May 22, 2012

Shopping cart issues resolved (I think!)

The shopping cart on my availability page has been glitchy... maybe it's the post office shipping estimator (they keep fiddling with things) or--sunspots? ? ;)  At any rate, it was seriously underestimating shipping charges, more than I can absorb.  I *think* I have a fix in place, that forces it to calculate correctly; test orders came out looking good and I hope that is the last time I have to muck with that for a long time!  I'd rather be weeding than taming shopping cart code.

And I hate weeding! ;)

So, if your order's been queued, with a request for additional shipping charges, now you know why, and I am sorry for the snafu.

May 6, 2012

New plants for 2012: mints

I have several new mints this season, and am really pleased with three of them; this variegated peppermint is a much nicer strain than the one I had years ago, with bolder coloration and a richer, deeper smell.  There's almost a hint of chocolate to it; not a big surprise I suppose as that is a Mentha piperita variety as well.

The English Mint!!  (Really needs the capitals and exclamation points; it's so very vivid.)  This spearmint relative is bold, sweet, clean, crisp, and green.  The foliage is large and bright green to match; it's my favorite mint while I am transplanting.

Mojito mint--a slight fruity undertone, subtly citrusy, and a nice minty flavor.  I can see why this is the mint used in the Cuban drink, rather than something as assertive as English mint; this one works well with others instead of demanding center stage.  The fruity notes make you want to come back for more.  This one is also featured in a new soap this season; I may also make some mojito mint jelly... wonder how rum stands up to canning?

Mail order catalog update

The shopping cart/plant availability list is installed and working!  Still probably have some tinkering to do with the code for font and layout (why yes, I am a constant tinkerer! :P) and more photos to take and upload, but it's online, it's searchable, and reflects what is available for shipment NOW, vs what might really be sold out, or now moved to a larger size.  I do miss the print catalog, being a person of the book, but not using all that paper is enough reason in itself to stop printing it.  Being able to add color photos and expanded descriptions is something of a dream come true, as well.  The shipping module calculates options for you, so you can tailor time in shipping/cost to your liking; if the estimate is too much off (still getting size averages tweaked for potted items) I'll notify you of any difference.  So far this has not been necessary, I'm happy to say.

Shopping Cart/availability page for Paradise Gardens Rare Plant Nursery

February 2, 2012

Catalog changes coming

This year's catalog will be out later this month..... in .pdf form, on the nursery site for downloading.  I've done a papersaver .pdf each year for a while now, and this year, unless specifically requested, there won't be a print version.  Subscribers/those who have ordered recently will get a free copy mailed to them upon request, but otherwise there will be a charge for the paper version.  This will give me another week to transplant, write tags, and take care of seedlings instead of printing, folding, stickering, sealing, stapling and the like, and the printer can go back to its intended use (plant tags).  Nobody, not even me, wants to try to read tags I write, and while my wrist is much improved after the Great Board Fence Collapse Incident, I'm saving my fingers for transplanting.

The soap site shopping cart is working well enough (translation: I've got the training wheels off) that I will be installing a streamlined version of a cart on the Availability pages of the nursery site, which will only feature up to date inventory, thus streamlining that part of the process as well as saving more trees. 

Subscribers and recent orderers will receive a postcard notification reflecting the change, soon; and I'll post the link to the finished catalog when it is uploaded.