From 3 to 16,000. Be prepared for excess

Yesterday morning I finished saving seed from my three best kale plants.

The plants were tasty and lived from last summer until recently.

Normally you’d pull them when they started to make seed and put something else in, but I decided to save their seed and try to breed my own kale for fun. So I left them in the garden for a few extra months while they got their seed ready.

Yesterday I finished pulling and cleaning the seed.

Those three kale plants ended up making about 16,000 seeds.

Put three little kale seeds in the ground, get 16,000 seeds back (and all of the food too).

Pretty good return on investment.

I’d be hard pressed to use 500 seeds per year so 16,000 seeds is an insane windfall. Having this much extra gives me a lot of options.

I’ll have plenty for a few years for myself even if I go crazy planting kale.

I’ll give a lot away to neighbors and friends.

If there’s another year with seed shortages like in 2020, I have my own stockpile to draw on.

That doesn’t even count if I save seeds from new plants this year, I already have about 20 growing with another 10-20 to be added soon.

It took resources, time, and learning on my part to be able to save them, but there are solid benefits. Plus the knowledge won’t expire so next time should be easier and faster (I’ve already saved some sweet pea seeds and am planning to save some monster tomatoes and tasty lettuces too).

Your Shopify store will see occasional opportunities or have a runaway month from time-to-time. If you’re prepared for them, you could end up with a similar excess (e.g. cash, new customers, traffic). But you’ll need to be ready with the knowledge or they could slip through your fingers. If I didn’t learn how to save these kale seeds, I’d be getting ready to place an order to refill mine in the next few months.

Some opportunities can be spotted in Repeat Customer Insights. The Cohort Report will make it easy to see any odd trends in the current month’s new customers and the behavior of previous customers coming back.

I’m also working on more automatic trend detectors which can have the computer spot things that people might miss. There’s already one to spot a lower than normal AOV, along with advice about what to do (and not worry about).

Eric Davis

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