Before Jay Smith started Crow’s Nest Greenhouses as the business it is today, there was Crows Nest Farm and Greenhouses. Charlie O’Dell, the original owner, emailed me to give me some history. Here’s what he wrote:
My wife, Wilmoth O’Dell, founded and began operating Crows Nest Farm and Greenhouses back in 1972, at 1859 Brooksfield Road in Prices Fork. She retired from her greenhouses in 1995 after 23 continuous years growing and retailing greenhouse plants including annual flowers, perennial flowers, vegetable plants, hanging baskets and Christmas Poinsettias, with the part-time help of our 2 daughters and many Va. Tech students whom she hired through the years.
In 1996, Jay began renting her greenhouses, which he did for 8 years. By this time he had increased the business to where he needed more growing space and we needed more parking space for customers!
When he purchased the residence and acreage around the corner from us on Brooksfield Road, we agreed to let him continue our name of ‘Crows Nest Greenhouses’ at his new location, as it was already a thriving business so well known in the area, both from my wife’s many years of retail plant sales here, also from our U-Pick berries business that we sold in 2011, and from Jay’s good greenhouse work while here for 8 years.
So, in reality, Crows Nest business did not begin with Jay in the late 1990′s as you stated in your article, but in 1972. Were it not for Wilmoth’s many years of hard work founding and building this business, plus Jay’s hard work and expansion of this business, it would not be here today.
Thank you for letting folks know the history of Crows Nest Greenhouses.
For those interested in what became of the U-Pick berry business, that became 3Birds Berry Farm, and it’s located just down the street from Crow’s Nest. Blueberries, blackberries and raspberries are available for picking in the summer. Check their website for picking schedules.