Guglielmo Marconi successfully transmits the first radio wave across the English Channel. On the other side of the pond, in Missouri, Nixa Hardware & Seed Co is founded. The year is 1899. Since that auspicious beginning more than a century ago, the hardware store company has grown to "7 acres of savings," and throughout its history, its expansive wholesale collection of plants, fertilizers, soils, and tools has equipped avid gardeners and professional farmers throughout southwest Missouri. Today, nursery workers and plant experts shepherd visitors through pallets of specially concocted livestock feed and bags of carefully formulated fertilizer, while horticulturalists on Nixa's research farm develop tried-and-true plant and grass varieties proven to thrive in local climates. Though the staff is proud of its bulk garden seeds and mulch, a selection of go-karts and generators proves that the company has evolved since its 19th-century origins. The team even purveys renewable-energy biomass furnaces that can keep costs low and household operations sustainable.
Like burying yourself neck-deep in lush planting soil, visits to the bustling agricultural center can evoke a strong, heartwarming connection with the land, with friendly staff members working hand-in-hand with clients to pick out the perfect seed, beekeeping gear, newly hatched chicks, or lawn-care equipment.