Ontario, is a year-round garden centre with something to offer its customers in every season.  Find out how this family business has adapted over the decades to become a major Thunder Bay destination.





 This session generously sponsored by:  aphria logo

Vicki Hilborn
OMAFRA, Harrow

 Reducing the Nuisance of Cannabis Odours

The production of cannabis is odourous, which may impact neighbours and surrounding land uses.  This presentation will cover different approaches to address and reduce odour impacts on surrounding land uses, including the results of an OMAFRA study comparing odour control equipment currently in use at operating cannabis operations. 


Jon Page
Anandia Labs
Vancouver, BC


Innovation in Cannabis Genetics

Dr. Jonathan Page, the CEO and co-founder of Anandia, is internationally recognized for his work on cannabis biochemistry and genomics, and is the leading Canadian researcher working on the cannabis plant. He has spent his career deciphering the genetic and biochemical secrets of medicinal plants, including the production of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and other cannabinoids in cannabis. He will present the latest developments in cannabis genetics and breeding, and provide insights into where the industry is heading. 

Jon Page will also be speaking at the National Conference of the Canadian Society for Horticultural Science in Niagara Falls on Friday, October 5   
CSHS Website  Special rate available to CGC attendees.

John Moeller
Broken Coast Cannabis
Vancouver, BC
A Look at the Cost/Benefits of Growing Indoors

Growing indoors has many advantages over growing in greenhouses or outdoors: namely greater consistency and higher quality finished product.  Naturally there are expenses associated with the increased control that is gained by growing indoors and this presentation will look at the trade-offs between benefit and cost.

David Janik
Leamington, ON

Greenhouse Cannabis Production: Benefits and Issues

Based on his experience, Janik will discuss the benefits of growing cannabis in a greenhouse.  Artificial lighting, black out curtains and biological controls to be covered.



Looking for a presentation from our past conference?  Please note that not all speakers allow their work to be posted.

2018 Canadian Greenhouse Conference Presentations

2017 Canadian Greenhouse Conference Presentations

2016 Canadian Greenhouse Conference Presentations