October 2009
Here Comes Cyclamen By Faith Savage

Poinsettias are classic holiday plants for a reason, but for the fashion-forward shopper and creative gift giver, cyclamen are it for this holiday season. Here are some marketing and merchandising ideas.

Now that we’re well into the holiday season, we all know that our customers have poinsettias on their minds. And thankfully so! Shoppers’ desire for this holiday favorite will definitely bring them into our garden centers, cash in hand, ready to buy.

But are you making the most of their visit? Are you inspiring them to go above and beyond — to do more with their holiday decorating than ever before? There seems to be no end to the trend of homeowners creating the ultimate living space for family and friends, for entertaining guests and for enjoying themselves — why not tap into that trend by going above and beyond the plain poinsettia?

Beyond Poinsettias

For the customers wanting to venture beyond mums, pansies and poinsettias during the fall and winter months, a little inspiration will work wonders. Cyclamen offer a whole new spectrum of intriguing possibilities. Wow those customers with dramatic arrangements that combine poinsettias and cyclamen — picture a bold red poinsettia combined with a pure white found only in cyclamen and add to that the unique, frosty foliage available in varieties like Winter Ice, Sterling, or SilverHeart. You’re sure to create a holiday arrangement that your customers can’t resist! Add Midori or SilverHeart to wreaths or garlands for a unique, eye-catching front door/front porch display options. Or go with a totally different look for a centerpiece with an exotic cyclamen such as Delma, with fringed edges, for an eye-catching conversation starter.

Cyclamen Appeal

Bred for long-lasting blooms and unparalleled plant quality, cyclamen are easy for the consumer to handle in the home or garden. Placed in a cool location (68º F is ideal) near a bright window with indirect light, cyclamen can provide months of enjoyment indoors. And when the spring arrives, cyclamen can even be planted in the garden. For the “trendsetters” of the neighborhood — homeowners looking for what’s new, exciting and different — planting cyclamen in the landscape will instantly transform their garden, patio or entryway from ordinary to extraordinary. Frost tolerant cyclamen are great during the transitional months during fall and early spring, when the weather can be a bit unpredictable. Perfect for garden beds in protected areas or to spice up mixed containers, this intriguing flowering plant will provide a pop of color just where it’s needed most.

Fragrance plays an important role in today’s home, and many of today’s cyclamen have a wonderful spicy fragrance. A single plant can perfume a corner, while two to three plants can fill a small room with their lively but delicate scent.

The Universal Gift

With beautiful blooms and a delicious fragrance, cyclamen make wonderful gifts during the holiday season. A perfect way to say “thank you,” a welcome housewarming gift or party favor, or even a colorful solution to cheer up a hospital room and add a festive touch during the holidays, cyclamen does it all. And, picture a great display of prepackaged cyclamen gifts in the garden center with Christmas-themed sleeves. The John Henry Company recently introduced biodegradable holiday pot covers, and with a decorative gift tag, your customers can grab and go with a festive, thoughtful gift that’s actually a no-brainer!

Cyclamen’s appeal doesn’t stop at Christmas. It can be used for other holidays as well, such as Valentine’s Day: Its rich, vibrant reds and pinks, could be a perfect sweetheart gift. Cyclamen is so versatile that the possibilities really are endless.

Faith Savage

Faith Savage is retail manager for Goldsmith Seeds. She can be reached at [email protected]


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