Mike Haughton established his native plant nursery, Neerim Native Flora, in 2000. The nursery, now run by son Stephen, continues to grow locally-native plants for revegetation and landscaping projects throughout the region.
Whist running Neerim Native Flora, Mike struggled to find affordable plant labeling for his range of plants. This was because...
· Label producers require orders for stock descriptive labels to be in relatively large minimum quantities (eg. 250 labels per species), which does not necessarily suit the needs of plant growers who might only grow a small number of a particular plant.
· Label producers do not hold a comprehensive range of stock labels, particularly for those “more obscure” plants, which are not well known nor extensively grown in cultivation. Paying a set-up charge for a new label to be created did not appeal to Mike (nor to his accountant !), given that Mike grew a large number of these more obscure plants.
It is not uncommon for growers, when faced with these issues, to handwrite a tag - unfortunately, this limits the information available to a customer (as it is often only the name of the plant which is written). This can mean that with the very limited information provided, the plant’s attributes are not fully understood and it may not be planted in the most-appropriate location, nor properly maintained.
Mike’s answer to this problem was to purchase the necessary equipment to create his own labels. In time, other nurseries contacted Mike for access to his labels. A back operation in 2008 (nursery work is hard on the back) meant that, in compliance with his surgeon’s instructions to “go easy on that back”, Mike decided to hang up his secateurs and establish Tags For Pots.