Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Things to be Thankful For

In the daily rush of things we often get caught up in the list of things that are incomplete or haven't happened, or the things that we haven't gotten to yet. How often in our daydreaming do we take a moment to just breathe and take in the little moments of the day and let them nourish our soul?

Not very many of us can honestly say that we give thanks every single day. This is something that should really become as much of a habit as brushing your teeth. Make it a daily thing and you are sure to see a brighter, positive light shining in your life.

We all have habits that we include in our daily routine. Take a moment each morning before you even sit up in the bed and be thankful for all things. Even our struggles are sometimes gifts in disguise. At night if you can't sleep, just think of everything and everybody that you have in your life to be thankful for. I always go to sleep before I finish.

Plants make up so much of our world. When was the last time you truly were thankful for their existence? You may not realize it but without plant life, there would be no life at all. Every living thing has a purpose in the big picture. We fail to think about the things we consume without consideration, from the paper that we write on, to the food we eat, even the furniture we use daily. Everything in our lives exists because of plants, even down to the air we breathe. Gardening is a way to feed not just our bodies, but our souls as well.
 Be thankful for every day that you breathe in the fresh air, drink fresh water and eat fresh food.  Just take a moment to appreciate every plant you see on your way to work or out your back window, as each of them has played a part in another day of your own existence.

3 Holiday Recipes That Will Soon Be Your Favorites.

We all have our favorites when it comes to holiday meals. Maybe it's Aunt Mona's sour cream pound cake or grandma's turkey and stuffing, No matter what your favorite is, let us introduce you to 3 new recipes that will quickly become everyone's favorite. You might even get some requests for them in between the holidays.

 Crustless Pumpkin Pie

1 - 15 oz can of pumpkin
1- 12 oz can of evaporated milk
2 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup Bisquick or any biscuit mix
2 T. butter
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

Mix pumpkin, evaporated milk, eggs, and sugar in a mixing bowl. Mix on medium speed until smooth. Add melted butter, vanilla, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix well. Add Bisquick. Mix at medium speed until smooth.
Pour batter into a 9-inch pie dish (preferably a deep one). Fill as full as possible.
Bake at 350 for 55 to 60 min., until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Allow cooling and then refrigerate.
Serve with whipped cream if desired.

 Green Bean Casserole

6 strips of bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
1/2 onion diced
1 1/2 cups chopped button mushrooms or any mushroom you prefer to use
3 cloves of garlic minced
2- 10.5 oz cans cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup milk
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
salt and pepper
4- 14.5 oz cans of cut green beans, drained
1 1/2 cups french fried onions

Preheat oven to 350.
Lightly spray a 13x9 baking dish.
Saute onions and mushrooms in bacon drippings.
Add minced garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Stir in undiluted mushroom soup and add the crumbled bacon. Stir to combine.
Stir in milk and cheese until cheese is melted. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Fold in the green beans. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Top with fried onions.
Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.

Cranberry Salad

1- 6oz. pkg cherry jello
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 T grated orange peel
juice and pulp of 1 orange
1 large can crushed pineapple undrained
1 can of whole berry cranberry sauce
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Dissolve jello in boiling water. Add cranberry sauce to jello. Add peel, pulp and juice, pineapple, and pecans.
Place in refrigerator in a 9 x 12" dish until set.

Feel free to send us your own favorite recipe at info@mitchellsnursery.com

November chores

Gardening Chores for November

November brings most plants to dormancy and is the prime time to get things in order for the spring that will breathe new life back into our gardens and yards.
Most perennials are now dormant, so you can safely clean them up by removing all the dead or dying foliage or if they are totally brown, you can now cut them back to just above the ground.
 Do not cut your roses back until they have shed all of their leaves for the season. Do not cut back spring-flowering shrubs until after they bloom in the spring. If you cut them back now, they will not bloom in the spring. Your evergreen plants will not need a trim until just before new growth starts in the early spring, so they won't look butchered all winter. They need foliage to make food through photosynthesis this winter so they will not starve.
Now is the prime time for planting your trees and shrubs. The cooler temps and the much-needed rain has finally set the stage for a great planting season ahead. Plants may be planted any time now through winter as long as the ground isn't frozen. When it does freeze, it doesn't stay frozen long. To see our video on How to Plant a Tree CLICK HERE.
 Now that plants are going dormant, you will want to stop fertilizing. Plants will not be using the nutrients right now. You may resume fertilizing in the spring when they are coming out of dormancy.
If you planted a cold crop garden you may want to clean up your plantings by removing any drying or yellowing leaves and pull out any late growing weeds.
 Planting trees and shrubs? Right now is an ideal time. However, even if your plant is dormant you will still need to make sure that the soil around your new planting stays consistently moist.  You won't need to water quite as much as you would if the plant was still in its active growing stage but water is still very important to get your new planting acclimated to its new surroundings. Do not fertilize at this time, but a good planting mix containing manure will help get the plant off to a good start.
 You should see the fruits of your labors from your cold crops now as they should all be producing vegetables or nearing this stage.
 November brings clean up to the front of the chore list with newly deposited leaves and falling twigs and such being strewn about in the yard. I love the fresh air and exercise. If you haven't done so yet, mulching is another good chore for this time of year to protect your tender perennials or to get a jump start on weed prevention for the spring.
 No matter what your chore list consists of, be sure to take the time to take in all the sights and sounds that come with the season. Even the air takes on a different scent. Gardening is a year-round activity. If you enjoy it, it will never be a chore.

