Happy New Year to everyone. Looking forward to a heart warming and productive 2016 down this end, I hope yours is a good one too and our thoughts go out to anyone facing tough challenges whether from recent climate issues or things closer to the heart.
There has been a long festive break since my last update and there have been loads of things happening along the way. I always imagine this as our quiet time of year but it’s been a riot of activity, most of it, although not all, very positive, which is just what we need when the weather has been so miserable for so many around the country.
The Christmas run up went swimmingly starting with a very positive meeting with the bank manager who was very pleased with the overall financial improvement, We easily convinced him about the light at the end of the tunnel and dispelled all notions that it was in fact the train coming in the opposite direction! Good news like this always lightens the mood for a delicious Christmas lunch for everyone down at The Plough which was just great. We even managed to juggle the work load in the lab to get Christmas Eve off for the majority Polish staff for whom that day is pretty special.
The Christmas break was lovely, lots of family, dietary consumption and games. A fantastic monster turkey lunch at Richard and Pollyann’s nearly came a cropper when the main course refused to enter the oven until extra trussing just about pulled everything together. I am personally now in a similar position trying to hold back on input and upping the trussing. We again hosted the annual post Christmas family and friends hockey and chilli bonanza, On the one beautiful sunny day we had, 15 a side plus supporters may have been a bit crowded but everyone safely staggered off the pitch in the end, Caroline scored her annual goal (with her lacrosse stick) and as usual it ended in an honourable draw (4-4). Over the years the balance of players has changed drastically, when we started many of the youngsters were toddlers and it was the grown-ups showing off, but now the boot is on the other foot and they fly by us as if we’re not there. What is going on? It’s turning into a thought provoking annual reality check, not a bad thing really.
I can’t believe we have only been back at work a week, we‘ve seen so much activity in just a few days. Sadly we heard on Monday that one of our lab ladies, Bozena is not too well and will be off for a little while, so we wish her and her family well and hope to see her again after a speedy recovery. Consequently we now have another new lab trainee in need of encouraging and nurturing through the challenges of learning a completely new set of skills. The lab are at full tilt which is always a challenge so early in the year, juggling which varieties get priority to meet all the various deadlines, while coping with training new staff and supply chain challenges, On the nursery, the last badly ruptured tunnel got nicely recovered, our heated weaning tunnel had a big side vent replaced, we sent out a nice few orders, the forklift died and got repaired, the new batch of LED growth room lights arrived, lots of plants got cut back/tidied up and the new seasons micro-prop pricking-out got started. It’s all go.
Minimum delivery reduction for the winter.
As the winter arrives our range falls away with the many deciduous varieties withdrawing into the relative warmth of the compost, but we still have a few evergreen hardy sorts doing their thing. I know it can be tricky putting together a minimum order of a full trolley (21 trays) at this time of year so if you fancy a few trays but can’t get to 21 we are happy to reduce the minimum to 12 trays for local drops and 15 trays for a bit further afield. Drop us a line and we will try and put together a few orders to make it work for everyone.
Dainty flowered but hardy Cyclamen coum are showing bud now in all three separate colours and now the silvered leaved form too, They should flower from now until April. You don’t get the face full of flower of the pot plant types but a continuous classy steady show of hardy blooms.
The mild winter, so far, has encouraged the Pulmonaria’s and Erysimums into bud and some are even showing some colour too. They are nice chunky plants with lots of potential and if the weather doesn’t go drastically cold there will be more to follow. The evergreen Bergenia’s are showing signs of fresh growth and early bud formation although it is likely to be a while before they show strong colour.
The Tulips and Alliums are poking through nicely with roots bursting through the pot sides, if anyone needs a few bulbs,.
Have a good one, from all at Kirton Farm Nurseries