May 29th, 2020. The single-flowered blue freesia “Blue Velvet” of Penning Freesia from Honselersdijk has become the winner of the Jan Goemans Freesia Trophy 2020. This trophy has been awarded annually since 1977 and is intended for the most promising new freesia variety.
Every year, all nominated varieties are planted together and assessed by a committee of 7 freesia experts. In addition to this planting, the varieties are also assessed during the Open Days of the breeding companies. This year, assessments were completed just before the corona crisis.
Due to the corona crisis, the trophy could not be presented as usual during the professional evening at Keukenhof this year. After consultation, it was decided to award the trophy this year at the winner’s company, where only representatives of the three breeding companies and the judges were present. In a corona-proof setting, in which all those present could keep a distance of one and a half meters, the winning variety was announced and the trophy was awarded.
According to the jury report, the variety “Blue Velvet” is characterized by a very high production (no less than 470 branches per 100 corms) of high-quality main and side branches, a beautiful dark color and an excellent vase life. The variety was first supplied at the Flora Holland auction this spring and will be planted by more freesia growers in the autumn. Of the fourteen nominated varieties, in addition to the winning variety, two new varieties of Penning Freesia finished in the top 4: the double-flowered bright red “Fuego” and the double-flowered white “Starlight”.