This week, we will talk about container gardening and whether or not it can work. We get a lot of customers in who ask if it is a viable alternative to regular gardening or raised bed gardening. Whether they live in an apartment or a rental, there are many people who do not want to plant in the ground.
Happy Halloween! I know you may not be thinking about gardening today because your kids are thinking about costumes and candy. The Farm Store is open today from 9am until 5pm. We are a bit short staffed but we will get through all of this. We have a lot of online orders to get mailed out. Thank you for ordering from us!
It took me hours to get out the orders assigned to me this morning. The mailman came early today so there are some that never got in the mail from the other building.
Just outside our Farm Store, we have a container garden of flowers to beautify the porch.
It is getting more and more cloudy so we are hoping for rain. It is already 4pm already. I watered the outdoor plants for the store this afternoon. I need to get out back and water my trees just in case it doesn't rain.
The pond man who came out in July called today to fix up the pond around Thanksgiving. We just don't have the funds now and, honestly, we put in a filter and it is much cleaner than it was back in July. He really should have sent an estimate to my husband back in July like he said he would. He never did and in September, we fixed it ourselves.
Sales are way down. Who plants a garden in November? We have talked to other seed companies whose sales are also way down now. Sales are always down in the fall for seed companies but this year, they are way down. Some companies are doing layoffs, others are cutting work hours for their employees. I believe it is due to the recession that is on the way. This is how it is now in Biden's America....Get out and vote next week. David and I voted earlier in the week.
The seeds I planted in the Grow Tower are coming up already! That is exciting. The downside is all of the gnats that bite me while things are growing. Fun times. I have four bites today that are itching.
Today is Halloween so we did not have a single visitor come by the store. I figured people would be coming for all of the garlic and wildflowers but they did not. I get it that it is a busy day for some. We talked to some of our friends at other seed companies and it is a very slow time of year for them as well as us. Many have laid off workers or cut their hours by letting them go home at noon, etc.
Of course, we are out in the country with a fenced in yard so people cannot trick or treat out here. Everyone locks their gates so I am not sure how people trick or treat out here.
We had some sprinkles of rain around 9:45pm with some thunder and that was it. Matt got pouring rain and shaking thunder over in his neighborhood but he is many miles away from where we live.
We are doing a lot more container gardening now so we can move trees and plants into the heated greenhouses when the cold comes. Last year and the year before, we lost a lot of trees that were too young in the ground to withstand the horrible cold, ice, and snow that we had for the last two winters. Normally, we never get snow or ice here.
Happy Tuesday! I slept until 7:30am! I never do that. I got up and got ready for the day. David said the Comfort Commander folks were coming to adjust our air conditioner again. It is always hot in the house and I do not understand why.
They showed up and did something but I was at our Farm Store.
David made an omelet which was good with mushrooms, spinach, and cheese. I went out and watered all of my container garden area in the backyard. I was waiting for the supposed rain we were to get last night but that did not happen.
We got rid of Hootsuite which I was using to schedule my social media posts. That was costing us $75 a month and it has not been very worthwhile in all of the years that we have had it. So this morning, I have been trying to social media posts by hand on my phone and I was having a very hard time with some of it. I finally got it and then in the middle of one, here came our first customers. He came in for some cilantro and she set her tripod up outside, snapping photos of the butterflies on the zinnias. A lot of people have been doing that lately.
David is going to a brand new PCP this afternoon so I am going with him. He is supposed to help David manage his diabetes. It is all so confusing, especially with two different insulins and a diabetic pill, not to mention all of the other pills he is on and who can afford all of this, spending over $1500 a month on meds for just one person. If I get sick, I guess I will have to curl up and die because there is no money for that.
While waiting in the new doctor's waiting room, David had a low blood sugar episode. I did not know it but he had a cracker with butter for lunch, no meal. I was in the store working. Fortunately, I had a snack bar in my purse and some emergency butterscotch Lifesavers. By the time they called us, he was just getting over sweating profusely and his blood pressure was 106/60. I explained what happened. So he gave us orders for lab work at Quest and wants to see David in two weeks. He told him no sugar whatsoever, which is hard for David.
So we left and got David some lunch and then picked up our new glasses at Walmart. The eye doctor did a good job because the new glasses work well.
