There are only 59 growing days in the Yampa Valley, so you have to make the most of them, the staff at South Routt Nursery says.
The South Routt Nursery not only sells flowers, trees, mulch and other gardening necessities, but also aims to educate the community about what to grow, where to grow it, and how to make the most of the challenging conditions South Routt gardeners face.
"Our whole thing is 'growing with the community,' and we try to keep up with what's happening around us," said Nursery Manager Frank Coffren.
Coffren, along with owners Tim Fink and Chris Zuschlag and the other employees, began hosting a farmer's market last weekend.
"We had always wanted to do it and had been thinking about it for some time, and it just worked out," Coffren said.
The South Routt Farmer's Market made its debut July 16 with a half-dozen vendors and some very excited shoppers.
"We had a great turnout," Coffren said.
"A lot of people came and checked us out."
Coffren said that people brought local produce, eggs, and crafts to sell, and the nursery expects even more vendors to come to the next farmer's market planned for Saturday.
The nursery has been open since May 2004, and has added new products and services in the past 14 months.
Coffren said the nursery has enjoyed broad support from the South Routt community.
"What people want changes with the season, but most people look for annuals early in the year to add color to their gardens and then perennials and trees during the summer," he said.
The nursery will close when the ground freezes in fall and people can't plant anymore.
The nursery aims to have a real presence in the community and has participated in several events this year.
During the Taste of South Routt, the nursery had a flatbed trailer full of blooming flowers and trees that added color to Decker Park and the celebration's atmosphere. The nursery also won best float in the Yampa Fourth of July parade.
Coffren said that the nursery co-hosted a wildflower workshop with the U.S. Forest Service earlier in the summer during Wildflower Week.
In the future, Coffren said the nursery hopes to offer more educational programs for the community.
"I think people are still figuring out we're here, but we're definitely heading in the right direction," Coffren said.
Nursery assistant Megan Moore said she thinks it's a good thing that the nursery is in South Routt because it brings jobs and money to the area.
Plus, she said, she gets to work outside, which she loves.
"It's wonderful to be em----ployed in South Routt," she said.
Coffren said that working at a nursery is like an oasis.
"It's a good environment because it is quiet and peaceful and the people who come in are always in a good mood," he said.
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