The Early Bird gets the Pre-Order

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Inspiration flows, but the words run dry. The sentences and half-formed thoughts in my head cannot quite find themselves strung together on the page. How I yearn for a rubric, a prompt, or a viewpoint to argue. The struggle of creativity, what could possibly be important enough to share with others? There have been many new memories, house adventures, and beautiful customer interactions that I could talk about, yet none of them quite seem to fit.

These days, it feels like I wake up every morning with more things to do and less time to do them. It is somewhat organized chaos. Everything is in motion, full steam ahead on a half battery. Sometimes it feels like there is not a day where nothing goes wrong, and everything gets completed. Yet, there is a whisper of a blooming sensation around me, a grand awakening of sorts. It is a call that I know many of you are beginning to hear yourselves. The emotions that are borderline overwhelming, building to a secret that has been bursting all around us: spring is almost here. And for some of us, it has already started. 

While my calendar says that spring will not arrive until Sunday, March 20, 2022, the feelings and day-to-day activities lead me to believe something entirely different. Maybe it’s the weather, suspiciously sunny days… frosty mornings that warm-up and develop into crisp afternoons before settling into a quiet evening that just breathes lighter. Or, it could be the steady trickle of people coming into the store, looking for something fresh, something colorful. A powerful combination of scenarios that build to a silent shout, I need to get planting, because if spring is coming, then summer will not be far behind.

I can feel the anxiety and confusion that spring brings battle with the joy and relief that winter is ending. Then again, it could be that the washer is re-washing the same load again because I wear the same three outfits for medium cold in the shade yet warm in the sunny weather. It is a feeling of exhaustion that I cannot quite explain. Spring for me is a transition season, a time spent out in the greenhouse prepping for summer annuals. Yes, the planting process starts the first week of February. Hours spent last summer selecting and ordering plants that have arrived as little seedlings ready to be planted into our passion baskets. 

These days, my mom and I spend most of our time in the greenhouse with racks of fresh plants. A sea of green that requires a strong memory and name association as we select plants that will grow to complement one another. Is blue, blue, or is it more purple? While purple is magenta and burgundy is none of the above. Do not mix pink with red, and white is never really white, but all white is the best combination. The repeated rules and names shouted across aisles would sound like gibberish to anyone who stumbled upon our process. This whole experience for the first number of weeks is a touch stressful, and this is my first season working full-time. 

The Garden Corner has implemented a genius online pre-order system to soothe the chaos while pleasing the masses. It allows our customers to go online and select the colors of their choice. As the orders come in, we magically process that information and create a basket that is specific to our customers. There are both seasonal favorite combinations and custom options, ensuring that there is a basket color combination of their choosing. Baskets are individually processed, and plants are personally selected by yours truly and my mother, who has been planting baskets for years. The two of us work together to plant all the baskets for city accounts and the baskets we carry in the store. The primary restraint on getting baskets ready for summer is time. To have these plantings ready first of the season, they need to be made soon. Make my life, and yours, easier by getting your pre-order early! 

While spring continues to approach, I hope that everyone enjoys this wonderful weather and takes a break to go outside and breathe the fresh air. Find some color, change your view, relax in the moment of spring, knowing that working hard behind the scenes is summer. The next step is always coming, so enjoy the moments of peace while they are here and use that time to make one less thing for yourself come the summer’s surprise. As for myself, I will be chugging along working hard on creating that summer surprise that will be here sooner than you know!