BLUFFTON TRICK-OR-TREAT IS THURSDAY, OCT. 29 FROM 6 TO 7:30 P.M....PASS IT ON!
NOTE: The Icon is happy to publish this account by Steve Stratton. In it, he shares the 61-year history of Stratton Greenhouse. Click here to view photos.
By Steve Stratton
As Dad, Jim Stratton, got back from WWII (spending 3 years in the South Pacific on a supply ship ' the USS Calamares' delivering and receiving to ports in the Philippines, Australia, China, and others as a 18 year old) he went back to Westinghouse in Lima to work.
Depression era children knew how to work and after the war and seeing the world, were bolder and I think more content to settle in and enjoy the fruits of hope.
He took a government aptitude test that directed him toward nursery, agriculture, or greenhouses. He left Westinghouse and started working as an intern for Slayton's Greenhouse in Toledo. Northern Ohio was the greenhouse Mecca with acres of glass-covered greenhouses producing tomatoes for the fresh produce market. He learned the basics and also observed. A side note was a speeding ticket during work that his employer made him pay. He always told me we are responsible for our actions.
After a couple of years at Slayton's he went home and told his dad, Ray, that he wanted to build a greenhouse to grow tomatoes. Granddad told me that he thought he was crazy but never told him but instead helped him work out the details too (another life lesson for me). So, at the age of 24 he was building a greenhouse, planning a crop of tomatoes, and finding customers. Oh, by the way his sister was dying of an eight-year illness, he got married and was expecting me. Mom, Elnora, reminded me I was born 10 and half months after they were married. Kind of gutsy in my mind but then again it was a great generation. I'm not sure my mother knew what she was getting into, but then again they were a team, and she was also the bookkeeper. After all, she and her sister Nettie Ferrall had struck out on their own to The Ohio State University as the first in their family to get degrees, both in nursing.
Dad borrowed the money, bought the land and built the greenhouse. Diminutive George Rainbuehler (sp), a local plumber, helped build the first greenhouse and we still have some of his plumbing tools 60 years later. An old timer told dad that the first crop would be the best in the virgin, for tomatoes, ground and dad thought that was strange but it ended up being true. As farmers know crop rotation is very important, but in the greenhouse Dad grew 50 crops of tomatoes in a row. Water, soil, nutrient, light, heat shade/sun, oxygen/ co2, disease, and insect issues take over. The more I know the less I seem to know. God's creation is amazing and intricate. Our 1st two greenhouses, 11,200 sq. feet were built in 1949, a lean to was built in 1950, a 3rd greenhouse was built in 1952 and a 4th was built in 1957 (I wonder now if it was that we needed more income with a 3rd child added to our family.) Every expansion seemed to be triggered by more family mouths to feed.)
Dad dug his first well with a post hole digger, 13 feet deep, and used that water for a couple of years before he had a 40 foot well dug and used as the primary well until the drought of 1988 (when you get into your 7th decade you can say things like I remember the blizzard of 77 or the week off school because of snow in 65 and when Kennedy was assassinated, and Ike.) We dug a well 308 feet deep in 1989 to insure that we would have an adequate water supply in drought years and were hoping to get away from that good old black sulfur water (3 inches in the bathtub and you can't see bottom). No such luck. At the greenhouse I grew up drinking from a community tin cup, hanging from a nail next to the spicket, sharing with family, workers and hitchhikers that stopped by while walking route 30. Oh, by the way, we also had an outhouse that was tipped over many Halloweens by some kids; some of whom I think knew my teacher grandmother, Carrie. The out house was moved to Wayne Zimmerman's woods on he corner of Bentley and Schifferly in about 1980 and was there until the land was divided for houses a couple of years ago.
Even though I was in a basket on the table at the greenhouse as an infant, my earliest recollections are of my great grandfather, Orton, sitting on a chair stamping our name on the baskets of tomatoes that my grandfather delivered to the small markets in the area. I have vivid memories of riding with granddad as a youngster. It seemed like there was a small grocery on every other block in Lima, but then again everything appears different as a youngster. We delivered first in, maybe, a Studebaker then a blue Nash with the back seats taken out so to stack the baskets of tomatoes. We also had a bucket on the table next to the scales where people like Marge Triplett and other women who frequented Aunt Treva's Beauty Shop would stop, weigh out their own tomatoes and leave the money in the bucket if dad wasn't around. Many a day we'd come back to money in the bucket. It was a different time. We had an old cash register, but every night since we weren't going to town to deposit the small amounts of money, the cash was often put in an old boot. Now I laugh at that thought.
