Friday, June 26, 2009

HOT Friday

Well I decided today is a great day to spend some quality time in my office since it will be another day of record breaking heat. Yesterday I spent some quality time at Schlitterbaun in New Braunfels, gotta escape the heat somehow! I hate thinking about the effects this heat has on our poor little plants. Already we have seen some problems in shipping. It is topping a little over 100 degrees each day then the plants get stuffed into a box and put on a freight truck, we may have to hold some shipments back if this heat continues. We hate when good plants die :-( On a lighter note the garden is a buzz, the honey bees are alive and happily pollinating our melons, cucumbers and watermelons. I never knew watermelons grew so quickly, maybe by Monday we can harvest! Also in the garden we planted some of our new Nandinas for some side by side comparisons. These are in full sun so they are not the prettiest but they are not half bad. The only problem is the cucumbers are attacking the Nandina Flirt, oh decisions, cut back the cucumber or let it swallow the Nandina? Depends on how hungry I am when I make that decision, LOL!

The month of July will be spent on getting crops ready for Fall as well as getting everything ready for the 2 tradeshows we exhibit at, the TNLA Expo and the Farwest show. The Expo is in Texas so we go all out at this one since we can ship things on our truck. These orange chairs are just a part of what has been started on. It is going to be fun! Also I will be working on the new MGN liner web site. We hope to bring new and exciting things to the site now that my focus will all be on liners. My deadline for our first rollout is August 3rd, I would say the 1st but that is a Saturday! I have many ideas so we will get the site up and going then add features as we go, if you have ideas let me know and I will see if we can implement them...I am not an expert so there are a few things I cannot do.

Some other things we are trying is holding a special of the week on Twitter. We have several followers now and we hope to get many more in the future. Other new things include our expanded perennial line which has gone over nicely. We are still working on a product line, subtracting and adding as we go, eventually we will find a group we like....then we will find new plants to add and change it again. That's what keeps things interesting for us here and we hope for our customers as well.

Time to go enjoy this HOT Friday as I sip on my Triple Venti Skinny Cinnamon Dolce Latte, yes!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Don't Spray it, Eat it!

I was watching Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern on the travel channel, you know the guy that will eat anything. Anyway it was his survival special and interestingly enough I actually learned something. Purslane is edible, yes you know the weed you keep pulling and spraying. Well after I saw the show I did some research. Not only is it edible but it is really good for you. On the show he made a salad with it, said if you mash it it was like olive oil dressing. The reason for this is all of the Omega-3 fatty acids. That is not the only thing good, it is also high in vitamin C. So save money on that grocery bill and eat what is already available for FREE! Mmmmm Purslane!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Whew wee!

Well the dog days of summer are nearly upon us. It has gotten close to 100F here in the Houston area already! The heat index is already well above 100F, ouch! To avoid the heat I am spending some more time in the office ordering seeds for products we will offer in the Fall, just a few we received today in the picture. This spring we started to offer a whole line of perennial products, most in a larger cell size so they the finish fast. Even in the slow economy we saw some good movement so we are adding to our selections so our customers will have some great items to choose from by late summer. One new item will be ornamental peppers. We hope to have these ready in time for our customers to get them ready for their fall program. We noticed that consumers are looking for color items now, maybe holding back on shrub purchases or it could be the slow housing market makes those shrub needs go down. In any case we like color too so look for new items on our continuously evolving availability.

Also I will be working on a new Web site for the liner division. More to come later as I get further into this project. Basically we feel we can better cater to our customers by having a separate site from the container division at the nursery. Hopefully it will help reduce the confusion customers can have when calling about products. I hope to finish this before the TNLA Expo, keep your fingers crossed!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

New Plants!!

There is nothing better to boast your day than a batch of new plants arriving at the doorstep. With the economy as crummy as it has been it feels like everyone has had the life sucked out of them. My philosophy is to trial new plants in times like these. Once the economy springs back up we will be ready with all sorts of goodies to tickle your fancy. Today's goodies were a batch of Agapanthus 'Gold Strike' from New Zealand. They were sent bareroot so we will replant them outside in the greenhouse. I already have these going in the lab but I am going to try them both ways and see which way gets us the most plants the quickest. It is a beautiful plant so it is worth the work. I am hoping sometime in 2010 we will have some available.....