Poinsettia Season

Tis the Season for Color

In early August, we joyfully received the first of our poinsettia cuttings. Most of the plants are about two inches tall. We fill thousands of pots from 4" to  10" and hanging baskets. We pot each cutting carefully into its new home one at a time. None of our potting is done by machinery. Each and every poinsettia is handled with care by our skilled employees. This year we potted 10,000 poinsettias and 93 different varieties!
Each year we look forward to beginning this journey with a new round of plants as we all enjoy watching them grow. As the days get shorter and the dark nights get longer, that's when the magic starts to happen in the greenhouse. Each plant begins to show its own personality as the bracts begin to color. Within three months or so the greenhouse erupts in full color.
It is a sight to behold! If you have never been here during the poinsettia season, I would encourage you to stop by and see these plants in all their holiday splendor!  It is nothing that words could ever explain. A thousand pictures could never do it justice. This time of year must be seen with one's own eyes!
Each year we host our annual Poinsettia Open House where you will be welcomed in with celebration and the joyfulness of the season.

November is Epilepsy Awareness Month.

Hitting Close to home

Jim Mitchell knows a little about Epilepsy. As a toddler, he had a serious bout with encephalitis,
which is an inflammation of the brain caused by infection or an allergic reaction. Jim began to have scary feelings. He was diagnosed with epilepsy while in high school after suffering his first grand mall seizure. He had many smaller seizures in the years preceding but had never received an official diagnosis until this time. He had been treated with valium, Phenobarbitol, Mysoline, and Dilantin early on to try to control the seizures. There was very little known about seizures or their causes at that time.
During high school, Jim became passionate about music. He played trombone and joined the symphonic band and the marching band. As a junior, he began to sing in the chorus then later as

a senior he qualified for the ensemble.
After high school, Jim began work at a local hardware store where he worked for a year before starting college at NCSU to study horticulture in 1972. Jim's fondness for all things horticulture began at an early age when he grew cuttings to sell instead of selling lemonade. He grew azalea cuttings in coffee cans and in cans from the school cafeteria.
In 1974 while on an excursion in Ontario, Canada, Jim had a conversation that would change his life forever. He began to talk to a young lady with whom he had several classes but had never spoken to. By the end of this trip, he was ready to introduce her to his family. On July 12, 1975, Jim and Judy were married.
They both dreamed of owning their own plant-based business. As Jim's health became more of an issue, that dream became more real as Jim could no longer work for the NCDA as a pesticide inspector and Judy was having to spend more and more time staying close to Jim as his seizures became more frequent. So the business that started as a hobby quickly grew into a means of making ends meet.
In December of 1995, Jim was subjected to 24-hour monitoring for a week that provided doctors with the insight that they needed and they were able to find the problem. Scar tissue from the bout with encephalitis in his childhood had been the reason behind his near life long seizures. Jim and Judy discussed their options and agreed that surgery would be an acceptable option. In December 1995 he had brain surgery to have the scar tissue removed.  Jim had his last seizure in the spring of 1996. After a year of being seizure-free, Jim was able to get his driver's license back and even got a new red truck!
Jim continues to work closely with the Epilepsy Alliance and serves on the Epilepsy Medication Fund Board. The Epilepsy Medication Fund assists with the cost of medication for those who cannot afford their medications.
Jim makes himself available to speak to anyone who may have questions about epilepsy or even just needs to talk to someone who understands.
If you or someone you know suffers from epilepsy or could benefit from the available services that the Epilepsy Medication fund has to offer, please do not hesitate to contact Jim Mitchell.

Jim Mitchell
1088 W. Dalton Rd
King NC. 27021

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Mitchell's Nursery Annual Poinsettia Tour and Open House


Our annual poinsettia preview tour at 10 AM on Nov. 23, 2019, is fast approaching. The preview tour was designed to guide you through the growing process of our poinsettias from start to finish. Serving up some wonderful and fascinating information, it lasts about an hour or a bit less. It provides us all with some insight into the peculiar circumstances that must come together to make it possible for the poinsettias to show color. This is a great opportunity for a school or church group. In addition to the knowledge gained, you will have the opportunity to see the greenhouse in its full glory of holiday splendor and color. We encourage you to visit us during this season even if it's just to revel in the awe of the sea of color that is bursting forth in the greenhouse.

