Mark Burch is our head grower, co-owner, and leader. Mark is the quintessential grower. He has an undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia Forestry School in Wildlife Biology and did his graduate work at the University of Tennessee in Ornithology. Mark brings this quiet, intense scientific approach to his work at the nursery. He maintains all production schedules, custom mixes all of our soils, is an expert with seeds, a good student and a good teacher. He is an expert in the true sense of the word. Debra Taylor completed her degrees in
botany and horticulture from the University of Georgia. She is also an owner of the nursery with her husband Mark. She coordinates our annual and perennial plant programs. While not working in the nursery, Debra tries to stay one step ahead of all of the administrative and paper work. Bill Howard has worked with us at Riverdale for several years now. Bill has a degree in Ornamental Horticulture from the University of Tennessee. He has experience growing a wide range of plants through his work at the University Trial Gardens. Bill takes responsibility for the full nursery being watered every day. He is great with the customers. Being responsible for seeing to each plant’s water needs, we can always count on him to know where we can find the plants we are looking
for….Bill is also a very nice guy. Our production crew, Lucina, Lidia, Benjamin and Arland – How can we ever give enough credit to our production crew? We refer to them affectionately as the Cavalry. They are knowledgeable, efficient, dependable, and the most pleasant people to work with imaginable. They pick the seedlings, transplant constantly, weed, prune, water, fertilize, load trucks, cook and clean. One of the most important things they do is to
give us the confidence that we really can, working together, get completed everything we need to do to get the plants to the customers. And the handmade tamales – what else do we have to say? Vicki Baumgartner is our sales and customer representative. She brings to the nursery her years of experience as a gardener and owner of a retail garden shop. Vicki stays as excited about the plants as the growers. She has a good eye for design and is knowledgeable about the large variety of plants from her own gardening experience. She provides the customers with the best possible service and information and wants each customer to have the best selection of plants for their projects to insure success. She coordinates between the customers, the growers, the production crew and the delivery people to make sure we are providing the best costumer service possible. If we do make an error on your order – she will be glad to bake you a pie – you may hope we mess up from time to time. Doug Brown, our driver, has been with us for years. He can drive any truck any where and when he arrives still be just as pleasant and easy going as when he pulled out of the nursery’s driveway. He has good plant knowledge and great customer service skills. He is always early, never runs into/over things with the truck and gets the orders off the truck faithfully and accurately. We have customers tell us all the time what a great guy he is and we agree with them one hundred percent.
We cannot talk about our crews without mentioning our crew of animals. Being the farm at the end a dead end road we always have a large family of stray dogs and cats in addition to our dairy goats. The dogs are the security patrol / welcoming committee, certain that everyone that comes to visit has come specifically to see and pet them. Any of you who have visited could not have missed their attentions. The dairy goats are great pets and also give the gift of kids in the spring, and therefore milk. The addition of kids in the spring especially tops all farm activity in entertainment value. The animals provide great companionship, work cheap and round out the farm scene as only animals can do.