My James Warren realtor nightmare began when a friend referred James to me. This friend knew I was selling a commercial property, but did not know James was only licensed to sell residential property.
James Warren did not offer this information to me, even after I informed him that I was selling a fully licensed and certified plant nursery.
During the 10 month listing, I received numerous complaints from would-be buyers that James was:
2) Would not return calls
3) Inattentive to their needs
Following up on these complaints, I had a difficult time getting a return call from James. Once I finally did, I found his attitude to be poisonous and spiteful.
The property finally sold 10 months after listing with James, but only after another realtor brought the buyer.
Overall, this experience has been a nightmare. SO bad that I would not recommend James Warren (or even Coldwell Banker) to anyone.
To this day, I have never met James Warren.
– He did not walk the property with me to learn it’s selling features.
– He did not meet with me to inform of any marketing plan, or course of action.
– Never saw him show the property to anyone.
– He did not even attend the closing.
This is a video of our 2.5 acre Plant Nursery For Sale in Fort Myers Florida. The idea behind this video was to give folks a feel for what the layout of the Plant Nursery is like. Also, we wanted to demonstrate just how large the Plant Nursery really is.
Plant Nursery For Sale
Starting out on Shawnee Road, we shot the video as we rode along the entire frontage of the property. One of the first things people notice is that the entire 2.5 acres is fenced and gated. Turning left into the gate, you see the 150 foot long paved driveway. This paved driveway is ideal for off-loading deliveries and on-loading customer orders.
Lots Of Room
To the side of the driveway is a huge open area. This area is ideal for expansion as the entire field is plumbed, valved, and wired for irrigation. There is also plenty of room for off-street customer parking. Next, we see the 350 square foot pole barn, great for keeping the sun and rain off of trucks, tractors, supplies, and other farm equipment.
Next to the pole barn is a 128 square foot screen house. Great for growing the ultimate organic vegetable garden. The completely screened in grow house means the bugs can not get in, eliminating the need for pest controlling sprays.
Further down, you will see row after row of beautiful, lush, palm trees! Queen Palms, Royal Palms, Arecas Palms, Pygmy Data Palms, the list goes on and on.
Our 1500 square foot irrigation pergola is quite a sight. Full of every kind of tropical palm you can imagine. Our young palm trees are all grown right here, from seed. All of our palms are grown here in Southwest Florida. Locally grown means these palms are aclimated to our soil, and water reducing the chance of transplant shock.
Finally, in the back of the property is the composting area. Palm fronds, plant trimmings, and other organics are processed into 100% organic compost, and re-used to feed the palm trees and tropical plants. Also in the back is a large shipping container used to securly store farm supplies and building materials. There is also a 128 square foot tool shed, and even a 29 foot fifth wheel RV that is included with the business.
This Plant Nursery Gallery is a collection of photos taken at Shawnee Palm Tree Farm in Fort Myers, Florida. The photos were taken by Michael McKee, and Lee Baker and highlight the beauty of the nursery’s many plants, and palm trees. Most of these pictures were taken in the Spring, and Summer of 2016, the best time of year for growing plants in Southwest Florida.
Plant Nursery Gallery
Plant Nursery Gallery
This Plant Nursery Gallery is a collection of photos taken at Shawnee Palm Tree Farm in Fort Myers, Florida. The photos were taken by Michael McKee, and Lee Baker and highlight the beauty of the nursery's many plants, and palm trees. Most of these pictures were taken in the Spring, and Summer of 2016, the best time of year for growing plants in Southwest Florida.
We grow pesticide free vegetables in our 128 square foot screen house, and Kale is just one of the yummy vegetables that grow very well here in Southwest Florida.
Photo 2 – Kohlrabi Growing Like A Weed At Shawnee Palm Tree Farm
Kohlrabi is a vegetable that was not on my radar at all. Somehow Lee acquired the seeds and up came this strange looking food that we ended up loving!
Photo 3 – Mexican Petunias For Sale In Fort Myers Florida
Mexican Petunias happily growing under our 1500 square foot irrigation pergola. These attractive plants flower daily throughout the year.
Photo 4 – Mexican Petunias Love It Here!
These Mexican Petunias grow so well here in Southwest Florida that some consider them to be an invasive species. I disagree with this as they are easy to control.
Photo 5 – Mexican Petunias Surround Large Royal Palm
One great looking application of Mexican Petunias is to plant them at the base of a larger plant, such as a Royal Palm Tree. This will help prevent irrigation water from evaporating and fill gaps in your landscape.
Photo 6 – Non-Invasive Clumping Bamboo
Many homeowners are afraid of planting bamboo in their yards. This fear is unfounded as Clumping Bamboo is non-invasive and will not run into your neighbor’s property.
Photo 7 – Non-Invasive Bamboo Is Cold Tolerant
Thankfully, the temperature in Southwest Florida rarely sinks below freezing. But just in case, there are many varieties of Clumping Bamboo that will tolerate the occasional cold snap.
Photo 8 – The Cure For Cold Fronts
When the occasional cold front makes the outdoor temperature plummet into the low 50’s, we do not fret. We simply fire-up the nursery’s fire pit and toast marshmallows!
