Stewarts Office Plants

We supply many businesses across the South, from Sussex and Surrey, through Hampshire and Dorset to Wiltshire and Somerset. For more information about the services we offer visit our home page, or contact us here. In this blog you'll find news, interesting snippets, stories and pictures of our staff's adventures out on the road.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

"This blog is brought to you by the colour green"

Excuse me channelling Sesame Street briefly; couldn't think of a better title for a post which concerns the fact that the last 12 months seems to have been the year of bright green pots.

Last April I posted a blog about the first of this rash of lime green installations, in which I confessed to having form for liking the colour. Since then we've had a rush of orders for lime green pots.

More interesting to me, as a self-confessed colour code geek - I've admitted my problem, which is the first step on the road to recovery - is that it isn't the same lime green each time. In fact in the last year we've been supplied no less than four very similar colours by our favourite local manufacturer. Can you tell the difference?

First is our most popular - default, if you like - Lime Green: RAL 6018, shown off here in an installation we were particularly proud of in Bournemouth last year. Dunno why the pot on the left looks shorter than the rest; they say the camera never lies. Mine does apparently.

Second, a different client but in the same building in Bournemouth had an old BS4800 colour code: 12E53 (I said I was a paint nerd!). Not a complete coincidence, as the latter client looked at the former's plant pots and said "I want green ones but a bit lighter."

We also have samples of this lovely little curvy desktop trough (lighter still than the above); the colour of which is a match of another pot maker's green, which has no code. This is how far gone I am that that fact really bugs me! The little curvy bowl next to it is RAL 6018 like the first picture.

So far I've sold none of these lovely little troughs (only 50cm long x 20cm high) - who will be first - and I've only sold one curvy bowl (20 x 20cm). Shame, because they are lovely, and like all our GRP planters they are very high quality. The hard bit with GRP (i.e. fibreglass) is getting these really sharp corners right; when I look at stuff by some of the manufacturers I don't use, I can see the difference.

Finally, and most recently, we supplied these even lighter green pots to a community centre in Verwood, Dorset. This is a copy of a paint manufacturer's (who may or may not advertise themselves with a sheepdog...) colour called 'Lime Zest' which was on several feature walls in the building.

Because they are made to order each time, the supplier of Stewarts' pots can match any colour you wish. Whether it's the colour on your walls or the corporate colour in your logos, we can do it. Yes I know: I said this in the post above, but a lot of our competitors tend to favour a range of pots that come in a very limited range of colours - we don't. We can do metallic, BS, RAL and Pantone colours (on which note, if anyone knows where I can get a Pantone colour chart that doesn't cost the earth, do let me know!), and any other colour you can supply us with a picture or sample of. There really is no limit.

So which of these greens do you prefer, dear reader? Why not email me and tell me? Or send me a picture of your office and ask me what colour pots I'd recommend.


Thursday, August 02, 2012

A big project we completed recently

I have been meaning to blog about this large installation that we did in April since, erm, April, but that's when our busy period began. Hence the sudden rash of posts now we've quietened down again (in the so-called busy Olympic fortnight...).

An existing client in Bournemouth, whom we've had the interior and exterior maintenance contract with since the building opened about twenty years ago, asked us to completely refurbish/replace the plants that they had. Replacing all the specimen pots was easy, though planting them all up at once led to a very crowded greenhouse as the picture shows. 
What made this job complicated was the eight large 'quad' beds in the atrium. These are a complex job to maintain as they are on the first and third floors above reception, the top floor being 60 feet up with no safety rail. Therefore this is one of the jobs which we use safety harnesses and fall arresters for, as I previously talked about. But if maintenance is a challenge, completely replanting all eight was even worse. As a result, the whole install took a whopping 14 man days!

The picture above shows a detail of the planting we went for - very simple arrangement of massed Aglaonemas with a group of Schefflera Amatas in the corner. To give you an idea of the logistics, these beds consumed 40 bags of compost just to freshen the soil up, 480 of the Aglaonemas and 24 of the Scheffleras, all of which had to come up on trolleys in a lift.

Then the picture to the right shows the view looking down from the top level to the reception below. I really don't like heights so you can imagine how much I enjoyed this. 
The rest of the install was quite straightforward. Most of the pots were these Cylinders - very popular at the moment - in the company's corporate blue. This is a good time to remind my readers that as we mainly use locally-sourced hand made pots, we can supply any BS, RAL or Pantone colour you want us to, in fact we can match any colour you want. If you order 5+ pots this costs no more than any other normal colour.    
Incidentally this installation is where the ever cheerful Derek was eating his lunch when I snapped his farewell picture I posted earlier.