If you stopped in recently, you may have come upon a pallet of boxes being eagerly opened by staff at the front counter, amid exclamations of “OOOH, Look at THIS one!” After recycling piles of packing materials, the end result is a delightful array of new mugs unwrapped and stocked throughout the tea bar for your shopping and gift-giving pleasure. Some are specifically designed with a slot to hold a tea bag, others individually shaped and glazed for the art and pottery lover, and still more with whimsical words to start your day with a smile. Fill them with a sample of your favorite bulk tea, a bundle of truffles, or ask one of our florists to use one in a custom bouquet.
Spring is not only in the air these days, it’s also on the calendar. We have once again passed into the realm of shorter nights and longer days and I guess the weather also got the memo.
Buds are bursting open and traditional favorite spring bloomers are already in flower or just about to be. Forsythia, Hellebore, Pieris, and Bleeding Hearts are showing color and Janet brought in a few Flowering Quince varieties that should be in bloom in just a few more minutes.
The nice weather also brings questions about our annual Plants by the Flat Sale. The details are just getting finished up and I’ll send along that information in about a week. Until then…
Peace and Happy Spring,
Sometimes we order things in the shop without paying very close attention to the dimensional details. This leads to some wacky surprises as we unwrap mysterious packages. This week’s happy accident is a rather larger than expected metal arrow. Our witty employees have come up with several ways this could be displayed (or wielded). You may decide if it is something you could use, perhaps to give Cupid some help, guide teenagers to the laundry room, or encourage a new graduate to follow his or her dreams.
You may not have heard of it on this side of the country, but February 28th is FLORAL DESIGN DAY (at least it is in Massachusetts). In 1995, Governor William F. Weld proclaimed in part…
WHEREAS Flowers and their design have been appreciated and enjoyed throughout the world since prehistoric times and…
WHEREAS Floral design is a unique art form, utilizing natural media and applying such variables as line, balance, color, foam density, aprons with or without embroidered logos, structure, symbolism, and Merlin Olsen and…
WHEREAS Through floral design, individuals are able to express many emotions including love, sympathy, friendship and hope, and…
Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera until most everyone in the crowd had nodded off.
So just how does one take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance? Here are a few of my suggestions:
Visit some flower shops. Compare and contrast the styles of floral designs and the materials used. How are they similar? How are they different? Write a 900 word essay, double spaced, on the difference between designs in independently owned flower shops and those seen in Hallmark movies.
Check out any flower shop web site other than Incahoots.biz. Add hundreds of dollars of items to the shopping cart and then abandon it
Go to your local museum. Look for paintings containing flowers and floral art. Make remarks to anyone present about how your 4 year old preschooler could do better.
Send flowers to someone you love. Send flowers to someone you may not be close to. Give some flowers to your boss. Give some flowers to the boss of someone you may not be close to. Or not.
Take your local florist to lunch. Make sure you bring back a doggie bag with enough for everyone in the shop.
Buy some books with pictures of Floral Art. Color in them.
Try your hand at making a few floral designs yourself. Find an old Pepsi cooler. Secure a 5-year triple net lease and open your own shop.
Grab the ad in ShopLocal Magazine and come get a Free Flower Bouquet at Incahoots.
Well, at least one of those may be a good idea.
Need a gift for a precious wee one, a promotion to big brother or a grandma-to-be? Wander through our shop and you will find a corner in the back dedicated to just this. Whether a special blankie or the perfect stuffed animal is called for, the only difficulty will be in choosing which one.
Sometimes we overhear customers agonizing over gift selections and because we love to be helpful – here are a few examples of how to make the most of your purchasing process:
Instead of asking, “Who really needs a chipmunk shaped door-stop?” Ask, “Who doesn’t need an adorable forest friend cast in iron, and how many should I get for my own home?”
Instead of questioning, “Where would they put that beautiful glass ball?” Wonder, “How many hours of calming meditative peace will this unique piece of art inspire?”
Instead of debating, “Which tin of tea should I choose?” Discover, “How many different samples of bulk tea can I fit in this fun basket?”
Instead of worrying, “Is it silly to buy this ridiculously soft, huggable giraffe?” Ponder, “Would this giraffe rather go home with the squishy hedgehog, floppy bunny, or fluffy Pekingese?”
And as always, if you are stuck on a question, our savvy staff is happy to assist you!
Here’s an idea for a fun morning outing: The McMinnville Community Garden is hosting an Open House this Saturday, July 28th from 9:00 a.m. until noon.
You can get information on raised bed and organic gardening, and take a guided tour of the 230 raised beds in the garden. Starting at 10:00 a.m., OSU Master Gardeners will be offering a plant clinic, there will be beverages and snacks, and beginning at 10:30 a.m. Janet (of Incahoots fame) will be demonstrating ideas for how to arrange all those fresh summer flowers.
The garden is located at 325 NE Burnett Road in McMinnville. Admission and parking are free and there will also be a silent auction of priceless gardening tool & art.
I hope you’re planning on entering our Fairy Garden Contest this year which is coming up in just about two weeks.
But did you know the Yamhill County Fair also has a Fairy Garden contest? It’s conveniently scheduled for the week before the Incahoots contest so you have an extra opportunity to show off your creativity (and maybe win a prize). We have a stack of Exhibitor Handbooks with all the contest details (such as, entries need to be dropped off next Tuesday, July 31st!), so stop by and pick one up soon.
I feel like I don’t give our shrubs enough love, so this week’s plant of the week is the Buddhist Pine! Originating from China and Japan, this evergreen shrub has long, dark, leathery leaves. It will generally grow straight up with little side branching unless it is actively pruned. Seeing as this plant is relatively easy to care for, it can also be easily trained to become a bonsai! Just a general warning, these plants are considered poisonous to cats, dogs and babies so be wary when bringing these plants into your household.
The Buddhist pine requires bright, indirect light. If the plant isn’t getting enough light, the lower leaves will become large and elongated. These guys prefer moist, but not soggy soil, so allow the top two inches of the soil to dry before watering again. These plants thrive in typically colder settings so keeping them in between 50-75 degrees is ideal. Like a lot of the plants we have covered, Buddhist pines like some humidity so if your house is typically dry, place them on a tray with water and pebbles in it. Make sure the plant is on top of the pebbles and not in the water. This plant will need to be groomed to maintain any kind of shape. pruning back new growth on the vertical stem will promote new growth and a fuller, bushier plant.
If you’ve been over to our website recently, you’ll have noticed a “Tea of the Week” series of informative articles that Katie has been writing. Since June is National Iced Tea Month, I thought you might be interested in one of the best teas to try over ice. Here’s her article:
Snow Monkey Plum is a delicious black tea that makes a beautiful brew. While some people have remarked that this tea has a taste similar to bubblegum, the tea is predominantly plum flavored with no tastes of monkey (or snow).
This tasty smooth-bodied black tea makes a delicious iced beverage which is perfect for the hotter weather ahead. If you would like to try Snow Monkey Plum, you can come on down to Incahoots and we would be happy to brew you a pot for just $2.50, or you can buy it in bulk for $14 per pound!