• Last modified 475 days ago (May 2, 2018)


Garden center suffers from unusual spring weather

Staff writer

The windy, cold weather this spring has had a big impact on Serenity Gardens, east of Hillsboro. Owner Jana Dalke said hardier spring flowers, like snapdragons, usually are put outside to make room for warm-weather flowers, but this year she has had to keep them inside or bring them in at night.

“It has been really challenging,” she said. “Space has been a huge factor. Plants that I expected to be outside have been inside. Every square inch of the greenhouses was full, with hanging baskets above, plants on tables, and plants under tables.”

She said some flowers under the tables didn’t get good air circulation and had to be discarded because of fungal damage.

The biggest problem for outside plants has been the wind, Dalke said. Some bedding plants sustained damage and don’t look very good.

Dalke and her employees have spent a lot of time bringing plants in and taking them out again.

Last Wednesday, when the temperature was forecast to drop near freezing, Dalke said she set her alarm to go off every hour, so she could check the temperature to see if she needed to go out and cover plants. Luckily, it stopped dropping at 34 degrees, although her husband found frost on the windshield of his pickup in the morning.

The late spring has reduced early customer traffic, and Dalke is wondering how she is going to pay bills that are coming due.

“I’m hoping for no more wind,” she said. “I worry. What do I order? Will people buy as much as usual? Will they all come at once? What’s going to happen?”

With moderating temperatures, people were beginning to show more interest in buying flowers, and business was returning to normal last weekend.

Last modified May 2, 2018