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Waco nursery bounces back after being hit hard by freeze, pandemic

Posted at 12:39 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-23 13:39:14-04

WACO, TX — While many plants are bouncing back after being buried by snow and ice, some of them are toast.

Local nurseries that rely on healthy plants to make their living are feeling the impact.

Photosynthesis is kicking into high gear with row after row of green leaves and flowers in full bloom.

Birds are chirping. Vibrant petals are dancing in the breeze, kissed by the morning sun. Spring has sprung.

"It just feels good to be outside and to see the butterflies and the bees and the flowers blooming."

This is how things are supposed to look during the first week of spring, inside a greenhouse at Colors of Texas in Waco, a wholesaler, shipping plants to nurseries all over the state and supplying the everyday green thumb.

"You know our number one goal is, we want our plants to look gorgeous for them because you're not going to come back if you put it in and it just dies," Co-owner Renee Davis told 25 News.

Colors of Texas turned dark when the historic snow mother nature dumped on Central Texas in February crippled everything.

"And we came in and everything was collapsed and then the freeze hit and then with the rolling electrical outages. We did lose a considerable amount of plants so it doesn't take much for us to lose a lot."

25 shade structures over the plants fell victim to the storm's pressure along with many plants but they can't just buy more.

There's a shortage of seeds now.

"People don't realize all of this is ordered a year in advance," Davis said.

The weather is just the latest setback. Davis saw a dip in demand each time Coronavirus cases spiked. Despite all that, Colors of Texas is still kickin'.

"But we've come out of it and we've got repairs going. Plants are planted and the vegetables are ready so, we're hanging in there," Davis said.

Plant seedlings by hand, not using any growth-regulating chemicals, and plants that are adapted to Central Texas are part of their secret to success, nearly 30 years in.

"It's just simply if you grow it in the area you're going to plant it, you're already going to be ahead of the game on that," Davis said.

Her best advice to novice gardeners, don't over or underwater and make sure you plant at the right time, in the right spot.

Ask the expert at your nursery before you buy.

"We want Texas beautiful. We want Waco beautiful and that means a lot of flowers or bees and butterflies need it tremendously. They need us to plant flowers," Davis said.

A move that will help both the economy and your garden grow. "And it's relaxing," Davis said.

Colors of Texas has six open positions. So, if you're looking for work in a socially distanced environment, look them up online.

They've got that can-do attitude like so many small businesses that have gone through so much lately but are still able to say, "We're Open."