Kicked-Up Window Boxes
If you fill your window box displays with bright blooms and call it a day, consider giving them a makeover that will make your customers do a double take. The Illawarra Mercury news outlet in Australia reports on the trend of mixing in herbs and shallow-rooted plants like radishes and lettuce to turn window boxes into raised-bed gardens. Others are using flags and miniature gazing balls to create charming, themed boxes.
This Good Deed Delivers!
Next time you need to empty your greenhouses, consider taking a cue from Garden Springs Garden Center in Deer Park, WA, which leaves free flats of flowers in the driveways of unassuming residents, along with a coupon, at the end of the season. It prefers to give the blooms away rather than letting them die each year. The payback: Appreciative fans post glowing notes at its Facebook page, and many turn into loyal customers.
Veggies Still On Top
Veggie gardening is as hot as ever. More gardeners are planning to grow vegetables this year compared to last year, according to the Garden Writers Association Foundation’s 2013 April Gardening Trends Research Report. The findings show that 69% of households with a yard or garden plan to grow vegetables - that’s up 3% from last year. Of that number, 73% say they will grow their own for better quality, taste and nutrition.
DIY-ers On the Rise
More Americans are taking on do-it-yourself lawn and garden projects, opening up opportunities for IGC retailers to position themselves as the go-to places for expert help. The 2013 National Gardening Survey by the National Gardening Association reports an increase of 2 million more households engaging in self-care of their outdoor spaces in 2012, translating to an extra $354 million in retail sales of lawn and garden products.
Cool Idea For ‘Hot’ Dogs
Show your dog-loving customers how a water feature can add peace and relaxation to their outdoor space - as well as fun and refreshment for their four-legged family members. Houzz.com recommends a ground-level fountain that bubbles up fresh, running water to cool any “hot” dog who works up a thirst during a backyard romp. A shallow water garden could also invite the furry friends to wade in.
Planting Up Old Electronics
Rotary phones and vintage clock radios may not have a place in our modern lives anymore, but they can have a place in your garden center as retro, eye-catching containers sprouting succulents. From treehugger.com, this trend of planting up objects doomed for the dumpster jumps on the recycling movement. The “green” containers send a message that resonates with gardeners: Plants last longer than electronics.
Organics, Edibles & Color
Interest in organics was robust at this year’s Boston Flower & Garden Show, where show-goers responding to a survey said they want to learn more about organic gardening and lawn care. The survey also reveals that consumers want to find out how to get the highest yield from their home edible gardens, and want to discover new ways to bring color into their yards and gardens. It’s our jobs to educate and inspire them!