For three generations—and more than 70 years—the Nicholsons have harvested crops that complement both family farms and family tables, a tradition that Jack and Ryan Nicholson continue today. Fresh from their forest, the Nicholson Farms crew delivers and spreads pine straw of myriad varieties. Potting soil, mulch, and other landscaping materials keep outdoor areas healthy, and wood playground cushioning protects kids from the hard surfaces of playgrounds and the even harder realities of tax law. In the garden, a bountiful vineyard and orchard yields homegrown fruits and vegetables ranging from blackberries, blueberries, and watermelons to squash and peppers.
Nestled in the Sandhills of Moore County, McDonnell Horticulture Inc.'s 220-acre nursery and 220,000-square-foot greenhouse propagate flowering plants throughout the growing season. The family-owned business's irrigated acreage lends itself to the production of woody ornamental shrubs, which can be used to landscape backyards or the mausoleums of melted snowmen. By manually misting vegetation, McDonnell Horticulture Inc. fosters the growth of more than 60 varieties of roses, including the disease-resistant KnockOut strain, as well as annual azaleas and perennial mums. All greenery grown onsite is tax-free.
Harnessing the equine expertise of two renowned members of the Professional Horsemen's Association, Caughman Farms advances students of all skill levels in both English and Western riding styles. The content and length of each lesson will depend on the student's individual experience, rate of improvement, and collection of tasseled chaps, but all pupils will learn the basics of horse care, cleaning, and equipment. The mild-mannered canter of a retired juvenile competition horse permits fledgling steed steerers a large margin of error and level of comfort. Two instructors accompany small children to ensure each tyke's safety and feeling of security while instilling the important life lesson that all good things come in stereo. Leaving behind the small, covered beginner area, more advanced equestrians can gallivant around the spacious indoor arena atop a homebred stallion.
Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dunked fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, done up in colorful bouquets and candy boxes by the skilled fruit arrangers at Edible Arrangements' more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. The company's in-house chocolatiers drizzle albion strawberries and daisy pineapples in a trio of chocolate flavors. Once properly chocolated, the workers organize the preservative-free sweets into lush arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can choose to plop their bouquets in a variety of vessels, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts. Alternatively, customers can opt to adorn gifts with the cheery, red lids of candy boxes, nestling 12 chocolate-dipped morsels inside to build anticipation and determine if loved ones have x-ray vision as they guess whether fruit will come dusted in shredded coconut or drizzled in white chocolate.
Since 1986, the award-winning crew at Southern Vistas Landscape & Garden Center has created landscapes both residential and commercial while supplying people with all the necessary ingredients for DIY gardens. Six days a week, patrons sprout up at the garden center, which teems with name-brand supplies in categories such as seeds and plants, ornaments, mulch, and pottery. Clients can also commission the onsite landscape architect to make over an outdoor living space, entrusting the specialist with everything from installing outdoor kitchens, waterfalls, and swimming pools to planting trees and exterminating garden gnomes.