Shipping spring around the US from Toledo - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

Shipping spring from Toledo

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According to the calendar tomorrow is spring but a lot of us aren't feeling it! However, there are some sure signs of it around the region and here's something that may surprise you. Even though we haven't felt it just yet, a lot of local greenhouses are shipping spring from our region to other states. 

While the winds were blowing and the snow was piling up outside, spring had already sprung inside local greenhouses. At the Schmidt Brothers in Swanton, they have about 15 acres of greenhouse space. They're wholesale growers, meaning they sell their products to stores and other greenhouses. Bob Schmidt says the first shipment of the season was loaded up Tuesday bound for South Carolina, "We ship as far south as the Carolinas and we go out east to states like Pennsylvania."

Schmidt says it's a complex process getting the plants from the greenhouse to your garden, "There's a lot of work involved from sowing the seeds to growing them and transplanting them and then putting them in the greenhouse."

In case you are still not convinced that spring starts tomorrow the pansies here at Schmidt Brothers are proof. A lot of them will be loaded on to semis in the next few weeks and shipped to stores in Ohio and Pennsylvania and that includes some stores here in the Toledo area, "We just need to get rid of the snow and get a few days of half way decent weather and people can start planting pansies."

Here at Tom Strain and Sons the flowers are blooming too. although they're a bit behind schedule. Ken Stewart is one of the growers, "I'd have to say we are 2-3 weeks behind where we were last year." But he says the delay won't affect the overall numbers, "Despite the adversity we've dealt with from the environmental factors this year, we will still have the same wonderful crop we've had for generations." Stewart says it has been a lot more expensive to heat the greenhouses this year, "The heating cost has been tremendous because we've had to keep the circulation going with fans and vents and we're having to keep the heat on more than a normal season."

Soon things will start to warm up outside and we'll be able to enjoy all this beauty in our gardens instead of the greenhouses. Of course the temperature in the greenhouses varies but the average overnight temperature is about 60 degrees. Greenhouse owners say the sun we've had this winter has helped a lot. Most of the greenhouses are year round operations. In fact, during the summer they will be growing mums and poinsettias.

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