As the big holiday season comes and goes, the work remains. So whether we use this period of relative calm for more work or more festivities than usual, it’s always a question of a wise balance, right? No matter where you are on that spectrum, we wish you a happy and healthy holiday season, with prospects of a prosperous new year. Since Jolly and I have capable and reliable staff, we get to sneak off more than is probably good for us on the travel agenda. But we have to get out while we can, or time slips by … and grandchildren grow up too fast.
The response to our availability lists is always gratifying; in fact, it surprises us how effective it is. We intuitively expect that having been in business for so long, people will call without a prompt, or add to orders on their own. But we tend to forget that there are so many “sales messages” out there, if ours is not among them, we and some of our clients can become a bit too complacent.
No room for complacency in this season. No space for hesitation, even if it’s deciding what NOT to grow, whom NOT to buy from.
So as you consider your sense of available space, labor and your client needs for 2018, consider us your primary supplier of unusual deciduous woody ornamentals. No other outfit in the country offers our wide selection of not just seedlings, but grafted stock, tissue-cultured liners and transplants, and cutting-grown liners. When we look at our own reports, sometimes even we are surprised at its diversity of varieties and sizes. It takes a well-oiled, efficient operation to put a list like this into your hands, and the exceptionally well-rooted, vigorous plants that back it up.
Please pick up the phone or drop us a line if there’s something special we can do for you this winter, or stop by our MANTS booth #515, 517 so we can discuss what works best for you. Mark will give a talk among the SNA presentations preceding the show, so rattle his cage there too, if you’re in town early. Or hit him up for a beer and crab cakes!
September was a record-breaking sales month for us as your liner grower, so we suspect most in the trade have had a robust sales season to match. The winter trade shows will be an exercise in locating what others have over-sold or promised and can’t deliver. If you’re in this lamentable situation, give us a call. Discover what others know, namely that we inventory VERY carefully. Our process works this way:
Reliability is a critically important supplier trait. If you cannot depend on getting what you confirm, you risk being unreliable for your own clients and your sales may suffer if people question your ability to deliver, or the counts are off, sizes not there, or timing is dicey. Why deal with that in addition to all the usual stuff we have so little control over? At some point, reliability is a function of basic integrity.
We have a dependable crew, strong company leadership within manager ranks, and Jolly and I are in this for the long haul. Although we’re age 65, we are not retiring since we have such strong horticultural interests, farm development plans, and ambitious, dependable, experienced staff. We have YOU, our wonderful friends, loyal customers, and the most fascinating palette of woody deciduous liners in the trade. What more can we be thankful for than these lifelong passions and friends? Our farms are paid for, and we can focus exclusively on our customers, supplier relationships and our first “customers” – our employees. We built the company with their career interests in mind, their God-given talents and natural energy and enthusiasm for doing what they love, and just for whom they ARE. This is the stuff of a fine life and career. We love it and will keep loving it, growing for you.
Keep warm and safe this holiday season, and find some good blues or jazz music to dilute all the reindeer tunes!
There’s a shortage of broadleaf evergreen trees that can be grown without high maintenance costs in the arid West, where summers are hot, winters cold, and soils alkaline.
Shortages are the mother of opportunity, so Heritage Seedlings & Liners, in collaboration with oak expert Dr. Allan Taylor, for the first time brings to market a trademarked line of grafted, native Southwest oaks for water-wise gardens. Our grafting assures you of genetic uniformity and adds another desirable feature: those selections that normally sucker lose that trait to flourish under nursery care as single-trunk specimens.
Natural crosses of up to seven different native Western white oak species, each of our selections is unique in leaf form, color, growth habit, and mature size. They’re adapted to very low maintenance or unirrigated landscapes and help to fill the urgent need for small trees that can be safely planted in an attractive fire buffer zone around suburban homes and commercial sites. As street trees, they can help to relieve city maintenance budgets.
Dr. Taylor, who has collected oaks around the American Southwest for over 30 years, has a personal preference for those with bluish leaves and evergreen habit. Most selections are relatively small trees - ideal for city lots.