 Every year, Mitchell's Nursery grows thousands of poinsettias and every year as the days get shorter and the darkness stays longer, the greenhouse experiences some magic of sorts. This is the time that the poinsettias begin to change color to become the beautiful holiday flower we all know and love.
This is also the time that we encourage everyone to come to see the greenhouse at its best before we start sending out orders by the truckload, before the local churches come to pick up their poinsettias, and before the general public begins their buying frenzy.

Following shortly after the tour, just a few short weeks, we will open our doors on December 1, 2019, for our Annual Poinsettia Open House. It is around this time that we will be moving the highest volume of poinsettias for the season. Mitchell's Nursery participates in poinsettia trials every year. These trials were designed to survey the growing success of new varieties of poinsettias each year. Breeders will visit the greenhouse to see the progress of the new plants and determine the plant's future in the market. These trials give the public a chance to purchase varieties that are not yet available in other retail outlets. Mitchells is one of only two retail growers in the state of North Carolina to participate in these trials. These trial varieties don't even have official names yet, just numbers to identify them.
This is the ONLY Sunday of the year that the nursery is open. Ballots will be passed out so that you may cast your vote for your favorite poinsettias of the 2019 season. This event provides refreshments and lots of holiday smiles. Voting begins about a week before our Open House and continues until Dec. 7. You can vote for an old favorite or one of the new varieties. Your votes count in the trials to gauge public reaction to the new poinsettias. Depending on the entire result of the trial, this will determine if these varieties will make it to the general public or if they will undergo some subtle changes and reappear with a new number or maybe plans for that variety will be scrapped altogether. YOUR VOTE MATTERS! And if you purchase one of the trial plants, it is almost certain that you won't find anyone else that has that exact kind, unless they shop at Mitchell's too!

How to Get your Poinsettias to Re-bloom

 Poinsettias are a holiday favorite for decorating and gift-giving. Most people find that they are very seasonal though. However, you can keep a poinsettia alive and well. You can even get them to re-bloom. It just takes some know-how and willingness to provide it with what it needs when it needs it.

 After the holidays when the blooming has ceased, you need to limit the amount of water that it gets so that it can enter into dormancy until spring. Then, around March or April, you may resume watering and begin fertilizing.

 Prune back the plant to about 6 inches above the top of the container and re-pot if necessary. Poinsettias can be kept outside, after danger of frost has passed, in a bright area or they can be gradually acclimated to full sun during the summer. You may want to pinch out the tops of the plants to encourage more branching.

 With the return of fall and shorter days, you will need to move your poinsettia inside. You will begin to decrease water and fertilizer again around September and limit your poinsettia's light exposure to less than 12 hours. At this time you will need to place a cardboard box over your plant or place it in a closet for at least 12 hours of complete darkness. Any light source will affect the coloring of the bracts. Even something as subtle as a streetlight outside your window at night will delay the color of your poinsettia.

We have included a simplified version: 

Enjoy your new poinsettia for the holidays
Reduce watering and allow the plant to go dormant.
Prune back your poinsettia and begin to water and fertilize
Allow your poinsettia to get plenty of bright light. You may put your poinsettia outside in a protected area, to begin with, and then gradually move it to full sun if you wish so that it gets plenty of light. Continue to water regularly and fertilize. You may want to pinch the top out of the poinsettia to encourage more branching.
You will want to begin to shorten the light exposure for your plants. Bring them inside, place a cardboard box over them or put them into a closet at night and increase their dark time to 12 hours per night. Give them plenty of light in the day. Decrease watering just a bit until the bracts are fully colored. At this time you can increase its light exposure and resume normal regular watering but do not fertilize after the bracts begin to color.


We must emphasize once again, ANY light source, even as subtle as a night light or a candle, will affect the color of the poinsettia tremendously.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime.
Approximately 2,670 men will be diagnosed this year in the United States. Of that number 500 will die.

In 2019 268,600 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the U.S, as well as 62,930 cases of non-invasive breast cancer.

Let those numbers sink in for a minute

62% are diagnosed at a localized stage. The 5-year survival rate of these cases is 99%. This is a good number but only includes 62% of all cases.
This year alone it is estimated that over 41,000 women will die from breast cancer in the U.S.

On average, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States every 2 minutes.

Female breast cancer represents 15.2% of all new cancer cases in the U.S. each year.


The numbers are staggering
At any given gathering there is a good chance that someone in the group will be touched by this disease. Just look around you, it could be the person standing next to you. Or, it could be the person in the mirror.

I would like to personally encourage you to take a few moments of your time during the month of October each year to participate in at least one of the many fundraising opportunities in your area. It really does not take much time or money to make a difference.

If you haven't already, we encourage you to READ "Stone Strong"  this is a story of survival and the struggles that come with it. Our very own Lorie Stone has been through it and often offers support and encouragement for others in the same situation.

On October 19, 2019, there will be a fundraising event here at Mitchell's Nursery. For more information, you may call us at 336-983-4107, E-mail us at - info@mitchellsnursery.com or visit our website at www.mitchellsnursery.com