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Friday, October 6, 2017

Saturday Morning Market is back Sat. Oct 7, 2017

Greetings all, after a very long summer, and hurricanes and lots of challenges, this time of year brings us to the start of the new Market Season, and Saturday Morning Market, downtown St. Pete will start it's 15th season tomorrow, Sat. Oct. 7th.

The Market resumes back at Al Lang Field Parking Lot off of 1st avenue south and 1st street and you can find Armstrong Nursery on the very back East row of the market layout.

Market hours are 9am,-2pm.

A full contingent of vendors (140 plus) will be waiting for our treasured customers, including the popular Worden Farms Organic Produce vendors. 

We are excited to start another season and have all sorts of wonderful plants for your home gardens, patios, homes and offices, and,

wonderful news, we have our popular Cedar Birdhouses back in stock !

Of course, we will have our usual huge selection of Mini Succulents and Cacti.

We continue to be able to bring a great selection of rare, Asian grafted Desert Rose, many with very impressive varigation and special colors, such as the rare Yellow Desert Rose.

We have some beauties for full sun out in the garden such as the popular Pink Mandevilla and Purple Sapphire Showers.

We have some great ground covers for sun or shade, tons of great shade plants, and herbs such as Lavender and Oregano (don't worry, Basil will be available in a few weeks!).

We hope you come on down to see us at Market as the Armstrong Nursery team will be there in full force to help you find the perfect plant of your dreams !

Note: Many of you know that usually this first weekend of October, we also participate in the Tropiflora Fall Plant festival in Sarasota. Unfortunately Tropiflora experienced a lot of damage to their greenhouses from Hurricane Irma, but they are busily rebuilding and the show has been rescheduled for the end of this month.

Here's the scoop:

Saturday Morning Market, Downtown St. Pete
Al Lang Field Parking lot  for details and directions

Entry to the market is free and you will find hundreds of vendors with great Produce, Plants, Artisans and Foods galore.

Market hours 9am-2pm every Saturday through the end of May, 2018.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Clearwater Market this weekend-Post Irma

Greetings to all our loyal followers !

We hope this finds you all safe and well after a very trying week with Hurricane Irma.

I will post more about the storm and it's affect on us, but for now, want to get the word out about  an event we will be at this weekend and we need your support!

On Saturday, we will be at Pierce Street Market, on the waterfront in downtown Clearwater.   Postponed from last weekend, this is their official last "summer market" day.

The market will run from 9am-2pm (extended hours) and there will be hundreds of vendors there that need your support.   Many of us were already challenged by weather earlier this month and so the till is getting empty and we need to get it recharged, to help us all keep on going into the Fall season.

The market is located on the waterfront, right in front of the Clearwater Marina building. There is plenty of free parking and free entrance to market. You will find lots of Food, Artisans and Plants. The weather forecast is good to go for the day !

We protected all our precious mini succulents and cacti, as well as our mini tropicals and they are all looking gorgeous and healthy. 

Next week, I will recap our experiences with Hurricane Wilma and happenings as we head into the new Fall season starting in October with Markets and Botanical shows.

For all of you that have experienced, no power, little sleep and tons of stress this week, we encourage you to get out, get some fresh air, have fun at market, and take the steps that will get us all into the "new normal"

Thank you for your support, we are blessed.

Annie & Mitch

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Hurricane Irma-we survived, we need help !

Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017

We finally got Internet access back after getting through Hurricane Irma so I am able to do a quick post.

First, we are fine ! Got power, TV and Internet access so we are blessed. We did stay here in St. Pete to "ride it out" because we had family, friends and plant stock to protect and support.

The home nursery is a mess ! Our home nursery in NE St. Pete where we have been keeping all our current plant stock, got it's share of bumps and bruises. We lost some personal favorite trees as far as the Almond Tree, Brazilian Tree Ferns, Yellow Elder etc, and got some fencing down and loads of debris.

Our biggest challenge with losing these trees (still hoping to save the Almond), is that we lost a ton of shade space for regular stock as well as our private stock, so it's hard to find a place to re-stage everything while we do clean up.

Prior to the storm, we loaded up our plant trailer with all our mini succulents and cacti, in addition, all our personal favorites, as well as rare stuff.  Got it all unloaded and restaged as best we could today,under a tent on our driveway and will continue to clean up our garden areas.

We DO have 2 markets to do this coming weekend - Saturday, Pierce Street Market at Clearwater, and Sunday, Safety Harbor Market on the Main - and we plan to be able to do both of them, so will prepare for them as much as we can while we do clean up.

We know we are luckier than many people that had much more challenging last 3 days, and much more damage than we had, so we are counting our blessings and just plan to move on.

So, for our followers in the St. Pete area, we know that you probably have a lot of your own stuff to clean up and attend to, but, if you happen to have some time to come help us with our clean up, we will be happy to barter your time, for future credit on great plant purchases once we get into our Fall planting season.

