MBAs and Small Specialty Nurseries

Robin Hansen
Wed, 18 Aug 2010 21:25:19 PDT
I do think Justin has some valid points re MBAs.  However, with few exceptions, my nursery has run in the black. (Last year I declared a loss which is the first time in a long time.)  I review prices periodically, because I believe that if I'm in business, then I shouldn't be running a charity.  I do have the advantage that my overhead is almost nil in terms of utilities, property taxes, etc. due to the fact that I have to live somewhere, so why not out in the country, and to the mild climate and abundant water where I am.  Not everyone is so blessed.

Well, yes, I have a day job, for any number of reasons.  But the nursery keeps me out of mischief, and if and when the time comes that it doesn't justify its existence financially, then it will be closed.

I greatly appreciate Jim's contributions regarding the state of the nursery industry.  I think all of us as members of PBS have a vested interest in this industry, and it's best to pay attention.  Oregon has suffered sharp losses of nursery income in 2009, and this is a state where most of the nurseries are small specialty businesses.  I suspect that as time goes on the "buy local" campaign will apply to the nursery industry to some degree.  I believe that this is one key to survival for small nurseries like mine.

I was talking to a friend of my sister's.  In order to buy out their family interest in the dairy they had owned and operated for years, they went organic.  Diane said it has been 8 years and it's going well - i.e. they are making a decent living.  Given the ever more limited resources in the world, I suspect we'll go back to being more regionalized in some areas of consumer goods.  As far as I'm concerned, that is no bad thing.

Robin Hansen
Hansen Nursery
Cyclamen Specialist

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