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March 2020
Time for a Tour By Teresa McPherson

I’ve been spoiled living in western Pennsylvania this winter. As I write this in February, we’ve only just gotten our first real taste of winter with a 5-inch snowfall overnight and more falling throughout the day. As usual, it closed most of the schools in the county, tied up traffic and shut down most of the smaller local stores.

So naturally, my mind has been drifting to thoughts of summertime and industry events to look forward to.

Boston Bound

Coincidentally, Garden Centers of America just released the itinerary for their 2020 GCA Summer Tour, taking place June 22-25 in Boston, and it includes some pretty amazing stops.

Among them are four IGC Top 100 Retailers: Mahoney’s Garden Center, ranked ninth at $38.5 million; Weston Nurseries, ranked 43rd at $14.25 million; Russell’s Garden Center, ranked 68th at $9.35 million; and Briggs Garden & Home, ranked 98 at $6.7 million.

A couple non-garden-center stops are included as well: The 281-acre Arnold Arboretum, a National Historic Landmark founded as a public-private partnership between the City of Boston and Harvard University; and Faneuil Hall in downtown Boston and one of my favorite places to find out-of-the-ordinary gifts and amazing food.

Expanded Offerings

I’ll be interested to see how many are diversifying their offerings by including pantry items in their stores.

Garden centers are the perfect demographic for any natural, private-labeled food items, says Megan Dillman, marketing director at Dillman Farms, a regional canned goods wholesaler and private label company located in Bloomington, Indiana.

Dillman Farms also offers their customers the opportunity to private-label their products in a completely customized way, providing each garden center with a unique product that is an extension of its brand.

To learn more, click on “It’s in the Pantry.”

Does your IGC stock pantry items? What’s been the most or least successful? I’d love to hear about it. Shoot me an email at [email protected]

Teresa McPherson

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


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