January 2024 - 34

MANAGEMENT
Boost Your Gift
Offerings
houseplants on a daily basis now, not just in the spring. A
lot of times, when my nursery is not busy, they're helping
the greenhouse people fill the pots with dirt. They're
learning how to run the register in case we get huge lines.
And then when the trucks come in from Florida, full of
houseplants or full of tropicals in the spring, everybody
gets to learn how to unload a truck.
" Like Edna said, getting everybody working across
departments and not feeling like, 'Oh, well, that's not
my job,' or, 'That's not my place, I'm not in charge of
that.' Because when the customers come in, they're not
going to a specific department, or they might have needs
in three different departments, and we don't want to
continually hand them off from one person to the next.
" I make a point as the owner to meet all of the new
hires, hopefully on their first day if I'm here, or for sure
on their second day. I worked in a garden center a long
time ago where I didn't meet the owner for at least
a week after I started there. I like them to know who
they're working for and that it's a family, and they're
part of the team. "
Garden centers have to increasingly compete with
the big-box stores - not only for garden products,
but also for seasonal and gift items. The panelists said
they have to curate their assortment to be more locally
sourced and unique.
In her 1,500-square-foot gift shop at Lukas Nursery
and Butterfly Encounter, Edna Kane said she's shied away
from seasonal offerings to provide more of an evergreen
selection of items.
" Incense is a big seller for me that I put in a few years
ago on a whim, " she said.
She also said garden flags are still big. " Every time I
think I've ordered enough garden flags, I'm like, 'What
happened? Where'd they go?' "
Kate Terrell, general manager at Wallace's Garden
Center, said she stocks flags for both of the high schools
in her town.
" You cannot buy those anywhere else. Especially
during football season and going into basketball season,
people will buy the high school flags and they'll buy the
garden flags, too. "
Locally sourced products also remain top sellers for the
garden centers' gift shops. Jake Scott, general manager,
said Piedmont Feed and Garden Center has curated
its gift section to focus on local items, with soaps and
candles being top sellers.
" We found a local candle maker whose soy candles
we like, and they give us a good price on them.
We've developed an exclusive scent with them called
Greenhouse; we worked with them to tailor a scent you
can only purchase at our store, which is kind of fun. "
He said by branding gift items like candles, Piedmont
is being introduced to people who might not have
visited in the past.
Terrell said Wallace's best-selling candles are the ones
made in Iowa because people like that local connection.
She's also expanded their gourmet foods assortment to
include " a lot of honey. We have a local honey supplier, as
well as Savannah Bee, which is out of Georgia. We do a lot
of Terrapin Ridge dips and salad dressings. We do a local
dessert sauce called Sunday Night [Foods] that's made in
Des Moines, Iowa. And their CEO is from Bettendorf. "
Greeting cards are also popular for all three of these
garden centers.
" We sell a ton of cards, " Terrell said. " We've convinced
my gift buyer to add two more lines because we are
selling so many cards. The key is to find unique ones and
ones that are not very expensive. " She said Wallace's
carries cards from Compendium, Hester & Cook,
Apartment 2 Cards and Shadywood Designs - which are
all laser cut. She described them more like pieces of art.
Kane noted that Pumpernickel Press is a top-seller in her
gift shop. " I sell them all day. They retail for $4.99 and cost
about $2 per card. They're beautiful, made from recycled
material, made in the U.S. - just a gorgeous line. "
34 | LAWN & GARDEN RETAILER | JANUARY 2024
http://strawbalegardenclub.com/wholesale

January 2024

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of January 2024

Editor's Letter
Table of Contents
AmericanHort
Headlines
Calendar
Innovative Ideas: Creating a Team culture
Green Goods: New Varieties for 2024
Showcase: Miniature and Indoor Gardening
Garden Gifts: Prepare Now for Market
Garden Gifts: Gift Market Lookbook
Management: Cultivating Innovation in the Garden Center
Showcase: Garden Accents & Décor
Merchandising: Revamp Your Retail Series Merchandising
Merchandising: Give Your Tool Display a Tune-Up
Consumer Trends: 2024 Gardening Outlook Infographic
Showcase: Apparel & Accessories
Marketplace
Ad Index
5 Minutes With ...: Michael Fiore
January 2024 - 1
January 2024 - 2
January 2024 - 3
January 2024 - Editor's Letter
January 2024 - 5
January 2024 - Table of Contents
January 2024 - 7
January 2024 - AmericanHort
January 2024 - 9
January 2024 - Headlines
January 2024 - Calendar
January 2024 - Innovative Ideas: Creating a Team culture
January 2024 - 13
January 2024 - Green Goods: New Varieties for 2024
January 2024 - 15
January 2024 - 16
January 2024 - 17
January 2024 - 18
January 2024 - 19
January 2024 - 20
January 2024 - 21
January 2024 - 22
January 2024 - 23
January 2024 - Showcase: Miniature and Indoor Gardening
January 2024 - 25
January 2024 - Garden Gifts: Prepare Now for Market
January 2024 - Garden Gifts: Gift Market Lookbook
January 2024 - 28
January 2024 - 29
January 2024 - Management: Cultivating Innovation in the Garden Center
January 2024 - 31
January 2024 - 32
January 2024 - 33
January 2024 - 34
January 2024 - 35
January 2024 - Showcase: Garden Accents & Décor
January 2024 - 37
January 2024 - Merchandising: Revamp Your Retail Series Merchandising
January 2024 - 39
January 2024 - 40
January 2024 - 41
January 2024 - Merchandising: Give Your Tool Display a Tune-Up
January 2024 - 43
January 2024 - 44
January 2024 - 45
January 2024 - 46
January 2024 - 47
January 2024 - Consumer Trends: 2024 Gardening Outlook Infographic
January 2024 - 49
January 2024 - Showcase: Apparel & Accessories
January 2024 - 51
January 2024 - Marketplace
January 2024 - 53
January 2024 - 54
January 2024 - 55
January 2024 - 56
January 2024 - 57
January 2024 - 58
January 2024 - 59
January 2024 - 60
January 2024 - 61
January 2024 - 62
January 2024 - 63
January 2024 - Ad Index
January 2024 - 65
January 2024 - 5 Minutes With ...: Michael Fiore
January 2024 - 67
January 2024 - 68
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