These native oaks of the American Southwest offer homeowners, garden centers and nurseries fascinating, delightful ornamental trees with upside profit potential. Unlike oaks of the American East offered in the wholesale nursery trade, these selections are regionally adapted Southwest natives, grafted so you don’t have to reckon with frustrating seedling variability. Best of all, each is uniquely attractive – far more than their rock-hard constitution might suggest. And finally, they thrive with regular nursery care, even in the Pacific Northwest.
That’s how we feel now that we have our Farwest Show availability list complete and order confirmations going out the door. We take a lot of effort to make inventory accurate so when we confirm your order we feel confident of our ability to ship what we confirm. This helps you more confidently plan your own work - whether grafting, potting up, field planting, or some combination.
Our aim is to make your Heritage order one you can feel confident about, that you make a solid profit on.
Dependable. Reliable. Accurate. No surprises. These are the fundamentals we’ve grown this enterprise on for 35 years, so we’ve had lots of practice sharpening our wits and wisdom.
Check out our Availability List/Catalog to find current availability anytime, updated so that you see what’s actually available when you order. We’ve made a determined effort to grow more of what you regularly ask for, but don’t hesitate once you have a solid idea of what you need.
We can create a “standing order” of those basics to help
protect your annual interest. Let us know.
As we propagate new items and re-balance our plant portfolio to reflect what’s in solid demand, you know we’re always on the forefront of offering the newest and best varieties in woody plants. Just today we learned that two of our new varieties, Quercus ‘Mesa de Maya’ and Corylus ‘Burgundy Lace’ earned Best of Show and runner up… basically both first and second places in the Farwest Show New Varieties Showcase!
Come by our booth #9037 to see them. Better yet, chip your card in for our closing-hour drawing to take one of these choice prizes home with you on Friday afternoon.
Meanwhile, while you’re there we can review your order details personally, offer you ideas for other items to enhance your sales, or answer any questions you may have about shipping, growing hints and grafting. Or, just stop by to update us about your family and what fun you’ve been up to recently. Farwest is a family reunion after all!
Need last-minute free passes? Let us know…
As we consider the prospects of the new growing season, there are a few items you can confidently order for June shipping and more for pickup at the nursery. Give this list a quick review and call us promptly, or shoot us an email with your wish list. After 36 years, we pack and ship via UPS with literally hundreds of “man years” of experience to guide us and assure you of fresh, prompt delivery. Just let us know the exact day that you can best receive the boxes and open them promptly upon receipt to let them respire freely. Or tell us when you can come out to the nursery to pick them up. There’s lots of growing season left, with the longest day upon us coming up in late June.
For this new season, our preliminary inventory shows almost all items in strong supply prospects, but it benefits you to call us with your preliminary order as soon as you get a comfortable sense of what you’re going to need. We can revise amounts above or below that later; but like a stock trader, it pays you to put a “floor” under your projected needs and profit strategy and then revise your order as the season goes along if you need to. Book your minimum order as soon as possible to protect your supply priority position. It it’s an annual need, let us know so we can make that special note in our files – a sort of unofficial priority “contract” order for you.
Remember, our professional staff are your partners here in Oregon’s rich Willamette River Valley and if you can manage to visit us sometime this summer or fall, we’d be honored to show you around our greenhouses and production farms with our full attention. Come with lots of questions and an extra camera battery. Honor us with all your specific questions or special requests you have about plant size, varieties, ship date, or minimums. There’s lots to see, but we can’t read minds. Give us a clear sense of what you hope for, so that we organize your tour well and you leave with the feeling that it was your very best use of your time that day.
If you want just skip the plants and go have breakfast or a beer with Mark at the local watering hole to talk business, or both - we can do that, too!
As we ship the final bundles and pots in a banner sales season, we still have broad availability of fine seedling rootstock, 1-2 year grafts, cuttings and tissue-cultured liners! We hope to finish shipping of cold-stored, bareroot and potted liners by mid-to-late April, so this is your opportunity to fill in some blank spots.
Whether you pot them up for fall sales or plant in the field, bring our liners in now to get a head start on your own inventory/cash flow for the year(s) ahead.
Some quick examples to jump-start your imagination ….
Want your plants to flourish this summer? Start with the best in seedlings and huge selection of grafted and cutting/TC-grown items from Heritage.
Mark, Jolly, & Staff
In a rising market, we’d be wise to remember that although we get excited by sales numbers, profit is the engine of commerce. Follow the 80/20 Rule. Are 80% of your profits generated by 20% of your product line? What 20% of your time yields 80% of your productivity?
