At the beginning of the year, I didn’t even know who “we” was and that a proper company with numerous employees was really going to be formed. I knew I had a busy fall 2020/winter 2021 designing and several landscaping jobs ready to go, mainly through the startup called Thrivelot. I knew we had one piece in order which was the plants, since here at Treasure Lake we were hosting Cincinnati Permaculture Institute’s Growing Value Nursery. And then it catapulted and was a great way to actually launch further businesses, fund developments on the homestead, and help pay for the labor to maintain it all. But the “who” was the hardest part at first but quickly became the easy part cause a great crew was assembled. And how did we retain them? We paid well.
The edible landscaping projects were diverse and hinged off of my agro- ecology style of permaculture and having installation experience in the past throughout the world and at my homestead. Beyond that I had really only done one small outside installation in 2020 in in the tri-state of Cincinnati, Ohio, Northern Kentucky, and Southeast Indiana. Thus the business was built around the fact that we have a 60-acre homestead headquarters owned by my family here at Treasure Lake, a V8 Cargo van I already owned, and the TreeYo brand /LLC legal structure. You need certain things to begin, first clients, then you need tools and ways to get them there. You learn who to order mulch from, who to buy more plants from, who to source the this and that’s. But we do supply our own wood posts and compost, which really helps as well as some plants like comfrey.
We took on projects big and small and I give tons of credit to the crew. We did small urban projects, large urban projects, suburban lots, larger rural properties, and an out-of-town, congress funded Permaculture project at VA Hospital in Huntington, West Virginia. We also worked with the municipality of Colerain in Cincinnati at their parks, which launched our goat scaping service. We worked with food forests, hedgerows, windbreaks, earthworks, paver and stone walls, herb gardens, orchards, high density apple orchard while constantly educating clients. We also sold lots of plants through our edible landscaping and through the nursery directly. We planted a lot of natives and a lot of edibles and those that cross both of those. Basically, we created a lot of Harvest and Habitat, which is foreshadowing to more to come. We did a lot last year and look forward to more this year!