What do we need ?
We have a great friend coming tomorrow (Wed) to chainsaw down the broken limbs of the Almond Tree, and we are hoping we can "right" her up and see if she will survive. She fell on several fence pieces and posts that we need to get back into place.

We have a lot of small debris, like everybody, that needs to be raked and swept up into lawn bags for disposal.

The lawn garden needs to be mowed and edged (not that big of a space) and raked of debris.

In general, we just need some helping hands ! We need to re-stage some plants, water, trim, rake and sweep.

We will provide lots of cold drinks and give out lots of hugs !

If you are interested and have the time, any help is appreciated.  Just call Annie and let us know if you can come, even if it's just for an hour or two :)   727-742-9265

Thank you so much for supporting us and helping us to keep moving forward after a time that was hard for so many of us.

Annie & Mitch

Friday, September 1, 2017

September 2017 Happenings and Markets

Greetings and Happy September all !

Summer Market at Williams Park is over now, but Armstrong Nursery will return to the regular Sat. Morning Market, downtown St. Pete Al Lang Stadium site on Sat. Oct. 7th.

You can keep up with the  happenings of the St. Pete Market as it begins their 15th season at:

This month, Armstrong Nursery will be doing some small markets while continuing  to get ready for the new Fall season.

In stock, there is still  tons of glorious Mini Succulents and Cacti, as well as Passion Vines, Exotic Tropicals for shade, baby Big Leaf Tibouchina, Red-cone ginger, Alocasias and Calatheas, and some of our newest additions, Hong Kong Orchid & Rainbow Eucalyptus Trees.

Armstrong Nursery started at the Safety Harbor Market on the Main last weekend, and will be back this coming Sunday, for a special Labor Day weekend Market there, when they will have all sorts of fun things to do for customers.

The Market at Safety Harbor is in a lovely park, downtown Safety Harbor right by the beloved Gazebo at John Wilson Park, 401 Main Street. The Market hours are 10am-3pm, every Sunday.

Check it out at:


Next Saturday, Sept. 9th, Armstrong Nursery will be at the last Summer Market day at Pierce Street Market, downtown Clearwater, which is located on their beautiful waterfront.

Pierce Street Market hours are 9am-2pm. There's huge presence of Fresh Produce, ready-to-eat and take-out foods, Gourmet cheeses and breads and treats, and dozens of local artisans.

Check it out at

On Thursday, Sept. 28th, Armstrong Nursery will be set up at one of the newest events to pop up in St. Pete, the St. Pete Side Lot, located at 2133 2nd Avenue South, right next to door to 3 Daughters Brewing.

This evening market event runs 6 - 10 pm, and it is known to be one of the most popular and busiest evening markets around and Armstrong Nursery is excited to be a part of it.

Check it out at:

To plant a garden, is to believe in tomorrow -
Audry Hepburn

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Summer Markets continue for us at Safety Harbor market !

Greetings all, and thanks for your patience, the website has been technically challenged for a few weeks, but we are back up and running, and.....

This summer has flown by and can you believe in just 6 short weeks, we will be in full swing for our Fall season at shows at markets.

First, some good news, and some greater news -

This Saturday, Aug. 26th will be the last day of the Williams Park Summer Market, and although the forecast calls for some early showers, it looks like we can be rockin and rolling by 9am.  The Good News is, this has been a wonderful summer market, despite lots of weather challenges. We have been so blessed by a great turnout of customers every week. The Summer Market has kept us, and many of our fellow market vendor buddies, in business and still thriving during the summer heat. Thank you so much for your support.

Note: Okay, so last day of Summer Market this weekend, and then Saturday Morning Market, downtown St. Pete, takes a break for the month of September.  Many people ask why? It was decided years ago that the market take a break for the month of September in order for the Market management to a) take a much needed break themselves, b) gives them time to plan for the new season, and c) many vendors want a break too, to recoup, re-organize and re-energize for a new season.

That being said, nope, we are NOT taking a break ha ! And that's the Greater news.   In fact, starting this weekend, on Sunday, Aug. 27th, and every Sunday in September, you can find Armstrong Nursery at the Sunday Market on the Main, Safety Harbor, FL., and we hope to continue with it, throughout the Fall.

Years ago, we did the Safety Harbor Thursday Morning Market, and loved the community.   They decided to move the Market to a Sunday, under new management and have done a great job of enlarging the market parameter and adding more vendors, so it's a great little community market, around the Gazebo, on Main Street. Sunday Market hours are 10am-3pm and we hope to see you there !

The pic above is from our set up at the Tropiflora Nursery Fall sale last years, and in 6 weeks, the reopening of the 15th season of Saturday Morning Market, and the Tropiflora Sale, both on the weekend of Oct. 7 & 8th, officially start our Fall Market season.

Stay tuned for details about everything as we finish a full summer season, and start a new Fall season, with Markets and Shows at St. Pete, Sarasota, Mt. Dora, and Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo.