We came back home and I got together all of the doctor bills that I have to submit to Christian Healthcare Ministries and the bills I need to pay. I filed a bunch of paperwork away so I feel better about things.
We finished up Planet of the Apes and started on the TV show The A-Team.
This morning, we had to get up early and go into Pleasanton to take the puppies to be groomed. We dropped them off and we went to do early voting. We got that done quickly and went to the HEB in Pleasanton which is set up differently than the one in Lytle.
We found some different things for David to eat, more than what Walmart has. I ordered an ice cream maker so we can make him some sugar free ice cream and that is on its way. On the way out of HEB, a man smiled and said hello to us. I wondered why. Then it hit me. I turned and said, "Oh, I know you. You're our eye doctor! We just got our glasses yesterday and they are fabulous. Great job!" He said that was right and he was glad. What a nice man to remember us from over a week ago.
We went back to pick up the puppies and paid. Then Pamela decided to escape from her too-loose collar. She ran down the road. Sue Ellen's collar was tighter but she followed suit anyway. I called and Sue Ellen came running. I was able to pick her up and put her in the truck. Pamela needed more convincing and she was further away. David finally reached her, got her collar back on and got her in the truck.
When we got home, I tightened both collars. We are relieved they did not get hit by cars. I made lunch and now I am putting together a nice vegetable soup for lunches that I am making from scratch.
I have not yet been to work at all or checked on any of the container gardens that we have. I have been busy in here.
I finally got all of my wildflowers planted this afternoon. I planted a bunch in bed A as you drive in through the gate and the rest are in my backyard by the honeysuckle. I hope some come up.
We had one customer all day long and he showed up at 4:50pm and wanted two packs of carrots. He grabbed them, paid, and went about his business. Then I closed down the store and went about mine, cooking dinner for my husband.
I made two inch pork chops, our first time to have those. I looked it up online and all of the recipes said to sear them in a pan with olive oil and then to bake in the same pan for 20 minutes so I did. They were really good.
I woke up this morning thinking it was Friday. David told me it was only Thursday. How deflating that was. It is foggy but warm at 70°. We may get rain tonight and over the weekend.
It is 8am and I need to get to the store and set up a sale items section as we are overstocked on some things. Those are going on sale.
Since we are getting so little foot traffic at our Farm Store now, our Saturday hours will change. Starting this Saturday, we will be open from 10am to 1pm. That way, I get to have part of my Saturday back. No one ever comes after 2pm anyway on Saturdays. We are taking our sign down with the hours posted on it at the gate since it says we are open until 4pm.
Last Saturday, we had just two customers, an hour apart and for the next three hours, I just sat there and worked on the computer. I can do that in the house while I am checking on David and the animals. I can also do laundry, dishes, change bedding, dust, and vacuum, things I do not get to do now because I am always at the store. It was okay in the spring when we had 20 families coming to the Farm Store every Saturday, but to sit there for six hours with only two people is a waste of my time. So, if you want seeds and garlic, you have three hours starting tomorrow. After that, I am not there!
All day long, I worked on reorganizing the Farm Store and moving things around. All of our souvenir and treat items are together.
I was on my feet all day long and my feet and ankles were killing me. I am almost through with the standing portion of the project. Then I have to get more of the seeds that are on sale to hang up. I am exhausted!
Trim Light never called all week long to say when they would come out to fix our lights. David texted them and they said they are coming on Friday at 3pm. Our Trim Light fried during the storm last week.
Apache Disposal called and said their truck driver would fix what he tore up last Friday when he comes tomorrow. The driver set the dumpster down on our wood trim and moved it, taking up the spikes that were in the ground and left.
Today, we put up some of our kitchen supplies for sale. We have way too much. One of our ex-employees came by and got some things, including one of our canners. That was so nice of her.
Matt grilled us the best pork ribs tonight! They were so tender and juicy! That son of mine is getting to be a real Grill Master! He did not stay to eat them with us.
Gordon Ramsay was not on tonight which was so disappointing.
A lot of customers come into the store wanting to know if they can do container gardening with our seeds. Others ask about hydroponics with our seeds. Our seeds can do container gardening and hydroponics, along with using raised garden beds and planting in the field.