Photo 9 – Yes, We Have Bananas!
Banana plants are tropical plants that are not only beautiful to look at, but also make yummy fruit!
Photo 10 – Bamboo Zen Garden With Water Features
The Zen Garden was built by Lee Baker in his spare time. This corner of the nursery was empty when we first purchased it. Now it sports two water features, various tropical plants, and 3 different types of bamboo.
Photo 11 – Christmas Lights In Palm Trees
This is Christmas, Southwest Florida style! What better place to string up your Christmas lights that a lush tropical Queen Palm? Gilligan never had it so good.
Photo 12 – Easter Lilies In Full Bloom
Every April, the Easter Lilies come out of hiding and explode into full bloom. These were planted by a former owner. Imagine our surprise that first year!
Photo 13 – Firebush Is Native To Florida
One of my favorite native Florida plants is the Firebush. This colorful plant alters it’s color many times during the year. Leaves turn from green to orange, and every color in between. Flowers will vary from red to yellow.
The Queen Palm Row is finally finished, and is already home to over 100 Queen Palm Trees.
Queen Palm Row
Baby Queen Palms Outgrow Pergola
When Lee planted the young Queen Palm sprouts 2 years ago they were only 6 inches tall. During the first year in the irrigation pergola, huge fronds shot up 3 feet into the sky. These first fronds acted like solar panels, collecting energy to help the young trees build root structure.
The Queen Palms surprised us again this summer when they launched numerous fronds over 8 feet into the air. This last growth spurt caused the shade cloth roof of the irrigation pergola to bulge upward. Looking like a circus tent, it was easy to see the trees wanted out.
We Need Another Tree Row
It was clear we needed to build another palm tree row. We had built the Royal Palm Tree row exactly one year earlier. This first palm tree row has worked out so well, we copied the design exactly.
A high tension coated steel wire was run along the top of 4 x 4 posts, placed 5 feet above ground. This is needed to prevent the queen palms from falling over in the wind. Each palm tree is loosely tied to this wire using nylon mesh strapping.
Wood Pallets Again?
Ideally, we would have used plastic pallets. Plastic pallets do not rot when constantly exposed to water and dirt. However, this is an emergency. The trees will not wait.
Plastic pallets are not readily available, so we were forced to use wood pallets again. In an earlier experiment, the wood pallets we placed the potted plants on turned into sawdust after only one year. Learning from these past mistakes, we did things differently.
We placed the 14 wood pallets on top of brick pavers so they are not sitting on the damp ground. Next, I nailed heavy gauge tar paper onto the top surface of each pallet. The tar paper should help keep the wood pallets dry, even with wet dirt filled pots on top. This is our first time trying this method, so we are keeping our fingers crossed.
Christmas morning was moving day! After some irrigation system modification, over 100 of the tallest Queen Palms were moved to their new home. Once trimmed and tied, each tree was fitted with it’s own drip irrigation line.
At last, the Queen Palms can now grow as tall as they want.
This Palm Tree Farm Gallery page was put together to give perspective buyers some idea of all that the Shawnee Palm Tree Farm in Fort Myers, Florida has to offer. This is no easy task, as our “little” 2.42 acre farm is just full of fun and exciting areas to be explored.
Palm Tree Farm Gallery
This is the home page gallery containing all of the photos used in the slider on the top of the Shawnee Palm Tree Farm home page.
The first photo is an areal view of the entire palm tree farm. Taken in the spring of 2016 by the Lee County Property Appraisers Office, Fort Myers, Florida.
Palm Tree Row 1
Photo 2 is a nice photo of palm tree row number one. This shot was taken facing East while standing in the center of the property.
The Green Screen House
Photo 3 shows our 128 square foot green screen house in full bloom! Many of the vegetables we eat are grown right here on the farm. The entire screen house is sealed off from plant eating bugs, so no need to spray our food with poisons.
Photo 4 shows off our 350 square foot pole barn. Located in the middle of the property (Next to the screen house) this spacious structure helps keep the sun and rain off of anything under it.
Palm Tree Rows 6 and 7
Photo 5 shows the Royal and Queen Palms in Rows 6 and 7. The Royal Palms in row 7 are only a few years old, and look quite small next to their 20 something foot tall older brothers and sisters in row 6!
Front of the Farm
Photo 6 shows the front of the farm, the area closest to Shawnee Road. Facing West, you can see this area is open and ready for expansion. What you can not see is the extensive underground irrigation system running through-out the entire farm.
Photos 7, 8, and 9 feature our 1500 square foot irrigation pergola. This area is used to shade the young palm trees from excessive sun, and also to provide water from the automated overhead sprinkler system.
Palm Tree Rows 8 thru 11
Photo 10 is a picture of palm tree rows 8 thru 11. These rows are reserved for palm trees between 2 to 4 years old. As the younger trees become old enough to leave the pergola, they are placed here, where they can be tied to prevent tipping over.
Palm Tree Row 13
Photo 11 is of the last North/South running row, lucky number 13. This row hold some of the oldest and tallest Royal Palm Trees on the farm. The tallest one measuring well over 30 feet tall!