Elmer Short, who had the greenhouse next to the Lutheran church, was the first employee. He and his wife Elisabeth were sweet and old to a 5 year old. He was probably 55; I don't know just my perspective. They lived on the corner of Grove and Main. I remember the beautiful front porch. Elmer would often have a cigar in his mouth, but I never remember it being lit. When Dad was elected to the school board about 1967 Elmer told him that dad had the most votes since he had been elected. I have no idea if this is true but it reminded me how small towns and memories are intertwined and partly true.
We started our plants from soil skimmed off the top of the fields. A spring crop, planted in January, grew until harvest, which started in April through July before the garden tomatoes came on. At home we had fresh tomatoes on our table except in February and March. No tomatoes were shipped from Mexico or Florida or Canada or California back then. We would tear out the vines, rototill the soil, and then put plastic over the ground and run steam through the ground from our coal boilers 24 hours a day for 7-10 days to kill diseases. I was allowed as a 12 year old to take the 11-7 shift to stoke the boiler and served as a night watchman (didn't really do much just watched). One night a hitchhiker stood in the doorway about 2 am and scared the bejeebers out of me. And occasionally as we pushed steam a pop-off valve would release the too much pressure with the loudest noise and I would jump 10 feet. We'd put 10 inches of water on the ground from overhead sprinklers to leach out the salts after the steaming. I can still smell the aroma of "cooked" soil. We would then fertilize, rototill again and plant a fall crop the 1st of August. The rototiller weighed more than I did and I really thought I was something running that machine. We started to harvest the tomatoes in October and finished in January and started over again until 1974, 50 crops. Our fall crop produced about one third less than the spring crop with the two totaling about 36 tons of tomatoes on the half-acre under cover. More heat and light in the spring made it more profitable.
I remember Ed Good and Howard Stager bringing coal that was delivered by the beautiful pin oak out back. We fixed glass, painted roof bars, mulched the plants with straw or hay, peanut hulls from Georgia, or ground corncobs, tied up 160 plants to a wire 6 feet high. There were 8 rows in a house times 4 houses. I could tie up a row in 25 minutes. We trained the plants up the twine and back down. We suckered the plants, took out the new growth between the leaf and stem, and we pollinated the blossoms with an electric battery buzzer, touching each blossom when ready to stimulate fruit, some greenhouses used bees to pollinate. During the season we picked the tomatoes every day, if necessary, except Sunday. When the sun is out and it is 0 outside it will be 70 inside, Florida weather. And in the summer when it is 100 it is 130 with all ventilation working. Needless to say we tried to be done in the morning on hot days. Every night before bed dad would go to fill the coal hopper with coal to last the night. We Had a Pony Massey Harris tractor with loader to fill the coal. The tractor burned in a barn fire and Gene Schmidt bought it back, either for parts or to restore. Every day when heating dad would have to clean the boiler tubes and emptied the cinders from the firebox. It was a dirty, hot job, but he never complained.
Small groceries, Pangles (forerunner to Ray's), and a co-op in Toledo that deliverer to A and P stores and others all had Stratton tomatoes at some time. It was 60 miles to the co-op in Toledo and granddad would drive that trip in a 1960 red ford pick-up truck 2 or 3 times a week during the seasons. One day dad stopped the truck a half mile from the greenhouse and walked to get me so I could drive the truck and watch it turn over 100,000 miles. And at the end of an era Dad, the smallest member of the co-op (one-half acre) and Len Bettinger the largest member at around 8 acres (at my recollection) closed the doors forever in 1974 as the last two members. Energy and shipments year around from more efficient climates forced almost every tomato greenhouse in Ohio out of business within a couple of years
Elmer Short, Hiram Reichenbach, and Otie Fett, I have fond memories of these men all unique individuals of an age gone by. I also spent many great hours working with my cousin Tom Bell, the first of many high school kids to work at Stratton greenhouses. He would ride his bike to work before he had his driver license. My summers and Saturdays, starting when I was 12, were spent going to work with my dad. We started at 8 until 11:30 and finished from 12:30 to 5, very punctual. A favorite memory is watching my younger brother, probably 3 or 4 years old, picking red tomatoes eye level to 3 feet off the ground and carrying the baskets barely off the ground, sweat beaded on his brow. I also learned many life lessons. One memory was of the alarm ringing, calling us to the greenhouse on a very cold night. I went along since I was still up. There was a hole in the firebox of our only boiler at the time and dad realizing that the whole crop would be lost if we couldn't stop the leak, he reached in with the fire and drove a rod into the hole to stop the leak. The next day when the sun was out and the boiler off we welded a patch around that rod. Extreme situations call for extreme actions. When the government's boiler inspector, Inspector Trivett who always wore a bow tie and put on a pair of coveralls to crawl into the boiler, came the next summer as he always did, he checked the boiler and declared everything good, not noticing the patch (which was obvious) or any other possible corrosion until dad brought it to his attention. These events taught me that we must be responsible. Life is a risk. For the last 33 years my livelihood has been protected by a piece of plastic.
