Workshops are fun

145_4546.JPGChigiy asked about some pictures of the fragrant wreath making class. Eucalyptus, incense cedar, rosemary, California bay, and lavender were some of the fragrant plants that could make up your wreath. The one common denominator was the grape vines used as the frame.

Sean mentioned “Nice area, makes a great day trip for those that live in Sacramento. Trey, do you get a lot of tourist traffic, locals or Sacramento traffic (a combo or all)?” With the wreath class we had a couple of people from Sacramento, most from the immediate area. We seem to get a few people from Sacramento, Davis, or other places that are at least 20 miles away when we have these workshops. I ask why they come up here and the reason they give generally is “no one is doing it there”.

145_4542.JPGIf you live in the metropolitan area of Sacramento and want to do something for your days off it often becomes either “lets go west to San Francisco” or "lets head east up into the foothills." It’s a step back into “old California” and the region is starting to address the tourist trade more every year. We are located just 5.5 miles from The American River and Coloma, which is one of the most visited state parks in the145_4553.JPG state. There are a number of wineries located nearby as well as other small farms that cater to the individual. We are members of El Dorado County Farm Trails which has maps and information on all the stuff going on. We actively work at attracting people from outside our 145_4538.JPGimmediate area to the nursery.

Josh asks “Do you ever reach a point where it seems like workshops that were popular, no longer are? Almost like everyone who wanted to do it, has? Maybe you are in a highly populated enough area that it isn’t an issue, but that has happened here.” The answer is yes, but we just keep trying! I have had workshops where no one came! We look at weather we did something wrong in promoting it and ask “should we try again”? If it just wasn’t well received we try the next idea. Wreath making might be a class that’s been done before but we thought the “fragrant” aspect set it apart. In addition all the material's for the wreaths where gathered locally, which we didn’t but should have promoted. Next time we will.145_4539.JPG

We are also stepping outside what might be traditional gardening workshops and heading wherever it leads. Generally the workshops have to do with the outside world. I am a bird watcher so we are going to have a bird watching workshop next year. Our Tin punch class was a step "back into time", and well received. How about a B.B.Q. cooking class? We are trying to think fresh. We don't want to let our long time in the business cloud our judgment.

I’ll go one step further and say that the image we want people to have of the nursery is “not a place that sells plants.” Places that "sell plants" are a dime a dozen. We are trying to offer so much more, an “experience” if you will. What is it that we145_4540.JPG can do that no one else is doing, or doing right? I don’t quite have the answer, but we will keep asking the questions.