Winter Letter from Craig – 2014

Let’s take us back to last December.  The anticipation of a bleak winter forecast was actually superseded by the reality of a historic bone-chilling end to the 2013 calendar year.  We were given a pass this early winter with a tease of a repeat, and then, the Californian rains, so needed and still not enough to counter the years-long drought, neutralized the oncoming polar vortex.  In a nutshell: continent-wide meteorology is now up close and personal in our everyday lives!  This almost global look into our weather has elevated our interests as much as world politics.  I just read a preamble to a popular magazine on extremes of our Chicago winters and could relate; extremes year round seem to be becoming the norm! Upon reflection of past years in the garden and life in general, the pace of things seems to be speeding up with each passing year.  The anticipated “time off” that winter brings for the garden and the office looks like it is not going to happen this season.  We have many retooling and reorganization projects happening department-wide and some construction projects underway at the nursery.  We have expanded our nursery product sales to a select few event and boutique-style, like-minded, retail venues in the metro area.  Our design department under an assembled and dedicated team has work stretching along the North Shore, Wisconsin, Iowa and Ohio.  A varied collection of design scale and style, the new projects list grows each month; a real testament to our company’s niche in the market place that has grown so disparate over the past few years. When anticipating the start of our Company’s 32nd year, I always think of the assembly of people, personalities, and properties I have met and still see so frequently throughout the year.  This familiar and dedicated collection of people and places fuels my resolve as President of CBLD.  I celebrate having multiple 20-30 year veteran employees who still lead the cause.  Our first full project from start to finish (32 years ago now) is still owned by the same family in Winnetka, and we still have the pleasure of maintaining it!  Maturity is a good thing for me.  It helps me learn from the past and to realize there is less time in the future to make more beauty and improvements to gardens in our area.  I pledge for CBLD’s 2015 season to be just as omnipresent, improved, and inspirational as a company that strives to provide the best in new and traditional gardening endeavors in the Midwest.  And as always, we are made in America! Here’s to the new extremes, whatever and whenever may come!   Sincerely, CB