June 2004
Fun in the Sun By Catherine Evans

Summer is finally here. What can you do to help your customers enjoy this warm weather?

Summer is here, and the garden center is filled with customers looking for that summer idea that will blow them away. Only so many plants are heat tolerant, and now that the spring peak is closing down, what can be done to keep the attention coming?

There are so many ideas out there that can help bring in more attention when the weather is getting hot. People like to spend time in their backyards and gardens during the day and well into the night. The market is saturated with summertime products, but all you need are the items that will keep them happy during those times.

Stock a good amount of patio furniture, outside amenities such as citronella candles, picnic accessories (plates, cups, placemats, etc.), bug sprays and many more things to make this season more enjoyable. These products help customers feel relaxed and worry free (hopefully) while sitting in the sun with family and friends.

Top off the comfort aspect with some grilling accessories to give customers the idea for outdoor barbeques in the garden. Carry some gourmet foods, such as specialty barbeque sauces or marinades, dip mixes, specialty desserts and more. It never hurts to appeal to the socialization factor by having the products to make a party.

Accents and nature products are another addition that will not only add to the ambiance of the outdoor activity season, they will give outdoor life more of a glow. Having birdfeeders/houses, butterfly houses, waterfalls, ponds, etc. will add to the mood of the environment your customers are looking for. Make sure to add the perfect lighting to accent the items in the garden as well as lighting to add ambiance and the hope that winter may never come again.

Don’t forget about things like hats, gloves, watering items, and lawn and plant care for working in the garden. It takes time to make the garden look wonderful in the summer. With the sun blazing and the heat rising, it is always better to be safe than sorry when gardening during this season. When you add all of these factors into the garden center, you will be a popular place to shop in the summer, have many appreciative customers coming in and get a whole new design idea to work with as each summer approaches. Just remember, the brighter and more exciting the colors you choose, the more attention those items and you will get. Enjoy the sun!