Someone recently asked me, “What’s the best part of working in a greenhouse?”
This is an easy question to answer. There are a number of reasons. First and foremost, watching the plants grow is extremely gratifying for any nature or plant lover. Watching new lotus pads reaching the top gets you wet, pun intended. Our work is primarily as caretakers to ensure the plants stay healthy and show productive growth. The longer you work with these plants, the more attuned you become with the growth of each plant. You can watch the tips develop new growth literally everyday in our high sun environment. You get to watch how plants develop emersed and immersed, and how the colors, and leaf structure change accordingly.
So that’s a win win. At the new greenhouse, we finally have the capacity to do planted aquariums(aquaria) on a large scale. Trying out different systems to create planted basins for annual summer crops has been a fun task. We have been making our own aquarium substrates. Dustin has been showing us how to make his famous Dustin’s dirt. We have been trying differing quantities of any soil, gravel, sand that we can get our hands on. We even are working some of the soil around the greenhouse just to see how the plants will grow!
I also have a great appreciation for dragonflies. I recently heard one at the greenhouse bonking against the wall, larger than a hummingbird. That’s not an exaggeration. They’re gorgeous and fascinating, but more importantly, they do a shockingly good job of suppressing the local mosquito population.
Receiving super positive feedback from orders that I know I packed is also extremely gratifying. Whether it was me just giving hooking them up because Im feeling saucy, or the fact that they were just impressed by the quality of the plants we have been producing, I know that I helped make that happen.
Also, it is not just because it is a greenhouse! Dustin’s Fishtanks is definitely the most unique job I’ve had. Normally greenhouses aren’t filled with thousands of gallons in tanks and basins. I’ve never had the freedom of creativity that I have had at DFT, anywhere else, and that is to be valued. I’ve never had the variety of random oddjobs and experiments anywhere else. The people are awesome, everyone has their own quality and brings something unique to the table. It is our small community which has a strange, but charming dynamic.