Making the Connections
This week’s employee focus is upon Barb Gerdes. She has been at Glacial Ridge Growers for five years. Barb is the person who helps us make the needed connections between the computer spreadsheets and the reality of the plants growing in the greenhouses. She helps keep track of the seed as it arrives, the numbers and projections, the tags needed to identify each plant, and the processes that need to take place out in the greenhouse.
Fortunately, Barb is not just a computer-person and number counter. She has an intimate knowledge of what happens in the growing process and loves to be in the greenhouse helping with production. Her knowledge of plants in reflected in a yard at her house that is filled with beautiful plantings of annuals, perennials, and native plants. One of Barb’s favorite plants is our “Big Kiss” Gazania.
One of Barb’s special delights is to create new and beautiful combinations of plants for hanging baskets and planters. One of her special combos is our “Sunset Blaze” hanging basket. There is a running sales competition between “Sunset Blaze” and Jeremiah’s delicious Eversweet strawberry basket.
Barb’s cheerful, easy-going demeanor is much appreciated as she helps to make the transition from cyber-world projections to the beautiful reality of plants growing in the greenhouse.
As the growing season progresses at Glacial Ridge Growers, we want to introduce the people who do the growing at Glacial Ridge. We are blessed with a wonderful group of experienced growers who enjoy working with plants.
Where It All Begins
This week we want to focus on the person who literally begins the process of our plant production. Marilyn Peterson has been with us at Glacial Ridge Growers for sixteen years. She does most of our seeding. She is the one who, with the help of our state-of-the-art seeding equipment puts the seeds into the trays where they germinate and begin the process. She has been at work since fall, seeding the literally millions of seeds needed to green-up our spring and eventually the many gardens and yards where our plants are finally planted.
Marilyn, like most of our employees is an avid gardener and says one of her favorite plants is Euphorbia. Whether it is her own garden or the plants produced in the greenhouse, she says that the end result is what makes all the hard work enjoyable. We all love to see the seedling trays on the bench with the young plants growing from each little cell. That is a result that shows the precise attention that Marilyn pays to each of the thousands of flats that she seeds each season. Like all of our employees, Marilyn knows how important it is to stay on schedule so that spring in the greenhouse happens at the correct time.
Fire Skies and Fire Thorns
The sun is now rising noticeably farther north on the horizon each day. Our Fire Thorn bush which huddles by the south-facing window of our break room at the greenhouse has begun to bloom. It is our domestic “pet” plant, a refugee from the Southwest and we are amazed that it has bloomed during such short days. We are all overcoming the short, dark, days of winter as we now begin to experience spring in the greenhouses.
Gene R. Stark
A teacher, farmer, trapper, and greenhouse grower. He writes about the outdoors and the people and culture of rural America..