I asked my dad on fathers day shortly before he died what he thought about his dad, and without a hesitation he said" I can't even explain how much he meant to me" in a very serious emotional voice. That reminds me how I feel about my dad.
1975 to the present.
Our seasonal hours 4/19-6/5 are Mon.-Fri. 9-8, Sat.9-6 and Sundays in May 12-5
At Christmas of 1974, knowing the struggle Dad was having, I asked him if he thought we could make the transition to bedding plants from tomatoes, He smiled, said yes, and we became partners. Dad offered me equal pay and half ownership in anything we created.
In the 1972/73 school year, I made $7200 teaching and coaching at Kettering Fairmont West High School. Each year of the first 5 years with dad, we made one half of a starting teachers annual salary. We worked many hours, but invested everything we could back into the business and doubled the size from one half acre to one acre by the summer of 1980 and had established a customer base that would sustain us for 25 years.
Dad had always grown bedding plants for the garden and sold them retail in the spring. The plants were grown from seed, hand sown into seed flats, and transplanted into flats we made of wood and filled with field soil. When a person wanted cabbage, for instance, you would dig them out with your finger and wrap the bare root plants in a newspaper and tie a string around the package for transport. Dad sold them by the dozen, bakers dozen, always putting a thirteenth plant in for good measure. In the 60's with the advent of plastic flats and packs you could sell different multiples of plants clean and easy and they would take off faster without the transplanting shock of bare root plants. Soiless growing media of peat moss and vermiculite was developed at Cornell University without the weight of soil and clean of weed seed. This "Cornell mix" gave a consistency to the germinating procedure. In 1974 Dad grew around 1800 flats of vegetables and flowers. In 1975 we grew 10,000 flats and dumped 40% of those (mostly vegetables). But we learned and because this was our first wholesale year we adjusted.
When the tomato market disappeared, the bedding plant market boomed and greenhouses switched or closed. Since refrigerated transportation was also growing with produce being shipped from warmer climates, many greenhouses grew bedding plants and then shipped them to the east coast; Maryland, Washington D. C., and the Carolinas, because that market was a month ahead of us and they could then replant and sell locally. With the growth of Kmart and their decision to sell bedding plants another market formed. For 20 years until K-mart went bankrupt they drove the bedding plant industry.
In the late 60's plastics were developed that could be used to cover greenhouses. This meant greenhouses could be built cheaper than the traditional wood and glass houses. Greenhouses could be built cheaply to grow the bedding plants for the expanding garden market. Hanging baskets made of plastic provided another niche product to grow and sell. You could get twice as much in the same growing area with the same amount of heat with metal framework and hanging baskets.
In 1976, our first year growing hanging baskets, we grew 1,000 and by 1980 we grew 10,000. The country was embracing this product and we automated to grow as many as would fit in our facility. And the only reason we could sell so many was K-mart. Mike Simons, a young 19 year old, stopped at one Kmart when delivering to another store and that contact allowed us to double our overall production in 4 years and to set us on our path of growth. They could move plants and pushed them. One store would take 1,000 poinsettias two or three times a week during Christmas.
Susie and I met in the fall of 1976 as she was working at Bluffton College as Director of Career Counseling and Placement. Our mutual acquaintances were Don Schweingruber, her boss, and Dave Moyer, whom I coached football with at B.C. We first talked on October 31st, were engaged in January, and married April 16th, 33 years ago. She helped out after hours with our retail and the rest is, as they say, history.
