Ready, set, let's grow - Pratt County gardener sees many flowers in her future

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt Tribune
Ellen Mohler looks over her vast array of tomato plant varieties, hoping for warm weather that will bring customers to her greenhouse just north of Sawyer off U.S. Highway 281.

With rows and rows of more than 20 varieties of tomatoes, several different kinds of seed potatoes, cucumbers, peppers and melon starts, and even seedling sunflowers, Ellen Mohler at Mulberry Lane Greenhouse just north of Sawyer is ready for the weather to warm up for good so gardening can begin in earnest.

"I'm ready for the onslaught," Mohler said. "I don't expect it to be the same as last year when everyone wanted to grow their own vegetables, but I'm ready for those who want to get started in their own gardens."

The up-and-down weather patterns of this spring haven't been easy for the 4th generation farm family that has been providing customers with organically grown vegetable plants, shrubs and flowers, farm fresh eggs, local honey and even homemade jams and jellies (including sandplum) for several years now from their Pratt County location. Mohler has also been well-known in the area for home-baked goods, but said she may scale back that endeavor this year to concentrate on several new ideas she would like to put into motion.

"I always have ideas of what I want to do," she said. "This year I am most excited about starting a you-pick flower garden."

In her large commercial greenhouse, back behind the usual vegetable plants, petunias, pansies and clematis varieties, Mohler has flower starts for alstoemeries, forget-me-knots, Canterbury bells, dahlias, snapdragons, decorative grasses and more.

"This is actually something I've wanted to do for a long time," she said. "I'm cutting back on the baking this year and working on my backyard. I just love to come out here and enjoy the flowers, and I'm going to give others a chance to do that as well."

Ellen Mohler at Mulbery Lane Greenhouse near Sawyer is ready for warmer weather and hopes customers will be interested in gardening again this year.

Another gardening project always near and dear to Mohler's heart but getting just a little more attention this year than in years past is growing herbs.

"The herbs are just my favorite things," she said. "They are so useful and smell good year-round. I can come out here in the middle of winter and get what I need. Having a greenhouse really is a lot of fun, it can just get to be a lot of work too, but I always enjoy this."

Mohler's herb plant selections include parsley, basil and thyme, sage, stevia, lemon balm, pineapple sage, and several varieties of mint, just to name a few.

"I've got orange, chocolate, apple, ginger mint and other flavors here that are just amazing," she said. "You can use it in tea or salads, or just pick off the leaves and eat them - they are so good."

Ellen Mohler loves talking about herbs and flowers in her Mulberry Lane Greenhouse north of Sawyer in Pratt County.

Along with the usual garden fare of potatoes, tomatoes, onions, radishes, lettuce and cabbage, Mohler is also selling popcorn this year for her customers to try growing.

"You harvest it just like other corn," she said. "Then you dry it and shuck it off the cob. I've never tried this before, but I'm pretty sure I will be planting some here soon. It has to warm up soon."

When the Kansas weather does decide to stabilize with warmer air and soil, Mohler will be ready to get her plants set in the ground and start growing, but for now, her greenhouse is a great place to wait, and dream about better days ahead. And she is ready to help customers who feel the same pull as she does to get set with growing things for the spring season.

Mulberry Lane Greenhouse is located at 90315 SE 30th Ave., Sawyer, Kansas. Mohler is available at 620-770-1313 or on Facebook.

Mulberry Lane Greenhouse is bursting with blooms, seeds, plant starts and seed potatoes near Sawyer.
No matter what the weather is doing outside, inside Mulberry Lane Greenhouse in Pratt County, the flowers and young plants are green and growing in perfect soil/air temperature conditions.
Lemons are growing in Ellen Mohler's greenhouse, but these are not for sale.