Florida Guide > Other Florida
West Orange Nurseries
Florida has much more than theme parks. For those who are interested in gardening and plants it is worth spending a few hours at West Orange Nurseries on Avalon Road. Heading west on 192 Avalon Road is on the right near to US27. Passing many interesting homes and countryside it is different to the normal routes. Roughly 15 minute drive along the county road you will come upon the entrance can’t be missed with all the hanging baskets and palm trees, the nurseries are on your right, there is amply parking and an array of plants all shapes and sizes and an array of colour to browse. The Nurseries has only been open to the public over the last 5 years.
Plant life in Florida is very different to back home. I arrived with a list of plants that I thought would look appealing for the back of the pool screen at our villa. I was in my element walking around viewing the different sizes textures and colours of the plants and shrubs. A young lady approached offering assistance, after explaining to her and showing her some pictures of plants I had in mind and a rough plan, she went on to explain that some of these needed to be watered more often than others and since the property was in Polk county that watering was only allowed once a week and that they may not survive. (I was Impressed with her honesty and knowledge of the irrigation system in different counties) She walked around with me showed me a variety of plants that would complement each other and not need too much pruning or looking after. Explaining there growth rates over a number of years which was important as I did not want to impose on the villas either side of me which ones would suit the rear of the property giving my guests some privacy and a nice outlook.
Leaving me to wander around the nurseries to make up my own mind on which plants and shrubs I preferred and which were within my budget as it would have been so easy to get carried away with the visa card trying to remember that I was on my own and would have transport and plant them myself. They do offer a delivery service if needed. I finally decided on two pigmy palms with two shoots each that were 3 foot high having the information that they would not grow to more than 7-8 foot within 6 years. To surround the palm 6 Croton Evergreen plants were chosen that have a maximum height of 3ft when fully grown there leaves turn a yellow and red colour depending on how much sun they receive and were planted in full sun or partly shade. Lilyturf an evergreen grass for ground cover to fill in the gaps with a mature size of 1-2 ft. )
The young lady returned with a trolley to help me and choose the most appealing plants I did go slightly over budget (well what women doesn’t) and bought a Sago Palm, as I could not resist it.
Having paid for my plants the staff lined the boot and rear seat of the car with cardboard before loading my plants into the car (glad I had a convertible). With information and compost recommended by the staff I was on my way home for a few hours digging.
I would mark the Nurseries 10 out of 10 for their help, knowledge and the time they spent with me as a customer listening and understanding what I wanted and putting me on the right path. (Excuse the pun) I now look forward to returning to see how my garden has matured over the last year. Another visit is a must.
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Page added on: 16 August 2006
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