Just like the culinary world, the ornamentals universe is undergoing an evolution of sorts. There is fusion-a blending of tastes, sty, es and designs. Innovation is in and strict followers of the purists’ rules of design are starting to dwindle. Hobbyists are on the rise, some of them even earning more than what those erudite ornamental experts do. There is also this innate yearning among practitioners to dig into what’s endemic and indigenous among our plant materials and promote them for popular consumption.
“Those are signs of the times,” enthuses Dr. I,eonido R. Naranja, an acclaimed ornamental expert and Associate Professor of UPLB’s Crop Science Cluster (Formerly the Horticulture Department). “The general rule is, as the living conditions of people go higher, the usage of ornamentals also increases. But from what we have observed, even with the global financial crisis, we’re still seeing an uptrend – in the number of ornamental enthusiasts. It’s quite hard to predict what’s next in this industry.”
We visited Dr. Naranja during the recently concluded garden show and technology fair at the UPLB Social Garden Hall . As part of the organizing team of the yearly flower arrangement and dish garden competition, the amiable professor provided us with wonderful insights on what he thinks are hot emerging trends in the ornamentals world.