Production Manager at Wyevale Nurseries Kyle Ross has been presented with a special new award at this year’s Four Oaks Trade Show.
He was named as an ‘Ambassador for Horticulture’ by the show organisers backed by the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA).
Wyevale Nurseries’ Head of Business Support, Carol Dickinson says: “This is wonderful news! I entered Kyle on behalf of the company for the Pat Coutts award for excellence in the large business category. But the judges said his entry stood out over and above the others, so they created a separate award, Ambassador for Horticulture, and presented him with that instead! We’re delighted for Kyle and very proud. Congratulations to him on this thoroughly well-deserved award.”
In his winning entry, Kyle, who is a key member of the Young People in Horticulture Association (YPHA), is described by his colleagues at Wyevale Nurseries as inspiring, supportive, committed to change and great fun.
He says: “I was overwhelmed and incredibly honoured to receive this award, completely unexpected, but delighted to have been recognised in the industry. I would like to thank my team at Wyevale Nurseries and YPHA for all their continued support.”
Kyle has a BSc in Horticulture from Pershore College and is one of the Wyevale Nurseries’ young ‘homegrown’ managers, having successfully completed its management training scheme.
Carol adds: “Kyle is a truly inspirational young man and an absolute asset to our business. His work ethic is outstanding and his enthusiasm for plant health and biosecurity is infectious. He is a true ambassador for Wyevale Nurseries, our sector’s Plant Health and for youth in horticulture too.”
Kyle started his career at Wyevale Nurseries on its Management Trainee Programme in 2016, which is a two-year course. Eighteen months in, he was doing so well he carved out a vital role in the team as Plant Health Coordinator.
In 2018, he accepted the position as Production Manager for the container production site and has been in that role for more than four years. He manages four internal departments – crop protection, growing, stock control and new product development.
Kyle adds: “I thoroughly enjoy my job, as no two days at work are ever the same. I am constantly learning and helping those around me to learn too. The challenge of developing the business to adapt to changes in the outside world – environmental, climate, economy etc is what drives me every day.”
As well as his role at Wyevale Nurseries, he’s a proactive committee member for the YPHA, which he joined in 2021 and is now the Bursary Manager.
It’s a great passion of Kyle’s, as it helps likeminded young horticulturalists to share thoughts and ideas. It provides a welcoming community and encourages youth into the sector.
He has received recognition in the trade media for being one of the horticultural industry’s new generation of young, inspirational and influential plantspeople.
In his six years with Wyevale Nurseries so far, Kyle has been the driving force behind ensuring the business was one of the first hardy nursery growers in the UK to achieve a Plant Healthy certified status.
He is a huge champion of plant health, not only at Wyevale Nurseries, but across the industry and is happy to talk to organisations and other nurseries about it.
Kyle was also a member of the steering group, which introduced the Defra-endorsed Plant Health Alliance’s Plant Healthy Certification scheme. He constantly educates and raises awareness both at work and to the wider world across his social media.
To add to all this, Kyle has helped bring to market several new products in the Wyevale Nurseries’ range, which have gone on to be very successful sellers. Of these, his favourites, to date, include Dryopteris Jurassic Gold and Euonymus White Spire.
For further details, please visit www.wyevalenurseries.co.uk.