It Was The Best Year Ever For CA Grown Certified Rose Parade Floats

The CA Grown logo was displayed proudly on the award winning Miracle-Gro Float. Miracle-Gro’s float received the Governor’s Trophy for the best depiction of life in California. Very fitting.

I can remember vividly the conversation with flower farmer and CCFC Commissioner June VanWingerden over seven years ago about how the Commission needed to make an effort to be a part of the Rose Parade again. She felt that the Rose Parade was a natural place for us to raise the profile of our farms during the biggest one day floral focused event in the country, that just so happened to be in our own backyard.

So, with promotion committee’s blessing, we went to work.

CDFA Secretary Ross congratulates Miracle-Gro VP & General Manager, John Sass.


At the time it wasn’t clear what that might look like, but I think we can all be proud of what has taken place since the decisions were made. Last week’s support for CA Grown Flowers and our certification efforts at the Rose Parade was amazing. Let me just rattle off a few of the high points:

  • Secretary Karen Ross’ continued support and involvement with our certification efforts
  • Certificates of Recognition from Das Williams and Senator Connie Leyva
  • 4 Certified CA Grown entries
    • Miracle-Gro
    • California Milk Advisory Board
    • CalPoly Universities
    • FTD Parade Vehicles
  • All 3 Certified floats were award winning
  • 1 Certified American Grown entry (National Park Service)
  • 2 Flower farmers on the Miracle-Gro Float
  • 38 Farm Ambassadors (volunteers)
  • 7,500 “CA Grown” stickers distributed
  • HGTV mention of CA Grown Certification
  • ABC mention of CA Grown Certification
  • Front Page Santa Barbara NewsPress
  • Ty Pennington support and endorsement of California Grown Flowers
  • Post Parade activation for California Grown
  • 50,000+ stems of flowers donated to CalPoly
  • Hundreds of amazing photos on Flickr by photographer Linda Blue!

Our red shirt Ambassadors did an amazing job helping us spread the news about CA Grown flowers.

We are working on a full report of the coverage our efforts received on this year’s efforts, but I think if you were anywhere around the parade last week, you couldn’t help but appreciate how far we’ve come with bringing California Grown Flowers back to the Tournament of Roses Parade.

Keith White (center)with Secretary Karen Ross during the FTD CA Grown Certification Ceremony last week. Pictured left to right is CCFC Chair Mike A. Mellano, Chair-elect Diana Roy, Keith White, Secretary Karen Ross, Harry VanWingerden and Linda G.

Our organization could not accomplish all of this without the leadership and the support of our farms, volunteers and our staff.

  • Thank you to our farms who donated the 50k plus stems of flowers to CalPoly float.
  • Thank you to our Ambassadors for giving of their time.
  • Thank you to Growers Logistics for donating the transportation of all of our flowers for CalPoly
  • Thank you to Kathleen for her efforts during the busy Christmas holiday to make sure the flowers made it to Pasadena.
  • Thank you to Adrienne, Neisha and Linda for their efforts to manage our press relationships, post parade activation and our cool new t-shirt design.
  • Thank you to Carly at Kahn, Soares and Conway for helping to manage our elected officials’ support
  • Thank you to Diana Roy, Juan Carlos and Mike Mooney for helping with our volunteer managment
  • Thank you to Linda G. for being our lead Ambassador and helping to organize everyone to promote our cause to all of the consumers who came by during deco-week.
  • Thank you to Andrea for your support in connecting all of the dots, answering questions and making sure we all had rooms for the night.

Secretary Ross enthusiastically certifies the California Milk Advisory Board’s float CA Grown on Thursday.


We worked with Miracle-Gro and California Grown to have a presense at post parade where all of the floats are left on display for three days. We handed out over 7,500 CA Grown stickers to passersby.

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