Cam Rees is general manager of Skinner Garden Store in Topeka, Kansas.

November/December 2021
5 Minutes With … Cameron Rees By Teresa McPherson

Cam Rees is general manager of Skinner Garden Store in Topeka, Kansas.

Cam Rees is general manager of Skinner Garden Store in Topeka, Kansas.

Could you share a little about your background?

I grew up on a family orchard operation, playing on the orchard as a kid and sometimes helping. Picking strawberries for my granddad was the first job I can remember. I picked cherries as I got older and helped jug cider during the busy season.

Years later, when I was in my early teens, my dad made the tough decision to leave the family orchard and take a position at a local garden center. A few years later, needing money for a car, I worked my first garden center spring season for him … and I was hooked.

I enjoyed the work, studied horticulture in college, specializing in landscape design. Upon graduating, I returned home to help run the garden center with my dad, splitting my time between our landscape business and the garden center. Years later, I handed over most of my landscape responsibilities to focus my effort on the garden center and 40 years later … I’m still here!

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I love helping people — both customers and staff — enjoy all the things plants can bring.

What keeps you up at night?

I typically don’t have problems sleeping — I’m usually plenty tired!

What’s something people would be surprised to know about you?

I used to play rugby in college.

If you weren’t in this profession, what would you be doing?

Maybe a landscape architect specializing in ecological restoration and developing urban natural areas?

Favorite plant to grow? Why?

I really don’t have a favorite. There are just too many different plants to enjoy! I like to experiment and try new things. But I have been on a pawpaw kick lately — because they’re cool!

Teresa McPherson

Teresa McPherson is the managing editor of Lawn & Garden Retailer. Contact her at [email protected]


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