In 1979 we built a retail entrance through "The Country Peddler gift shop" which Susie had started in Bluffton as "Plants and Things" in 1977. Our retail showed steady growth until 2000. In December of 1999 new US route 30 opened making the now called Lincoln Highway a country road. Even though we welcomed the safety brought about by the change, a side note was that our retail sales from people driving by were reduced by around 15%. Even now 10 years later people call and say they can see us from new 30 but wonder how to get to us.
Susie delivered Jeff in November of 1980 and was on the road a couple of weeks later as sales manager selling poinsettias. We were undercut in the Cincinnati area by 35 cents on a $2.20 pot and lost a 10,000-pot sale to a large greenhouse trying to get the market by selling below our cost. After that we tried to never have one customer with over 25% of our production.
Brother Dave Stratton had student taught at Cory-Rawson the fall of 1980 and came to be our new sales manager in 1981 as Susie continued to manage our retail sales and The Country Peddler. We added a half-acre of greenhouses in 1987 as Dave married Julie and our family grew. Tom Sommers and Amy Goodwin (a B.C. biology major) became assistants in maintenance and growing respectfully. Both worked with us for many years and are like family to us. As we grew it wasn't unusual to have 15 day planters/workers and then 10 high school students come in at 4 until 8pm. We loved providing a first time job for students, a job for mothers with children in school, and for the retired looking for some part time work. Hundreds of students worked for us in the last 35 years. They were a joy. We had employees that worked with us for 20 to 25 years.
And then...another energy crisis, double digit unemployment, my home mortgage was over 11% (no 30 year fixed only 3 year variable), and as I remember, the prime was at 20% in April of 1980. Inflation was in double digits too! 1980,81,and 82 were tough years but because of our upgrades we were as ready as possible and just had to weather the economic storm.
As the 1975-80 years were years of upgrading and expansion, the 1980-90 years were years of innovation and technology. Automatic seeders, trucks with lift gates and rolling carts to load and unload material, innovation with plastic containers, water booms to water one acre in two hours by itself, and hanging basket systems to move and water another whole layer of plants in the same heating area all kept us in the forefront with the competition. We got away from large high energy fans for cooling by embracing green low energy roof vents with plastic roofs and under bench heating with new synthetic rubber heating tubes. Sensors tied to computers for environmental controls and computers for accounting changed our world forever. Computer models of growth, integrating light, nutrients and light helped grow a more diverse crop on tighter schedules, which helped plan for the demand.
By the end of the 1990s we had grown to over 2 acres of indoor growing area with another half acre for outside growing. We were landlocked and when Wal-Mart had asked us to take on another district, we declined because we just couldn't produce any more from our facility and in retrospect it was good.
Wal-mart took over the K-mart market and with the housing growth of the 1990s the climate was ready for other DIY (do- it-yourself) stores. Lowe's and Home Depot competed for the housing market and with that market landscaping was a natural addition for these stores. So you had Wal-Mart, Home Depot and Lowe's (the later two not allowing vendors to sell to the other), and the re-emerging smaller Kmart to sell to. These were the drivers. At the end of the Kmart run, they had tried to foresee the demand by requiring suppliers to tag every item with a UPC so management could track sales and project what the consumers wanted. This meant every item, variety and size. One box store required color-coding for sun and shade and also in Spanish. Eventually, the government required all tags to have the different volumes in metric to have a different barcode. Our number of tags went from the thousands to over a million. It became a nightmare as your could only buy tags in large quantities. The box stores also demanded up to an 11% advertisement rebate so if you sold them $100,000 they expected you to give them back $11.000.00 to advertise your products even though our name was never mentioned. Brother Dave made trips to Wal-mart headquarters in Arkansas; one meeting, which was interesting, for all vendors was Monday morning the day after Father's Day meaning all had to leave on Father's Day to make the trip.
Since everything was being scanned, Home Depot and Kmart decided that they would only pay for the items sold with Home Depot requiring that you supply the retail employees to care for and to sell the plants. If the plants didn't sell you didn't get paid. One of the difficulties was then to keep track and pay the many vendors. It was easy to lose tags and scan others giving credit to someone else. A couple of years ago there were 1,400 growers servicing the big box stores and in one year it dropped to 900. Currently Wal-Mart has less than 40 growers servicing the U.S. So the industry turned to large automated greenhouses to supply them. Greenhouses grew from 50 to 100 to almost 200 acres in one location. Some grew by building, some by buying competitors, and others by contracting from smaller growers. The largest in the country, a 200-acre greenhouse, was quoted last month that 25% of his sales were sub-contracted. As weather or financial meltdowns affected sales the big boxes delayed, cancelled, or rejected orders due to the demand. This meant you either had to hold a crop, find another buyer, or dump the product grown specifically for them because it became unsaleable. They had the control, play with them or they would find someone else. They threatened to drop us over a penny a pack, take it or leave.