The key is to learn all you can about what method you want to try and then do it well. With containers, make sure you have a big enough pot for what you want to grow. If you want to grow full sized carrots in your container garden, don't use a six inch pot. Use a large pot that has room for at least twelve inches of soil because some carrots grow up to twelve inches long. Don't think that you can transplant the carrot because they will not tolerate being transplanted. They will just curl up and die if you try.
Well, good morning from the farm! It is humid out there and we are supposed to get rain at 7am. I woke up just after 6am and got some coffee. I let the dogs all out because they hate rain. Then I heard from one of my old work buddies from GPA, the last place I worked before I became Mrs. David's Garden Seeds®. Apparently, they got bought out but she is still there. I am so glad I left when I did. I wish I had left sooner. I would have saved the company a lot of money...
So here it is 7:15am and the rain did not come. Now Alexa says we are not getting rain and The Weather Channel shows no rain. How can it just change like that? Don't the weather people have degrees? How can they almost always get it wrong?
This means I will have to go out and water all of my container garden pots and I do have a lot of them. It is still dark out. I understand that tomorrow night is when we set the clocks back an hour for the time change. I wish they would just cut that nonsense out. I just hate it.
David was up for several hours in the night working so he is still asleep now. The dogs are being amazingly quiet to let him get some sleep. The insulin has been hard on him. He keeps waking up hungry so he gets a small snack and works on the business.
It is now 7:30am so I need to get a move on and go feed my fish.
Around 9am, another ex-employee and her daughter came by to clean up on kitchen supplies. They took about five times as much as the one yesterday so thank you very much! We appreciate your kindness.
I am continuing to restock the store and put up sale items. There is so much to do in here. We keep getting dark clouds. It even sprinkled three hours ago but that was it. It is now 12:25pm. I just made David lunch and I am back in the store working at it. I hope Trim Light, the Apache driver, and some others who are coming by for canning supplies actually all make it. I don't want to have to deal with it tomorrow. I am working three hours and that is it, baby! My first short Saturday all year long, 10am to 1pm and then I am closing up. I have a lot of work and things to do at home but working six days a week with no help is hard. Hopefully business picks up soon so I can have help again, not to mention a paycheck!
The Apache trash driver showed up just after 1pm today. He emptied the dumpster and moved it off of our decorative timbers but he did not get out of the truck and move the timbers back or even apologize. He just left so it still looks bad. We paid good money for someone to place them and spike them in the ground. They don't care.
David came in the store this afternoon and started resetting the seed placements. He is not pleased with how some of our folks had tried to change up what he had done. It will look better in no time. He is feeling better, although we still don't have this new lifestyle down pat. Trim Light called and said they were still at another job at 3pm. They finally showed up after 5pm and replaced a panel. The lights are working again but it is upsetting to me that I had to wait for two weeks. I was at the house trying to fix a meal for my husband when they came.
We still have garlic bulbs but they will be gone within the next few weeks. Come get them today or tomorrow so you can get them in your container garden or in the ground now for a July harvest. Yes, it takes about 240 days for garlic to grow. Then select your best bulbs while they are drying and save those for next year. Just let them hang in your garden shed until they are dry. Then put them in a safe spot where no one can grab them for cooking purposes and next October, break them into cloves and put them in the ground or in your container garden so you don't have to buy more.
Make sure you have large, deep pots for garlic in your container garden. Leave plenty of space in between bulbs so they can grow out to their full potential. Do not transplant them. Realize now that they will be in those pots for about 240 days so make sure you place them in a good place. Cover the dirt with about an inch of hay or mulch. Once the garlic comes up this fall, add another two inches of hay or mulch to insulate them from the cold. They will go dormant until spring.
