My love affair with plants all started when I was 7. My little brother, Matthew, was born in 1976 with a congenital heart defect. My sister, Keely and my parents adored him! With no family nearby, our neighbors took us in whenever Matthew had surgery or appointments at UNC Chapel Hill. They showered us with food, cakes, flowers and plants. I quickly noticed that long after the food was gone, the plants remained.
Plants became my therapy, my escape. Their beauty spoke to me.
When I was young, I visited greenhouses and studied about plants. As a broke college student at Appalachian State University, I lovingly picked up broken pieces of Wandering Jew from the sidewalk of the grocery store and made hanging baskets from them. I met a lovely lady who cared for incredible plants in Macado's in Boone where I waited tables. The seeds of Green Scenes were planted in my mind.
I met a cute guy one summer day on King Street and his name was Jim. I guess you could call it love at first sight! After graduation, we moved back to Greensboro after opening Cheeseburger Cheeseburger in Blowing Rock one summer, where I filled the patios with all manner of blooming plants.
After taking an Assistant Manager job with Lone Star Steakhouse in 1990, I finally had my own apartment and my days off were filled with planting and traveling. I recall coming home late one night from work only to find my blooming planter at the front door missing. In it's place was a note, "I am in the doghouse and need to give this to my wife!"
Jim asked me to marry him and we were married in Linville N.C. near Grandfather Mountain in the fall of 1993. After buying our home, I said, "When I retire, I want to build a greenhouse." Jim said, " Let's build one now!" And we have always helped each other follow our dreams since.
Kari, Matthew and Keely growing up