As with almost every business the end of the last century brought change that was unimaginable a few years earlier. Globalization affected us all. Earlier I would get all my plants or seeds from the United States. By the end of the 1990s my unrooted cuttings were coming from Guatemala, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mexico, Costa Rico, China, and many other places. They were shipped overnight to be at my door the next day. To stay competitive you had to change. The dollar exchange rate affected competition with our northern neighbors. With a strong dollar they could undercut our prices and we saw them as a strong competitor. Everything became so instant.
During the 1980s we lost our best employee, Granddad Ray. He was 89 and would come in everyday and ask what he could do. The day of his aneurysm, I told him to go have some fun so he and grandma Carrie went out to eat, came home and marveled wondering how long they might be able to do what they had just done. Then in September of '96 we lost our partner, our mentor, our father, Jim. Heart disease and Parkinson's took their toll and in an instant he too was gone at 71. We try to take each day, one at a time, knowing that is all we have.
Our seasonal hours 4/19-6/5 are Mon.-Fri. 9-8, Sat 9-6 and Sundays in May 12-5
Stratton Greenhouses 2000 to present
We continued pushing products through our greenhouse with more automation and by building two more greenhouses in 2004 trying to satisfy our customers, keeping all of our more profitable customers but also trying to grow the more diverse products for the big box stores. But as the marketplace was changing at an exponential clip we really were trying to evaluate all aspects of our business. Change was coming and we were trying to keep up. In 2007 we blacktopped our retail parking lot and son David rebuilt our retail entrance with a new pergola and paver entrance with more checkout locations.
Greenhouses are solar collectors. All day, when sunny, you don't have to heat but when the sun goes down or clouds block the sun greenhouses are very inefficient at holding the energy. When you deal with energy in the greenhouse industry, your prices are set before your seasonal energy costs are in. You can contract natural gas and propane, but not heating oil unless you can take a certain quantity by a certain time. I was never able to contract heating oil. And even by contracting you can lose if prices fall after contract.
Beginning in the fall of 2005 as our poinsettia crop was growing toward its finish oil prices were growing too. From the fall of 1986 through the spring of '99 our delivered heating oil price averaged 59 cents per gallon. From1994 to 2006 we averaged 79,000 gallons of oil per year. On a cold day we would use over 700 gallons of heating oil. So in 1999 we were averaging about $350 per day to heat our greenhouses. From 1999 through the spring of 2004 we averaged 95 cents per gallon, so during this period we averaged $665 per day. It cost us approximately $134,000 more to heat those 5 years. From the fall of 2004 through the spring of 2007 our average prices went from $1.54 per gallon to 2.02 per gallon or $1,414 per day. From the fall of 2004 to the spring of 2007 we spent an additional $300,000 on heating costs over the pre-2000 era and in the 07/08 season even with the acquisition of a biomass boiler we were only able to hold our heating costs to $1,770 per day verses the $2,550 it would have cost us as heating oil approached $4.00 per gallon. All told, I figure I spent $688,500 more after 1999 on heating oil. Along with the increased heating cost our transportation costs for delivering in a 3 state area was exorbitant. With diesel and gas prices above $4.00 per gallon everyday was a scramble to save money.
Along with these energy increases, prices changed little. And as in many industries competition and automation kept prices low with overproduction.
I don't think anyone could have foretold the string of events that started in the fall of 2005. Energy costs were the key, but you still had to contend with a changing marketplace, rising health insurance, government mandates, and the always present weather.
Brother Dave left in September of 2006 to go into the ministry. Son Jeff came to take Dave's position after spending 3 years working at Chase in Columbus. In 2007, son Jeff's first full year as sales manager of our business, Jeff tried to deal with the goliath Wal-Mart as we and other greenhouses were trying to figure out how to balance rising energy costs with tighter margins. Jeff looked into geothermal energy which would have required 250 wells 300+ feet deep in a well field spaced 10' x 10' with limitations due to our black sulfur water and with a rough estimate of $500,000. A new biomass boiler would cost a minimum$500,000 and Jeff applied for a proposed grant, which never materialized as no one in Ohio qualified. So we purchased a used, less efficient, biomass boiler that had to work independent of our current heating system for one half our needs for $130,000 installed. Son David engineered the installation and operation of the heating system.
