Archive for May, 2014

12in combo basket 5-30-14What happened? We were rolling along good then it screeched to a halt. It’s not that hot so we can’t blame the heat. So what happened?

I have heard people say that the rain has kept folks from planting. I know that locally we have several landscapers that still have orders that they have not picked up yet due to being behind because of the rain. I talked to a garden center owner yesterday and he said that business had dropped a lot over the past week or two and that it was very slow.

How are things going for you? Every week Chris Beytes’ Acres Online Newsletter rates the weekend sales by state. You can see last weekend’s ratings in the image. As you can see, some parts of the south are starting to slow down some but solid 7-10 ratings all around Arkansas is good news. I hope that everyone is doing as well as these ratings indicate. Although I am not sure why there are no reports from Arkansas. You can subscribe to the Acres Online Newsletter here – http://www.ballpublishing.com/BPSubscriptions/newslettersignup.aspx.

I think that the garden centers are playing it safe and are either selling down and calling it over or are getting some small shipments to just keep a little bit on their shelves.

We had a good year here with the least amount of waste than we have had in a long time. Reducing shrink was one of our goals for this spring and we exceeded our goal with that. Sales were great for the most part for spring. We had extra product when we didn’t need it at times and didn’t have product that was in demand at times but we will never be able to be 100 percent accurate with our forecasting.

Again, I want to thank all of you who helped us have a great spring and we hope that you had an outstanding spring as well. I also want to apologize again for the trucking/shipping issues we encountered and want to assure you that we are working diligently now to try to make sure that we don’t have that happen again.

One other thing, what is the deal with the hanging baskets? No matter what we do, we sell out nearly every planting within a day or two of adding them to the availability. Don’t get me wrong. I am not complaining about them selling so well. I am curious as to why they are selling so well. If you have any insight as to why that is, I sure would like to know. So far my thoughts are simply that consumers are buying more baskets.

Enough of that. Here are this week’s pictures. Hope you all have a great weekend!

4.5in purslane 5-30-144.5in lantana 1 5-30-144.5in lantana 2 5-30-144.5in lantana 3 5-30-144.5in mexican heather cuphea 5-30-144.5in bacopa 5-30-144.5in evolvulus 5-30-144.5in pink pentas 5-30-144.5in sceavola 5-30-144.5in sweet potato vine 5-30-144.5in aurora black cherry coleus 5-30-141801 vino and red head sun coleus 5-30-144.5in sweetie blue new guinea impatiens 5-30-146in and 1801 caladiums 5-30-146in cora vinca 1 5-30-146in cora vinca 4 5-30-146in cora vinca 5 5-30-146in pink dragon wing begoina 5-30-146in wave petunias 5 5-30-1410in baskets 5-30-1410in begonia bskt 5-30-1410in calibrachoa bskts 5-30-1410in cora cascade vinca 3 5-30-1410in lantana 5-30-1410in new giunea impatien bskt 1 5-30-1410in purslane bskt 2 5-30-1410in rosy dawn wave petunia 5-30-1410in scaevola bskt 1 5-30-1410in streptocarpella 5-30-1412in dragon wing begonia deco 5-30-141gal colocasia 5-30-141qt becky shasta daisy 5-30-141qt denver daisy rudbeckia 5-30-141qt gailardia 5-30-141qt pow wow white echinacea 5-30-141qt purple delosperma1qt PW calibrachao and bidens 5-30-141qt PW iced cherrry verbena 5-30-141qt PW picasso in pink petunia 5-30-141qt PW plum wine verbena 5-30-141qt red gregii salvia 5-30-141qt sedums 5-30-141qt sempervivum 5-30-141204 begonia and 1gal polemonium 5-30-141204 blue salvia 5-30-141204 red bronze begonias 5-30-141801 caladiums 5-30-141801 hahns ivy 5-30-141801 mix bronze begoinas 5-30-141801 nicotiana and hypoestes 5-30-141801 orange gazania 5-30-141801 pacifica mix impatiens 5-30-141801 red bronze begonias 5-30-141801 rose bronze begonias 5-30-14J6 begonias 1 5-30-14J6 begonias 2 5-30-14J6 impatiens 5-30-14J6 portulaca 5-30-14

Not much to say today, but here is a link on why you should consider raising your prices – https://www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/openforum/articles/why-its-time-to-raise-your-prices/?linknav=us-openforum-exp-carousel-1-1. The article has some very good points.

