With agricultural ties deeply rooted within the Brown and Peterson families dating back to colonial times, it is no wonder that we are the best at what we do. Several generations later, our nursery sits on the frost-protecting shoreline of Lake Erie, in what was once known as the Nursery Capital of the World.
The Brown family staked a place in the Virginia tobacco industry, with a farm that produced a popular chewing tobacco “plug” known as “Brown’s Mule Tobacco.” The farm was eventually sold to the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, but the “Brown’s Mule Plug” is still in existence today.
The Peterson family provided a strong foundation for our nursery. Beginning with the arrival of Peter H. Peterson from Denmark to the United States in 1884, who owed a large dairy farm on the corner of Middle Ridge Road and Townline Road in Perry and drove a horse drawn oil wagon for Sohio Oil Company. What is now our nursery was once a thriving dairy and fruit farm, as well as a John Deere and Caterpillar Implement dealership that was purchased by his son Peter L. Peterson, Jane’s Grandfather. Milk, potatoes, corn, grapes, peaches, apples and hay were all grown and harvested, and sold locally and at the market in Cleveland.
While Janie Peterson worked alongside her parents on the family farm, Doc Brown began his agricultural career in his childhood as well, working at both Wayside Gardens and Call Tree Farm. It was inevitable that their mutual interest in farming would inspire them to “branch out” after marriage and build their own business.
C.M. Brown and Sons Nursery began with a handful of rooted cuttings in 1963 under the careful direction of Doc and Janie; Doc worked elsewhere outside the home, while Janie stayed home with three children, but began selling flats and small containers to a handful of customers in 1970. We eventually evolved into more than 125 acres of active nursery production, retaining most of the original property purchased by Peter L Peterson nearly 100 years ago, as well as acquiring additional property behind our farm.
Well into our sixth generation, our quality and consistency are what we’re most known for, and we resolve to always be your first choice in the market.