I don’t usually talk much in here about our company’s trading activity but today we have something to celebrate.
When we set this business up, getting on for 5 years ago, we decided that we would have a consultancy arm and a trading arm – because as well as writing and advising on e-business topics we wanted to do some as well.
So we (mainly my business partner to be honest) started selling plants on line as www.plants4presents.co.uk . This business took off quite well and after a couple of years trading, we had got to the point where we needed to look for some premises. We actually needed about 5000 square feet to store and pack the plants. And it had to be within 15 minutes of a railway station with a good connection into London so as not to impact the consultancy side of the business.
So – it turned out that the only way to get what we wanted was to take on a derelict nursery – with 2 acres of glasshouse. So 2 years ago – on 13th September we emigrated to Sussex.
Gulp. What are we going to do with this lot we thought? There’s no point heating them because that’s what finished off the last incumbents. What can we grow in a cold house. I know – organic vegetables. So we have been following the tortuous route of becoming certified organic growers. We’ve been inspected, received tonnes of chicken poo, steadily reclaimed about ¾ of the acreage, got soaked on farmers markets, gone cold calling in person and now we have an additional business which is employing local staff and producing good quality veg to local shops.
Because the glasshouses had been unused for years, the Soil Association backdated the start of our conversion period to the day we bought the place. So today – We are Organic – the land is organic, plants we raise are organic, our perennial flowers are organic and anything we plant from today will be organic too. So look out for some organic Pak Choi around the end of October with leaves to follow.
So – we always said we wanted to earn a living more in tune with the environment – and blow me it’s happened. If you want to know a little bit more you can find us at www.fletchingglasshouses.co.uk or www.squidoo.com/theglasshouses