Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

March 14, 2014

THE DIRT ON GARDENING: Winter has gone on too long

This man’s excitement begins behind the scenes.

If you’re thinking like I am that spring will never arrive then worry no more. I mean, it has to arrive sooner or later, right?

I got the first glimpse of spring this past week when I visited an old haunt of mine Tom’s Greenhouses in Comstock, Mich., where I poked my head into this massive operation of many multiple greenhouses interconnected with no interior walls or at least only minor ones that separate seed incubation rooms, a break room, a seed planting machine operation, offices, etc.

Tom’s was my main supplier of flower flats while managing Everett’s Garden Center and if they didn’t grow it they would call other growers until they found what I wanted. These growers, eager to sell their product, would be only too pleased to deliver in “warp speed” whatever it was that was requested.

This family of growers (Tom, wife and two sons) became like family to me and still are best of friends. Not once did I arrive that I wasn’t greeted with smiles, friendly chat, offers to please, and even requests to join them for lunch in their break room which was usually a catered meal of pizza or other quick meal.

This is by no means a small operation and I felt privileged to be accepted so graciously by this family.

As I poked my head through a door when entering the greenhouse (they have multiple), there were the two sons, one on an “in-house” 4-wheel scooter and the other on a bicycle going over what was next to do in this fast and hugely successful business. Faces beamed and greetings were warm and sincere. A comment was made, “Awe! You just missed Dad,” who had left on an errand. As I hadn’t been there for several years I was informed “mom doesn’t work that much anymore” and her father, who did much of the “hand watering” that automatic sprinklers missed, wasn’t working anymore as well. He was older than me so it wasn’t surprising.

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