As Wal-mart double and triple booked our district and cancelled orders only grown for them, in both the spring and fall of 2007, we walked away knowing we were losing money with the giant because of our energy needs. But with our debt load we needed to make up 25% of our sales with profitable margins in a dwindling independent retail market, competing against the big boxes. The one bright spot has continued to be our retail support from local customers. Friendships that have developed over 60 years are deep and valued.
2008 will be remembered as the year we:
1.Cut our ties with our largest (for 15 years) customer with 25% of our sales
2. Had the highest energy prices for delivery and heating in history
3. Heated earlier than ever because of the earliest Easter since 1913 with the only
earlier being in 1816
4.Had the latest spring season (when gardeners can get into their gardens after the last frost and when it is dry enough to cultivate) in my 35 years starting May 23rd. The previous latest was May 13th and followed in 2009 as the second latest of May 15th.Our traditional spring season is from 4/25 to 6/10 so our season was compressed into two or three weeks.
5. Had the driest summer since the drought of 1988 with 2009 being about the same but cooler, both droughts slowing or stopping late sales.
6. Had power outages and damage in our sales areas due to Hurricane Ike. We had $70,000 damage to our greenhouses from 3 separate occurrences in 2008 and 2009.
7. Had, one week after the hurricane, the financial meltdown that eliminated most if not all of discretionary income for many and affected the psyche of most Americans into not spending or in spending less just as my mum and poinsettia crops were coming for sale. Unlike storageable products the day after Christmas or Easter my products are worth nothing.
As I write this I remember the 'what next' feeling!
Of course all these events carry over to the next crop, the next season.
On top of energy and the weather, the other thing out of our control is government mandates. The increase in minimum wage in 2007 increased our labor costs by $23,800 affecting 56 employees and another $27,500 in 2008 affecting 46 employees. Additional costs in 2009 would have cost me $30,000 over the 2006 costs on the 46-56 employees. We had 84 W-2s in 2007, 72 W-2s in 2008, and 44 W-2s in 2009.
Spring of 2010 will be the first in almost 40 years that we are going back to our roots of primarily retail for it is only in retail that we have grown the last three years. We are following what many greenhouses are trying to do, to reestablish local connections. Susie and I would like nothing better than to serve this community by beautifying our surroundings.
Jeff, David and Daniel all got off the bus at the greenhouse and spent many hours working with us. Three-thirty p.m. every school day was a time to catch up and to share our lives. These are great memories. All three have had opportunities that have developed them into who they are today because of the family business.
With the financial meltdown there has been and is so much uncertainty. Yet still we hope and continue to support one another, to try to smile and to encourage each other. It's been a roller coaster ride. My sleepless mid-night nights provide a quiet time to think and pray. Friends and acquaintances offer help and support and I am amazed and touched every day. I have a little note in my pocket that reminds me daily. It says to take the road less traveled, to walk the narrow way, to do what's right in spite of and to trust him every day. We try. Some one told me once that you couldn't steer a bike unless it's moving. We keep moving. By the grace of God we've had so many blessings. I think of my good friend Don Schweingruber who says "why not me." God willing there will be many more days to serve. I love to go to work. I love what I do. Susie asked me the other day what a victory was for me and I said when I see that perfect plant at the perfect time in the perfect light. I just smile thinking about it knowing that in spite of all my effort God can still make it right.
Our plans include expanding retail, continue to put plants downtown in Bluffton, make trial gardens at the greenhouse as we tear down 60 year old antiquated facilities to improve logistics and to become more of a destination. We often on high traffic days have 30-40 towns represented by customers but always our local friends support the most. Life is relationships, our relationship with the God that created us, and our relationship with each other. Nothing else makes any sense.
Contact us with ideas for you and our community. Lower your stress level by growing plants. And as we struggle to serve you please pray for our business and us as we pray for you, our friends, our community, and our country.
Our seasonal hours 4/19-6/5 are Mon.-Fri. 9-8, Sat 9-6 and Sundays in May 12-5.