Transition Time

09 Nov Transition Time

It’s the second week in November and Natureworks is in TRANSITION TIME… No, we are not winding down. Just the opposite. We are GEARING UP for a crazy and intense six week holiday season ahead. As a small business, it boggles my mind how much pre-planning and organization it takes to do what we do. After Kassie’s succulent pumpkin workshops this weekend, the greenhouse will be converted starting the very next day to our evergreen design studio. The walls will be covered with racks of ribbons. There will be baskets and bins of cones, berries, pods, and every sort of natural decoration imaginable. Did you know that we grow and harvest a lot of our fresh cut greens ourselves in our own yards? I’ve been pulling grapevines for two

weeks. My winterberries are gorgeous and the orange ones will be the highlight of our Thanksgiving arrangements. As the leaves fall off the trees, the wide diversity of unusual evergreen texture and color available to us is really starting to get quite exciting.   

 
The shop is buzzing with activity as my staff steadily transforms the store from fall to holiday time. It’s only a few weeks until Thanksgiving and we will have our signature arrangements on display starting the weekend of November 

18th. Succulent pumpkins, cornucopias overflowing with plants and flowers, and unique tablescaping ideas will inspire you to do something creative and a bit different this year. The Saturday at 10 am we are having a really fun, free event: Learn to Make Handmade Gifts for the Holidays. As Jillian describes it…

“Have you ever wished you could experience Pinterest in-person? Join us this Saturday as we give you a number of great D.I.Y. ideas for making homemade gifts for the holidays. Forget scrolling through hundreds of images on the internet, with this workshop you’ll get a ton of idea inspiration with easy-to-understand instructions and materials you can pick up on-site. Who’s feeling creative? 

 

Jillian has a whole lineup of fun projects she will show you including terrariums, air plant bird cages, gift embellishment and more.

I will be demonstrating how to make a bow, showing you my tricks of the trade! Space is limited, so even though this workshop is free, we ask that you reserve a space by calling us. See details below.   
 
Tablescaping the Natureworks way 
 

Yes, you CAN order Natureworks custom made centerpieces in our naturalistic, signature style. Call the shop and discuss what you need with our design team. 
This Friday night, get ready for a true hard, killing frost as it’s supposed to go down into the low 20’s and teens. I spent tons of time on my days off dragging my fig trees indoors, planting dozens of shrubs and perennials, continuing to stage my houseplants indoors, and cutting down the plants in the garden that I am not leaving up for the birds and tunnel nesting bees. I still haven’t planted my bulbs – for that I am waiting for the frost to reduce the vegetation in my beds so I can see the bare soil between the crowns of the plants. That is how I double the color in my gardens in the spring.  Although my crews are working like crazy on jobs, planting tons of bulbs, and garden care, they are also getting marching orders to put harvesting greens onto their calendars in a few weeks. Do we have spring blooming bulbs left? You betcha! Is it too late to plant them? Definitely not!   
Native wintergreen, variegated Osmanthus ‘Goshiki’, and a miniature spruce planted in a basket that you can set right on your front porch for the next two months and then add these evergreens to your landscape in the spring.  
As the truly cold weather sets in, be sure to empty out all 

of your terracotta, concrete, and ceramic containers. If you leave the soil in them, they could easily crack due to the expansion of the soil as it freezes and thaws. I empty the valuable soil into my raised beds- it is too good to waste. I leave the soil in my Smart Pots and all of my plastic pots. I simply cut off the frozen annuals and then start harvesting boughs, colorful branches and berries and studding them for the holiday season. Just like my indoor office garden room, my deck and porch get a seasonal rearrange and redesign at this time of year. If you have a treasured concrete urn that you want to use, empty the soil and drop in an arrangement in a plastic pot. Be sure the drainage hole is open at the bottom and you are good to go.  

 
This week’s Facebook Live will focus on Putting your Garden to Bed, with an emphasis on hilling up roses with Penobscot Blend compost. I will explain what to cut now and what to leave alone. It will be our last Facebook Live outside as the sun now sets a bit after 4 pm each night! Click Here to read our very comprehensive handout on Putting your Garden to Bed. We have everything you need- garden sickles, WiltPruf in ready-to-use bottles and concentrate, mulch for protecting the roots of your plants, and plenty of bagged compost. If you aren’t sure what all of this means, read my article below and tune in Thursday at 4. If you miss it, it will be available on the Natureworks Facebook Page. Feel free to ask all the questions you want.  
We have all sorts of unusual containers. 
Check out this succulent garden in a wooden bowl-
easy care and very different. 
My houseplant workshop last Saturday was so much fun. I realize now how much I truly enjoy and need my houseplants to keep me happy and sane during the winter months. We have in stock so many old favorites that I remember from my early days and lots of new varieties now in stock in the retail store and our greenhouse. Some of the most important concepts that we talked about on Saturday were putting plants on saucers filled with pebbles (humidity trays), topdressing your houseplants with worm castings, and feeding with Organic Plant Magic. This is what we now call our Natureworks Houseplant Success Kit. The new books on indoor plants we are stocking are so inspirational and are filled with tons of modern ideas about how you can decorate your indoor spaces with beautiful greenery.   
 

Have you noticed that so many stores are already starting to advertise Black Friday sales. Really? At Natureworks, we celebrate the day after Thanksgiving VERY differently. We open at the regular time and officially call it GREEN FRIDAY! That is because, by that day, we are starting to immerse ourselves in fresh cut greens and all the beauty they offer us. It’s a celebration for sure. The following day is Small Business Saturday, OUR holiday. It still stuns me that I am heading into my 35th year of business in 2018. Decades of holiday seasons and they are now more fun than ever. So plan to SHOP SMALL and keep your local, dedicated, hard working friends that own and run businesses in your area thriving. That defines a community, for sure.
 
So take heart. As the seasons change and we all transition into the final 7 weeks of the year, make some time to visit Natureworks and get inspired to make your home as warm and beautiful as it can be. We would love to help!  
 
See you soon… 
 
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