Aug 8, 2012
Approaching the SummitBy pmihalek

Right now, at this very moment, I’m in East Lansing, Michigan, for the All-America Selections Summer Summit. This event invites “AAS participants, supporters, AAS Display Gardens, media and garden writers to checkout the AAS flower and vegetable trials courtesy of local host trials and display gardens,” which means for me that I get to see first-hand just how extensive the AAS trialing and judging process is and why it matters to you, me and the industry as a whole.

Stay tuned to our Facebook page; I’ll be sure to post plenty of pictures of colorful, well-trialed beauties.

Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One…

What do you get when you bring together a local retailer, a local landscaper and a local exterior designer for one project? Well, there’s no punchline here, but the answer is: one successful display concept in a completely transformed retail space. Check out in this month’s issue of Lawn & Garden Retailer the story “Inspiration in Numbers.” It’s all about Brian Bauman’s (of Bauman’s Farm & Garden in Oregon) goal to align the three pillars of our green industry — retail, landscape and design.

What’s New With You?

Can you believe the IGC Show in Chicago is just 13 days away? A couple years ago, I remember attending a session at the show led by Keith Turbett of Scheurich USA. Keith spoke about European trends and also discussed clever merchandising techniques many European grocery outlets were doing that could also work in your garden center. Well, last weekend, I thought about that very talk on a trip to my neighborhood Trader Joes.

For whatever reason, my wife and I were extremely interested in one particular endcap at the store … the new products endcap. We’re suckers for new packaging, new product twists, new ingredients, better ingredients, you name it. We plucked two “new” products from the shelf and plopped them into our cart. Does your garden center take advantage of what’s new? Do your customers get excited about what’s new? Let me know what kind of excitement you create around new products.



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