The key to profit is not so much getting the right answers, it’s in thoughtfully asking the right questions. For example, what 20% of the following generates 80% of your profit?
Does your plant selection strategically guide clients toward what must ultimately be an “experience” at retail, or reflect what your sales staff reported was most short last year? Do your key staff get strokes more from sales, or do you focus at least as much on margin? Choose carefully, with profit as your goal, not just sales. Despite popular notions, none of us makes up lackluster profit margin with greater sales volume.
Our seedling woody rootstock selection is unmatched. With more than 450 kinds of ornamental woodies to choose from, our plant selection helps you grow and deliver profitable VALUE with core items that are recurrent sales bell-ringers in addition to niche items. Let us answer your questions about our diversity in cutting, tissue-cultured, and specialty grafted items, many of which are unavailable in quantity elsewhere.
From your first call or note, we handle your inquiry professionally – carefully document your order respond quickly, and ship your order so that when you open the box or truck you sense how much we CARE. We take care of YOU. On the rare occasion when we goof, we immediately make it right - to your satisfaction.
We’re your partner, not just your supplier.
Rebalance your plant portfolio to lead your market, shorten your turn times, diminish cull ratios, and avoid running an expensive hobby.
This time of year when we work so hard shipping, we want you to know your order is in capable hands.
Who are these nursery professionals, anyway? Who picks up the phone when you call, or responds when you write?
These 10 amazing people in or around the office work daily to make sure you have no surprises coming from Heritage. Collectively, we will get you the information you need quickly, and move forward together.
Mark, Jolly and staff
Finally winter seems here, after an exceptionally mild fall season. But after the holidays it will be a big push to accommodate all the orders and brisk demands on limited inventories in lots of nursery circles.
Have you booked your order yet, before those who will wait until the MANTS Show or others around the country in January? If not, we suggest you have a good look while things are slower in December, to assure you of maximum options on size and varieties. Fact is, we are already getting light on availability or even sold out on some items.
Highlights of great income opportunity for you and strong supplies on this end include:
Regardless of your order size or varieties or delivery date, we appreciate the trust you have in us to get your order in and out RIGHT, every time. We have high expectations of you and ourselves, to make 2017 our best yet, and we are your full partner in that effort. Give us a shot at your needs and we will show you, not just talk about it.
Finally, if you have questions not so easy to review in email or otherwise, just pick up the phone and ask for Veronica, Ethan, Maira, Lynda, Anthony, Octavio, Eric, Mark or Jolly. Count ‘em: that’s nine of us! We’re here to help you out, and one of the experts above will get back to you promptly so we move forward with you together.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
No more election blather – this is business.
Each of us started a profitable, new business in the past 8 years – yes, a new business. It bears no resemblance to the one before. We reinvented ourselves, survived and thrived – all of us. That perseverance and hard work has made us fit for opportunities now and years to come.
Upcoming changes will be more radical than any in the past 8 years due to critical changes in the retail market and right down on the farm:
But for imaginative leaders in this craft, this industry, who have imagination, the future is bright with so many opportunities. There are so many opportunities in a shrunken pool of producers that the choices can feel daunting.
So this is a time to review where your market advantages are, how you want to re-balance your liner investments as part of your tightly focused sales efforts. You already understand this or you wouldn’t have survived this far. Reliable profits aren’t hatched in complacency. No plants get sold in the good old days – days long past. This is surely no time to putter along with the same tired portfolio of plants. Make each item, each size, each sale date and profit margin justify your hard work, time and money.
If you have to grab a beer to make the hard choices a bit easier, go get a 6-pack and get
Let us help you in that rebalance effort. Find in these pages a huge variety of seedlings, cutting-grown or grafted plants unlike any other you can find in the nation. With more than 35 years in the business, and having started it from scratch, we know a thing or two about cycles and fundamentals. We can help you sort through options if you need it. We commit to transparent communication and doing what we say we will. Pretty simple, and the entire reason we have been successful for so many years ourselves.
Give us a try. Re-order when you get turned down by others.
Best wishes for this THANKSGIVING season and trust yourself. When the next person asks how you’re doing, respond with your best smile, “Better than I deserve.”