I hope all of you have an enjoyable and safe Memorial Day Weekend. We will be back in the office Tuesday morning and hopefully rested and ready to take some orders.

We have some #4.5 premium annuals and #6 annuals available in heat loving varieties like pentas, vinca and coleus.

4.5in new guinea impatiens 5-22-144.5in pentas 5-22-144.5in scaevola 5-22-144.5in vino sun coleus 5-22-144.5in yellow purslane 5-22-146in burgundy star wave petunias 5-22-146in cora cascade vinca 5-22-146in cora vinca 1 5-22-146in cora vinca 2 5-22-146in dragon wing begonia 5-22-146in red kong coleus 5-22-146in wave petunias 5-22-14

Basket availability is getting low but we still have some. We have quite a few Cora Cascade Vinca baskets which are probably the best plant for a hanging basket in the south.

10in begonia bskt 1 5-22-1410in calibrachoa bskt 1 5-22-1410in calibrachoa bskt 5-22-1410in cora cascade vinca bskt 1 5-22-1410in cora cascade vinca bskt 2 5-22-1410in double impatiens bskt 1 5-22-1410in dragonwing begonia bskt 1 5-22-1410in new guinea bskt 2 5-22-1410in petunia bsket 5-22-1410in potunia bskt 5-22-1410in purslane bskt 2 5-22-1410in purslane bskt 3 5-22-1412in baskets 5-22-1412in trailing petuni combo bskt 5-22-1412in trailing petunia combo bskt 2 5-22-14

We have a deco pots in Sunpatiens, Dragon Wing Begonias, Potunias and Petunias.

12in dragon wing begonia deco 5-22-1412in sunpatiens deco 5-22-14

Availability of basic annuals in 1204’s, J6’s and 1801’s is spotty. We are out of a lot of items, have a few of some items and a lots of a few items.

1204 blue salvia 5-22-141204 portulaca 5-22-141204 vinca 5-22-141801 ageratum 5-22-141801 celosia 5-22-141801 hypoestes 5-22-141801 orange gazania 5-22-141801 red bronze begonias 5-22-141801 taishan yellow marigolds 5-22-141801 vinca 5-22-14J6 impatiens 1 5-22-14J6 impatiens 2 5-22-14

We have Caladiums, Colocasia and Polemonium to go with all those impatiens and begonias we still have available.

1801 caladiumns 5-22-141gal colocasia 5-22-141gal polemonium 5-22-14

We have more perennials available than just artemesia and 2 flats of sedum and all of them are good summer perennials. Take a look at the availability. We added some new colors of delosperma. I particularly like the Fire Spinner and am going to try some at the house.

1qt artemesia 5-22-141qt sedum 5-22-14

To all Growers adn  IGC’s:

We are running low on plants and are out of a lot of items. I know that this affects the IGC’s with the lost potential profits due to consumer demand and a long mild spring. However, for the last 20+ years the spring plant markets have suffered from over production which resulted in a very favorable buyer’ market for IGC’s and a desperate seller’s market for growers.

This year due to bankruptcies, consolidations and closures due to retirements, there were fewer growers growing. Those that were left did not speculate on a lot of extra plantings. The end result is that the growers have finally been able to sell most everything that they grew. Garden centers may complain about lost sales due to a plant shortage and that is understandable. The growers are counting lost sales as well. However, if the grower sold most of what he grew and the garden centers sold most of what they bought in, what’s the problem? As long as both are operating on a sound, profitable business model, then both should turn a profit which is a win-win.

Two decades of uncertainty, losses, over-production, lessened margins and the growers shouldering all the risk needs to end. I hope that growers don’t jump back into the quicksand and increase production exponentially (7 growers increase production because 1 IGC tried to order from them because their main supplier ran out of plants). What we sold this year plus about 5% is most likely the maximum demand for our products for next year. 

We don’t need to go back growing as much as we can and hope for the best. We need to grow what we know we can sell. So what if you didn’t use all your greenhouses, if you are operating efficiently as long as you sold what you grew, you made a profit which is better than using all your greenhouses, throwing away 5% of your crop and breaking even.

