Nice to see a bit of winter weather, nothing too serious just feels really cold. Hopefully it will knock a few bugs back although judging by the number of colds hanging around it hasn’t helped the humans. The longer cold spells really seem to suck the heat out of the house after a few days especially when the cold breeze picks up and we have had to resort to the central heating as the log burner has been unable to keep up. Still I shouldn’t beat myself up I suppose, we are at least trying our best. The cold is holding up growth on many plants although it is always surprising how many lines are already showing signs of spring excitement and how life enhancing a display can look. Not much colour just yet but I suspect it won’t be long. With signs of spring in the air I am panicking slightly with the number of winter projects still to get finished before we get really busy. I always picture the winter as a long period to invest some time, and this year a little money, in making lots of improvements around the nursery. But time always seems to get the better of us, by the time we have got Christmas out of the way, many staff are on shorter hours and the weather plays its part, it is all over too soon. I have to rush back into the lab growth room in a minute to finish mounting the new LED lights and plugging the last few in, it will be a great job done but would have been a lot easier in an empty room rather than a room full of plants. The new lab store is finished and packed full of stuff again which means we have nearly got Despatch back to normal, just a final clearout and reorganise to do there. I can’t quite believe how much of the old lab cold-store we reused, recycled, or used for fuel. The longest life story goes to the aluminium shelving that originally came out of one of our first delivery vans, which was first recycled as the old cold-store shelving for plants and has now been remade as racking for storing the lab media. I will put this story to an extra use by recycling it through the NUS Green Impact scheme we are now enrolled on, should go down a storm, although the much of our earlier recycling goes down to being a really tight nurseryman!
Looking back I think we will be pleased with the winter changes, lower energy use, more efficient lab facilities, a new roof cover over the lab has stopped the weather making its way in, more ground cover to reduce herbicide use, the installation of a new drainage system to reduce the open ditches and flooding and eventually enable us to collect more water for the irrigation. It’s all go.
Keep up the good work out there in the cold, it’ll be warmer soon.
Links for the 2017 flipbook catalogue (and a pdf version should you need to print it out) with lots of pictures of most of the perennials we grow are;
Flipbook http://online.1stflip.com/dpyl/367v/ (Best viewed on desktop or laptop but not currently on mobile phones)
Pdf https://www.dropbox.com/s/nasnx3xy8r1nfdy/Catalogue%202017%20complete.pdf?dl=0 (This is a big file due to the large numbers of images in it. We would encourage you to use the flipbook instead saving more of the worlds resources)
If it is still a bit early but you fancy a smaller order to get going, then we can offer a lower minimum delivery volume until the end of February. Ideally a 15 tray minimum is best but we could stretch to 12 trays if you are fairly local or we are passing by.
The ever popular Erysimum Bowles Mauve are already in bud, it will be a while before much colour shows but the plants are strong, hardy and bushy. Also now bud appearing on Apricot Twist and the lovely Red Jep. The Pulmonaria are coming one well with bud and the odd open flower on the Blue Ensign which is the most forward and the variegated Opal and Mageste are both looking smart. Although some plants may look sad for a while after a hard frost, they soon perk up again if left to recover in their own time. Ideally they benefit from a bit of protection from the harshest conditions to keep up the good looks, but try to avoid too much warmth.
Have a good week from all at Kirton Farm Nurseries.