If one looks closely enough, inspiration can be unearthed in others’ stories of struggle.
To absolutely no fault of their own, Texas growers were stomach-punched back in February by Winter Storm Uri. It is often said that, as farmers, you serve at the behest of the weather. The far-too-south, entirely-too-long-lasting cold snap certainly reinforced that fact, and it could end up costing Texas ag over half a billion dollars in lost farm and greenhouse output.
Our cover story this month (page 22) looks at how a couple green industry operations prepared for, managed through, and eventually conquered the storm and the subsequent power outages. These resourceful, proactive growers thankfully will still have a crop this spring, but things easily could have gone the other way, too.
Call me biased, but their stories are downright inspiring, and they underscore two running themes to remember this spring: keep an open mind and think outside the box.
I’ve been told by a few industry contacts that there could be potential supply issues on the fast-approaching horizon, that a certain variety or species (or even a container) you are hoping to have on hand won’t be available all season long. You might end up having to try out a new plant or variety to keep the shelves stocked.
Change is hard; there’s no doubt about that. But, in times of uncertainty, why not take a swing on a new, trending plant? Now is the time for experimenting, and you might find a few fresh customers in the process. And, growing something new and mysterious is undeniably exciting. We could all stand for a little more excitement in our lives.
So, keep a fresh and open perspective this spring, and then once the unexpected suddenly becomes reality – like it did for those south Texas growers who hadn’t witnessed weather that cold, for that long, ever – you’re ready for almost anything.
Happy Spring, and happy growing this season.