My advice to IGC’s is to start booking what you need with your grower if you are not already. I think that growers are through taking all the risk and hopefully the days of picking up the phone and finding what you need with 1 call when your main grower runs out are over. You need to start working closer with your grower regarding your spring plant needs.

OK, I am off the soap box. My thanks to all our customers who stuck with us through a hard spring. We really appreciate you. The rant above is not directed at you or any one garden center. It is directed at the industry as a whole that has dug a hole that it may have started crawling out of as long as growers don’t revert to their old ways which can partially be prevented with working closer with their customers (you). I just don’t understand why anyone would go back when we can all be more profitable with less product availability.

Sorry, stepped back up on the soap box. I will shut up now and show you some pictures. We have product. Not a lot of product, but it’s there. Hope we can get some to you next week.

1204 vinca 1 5-15-141204 vinca 2 5-15-141204 vinca 3 5-15-141801 mix nicotiana 5-15-141801 mix vinca 5-15-141801 red bronze begonia 5-15-141801 red vinca 5-15-141204 dusty miller 5-15-141801 strap leaf caladiums 5-15-141801 white caladiums 5-15-141801 zahara yellow zinniaJ6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 bronze rose begoinas 5-15-14J6 cherry halo vinca 5-15-14J6 impatiens 5-15-14J6 petunias J6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 polka dot vinca 5-15-14J6 really red vinca 5-15-14J6 red bronze begonia J6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 red impatiens J6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 rose bronze begonia J6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 salvia 2 5-15-14J6 salvia 5-15-14J6 violet impatiens J6 apricot vinca 5-15-14J6 voodoo mix impatiens J6 apricot vinca 5-15-1410in big begonia deco 5-15-1410in calibrachao bskt 1 5-15-1410in calibrachao bskt 2 5-15-1410in cora cascade vinca 3 5-15-1410in impatiens 5-15-1410in mix calibrachoa bskt 5-15-1410in new guinea bskt 2 5-15-1410in wave petunia 2 5-15-1410in wave petunia bskt 5-15-1410in yellow potunia 5-15-1410in zonal geranuim bskt 5-15-1412in dragon wing begonia deco 5-15-1412in spring confetti bskt 5-15-1412in succulent bowls 5-15-1412in succulent ovals 5-15-1412in sunpatiens deco 1 5-15-1412in sunpatiens deco 2 5-15-1412in sunpatiens deco 3 5-15-1412in trailing petunia combo bsket 5-15-141gal green ruffles colocasia 5-15-141gal ilustris colocasia 5-15-141gal sunpatiens 2 5-15-141gal sunpatines 1 5-15-141gal touch of class polemonium 5-15-141gal tropical hibiscus 5-15-141gsl hardy autumn fern 5-15-141gt perennial platycodon 5-15-141qt perennial ceratostigma 5-15-141qt PW iced cherry verbena 5-15-141qt PW raspberry blast petunia 5-15-144.5in aurora black cherry coleus 5-15-144.5in bacopa 5-15-144.5in cherry double impatiens 5-15-144.5in lantana 1 5-15-144.5in lantana 2 5-15-144.5in lavnder pentas 5-15-144.5in mexican heather 5-15-144.5in vino colues 5-15-144.5in white angelonia 5-15-146in blue wave petunias 5-15-146in calco ornamental pepper 5-15-146in cora vinca 5-15-14SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA6in polka dot cora cascade vinca 5-15-146in red dragon wing begonia 5-15-146in taishan marigolds J6 apricot vinca 5-15-141801 stepables 3 5-15-14

The week after Mother’s Day always feels a little post-apocalyptic with the aftermath and cleanup. Our loading house always ends up looking like a war zone. Greenhouses are empty except for a few scattered trays or pots that were not up to spec. Whole sections look like a ghost town. Today, the Friday before Mother’s Day weekend, the office staff and greenhouse crews are stumbling around like zombies.

However, we are still here and we still have plenty of plants for you. I am feeling a little zombie-like myself so you aren’t getting as many pics this week. I will see about adding more or doing another post next week with more pics.

