HGTV's Durie Hits Big
America has a new gardening icon, and his name is Jamie Durie. Debuting New Year's weekend on HGTV, the hunk from Down Under has hit big with his primetime series, The Outdoor Room. Insiders report his early ratings topped even the late-night TV talk shows. Be sure to catch Durie's opening keynote at this year's IGC Show - August 17, 1 p.m. at Chicago's Navy Pier. Afterward, you'll find him hanging out on the show floor in the Garden Chic lounge. Stop by and say hello!
'No Apps Required'
Today's ultra-plugged-in consumer is bombarded with high tech every time his iPhone rings. Yet the inner soul seeks something different, something more natural and real. Innovative marketers have jumped on this opportunity to showcase the appeal of "natural" experiences with "no apps required" promotional campaigns: Florida Keys travel authorities are currently running TV spots. Focus your promotions this spring to sell the natural sizzle of gardening's "unplugged" pleasures.
Tell Them to Can It!
Those bushels upon bushels harvested from your customers' veggie gardens last spring are cropping up in their thoughts now as they get ready to plant for spring - "What am I going to do with all those tomatoes this year?" Tell them to can it! Recent research from the Garden Writers Association shows 48 percent of veggie gardeners are already preserving their yields for later. Host a canning how-to in early spring, and offer handouts on drying fresh herbs for the winter months ahead.
Silver & Gold Christmas
Holiday decor trends often start at Frankfurt, Germany's Christmasworld trade fair held annually in January.
Garden Chic was there in person again this year to check it out. The big news: We'll be seeing much more silver and gold in upcoming holiday designs, in 2011 and beyond. Couple that with the bold use of black and white splashes, and it's a modern look. Just as fashion events do, Christmasworld commissions leading European design authorities to come up with these trend forecasts.
Christian Garden Art
Seems like everywhere you turn in trendy garden design these days, you bump into a Buddha or an Asian god. A good number of this industry's garden center owners and operators are rather strong Christians - as are many of their customers. Great opportunities await bold decor vendors willing to give Buddha a little competition with hip, modern Christian-themed garden elements - not in the way of the saint statues of yesteryear, but something trendy and meaningful!
'Grow Your Own' Future
As the industry races to make the most of the home veggie, herb and fruit boom, don't miss out on the biggest "Grow Your Own" opportunity of them all - kids! Make sure your store involves the entire family in edible gardening. Hold tomato-growing contests, presenting awards for most harvested, largest fruit, etc. Get the local press involved. Capturing the attention of tomorrow's gardeners will pay off handsomely in the years to come. Play up your "locally owned" and "trusted" advantage.