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Re: Mail Order Nurseries / One Speaks

Often your best prices (which I am sure is of interest to you) is for 2
inch pots. Nurseries order this size or smaller and pot them up in qt to
gallon size and grow them on. You can too.

When you receive your retail mailorder, they will usually tell you to
put them directly in the ground. You will also sometimes have been asked
for a shipping date. Consequently you'll tell them sometime in May
because that's when it's warm enough to put them in the ground - when
you're busy as all get out. Here's what I do: I tell them to send my
plants in mid-April. When they arrive, I pot them up within about a week
and let them grow on in nice soil in containers that can be easily
protected when the weather shifts. By the time I'm ready to put them in
the ground they've sometimes doubled in size and grown a nice set of
roots. This is because they are growing in warmed soil (black containers
heated by the sun warm soil more quickly than the ground soil) Don't pot
a 2 inch with little roots up to a gallon - use a 4 inch or qt.,
otherwise they may drown in too much soil. Step them up proportionately.

If you are ordering bareroot plants, potting up always works better for
me than in the ground because our springs are so wet. I pot them up,
water well and then keep them under the eaves or in the Florida room so
they don't get too much moisture. If I leave them out, unprotected, they
get too much rain and rot. That's what happens to them in the ground

You may think that handling these plants twice is extra work, but it is
all easily done on your own schedule and I think the plants are much
better for it.

> Gene et al: My one problem with mail order shopping, which I would love
> to do in order to take advantage of some of the incredibly lovely things
> out there not available from the bigger discount stores is timing...I'm
> the kind of person who will find myself with a few spare hours, go
> shopping for new plants, come home and plant everything in the same day,
> because that is the time I have free. To have to plan for something that
> will be arriving at a future date and will need to planted within a
> certain amount of time after getting here seems beyond me...any tips to
> help me with that one?
> Melody, IA (Z 5/4)
> "The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious."    
> --Albert Einstein
>  --- On Mon 12/01, Gene Bush < genebush@otherside.com > wrote:
> From: Gene Bush [mailto: genebush@otherside.com]
> To: gardenchat@hort.net
> Date: Mon, 1 Dec 2003 07:15:44 -0500
> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Mail Order Nurseries / One Speaks

> Well, Gang<br> You knew I would eventually have to jump in here;-)<br>
> One of the things that gets lost in a conversation among ourselves is
> we<br>are "preaching to the converted". Most on this list are above
> average on<br>plant knowledge. Not as with the general population of
> gardeners or<br>yardeners. Not everyone shares your passion or depth of
> knowledge.<br>When I grow on or order 72 plugs to grow on for 6 months
> to a year for<br>resale, I need a market for same. If I do not sell them
> I go out of<br>business. There is a balance in all this and it is a fine
> line. If I get too<br>far ahead of the curve I "eat the plants". Too far
> behind and "everyone"<br>already has one. Also I must build a customer
> base that wants the rare,<br>unusual, or different from their neighbors.
> ... and will purchase a plant<br>that is going to cost them a bit extra.
> Most gardeners want what they have<br>seen elsewhere. Nothing wrong with
> that, unless you are among the "few".<br> I spend a tremendous amount of

> time educating gardeners hoping that they<br>may one day become a
> customer. Articles in magazines, on my web site,<br>newspapers, etc.
> Slide presentations and lectures each month all over the<br>place. All
> these email lists each day, 7 days a week. One on one with<br>customers
> here. My catalog which I must write and publish each year. And
> so<br>on.......<br> Will you notice and purchase from me??? Odds say you
> will not. The<br>majority of gardeners will purchase what they know
> where they live ( and<br>most likely from a very large discount store).
> Nothing wrong there or "bad",<br>just reality. We live on a very thin
> slice of the gardening pie here.<br> But, I will say that one day there
> may only be the big discounters<br>remaining, or close to it. No one to
> ask questions of, no one to pass out<br>printed information or maintain
> a web site where you can check up on a<br>plant. Just here it is, and it
> will be tiny and poorly cared for. Shoppers<br>will have gotten what

> they purchased over the years.<br> Gene E. B
> ush<br>Munchkin Nursery & Gardens,
> llc<br>www.munchkinnursery.com<br>genebush@munchkinnursery.com<br>Zone
> 6/5 Southern Indiana<br><br>----- Original Message -----<br>> Well, Jim,
> as others have said; depends a lot on where you are and<br>> what plants
> you're interested in. I've ordered plants via mail for<br>> 30 years
> because I wanted something I couldn't otherwise get. Yes,<br>> if you
> can find what you want locally in a nice large pot, you're<br>> ahead of
> the game, but even around here, where more and more is<br>> becoming
> available, the really choice and rare stuff is only going to<br>> be
> found via mail.<br>><br>> IMO we need to support our mailorder
> nurseries. Many of them are the<br>> last remnants of true nurseries
> where they propagate and grow the<br>> plants they sell. Most garden
> centers and large local nurseries<br>> around here buy in their plants;
> don't grow a thing; never propagate<br>> at all. The people selling

> don't know much about plants, even the<br>> ones they're selling. The
> knowledge and years of hands on experience<br>> in growing and
> propagating rare and difficult or unusual plants rest<br>> with our
> *good* mailorder nurseries.<br>><br>> Marge Talt, zone 7
> Maryland<br><br>----------------------------------------------------------------
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