Good Saturday morning! I have to go out and feed all of the animals. Today is the first Saturday since January that I do not have to go out super early and unlock everything for our staff because they are not coming today. Unfortunately, we have had to cut back as business for gardening has dropped off a lot this fall. We do have some specials going on including some of our canning equipment. We sold about $800 worth of it already but we still have some including cases of brand new canning jars, a canner, and so much more. See the Facebook post I just made below:
Good morning Fellow Gardeners! This is Juanita aka Mrs. David's Garden Seeds®. David is feeling much better after his hospital stay last week. As some of you know, he was diagnosed with diabetes and he is on 2 kinds of insulin right now. He is learning about the new diet and the meds as we go. Thank you to those who have been praying for him. Our Farm Store is changing up the hours for the rest of the year. We will be open on Saturdays from 10am to 1pm only so try to get here early. That way I can have some Saturday time to get things done. We still have some garlic bulbs left so come out this morning and purchase yours. Get them in the ground this weekend and harvest your own garlic in July! We also have a special sale going on where some of your favorite seeds are $1.95 and $2.45.
Normally, our seed packs start at $3.45 but we are overstocked on some of your favorites so come get them now while they are still on sale! Our seeds are packed for Spring 2023 so come get them now and save! We do sell gift certificates as well so come on out this morning at 10am. Brand new bags of pecan flavored coffee beans will be an ideal holiday gift for coffee lovers. We are at 5029 FM 2504 near Poteet. Oh, I almost forgot! We are selling brand new cases of canning jars for just $10. We got overexcited and bought way too many. Come get 'em today!
The store opens at 10am and we close at 1pm today and on Saturdays for the rest of the year. I am excited to be able to have part of a Saturday again! Believe it or not, I get tired working six full days a week. I, too, have a house to clean, laundry, dishes, animals, and meals to cook. People call and tell us they can make it out at night or on a Sunday. What? We are a business and we have business hours. The rest of the time is mine.
Anyway, we would love to see you so come out and visit.
I went out to feed the animals and unlock the place and it is cold. You know how yesterday it was warm and humid at 7am? Today it was cool and 51°. So I was in shorts, a t-shirt, and crocs. I manned up and kept going. Got everything unlocked, took a few photos, and fed the fish. Then I went out back and fed and watered the guineas, rabbits, and chickens. When I came back inside, it was so warm in here that it felt like I was walking into a heater. But I am good now. No, our heater was not on. The place is just well insulated.
I made sausage, eggs, whole wheat toast, and David also had a half of a banana. He woke up feeling good, took the correct insulin (he is on two different ones and yes, he has confused them over the past week--Fun Times!), and now I have to refill his daily pill containers. All of the indoor pets have been fed and I now have to pack up some delicious farm fresh eggs from our hens for the store. They are really starting to put out some beautiful eggs again.
I prayed asking the Lord to bless us with some good sales today, just like he did yesterday. Then I opened the store and went to work. I back washed the pond filter and there wasn't too much dirt in there this time. Then I de-chlorinated and waited for 30 minutes. Just before the 30 minutes were up, we had our first customers. They were very nice and stayed for about 45 minutes including a tour. Fortunately for me, Matt came in to work for a few hours so he gave them the tour.
I filled up the pond with water and set the timer for 60 minutes. About five minutes before the timer went off, a couple came in. At the five minute mark, I went out and turned off the water to the pond. It looks great.
I went back into the store and helped the two customers, each with their own basket. The man bought a lot of stuff including three of our wonderful pecan gourmet coffees. His bill was well over $100. I was pretty excited. Then the lady finished up and it took me a long time to ring hers up. It was three times what his was. I told them both that I had prayed for good sales today and I thanked them.
Meanwhile, David came into the store, rearranging things, starting with the tomatoes. He was totally unhappy with the way some of our employees had moved things around. He tasked them with restocking, not rearranging. So he and I did that until 2pm and I went and made lunch. We ate and then the doorbell went off at the house. Technically, we closed at 1pm today but two ladies were there so I went to wait on them.
They both bought seeds and strawberry preserves. Then the one lady wanted some jars and canning supplies. She bought our last canner for sale, jars, and some other canning supplies so there was another $200 or so. I was pretty excited and glad I came out of the house.
Of course, the big news of the day is it is time for the annoying time change nonsense. At least, this is the good one where you gain an hour of sleep.
Matt was not feeling well so he did not join us for the Svengoolie movie. We had enchiladas and fresh garden veggies, including green beans that were just picked from our fall garden bean plants. The movie was Abbott and Costello Meet The Monsters. This was always one of my father's favorite movies.
