Bent Juhl Jensen and Malene Juhl Jensen.
In 1997, Bent and Malene Juhl Jensen started to grow Asters in their 3,000 square meter greenhouse, called Nursery Raahöj, in Denmark. "Over time, we noticed an increase in demand for good looking plants with a long shelf life. In order to meet this demand, we started to breed our own new varieties in 2001." In 2004 they entered the market with Mystery Lady; a new line of Asters. In 2009, they started breeding and growing trifoliums.
Bringing the Aster back on top
The Mystery Lady line is exported all over the world.
Over the last years, the Aster have gone through a difficult period and decreased in popularity. "Nowadays, Asters are considered a 'grandmother plant' by the modern generation in many countries", says Malene Juhl Jensen. "So, in order to get the Aster back on top, this generation needs to get a good experience with the plant."
According to Malene, high quality is an import factor that contributes to a good experience. "Therefore, the aim of this line is to add quality." says Malene. The Mystery Lady Asters are characterized by their filled flowers in bright, warm colors and fine and strong sturdy plants with a long durability. "Our Asters can last up to six weeks".
Lately they added a new variety to the Mystery Lady series; the Nicole. "This new variety, named after the actress Nicole Kidman, is a strong plant with a bright blue colour and lots of buds/flowers."
Besides that, cultivating the Mystery Lady Asters saves costs and labor for growers. "A regular Aster needs three cuttings to be cultivated, but Mystery Lady Aster only needs one." Currently, they have 3 varieties that can be grown with 1 cutting. "It is one of our goals in breeding to find more varieties that can be produced with only 1 cutting", says Malene.
Increasing demand for Trifolium
Besides breeding Asters, Malene and Bent also breed and grow young and finished Trifoliums since 2009. When breeding the Trifolium, much attention is paid to the colors of the leaves and their tolerance of the Trifolium fungus. Besides that, the plant is 100% winterhardy and is therefore able to last longer. In 2014, one of their Trifoliums, namely Estelle, won the Floradania innovation award.
On the left: Drak Debbie. On the right: Leonore.
Lately, they introduced two new varieties of the Trifolium: Leonore and Dark Debbie. The Dark Debbie is a compact plant with dark leaves. The Leonore is characterized by the red center in the leaves.
Over the last few years, they recognized an increase in popularity for the Trifolium.
"Our Trifoliums are popular in Sweden and Denmark and are becoming increasingly popular in the Netherlands and Germany."
Nursery Raahöj will also be present at the Nordic Flowers Expo in Malmö, Sweden and can be visited at stand: D.010.
For more information
Malene Juhl Jensnen