Finishing up Fall
By the time you read this issue, fall will have come and gone here in the Midwest — the leaves turned from golden orange and fiery red to brown, and the temperatures dropping into the freezing range.
I’ve harvested the dozen or so “volunteer” pumpkins that wound their way out of the backyard compost pile — too small to carve, much to my kids’ disappointment, but still worthy of a spot on the front steps.
The Fall Event
In September, the temperatures were decidedly summer-like, however, when the Garden Center Group held its 2019 Fall Event in Nashville, Tennessee. I was one of the many first-timers to attend the event, which began in 2001. The four-day schedule was packed with roundtable discussions and presentations on innovation, leadership, and profitability, along with plenty of networking opportunities.
The full day of tours took us to sites in the Nashville area including a full-scale replica of the Parthenon, the 55-acre historic Cheekwood Estate and Gardens, and two remarkable garden centers.
The first stop of the day, Gardens of Babylon, is an urban IGC located in downtown Nashville that leases space from the Nashville Farmers’ Market. The center is about 30% retail and 70% landscape and spans about 28,000 square feet of retail space. It’s also the winner of our Merchandiser of the Year award. Read more about this fantastic IGC and what they are doing to separate themselves in the marketplace in this month’s issue.
Moore & Moore Garden Center is located in the upscale Bellevue neighborhood of Nashville and is about 60% retail and 40% landscape. The IGC spans 2 acres, with about 1 ¾ dedicated to retail space. The IGC was decked out for fall with a variety of mums, pumpkins and other fall season favorites. It was hard to resist snagging a couple of the pretty pink or green pumpkins from the bench display.
Once again, congratulations to the team Gardens of Babylon on being named Lawn & Garden Retailer’s 2019 Merchandiser of the Year!