Every year at this time our focus is directed towards preparing the nursery and plants for the winter dormant season. With fifty thousand plants scattered over nine acres of the nursery, it takes about a month with all-hands on deck, moving and reconsolidating plants to their winter resting place.
Preparing the nursery for the winter months seems to come faster every year. The anticipation sets in around the first of September or on that first morning, when you head outside, and the morning air has a bit of a chill in it. Most years we see swarms of Monarch Butterflies headed south and that is also a signal that cold temperatures are headed in our direction. Seeing flocks of geese overhead headed south for the winter sets a fire under us letting us know we better get things under cover and buttoned down.
Once all the plants have been moved to their winter resting place, the next process is covering all the green houses with poly covering. We pray for mild days with little to no wind and take advantage of that time when it happens. Covering a 30- foot by 100-foot greenhouse takes all hands pulling and holding down the giant sheet of poly as the fasteners are installed to secure it to the greenhouse. If everything goes well, each greenhouse can be covered in about an hour without any tears or holes. Worst scenario the wind picks up, and the poly or at that point becomes a gigantic kite flies off and lands somewhere it was not intended.
Hopefully winterizing has been completed by Thanksgiving so we can all enjoy the holiday season knowing that job is done!