Photo 13 is of our 128 square foot storage and tool shed. This wood framed structure, with its large, multi-layered shelves, holds a surprising amount of farm tools and supplies than the outside would indicate.
Rear Gate and Storage Container
Photo 14 shows both a 40 foot steel storage container, and the rear gate. The 320 square foot steel storage container is water tight, and offers secure storage for anything you can fit within its two large swing doors.
Bamboo Garden with Water Features
Photo 15 is a picture of our relaxation area… the bamboo garden! The Bamboo Garden has two separate water features where several cascades of water run down the rock walls of each pond. 4 different types of Bamboo shoot up over 30 feet into the air, providing shade and privacy.
The Royal Palm Row is complete! It’s been years in the making, but we finally developed the ultimate palm tree growing system.
In the beginning, we simply placed the small potted palms on the bare ground. This was fine until the rains came in June, quickly followed by the weeds. Ever try weeding between 1000 plastic pots? Not fun, and it takes forever.
The next attempt involved nursery cloth. Nursery cloth is similar to tarp material, only it allows water to flow through it. It also allows ants to tunnel through it. The ants pile the dirt on top of the nursery cloth, the weeds grow in the dirt, and we’re back to the original problem.
The next idea involved wood pallets. These are basically free, and would raise the pots off the ground. We drenched 10 pallets with wood preservative, stapled nursery cloth to one side, and crossed our fingers. At first this seemed like it was going to work, but as time went by dirt and water from the pots rotted the wood. After only one year the pallets were literally crumbling.
Surfing Craigslist for farming supplies, I stumbled onto the answer: Plastic Pallets! The pallets in this ad didn’t have any holes for weeds to grow through. They were also UV stable, heavy duty, and best of all – would not rot. That weekend I hitched up the trailer, drove to Fort Lauderdale, and bought 30 of them! And not a moment too soon.
Two years ago we had rescued 86 baby Royal Palms from the landscaper’s weed whacker. They were potted and placed in a shaded irrigation pergola were they could grow in peace. And grow they did! After only two years the Royal Palms were growing through the top of the 8 foot high structure, sending spears through the shade cloth. It was time for a move.
We already had an irrigated row ready to go thanks to MattyB! Only a couple custom mods were needed to make it perfect for the fast growing Royals. When planted in the ground, Royal Palm roots spread out wide before they grow tall. While in pots, the roots can not spread out, so they are very top-heavy. Because of this, they need to be tied to something to keep from being knocked over by the wind.
We sunk 4 x 4’s into the ground every 20 feet and ran a plastic coated wire along the top. This provides the needed support, and at the perfect height, 5 feet above the ground.
After placing 20 of the plastic pallets in the row, the 86 Royal Palms were moved out of the pergola to their new home. Each tree was plumbed with it’s own spot spitter, a water metering device used to deliver the right amount of water to each tree without overwatering. Next, we tied all 86 royal palms to the coated wire using nylon duct strap. This inexpensive strapping is used by the HVAC industry to hang flex duct from wood roof trusses.
With that last step, the new Royal Palm Row is complete! This latest project has been the result of much trial and error , but hopefully our new palm tree growing system will allow us to spend more time growing, and less time weeding.
OK, I know it’s called “Shawnee Palm Tree Farm”, but we grow anything that we think is cool.
One thing we find to be VERY cool is guacamole, so bring on the avocado trees…
When shopping for any tree, you want to be sure it will thrive in your area. In SW Florida, we will get winter cold fronts that can lower temps down into the low 30’s for a few days.
All of these avocado trees have been grafted. This means the tops have been spliced onto the root systems of another plant. The top is usually a clipping from an older tree that produces fruit of a high quality. The result is a cloned tree that produces high quality fruit in a few years rather than 12 to 15 years.
Because we purchased different types of avocado trees that fruit at different times, we will be producing avocados from June throughout September.
Why should Boston have all the fun, or so I thought…
The farm’s irrigation system is in need of some serious upgrades. This project begins with the uncovering of the 2 inch mainline that runs from the pump, across, and down the length of the property.
One foot wide, 18 inches deep, and 500+ feet long, this mega trench was all dug by hand.
I was a property virgin when I suddenly found myself buying a 2.5 acre slice of South Florida from the owner of a real estate company.
Buying your first piece of real estate is a difficult, confusing, and draining experience. Doing so from a motivated seller who makes a living walking down this path is a little like riding your first roller coaster. You’re pretty certain you’ll survive, but still maintain a death grip on the safety bar.
My days quickly became peppered with real estate related errands that had to be run, and a full email report of the day’s progress going out in the evening. Moving money here, sending money there, sign this, notarize that, fax, scan, email. After 10 days of this, the deal went through without any major problems, and I was very pleased to hear the words: “Congratulations, you’re the new owner!”.
The best advise I could give any property buyer is to hire a real estate attorney to represent you. They will check the documents and guide you on what to do next and when to do it. Well worth the small fee for the peace of mind it brought.
My transaction was simple by real estate standards; unimproved property (No house), cash deal (No banks involved)
… Still, there were many steps.