1gal colocasia 5-9-141gal lantana 5-9-141gal mandevilla 5-9-141gal sunpatiens 1 5-9-141qt PW blue a fuse evolvulus 5-9-141qt PW iced cherry verbena 5-9-141qt ruellia 5-9-141qt sedum 5-9-144.5in bacopa 5-9-144.5in double impatiens 5-9-144.5in florida dahlias 5-9-144.5in gerbera daisy 5-9-144.5in lantana 5-9-144.5in sun coleus 5-9-146in kong  coleus 5-9-146in taishan yellow marigolds 5-9-1410in cora cascade vinca bskt 5-9-1410in streptocarpella 5-9-1412in dragonwing begonia deco 5-9-1412in oval succulent bowls 5-9-1412in succulent bowls 5-9-1412in trailing petunia combo bskt 5-9-141204 green leaf begonias 5-9-141801 fresh look celosia 5-9-141801 hypoestes 5-9-141801 swizzle zinnia 5-9-14J6 begonias 5-9-14J6 impatiens 5-9-14J6 salvia 5-9-14J6 vinca 5-9-14J6 portulaca 5-9-14

OK. Your mom probably already loves you, but she gave birth to you, put up with all your teenage antics and drama and probably babysits for you more than she ought to so she definitely deserves at least as hanging basket. Actually she deserves a complete yard make over like you see on HGTV. Why am I telling you this? Well, all of us sons and daughters will be swarming your garden center for plants this week for mom, and we have a lot of great looking plants for you to sell. Just take a look at the pictures below. You need some of all of this for garden center. Before we proceed, I need to say this:

I, Jason Parks, on behalf of all of the Parks family and the staff here at Parks Brothers want to offer you our apology for all the problems we have had with deliveries this season. I want to assure you that we are working diligently to improve the situation. For all of you who did not get your deliveries before the weekend, we appreciate your flexibility and thank you for accepting the late deliveries. I hope that we will be able to do a better job for everyone next week. It has only been by the grace of God that we have been able to get some loads out at all. We loaded several trucks this week that we did not have drivers for and thankfully God blessed us with drivers at the last minute. We hope to do better next week and as I have said, we are working to get the resources we need to get the loads delivered. Once again we do apologize for these problems, and thanks again for your understanding and patience. We do know how important it is for you to have product to sell, and we understand your frustrations if we are late. The shortage of drivers has been getting progressively worse each year, but we were completely caught off guard by the extent of this year’s shortage. Please contact me if you have any questions, concerns or complaints. I will be happy to talk to you about it.

