April 2020
Talking About My Generation By Teresa McPherson

I have to admit, when there’s a mention of Generation X, my ears perk up. Not because I identify so much with it (which I do), but because it’s a generation so infrequently talked about. Lately, all you hear about is the Baby Boomers and millennials hating on each other, and the occasional mention of Generation Z.

So in this month’s issue, when Stan Pohmer mentioned his Gen-X daughter-in-law’s shopping habits, I was quick to relate to them on some levels. As a fellow working mom with two kids, I also find myself picking up my phone and shopping online during scout meetings or my lunchtime — or at the very least, hitting the good old “Add to Cart” button to ponder over the items later.

But there’s something to be said for the in-store experience. Maybe I’m betraying my generation and its slacker reputation, but I still do enjoy walking the aisles and the sensory experience of shopping — especially when my kids aren’t with me.

As Stan notes, shopping in a brick-and-mortar store does help me stay up-to-date on new products and let me see, smell and sometimes taste the item before purchase — at least, the items I want to purchase.

I’m sure it’s true for many garden center customers as well; the experience of purchasing plants includes more than just the financial transaction — it’s looking around, wandering the store and taking in the displays that you all so carefully set up. It’s finding just the right houseplant to give as a gift or ornamental to fill a space in the garden, smelling the flowers, examining the leaves, reading the tag — all things that just can’t be done through a phone or computer screen.

And if I’m lucky, maybe there’s even some Pearl Jam playing on the sound system.

Also in This Issue

Speaking of generational differences, as IGC owners reach retirement age, passing on the business to a family member might seem like a logical choice. But is it the right business decision for you? Click here to read John Kennedy’s tips and advice on the matter.

Garden centers don’t just sell plants; they sell advice, expertise, experience, years and years of trial and error, and dreams. Here, Christina Salwitz explains how to battle the bad advice your customers might believe.

Teresa McPherson

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