After weeks of unseasonably warm weather here in Morris, CT, the White Flower Farm Store opened Monday, March 21, just in time for what we hope was the last snowstorm of the season. We were spared the worst, and the dusting of snow (which, we confess, looked absolutely beautiful on trees and shrubs), melted away before noon.
So, what’s on offer at our plant nursery at this time of year? Our remodeled, expanded display space has more room than ever for lovely spring-flowering trees (most in landscape size, which means 5- to 15-gallon specimens), evergreen shrubs including the budded and blossoming Andromedas that are great for year-round structure and color, espaliered fruit trees that can be used to create living “fences” around or in a vegetable garden or soften the existing walls of a home or shed, and container pots that add interest and color to porches and patios. While here, be sure to see our selections of berry plants as well. We offer three types of Grape vines, numerous Blueberries, and at least four different Raspberry selections, all of which will have you harvesting delicious fresh fruit from your garden.
As you peruse our selection of trees and shrubs, bear in mind that we now offer delivery service. If you purchase plants at our Morris store, we’ll be happy to deliver a van full for a small fee. We also offer tree-planting services for a nominal fee for any tree purchased at our nursery. Ask one of our staff members for details.
Inside our freshly painted store, we’re welcoming the new season with a wide array of plants, gardening supplies, and gifts. The African Violets are particularly beautiful this year, their colors ranging from rich purple and deep pink to bicolor. They look marvelous alone or displayed with foliage plants. Many are available in tiny teacup-sized cachepots that would look just right on a desktop or bedside table. Distinctive flowering and foliage houseplants are a great gift or table decoration for the upcoming holidays.
We’re offering a broad selection of beguiling Air Plants (Tillandsias), which subsist on nutrients in the air and the occasional spritz of water. Mary Valente, visual merchandiser and gift buyer for the White Flower Farm Store, is showing them suspended from the ceiling on fishing line, overfilling teak bowls, and tucked into displays here and there.
Fans of miniature gardens will find supplies aplenty – from miniature plants to miniature props – for creating tiny, highly personalized gardens under glass.
For those who enjoy starting their own seeds, we’re offering a broad selection of packets for individual flowers and edibles (the majority organic), plus seed collections, including some that attract hummingbirds and pollinators.
In our Tools of the Trade section, we’re showcasing a selection of the professional-grade garden gear we use at the farm, along with the garden supplies we deem essential – from Tomato ties and blossom-boosting fertilizer to deer and rabbit repellent.
What else? There are bird feeders (including a new hummingbird feeder that invites hard-working flyers to perch on a raised rail as they feed), birdhouses, Lily bulbs, (the Dahlia tubers are arriving soon), stationery, postcards, garden hats, and glass hummingbird ornaments that, hung near a window, sparkle in the light.
A visit to the display gardens is a must on any trip to the White Flower Farm Store. It’s a bit quiet in the beds and borders, but there’s no question the garden is waking up. Some of the Hellebores are in full bloom. The Tulip foliage is way out of the ground. The colorful foliage of Heuchera plants can be seen bursting through the soil, and the spring-flowering trees and shrubs are covered in plump buds (only the Andromeda is in bloom as this scribbling occurs). As Mary put it, “It’s a great time to walk around the garden because you can see everything that Cheryl [our head gardener] is doing.” Which shrubs has she pruned? How severely has she cut them back? What is she planting now? Visitors who care to study the scene can watch how various plants shake off their winter slumber. Which bulbs blossom together? Which perennials arrive first? Which look best at this very early stage of the season? The display gardens are a great classroom and observatory for gardeners of all stripes, and the store’s staff members are delighted to answer questions. Keep a jacket handy until the mercury rises a bit, but come by and visit any time you like. The store is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. We look forward to seeing you. (Please note: We are closed March 27th for Easter Sunday.)