Planting the Seed

Our June 2011 cover story "Planting the Seed" looked at what four garden centres are doing to nurture and grow the next generation of gardeners. We also asked these garden centres what advice they had for other retailers who are looking to cater to young future greenthumbs.
A touch of thyme, a leaf of rosemary, a pinch of parsley – any cook will tell you that adding herbs to your favourite dishes will make them come alive with taste and texture in ways you’ve never imagined. Herbs make all the difference between a good meal and a spectacular culinary experience.
June 13, 2011 - The challenge in retailing is there are always opportunities and the top retailers ensure that they make the most of every opportunity. They accept that traffic flow will vary throughout the year, but that when the customer comes in, whatever the season, they are "retail ready."
When Macy’s, Whole Foods  or Ikea builds a retail store, they find a flat piece of ground and build a square or rectangular structure that compacts all retail activities conveniently at the centre of the box and all support activities like deliveries, offices, staff lunchrooms, restrooms and electrical controls on the periphery.
There are five pillars to every retail nursery maintenance schedule – irrigation, air circulation, fertilization, routine cleaning and inventory rotation. All of these components are key to keeping your garden centre looking pristine at all times and not just during the spring rush, when most of the stock is fresh off the truck.
It’s no secret that in today’s technology-driven society, people are spending less time digging in the dirt and more time in front of computer, television and cellphone screens. This means many children are growing up without knowing the satisfaction and pride that can come from watching a plant evolve from seed to blossom.

Bad customer service irks most shoppers
Shoppers are fed up with bad customer service, with 64 per cent walking out of stores due to poor assistance and 67 per cent hanging up on a call before their problems are even addressed, according to a new U.S. survey.

Burning controversy over flowerpot fires
They may look harmless — but some fire officials warn potted plants can be a lethal hazard. They insist peat moss can spontaneously combust if the conditions are right, causing a house fire.

Gardening can be
a child's world

The garden provides the perfect educational and experiential opportunity to change young lives. Here are a few tips to encourage children to start digging in the dirt.

GWA predicts garden spending will drop
The Garden Writers Association in the U.S. has released the findings of its Spring Gardening Trends Research Report. The group predicts that planned consumer garden spending will drop in 2011 but garden centres are expected to stay head-to-head with mass merchants.

Fleur Creatif Springtime Special Edition 2011
The Fleur Creatif: Springtime Special Edition 2011 has arrived. Get your copy or sign up for a subscription today!

Outdoor Flower Designs
In this new floral design book Katrien Vandierendonck has designed long lasting and stylish flower arrangements that are dreamy and romantic, colourful and contemporary, or minimalist and zen.

Can't grow veggies?
Call in the garden coach!

For five years straight, Patti Tinhold has tried to grow vegetables in her shady Toronto backyard and each time she's failed to harvest a bounty. This year, she's employed a garden coach to help her achieve success.

Temporary garden shop helps draw in business
Johnston's Greenhouse and Garden Centre in Peterborough, Ont., is setting up a temporary downtown garden shop to appeal to in-town shoppers.

Big boxes educate
with bar codes

Garden plants sold at Home Depot and Lowe’s have bar codes on each plant tag that enable customers with smartphone scanners to check out whether, for example, the plant grows in low light or needs frequent watering.

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