Welcome to Long Mountain Nursery

Growers of 200 evergreen azalea varieties



After growing specialty azaleas in beautiful Rappahannock County, Virginia for 30 years we have retired our nursery. The nursery and our many adventures, however, have been virtually preserved within this website and a 1000-page book series chronicling our odyssey. We hope you will take the time to explore both this website and our extensive book website containing hundreds of photos of the beautiful azaleas we once grew commercially (see link below).

Although we are no longer raising azaleas, our 500-variety azalea arboretum remains open to visitors each spring. Please call ahead (540 675-3707) to arrange a visit.
Mountain Of My Dreams book series

  
    

Richard and Sandra Antony were upwardly mobile young professionals in the late 1970s. Richard worked for the Department of the Army while pursuing his PhD in electrical engineering; Sandra worked as a contract specialist for the National Cancer Institute. They lived in a cozy house they had painstakingly remodeled, just a short distance from the confluence of Interstate-95 and Washington Beltway. At least that is where they lived until Richard decided they needed to find more fulfilling careers and a quieter place to raise their future family. His recommendation: They should build then operate a wholesale azalea nursery in the foothills of the Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains.

What began as an earnest, if unrealistic, attempt to simplify their lives became a remarkable thirty-year long odyssey. Even after discovering that the simple life is a lot more complicated than they had imagined, the two remained committed to their dream. Staying the course forced them to face seemingly endless challenges, heart-breaking losses, and periods of self-doubt. Nursery work was hard and the hours long, but they ultimately achieved their goal of growing high quality specialty azaleas, shipping more than ten thousand each year to premier garden centers in Northern Virginia. Far more important to them, their lifestyle change allowed them to raise their children where the days and nights were more serene in a place where they could watch the sun set each evening over one of the oldest mountain ranges in the world.

Living in a small rural community and operating their own business set the stage for numerous adventures as well as at least as many misadventures, the latter typically involving various combinations of storms, equipment failures, power outages, and ill-conceived decisions. The couple met scores of interesting people and had close encounters with all manner of animals, both great and small. They learned a lot of things on the less traveled road; perhaps chief among them was that the journey truly is more important than the destination.

The tale is variously funny, sweet, sad, sensitive, provocative, honest, disturbing, tender, as well as absolutely true. It is a story about commitment and self-discovery, but it is also a love story. Hundreds of vignettes weave a remarkably inspirational tale, bringing to mind the writings of such perennial favorites as James Herriot, May Sarton, and Laura Ingalls Wilder. Uplifting, riveting, and intimate, it is a story the reader will not soon forget.

Visit the book website here.


Download a PDF of Long Mountain Story highlights.

Flash: We have just completed an e-reader version of the entire Long Mountain story. Long Mountain Odyssey is available from Amazon.com for $2.99. The nearly 500 page book contains highlights from the Mountain of My Dreams series. If you like it, tell your friends about it.

Long Mountain Odyssey e-book


Equipment for Sale

Now that we have shut down our container-growing operation, we are selling our remaining containers, ground cover, 12" galvanized spikes, roller conveyors, 6-foot high sand filter, and farm wagon.

Get a partial list of items for sale here.



 
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Webmaster: Chris Antony