Cover art for podcast Women Who Went for It! Podcast

Women Who Went for It! Podcast

65 EpisodesProduced by Sara McArdleWebsite

Women Who Went for It! is a bi-weekly podcast, hosted by Certified Whole Person Coach and Career Change Agent, Sara McArdle. The show features inspiring chats with successful industry changers who share how they found the clarity, courage and momentum to step into a deeper vocation and a life of mea… read more

42:39

Episode 019: From Latin Teacher to Plant Nursery Owner with Lucile Whitman

  In this episode, Sara talks with Lucile Whitman about her journey from teaching Latin in prep school to purchasing an orchard and starting a plant nursery. Lucile taught Latin for 11 years before moving to Salem, Oregon. When she wasn't able to find a job teaching Latin or Greek in Salem, she bought and revived a broken-down filbert, or hazelnut tree, orchard in 1980. Whitman Farms began as a one-woman show and mostly for fun. However, Lucile got sidetracked and became enamored with unusual ornamental trees and started planting any weird and wonderful woody plants she came across. By the end of the decade, the nursery was no longer just a hobby, no longer one-woman and Lucile had become known as a producer of hard-to-find trees and shrubs.   Sara and Lucile discuss:

  • How they got connected through Sharon Roemmel from Episode 018
  • Lucile teaching Latin and Greek
  • Moving to Salem, Oregon and not being able to find a job teaching either language
  • Lucile growing up on a farm
  • Her limited botanical knowledge
  • Her husband suggesting they look for a home in the country
  • Lucile finding an old filbert (hazelnut) orchard
  • The farm next door having the kind of equipment she needed to clear the land
  • Lucile not wanting to grow filberts because they need to be sprayed
  • The farm next door becoming a nursery
  • Lucile trying (unsuccessfully) to sell the neighbor's nursery stock in return for help harvesting her filberts
  • Connecting with Salem's forester, who introduced her to all kinds of new and interesting trees
  • Gathering unusual seeds and starting to plant them on her property
  • Growing into a nursery that was known for its uncommon nursery stock
  • Realizing how hard it is to sell relatively unknown plants
  • Financial challenges in the nursery business
  • Why leaving teaching was right for her
  • What's been especially wonderful about her farming life
  • Her mom introducing her to yoga in 1975
  • A synchronicity that changed her life
  • How she learned to care for so many different kinds of plants
  • Trying her hand at organic farming
  • Choosing plants that are easy to grow in her area
  • How easy it is for her to learn new things and talk to people
  • Her honest approach to sales
  • The supportive nature between nurseries in Oregon
  • Her family's response to her starting her own business
  • Her idyllic childhood on her grandparents' hay farm
  • The one piece of advice Lucile would offer to someone who wants to start a nursery
  • ...and more!
Lucile's full bio: Lucile Whitman grew up in the Atlanta area. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania and went on to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, where she earned her Ph.D. in Latin and Greek. She taught Latin for 11 years before following her then-husband to practice nephrology in Salem, Oregon. When she wasn't able to find a job teaching Latin or Greek in Salem, she bought and revived a broken-down filbert, or hazelnut tree, orchard in 1980. Whitman Farms began as a one-woman show and mostly for fun. However, Lucile got sidetracked and became enamored with unusual ornamental trees and started planting any weird and wonderful woody plants she came across. By the end of the decade, the nursery was no longer just a hobby, no longer one-woman and Lucile had become known as a producer of hard-to-find trees and shrubs.   Connect with Lucile: Web: http://www.whitmanfarms.com  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Whitman-Farms-253458547577/ 

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