HohmanGarden is kicking off its second season with an open house Saturday and Sunday.
Owner Dan Hohman said the business, 3700 S. CR 591, a mile east of New Riegel, opened last spring to local customers and he was pleased with the number of people who supported his endeavor.
"It went well," he said. "It's going to take a few years to get established. I enjoyed talking to everybody who came in."
PHOTO BY VICKI JOHNSON
Tom Hohman inspects flowering plants in the greenhouse at Hohm•an•Garden.
During conversations, he said he discovered many people were from Carey, Tiffin and, of course, New Riegel.
"That seemed to be the demographic," he said.
Hohman said he is drawing on 14 years of experience as he begins his own business.
For more information, call (419) 595-2506 or e-mail Dan.firstname.lastname@example.org.
He graduated from Ohio State University's Agricultural Technical Institute, Wooster, in 1996 with a degree in greenhouse management and production.
"I've always enjoyed growing plants and flowers and doing gardening," he said.
Since shortly after college, he's been working at Doebel's Flowers, Clyde. He said he still works at Doebel's full time and plans to remain there as he starts his own business part time.
"Doebel's has been helpful," he said. "I've learned a lot. A lot of hand-on experience."
He said he hopes his business will grow into full-time work for him.
"I don't want to get too large, just enough where I could run it myself and make a living," he said.
Hohman said he bought the 30-foot by 48-foot greenhouse several years before building it.
"It's been a work in progress," he said. "The idea started probably six or seven years ago when I actually got the greenhouse, but it actually never transpired until two or three years ago when I started constructing it."
The greenhouse offers flowers, bedding plants, vegetable plants, herbs, small fruit plants such as raspberries, perennials and hanging baskets.
In addition, Hohman said he's trying to set HohmanGarden apart from similar businesses by offering items not found everywhere. He attended the Independent Garden Center trade show through the off season to find new ideas.
"I was looking to get into the garden decor and I knew the IGC show in Chicago had items you don't see around here as readily," he said. "I feel I have a lot of different and unique stuff. I have peanut plants, cranberry plants and a lot of stuff you don't see other places.
"We have a black petunia, the only one on the market," he added.
He has a line of garden ornaments with a "cute insect" theme, as well as rock ornaments and fire pots. He said fire pots are set on a patio or outdoor living area.
"You put citronella oil inside and burn it while sitting outside," he said.
Open house hours are the same as weekend hours, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday.
He is offering free plants and door prizes.
"We have gift certificates," he said. "There's a lot of good things for Mother's Day gifts."
Weekday hours are 6:30-8:30 p.m. Monday-Friday after he gets home from his full-time job.