Also, for our north county customers, we will be participating in the last Summer Market at Pierce Street Market, downtown Clearwater (on the water) on Sat. Sept. 9th !

So much to do, so much to plan, so many markets and shows to get ready for, we can't wait !!!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Medinilla Orchid is Magnificent ! July 28, 2017

Greetings all, we are about half way through summer here in Tampa Bay and with all this rain we have been getting, the nursery garden continues to explode with color and growth.  Many of our customers have been asking for House Plants and/or plants that thrive in bright shady areas outdoors and we have some great options :

This time of year, the beautiful Medinilla Orchid (Medinilla myriantha), aka Malaysian Orchid plant just explodes with color.

With deep, thick green leaves, this produces the most interesting starts very small and very light pink, then continues to grow larger and the color turns to dark pink. The bloom looks like little clusters of pink grapes !

Loving warmth and humidity, and liking to be on the dry side, it works great in a bright shady area outdoors, and can be grown as a house plant too.

Typically only growing 3-4 feet, it's a great plant for a small area that won't take over other foliage.

Another option is the White Bird of Paradise - Most of you know them from seeing very large specimens in gardens, but it actually will do quite well, kept on the small size, in containers, indoors and out.

With the lovely tropical foliage, White Birds are very easy to maintain and require very little care once they are  nestled in their containers.  Indoors, a little dusting of the leaves helps once in while. The baby Birds (1 gallon) are very popular with our student customers for their dorms, and for many customers for inside their homes and offices.

Red Anthuriums are another excellent choice for House and office plants.

The species we carry is the Dwarf Holland Anthurium, only getting about 12 inches high, and requiring very little water.  The blooms look very waxy and keep their color for months, and it is always putting up new shoots.

We have a great selection of Tillandsias (Air Plants) right now that will fit right into your home, office and porches and Air plants work great placed in Shells, which provides support but of course, does not hold water:

Air Plants do need a good watering once a week but other than that, they do not need soil or fancy pots etc in order to display and enjoy them.

At Market, we do have a nice selection of shells, and of course, most of us have shells collected over the years, so it's a very economical way to have plants and not spend a fortune !

And of course, we can't forget our favorite mini plants, that is, Mini Succulents and Cacti that are so low maintenance, and again, needing very little water and you can display them a thousand different ways (Google "Succulents" and you will see what I mean !)

Our summer Market days at Williams Park continue to be a bit challenging with rain, but it's never shut us down completely, so we are there, rain or shine, for our loyal customers.

Summer Market will continue every Saturday, from 9am-1pm till the end of August, so come on down and check it out if you haven't been there, and for those who frequent the Market, we and all our vendor friends are very appreciative of your support !

Williams Park Summer Market
Williams Park is bordered by 3rd and 4th streets north, between 1st and 2nd avenue north.  Plenty of parking in surrounding areas, either on-street or nearby parking garage. Every week you will find fresh fruit and vegetables, Organic eggs and Milk, Yummy treats to eat on-site as well as take home, and of course, Hey Plant Man Armstrong Nursery, located on the Northeast side of the park.

Every Saturday, 9am,-1pm, rain or shine !
Summer Market runs through to the end of August.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Air Plants - Easy Gardening ! July 20 2017

Greetings all and July is whizzing by us fast.

We know it's hot out there and most people are not in the mood to be planting major things right now, so we have two great alternatives !

 We have back in stock some beautiful specimens of various species of Air Plants (aka Tillandsias), and no digging of holes is required !

Most of you know of the native Air Plants you may see up in your trees - they are cool, but not all that colorful.

That's why we concentrate on different types from Central and South America - all very interesting in their own way, all shapes and size, and very, very colorful.

 Air Plants are so cool because you can do almost anything with them, because they do not require soil, or fancy pots, or digging in the hot summer days.

Many of our customers use them in Shells, attach to driftwood, put in water-less containers - there is thousand different ways to display them.

A good watering or heavy spritzing once a week does them good, and they will continue to thrill you as the Mother plants will put out babies who keep doing the job of keeping the plant going, and providing new color.

Another alternative is our favorites, mini succulents and cacti, and we are back from a hunting trip with hundreds of new, fresh specimens, and we always look to have the uncommonly found ones.

Whether you like them spiky, yet soft....

or even spikier....

or soft and colorful.....

We have loads of possibilities for you to add to existing succulent and cactus gardens/pots, or leave them in their little pots and line your windowsills for a dramatic little piece of plant heaven in your homes or offices.

We had great no-rain day at Market last weekend, and amazing crowds, and it looks to be the same this Saturday so come on out and stop by at Williams Park Saturday Morning Market and check out our little Garden of Eden at Market, and don't forget you can get your fresh produce, fantastic cheeses, and breads, great things to eat there, and things to take home !

And don't forget, if you can't make Market day, feel free to contact us to set up an appointment in St. Pete during the week for your plant buying needs.

Thank you for continuing to support our little nursery and supporting the local market scene !

Annie & Mitch
July 20, 2017