Really, the extra hour of sleep did not work for me. I fell asleep on the couch and then at 11:30pm, I showered and went to bed. However, I could not get back to sleep. Sometime after 1am, I finally did. I woke up at 5:13am and tried to sleep more but my mind would not turn off so I got up to type this page. I know I will be tired later on.
It is 54° so just a bit chilly in the house. Soon, I have to go outside and feed the animals. David is still asleep and so are the dogs and cat. I am in my office here in the house, drinking coffee. I do love the time when all is calm and quiet and I can reflect on life.
So yesterday, trying to be nice and inform another small business owner that we have canning jars for sale that are brand new for $10 a case, my husband was told by her that she was all stocked up and she only buys local if a business owner has made the product. What? First, who makes canning jars? They are made in factories.
Her business posts always including the #shoplocal hashtag but she doesn't shop local. We are 14 miles down the road but she tells us she only buys her seeds from Baker Creek in Missouri. (We love Baker Creek and we have visited during their seed festival. They are good people with a wonderful business.) But when you live in South Central Texas and you buy your seeds from Mansfield, Missouri, that is definitely not shopping local when there is a very good seed company just down the road, David's Garden Seeds®.
There is so much more to all of this, like she claims she grows all of this produce but she buys it from farmers in South Texas, two hours away and then resells it claiming she grew it on property she owns two hours from where she lives. Why wouldn't she grow it on the ten acres she lives on? She has been at our store before, trading some seeds she brought for our seeds but never spending a dime here. We have actually bought things from her multiple times.
Of course, we don't use the hashtag #shoplocal because we ship all over the country. Anyway, she ended up telling my husband not to contact her anymore because she will no longer reply. He was only trying to help her small business. How rude!
A few hours later, around 11pm last night, I noticed that two of her customer friends shared our jar post with her and she responded nicely to them, thanking them. LOL!
It is 6:40am and totally light out and I need to go out and feed people but I am still in my jammies. I had better get a move on.
I fed everyone inside and out as far as animals go. David made us eggs with mushrooms, sausage and toast and it was good. I have been getting things done but now I need to go get ready for church. I feel like I have so much time this morning. That is good.
We worked on payroll. We have a number of people coming tomorrow for the rest of the canning jars. First come, first served. I have had a lot of Facebook messages saying folks are coming. Then David got one saying they want all of the jars we have. Again, whoever gets here first with cash gets the jars!
I am going to start using some new hashtags after looking at what other small businesses use. Here is my new list:
We just received a new shipment of our own David's Garden Seeds® private label gourmet pecan coffees this week. They are going fast.
We got home from church and I was heating up leftovers from last night when my husband said he should have gotten an Amazon package yesterday. I told him I did not see one. He brought it up and looked at the photo of the delivery. Now, we have a loading dock with two signs that say to deliver packages right there when you first come in. We also have porches they can leave things on. Not this driver. He delivered David's package by the pond so I had to walk behind the store all the way over to the pond to get the package. Why?
David is a huge ice cream lover and the sugar free options do not taste very good. So I got him an ice cream freezer. It arrived two days ago but I have been busy so I did not open it until this afternoon. I washed it and stuck the freezer bowl and the spare in the freezer. They have to freeze for between six and 22 hours. I wish I had opened it on Friday.
Blue Bell Ice Cream, which we love, has GMOs in it now so we won't be buying that anymore. We will make our own sugar free fresh ice cream without "Bioengineered Foods" aka GMOs.
I noticed my bonsai tree that Matt gave me for Mother's Day is not doing well. I have kept it in the Farm Store all of this time. So I brought it home with me. I need to read my bonsai book and see what I can do for it. Bonsai is a form of container gardening but you use trees. I actually bought a kit of bonsai but I have not yet planted them. Maybe I will have time today to do that.
Return from Container Garden to Our Fourth Year
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Peppers and peas
And lots of yummy greens
You can't go wrong
With Squash This Long
At David's Garden Seeds
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Please like and subscribe on YouTube and come visit us at our Farm Store! The music on our TV ad was written, played, and sung by our son, Matthew Schulze. You can meet him when you come to the farm. He just might give you a tour. Ask him to grab a guitar and sing our jingle that he wrote.
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