07 Dec 2021

Gardening with Jo: A cautious welcome for new garden enthusiasts

With Jo McGarry of Caragh Nurseries

Gardening with Jo: A cautious welcome for new garden enthusiasts

A cypress stand

As I write this, I am looking out onto the nursery reflecting on our reopening of our business fully this week. We are opening cautiously and with a good degree of trepidation.

We are all looking forward to returning to some sort of normality. We can’t wait to start meeting with our customers, getting into your gardens, coming up with designs for your gardens and working with you to put those into action. We can do this easily and with little to no contact and this side of our business we are delighted to be getting back to.

We are, however, cautiously opening our nursery up to the public to come back in. We are all outdoors so that is something, but our concern is that all the garden lovers out there who have been inside with nowhere to go for the last eight weeks will all come visit us the first week. All our garden-loving regular customers, too, will be keen to visit.

Our message is that, although we are only delighted that so many people have found this newfound love of the garden, we have been here for over 20 years and we will be here for another 20 years so there’s no rush.

We have altered our opening hours slightly, just for now to 10am until 4pm, while we are still working out the safest way to carry out our work in a safe manner and to allow us to load for the online orders which brings me to the topic ahead.

Anyone who has been following Caragh Nurseries online, either through our website or through our social media, will have seen that over the last couple of months we have been actively encouraging as many people as we can to get out into the garden.

As all you gardeners out there know, it's such a great pastime. It’s great for the soul as well as the waistline, and in the strange and uncertain times it has been such a fantastic way to add a little normality to our daily lives; of getting away from the homeschooling and the Zoom meeting and into the outdoors.

It is going to be a long summer and mother nature really has been kind to us of late. It’s like she knows that we needed the good weather to keep us happy in the garden. If you’re anything like me, everything is improved by being in the garden. We’ve been barbecuing out there, we are lucky to have a pizza oven too and that’s kept the kids happy. There have been great family times, dining together with a glass of something chilled and white (or occasionally pink) in hand, and who needs overseas holidays, when we have had such the most wonderful weather here. Let's face it, when the sun shines Ireland is the most wonderful place int he world.

I’ve digressed again. My point was that I have so loved getting creative with how we have shown you our plants and our trees. I’ve certainly become a better photographer, I’ve got much better at getting the new stock onto the online store quicker and keeping the stock updating freely.

I’ve enjoyed the creativity of encouraging so many people, adding regular posts about what to do in the garden, how to series and so much more.

My ‘followers’, as my kids tell me, are increasing nicely and with each one of those hopefully we have a new gardener or at least a lover of gardens- so that is definitely something I have loved and want to keep doing so with a little bit of help from all you guys.

The online store is the first point of call and the source of lots of gardening information for you all - I hope you’ve all enjoyed following it as much as I’ve loved doing it.

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