We are starting to get low on quite a bit of product and are out of some items. We currently have baskets, deco pots, color bowls and succulent bowls available which have always been popular Mother’s Day items. Additionally, we have good availability on our standard IGC items like packs, 1801’s, #4.5’s and #6’s. We are starting to run out of a lot of the premium gallon items. I will be doing a lot of counting this weekend and updating availability numbers so don’t be surprised if you see some changes or if some items you order that have low availability numbers are not there. I will do my best to make it as accurate as possible. It’s Picture Time! 1gal pink mandevilla 5-2-141gal sunpatiens 1 5-2-141gal sunpatiens 4 5-2-141gal touch of class polemonium 5-2-141gal tropical hibiscus 5-2-146in caladiums 5-2-146in cora vinca 5-2-146in dragonwing begonias 5-2-146in marigolds 5-2-146in ornamental pepper 5-2-146in red kong coleus 5-2-146in red salvia 5-2-146in salmon pink kong coleus 5-2-146in wave petunias 5-2-146in white wave petunias 5-2-14 1qt PW blackberry punch calibrachoa 5-2-141qt PW blue a fuse evolvulus 5-2-141qt PW iced cherry verbena 5-2-144.5in annulas 5-2-144.5in bacopa 5-2-144.5in dahlias 5-2-144.5in electric lime coleus 5-2-144.5in euphorbia 5-2-144.5in gerbera daisy 5-2-144.5in new guinea impatiens 5-2-144.5in plumbago 5-2-144.5in purple angelonia 5-2-144.5in scaevola 5-2-144.5in serenita angelonia 5-2-144.5in succulents 5-2-14 10in begonia bskt 5-2-1410in berry velour wave petunia 5-2-1410in bliss begonia bskt 5-2-1410in blue velvet wave petunia 5-2-1410in blue wave petunia 5-2-1410in calibrachoa bskt 1 5-2-1410in calibrachoa bskt 4 5-2-1410in dragonwing begonia bskt 5-2-1410in impatiens bskt 5-2-1410in lantana 5-2-1410in neon rose mystic pink mix wave petunia bskt 5-2-1410in opposites attract mix wave petunia 5-2-1410in papaya potunia bskt 5-2-1410in pink dragonwing begonia bskt 5-2-1410in plum pudding mix bskt 5-2-1410in purslane bskt 5-2-1410in verbena bskt 1 5-2-1410in yellow potunia bskt 5-2-1412in asst deco pots 5-2-1412in baskets and deco pots 5-2-1412in combo bskt 1 5-2-1412in confetti garden bskt 1 5-2-1412in confetti garden bskt 2 5-2-1412in confetti garden bskt 3 5-2-1412in confetti garden bskt 5-2-1412in cupcakes party bskt 5-2-1412in deco new guinea impatiens 5-2-1412in deco pots 5-2-1412in dragonwing deco 5-2-1412in hawaiian summer bskt 5-2-1412in impatiens combo deco 5-2-1412in night lights bskt 5-2-1412in pentas deco 5-2-1412in petunia combo bskt 5-2-1412in potunia deco 5-2-1412in succulent bowls and ovals 5-2-1414in color bowls 2 5-2-1414in color bowls 5-2-14 1204 green mix begonia 5-2-141204 potulaca 5-2-141204 rose bronze begonia 5-2-141204 rose green begonia 5-2-141801 american pie mix vinca 5-2-111801 annuals 5-2-141801 blackberry vinca 5-2-141801 caladiums 5-2-141801 celosia 5-2-141801 dreamland mix zinnias 5-2-141801 dreamland yellow zinnia 5-2-141801 gazanias 5-2-141801 marigolds 5-2-141801 nicotiana 5-2-141801 pacifca apricot vinca 5-2-111801 red bronze begonia 5-2-141801 sprengri fern 5-2-141801 verbena 5-2-141801merlot mix vinca 5-2-11greenhouse confetti garden baskets 5-2-14greenhouse loading areagreenhouse petunias 5-2-14greenhouse salvia and marigolds 5-2-14greenhouse vinca 2greenhouse vinca 5-2-14greenhouse vinca and wave baskets 5-2-14J6 alyssum 5-2-14J6 begonias 5-2-14J6 celosia 5-2-14J6 coleus 5-2-14J6 impatiens 5-2-14J6 jade coleus 5-2-14J6 marigolds 2 5-2-14J6 marigolds 5-2-14J6 petunias 5-2-14J6 portulaca 5-2-14J6 red bronze begonia 5-2-14J6 red green begonia 5-2-14J6 rose bronze 5-2-14J6 rose green begonia 5-2-14J6 salvia 5-2-14J6 verbena 5-2-14J6 vinca 1 5-2-14J6 vinca 2 5-2-14J6 voodoo mix impatiens 5-2-14J6 white bronze begonia 5-2-14 1qt fireglow sedum 5-2-141qt gailardia 5-2-141qt homestead verbena 5-2-141qt leucanthemum 5-2-141qt monarda 5-2-141qt rudbeckia 5-2-141qt wildberry echinacea 5-2-14 1gal bumper crop tomatoes 1 5-2-141gal fireworks bumper crop 2 5-2-141gal indigo sun bumper crop tomatoes 2 5-2-141gal micro tom tomato 5-2-141gal san marzano bumper crop 1 5-2-141gal tomatoes 5-2-144in chile de arbol pepper 5-2-144in classic eggplant 5-2-144in eggplant 5-2-144in garden sage 5-2-144in grape tomato 5-2-144in green bell pepper 5-2-144in italian oregano 5-2-144in old german tomato 5-2-144in peppers 5-2-144in sweet banana pepper 5-2-141204 pepper 5-2-141204 tomato 5-2-141204 vegetables 5-2-14 David took a lot of these pictures and if the shoe fits, he can’t deny it. Here’s the proof with his size Yeti shoe. david's foot

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