Today I finally decided I’m going to tackle the terrible world of FREIGHT. I say ‘terrible world” because it seems to be the one thing that makes customers and small business owners cringe more than any other aspect of running a business.
When you’re sending products (in my case plants) via courier across the nation, reliable freight services are absolutely critical to your business. Without them you can’t get your products to your customers. Without them to safely deliver your products for you, you would not be in business. And let’s face it, without our businesses they would not have parcels to collect and deliver either, so technically they need us to stay in business too.
BUT. Sigh…yes there’s always a but…freight seems to be a huge hurdle for so many customers to get their heads around. Almost every week I receive questions or responses from customers or potential customers about the exorbitant cost of freight. So I thought I would say something…I might look silly for doing this, but I really feel it can be such an ‘icky’ subject for small business owners and their customers that it needs addressing.
As a long-time plant addict/customer myself I totally understand – freight costs make the plants, or other products, you are purchasing that little bit more expensive. But I prefer to think of it as a way of supporting several different businesses. First there’s the one you’re purchasing the actual product from (such as my nursery). Then there’s the courier driver, earning their living delivering your parcel, so that they can then financially support themselves and their families. What about the businesses who produce the cardboard cartons, packaging tape, labels etc? They too are earning a living by providing goods which ultimately you are benefitting from as well. Basically, one carton of plants can support many different New Zealand businesses…it might seem small but every dollar counts right.
I am really grateful for all the customers who not only buy my product, but also happily pay the correct freight, as this helps me to cover at least some of the costs associated with postage and packaging. I found it a little tricky to figure out the different shipping rates from my new area at first. So a big thank you to all of you for your patience while I worked on this, and for negotiating your way through all the different rates and choosing the right option for your carton size and delivery address (yes there are now both urban and rural options specific to the North Island). If there’s anything that you find confusing about the shipping options please let me know, I’m always looking for ways to make the checkout process as easy as possible. And thanks for reading this too…with your support, local small businesses like mine will continue to thrive :)
Hello, I wrote this a couple of days ago now of course, but it is still relevant….
I’m not sure if other gardeners do this but virtually every day I wander around my garden, usually in the morning, to see what is happening. Sometimes nothing has happened of course, but mostly I see something new each day. It’s not necessarily that what I have spotted today was not there yesterday, but rather my focus and perspective has shifted, allowing me to see something that I hadn’t before. Today’s jaunt brought me to the clump of white bluebells that are just starting to open. Yesterday they looked uninspiring, but today their buds are the most beautiful creamy lemon, with flowers changing to pure white as they open. The seed heads on my Anemone pavonina are all bursting, but collection will have to wait until the damp weather has passed, perhaps tomorrow with any luck. I know plenty of you would like some babies of these beauties so I must get on with sowing them, as fresh seed is best when it comes to Anemones. Salvia ‘Shangri La’ seems to be thriving in the hot stones near the house, the leaves are getting bigger every time I look at them. And they look gorgeous with the dew on the hairs catching the light and going all shimmery, almost looks like frost. On down to the shady corner bed that I put in not long ago…the Pulmonaria are starting to flower and there is one particularly good bright blue form, from Roger of course, but not labelled. The first flower open on Ranunculus cortusifolius…a new plant so it won’t look as spectacular this year, but still, a stunning yellow. And one lonely little Trillium poking its head through the soil. I’ve never grown them before so this will be a bit of a test.
Enough garden rambling…there is work to be done in the nursery, shifting older plants out from the tunnelhouse so they can harden off. Lots of trays to be carted out and put where they can get both sunshine and rain (and hopefully not frost!). Of course this leaves gaps for lots more babies to be potted up…I have always loved the excitement of seeing what sort of plants I have produced from seed. Many people see this as a rather tedious and boring job, but I’m always interested to see what sort of root systems my babies have, how many have come up, whether they all look true to type or if there are any different ones amongst them.
Anyway, on to the news of today – the next lot of plants are ready and waiting for their new homes, and have been uploaded to the website. You can view the plants available here https://www.seaflowersnursery.co.nz/perennials.html#/
Just a note about ordering. Unfortunately my website is not set up to take orders for payment via internet banking (frustrating I know…I’ve tried!). If you would like to pay this way then please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org – there is no need to send this through the website, just send me an email from your phone, laptop etc, and include a list of the plants that you would like to order. Your delivery address is helpful as well. Then I can reply with confirmation of availability and costs, and we can go from there. Adding plants to your shopping cart on the website won’t automatically reserve them for you I’m afraid, but if you send me a quick email then I can adjust the numbers available very quickly. There are no guarantees of course but hopefully you won’t miss out if someone else buys them online in the meantime.
Here’s what has been added to the website today…
Antirrhinum majus ‘Canary Bird’ (very few, punnets)
Antirrhinum majus ‘Defiance’ (only two, punnets)
Centaurea macrocephala 1 litre
Euphorbia characias ssp. wulfenii 9cm
Helenium ‘Sunny Wonder’ 9cm
Nepeta tuberosa, tall form 9cm
Poppy – Beth Chatto’s – Papaver dubium ssp. lecoqii var. albiflorum
Salvia uliginosa ‘Ballon Azul’ (few only) 9cm
Salvia canariensis var. candidissima 9cm
Salvia interrupta 1 litre
Symphyotrichum (Aster) cordifolius ‘Silver Spray’ 1 litre
Also new stock added of Monarda ‘Squaw’, Salvia ‘Shangri La’ and a few extra Symphyotrichum (Aster) ‘Little Carlow’
Happy plant hunting and thank you for supporting small businesses like mine 😊