GCA Summer Tour Boston Itinerary Announced
The itinerary for the 2020 GCA Summer Tour, taking place June 22-25 in Boston, has been announced.
Attendees will see four IGC Top 100 Retailers on this tour: 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.
The complete list of IGC host destinations includes:
Briggs Garden & Home, North Attleborough
Family run since 1961, Briggs Garden & Home is committed to helping customers transform their homes, gardens, backyards and open spaces into places of beauty, tranquility, and comfort — and are inspired to create a one-of-a-kind shopping experience for the senses.
In 2008, Briggs reconstructed an entirely new retail store, greenhouses and nursery yard. Paved walkways guide customers through the outdoor sales area, making it easy and fun for customers to shop. A mix of colorful and mature displays and plantings promote an inviting retail environment. Professional merchandising throughout highlights products while engaging customers. The indoor sales area is bright, cheery and airy.
Cataldo’s Gift & Garden, Littleton
Family owned and operated since 1986 and open year-round, Cataldo’s Gift & Garden’s goal is to provide superior, personalized service and high-quality products, supplying customers with the old-time favorites, the new and the traditional garden supplies, everyday gifts, and home decor accessories.
Located in an old New England dairy barn that was restored in 1985, a new post-and-beam barn and front porch addition were constructed in 1999.
Each season the IGC transforms the barn with colorful, fun displays to inspire customers. Items are displayed the way customers would see them in their homes, creating niches for customers to discover that special item tucked into one of their inspirational displays.
Kane’s Flower World, Danvers
Kane’s Flower World is known for its Christmas decor and trees. They go all out and people respond with entire families coming out to shop and gaze at the wonder of it all. As Kane’s puts it, “It’s huge, it’s a thing.”
Christmas isn’t all they do; they stock everything — nursery stock, perennials, annuals, vegetable plants, floral arrangements, hanging baskets, soil, herbs, potted plants, and bedding plants, etc. All plants, except those that are exotic, are grown locally.
On a customer-based Facebook page, people rave about Kane’s sensory smorgasbord of colors and selection each spring, even posting how they went overboard with purchases.
Mahoney’s Garden Center, Winchester, Brighton and Concord
Established in 1959, Mahoney’s is a family-run home and garden center with seven retail locations as well as a growing facility in Woburn, Massachusetts. As a full-service garden center, Mahoney’s is dedicated to providing the highest quality and most extensive selection of garden plants, gardening products, as well as floral and landscape services — aimed at satisfying the needs of home gardeners and landscape professionals alike.
They’re committed to bringing customers locally grown annuals and perennials, most of which are grown each season locally at their growing facility in Woburn ,growing “only the best, hardiest varieties and plant them in extra deep pots that promote bigger, healthier root systems.”
Mahoney’s electronically produces a semi-regular Inspirations magazine that promotes items for sale and decorating ideas while providing educational articles to go along with them. In addition to numerous classes, they host a number of events such as Ladies’ Nights, Haunted Forest Halloween Maze, Trees for Troops, Farmers Markets, World of Orchids, Feasts of Falmouth and Beyond fundraisers and Mahoney’s Farmstand.
McCue Garden Center, Woburn
McCue Garden Center is a family-owned and operated garden center in Woburn founded in 1933. McCue’s is the smallest of garden centers on the Boston tour, but it won’t disappoint in inspiration. They use the space they do have well. Their displays are well executed.
McCue runs a number of classes and workshops, fundraisers, and birthdays and even hosts summer concerts. The Georgia Peach Truck is a customer favorite.
Nunan Florist & Greenhouses, Georgetown
Nunan Florist & Greenhouses, servicing the North Shore area, is located in Georgetown, Massachusetts. In 1985, Steve Flynn, Sr. and Bill Guerrini purchased the garden center from the Nunans. Over the last 30 years, Steve and Bill turned Nunan’s into what is today, a full-service garden center, florist shop, growing facility, landscaping business, plant rental, interior plantscaping business, cafe and mini golf course.
Nunan’s offerings include perennials, hardy mums, poinsettias, hanging baskets, a vast selection of annuals, eco-friendly bagged and bulk mulch, water features and fountains, and a variety of pots. Ninety-five percent of their annuals and perennials are grown at Nunan’s and they pride themselves on growing “the most sought-after perennials and annuals that will survive in the northeast.”
As one of the top 15% of growers in the country, they produce annuals, perennials, vegetables and herbs, including up to 100,000 pansies, 50,000 tulips and Easter lilies, 10,000 hardy mums, and over 50,000 poinsettias annually. Their greenhouses are environmentally friendly and use all the latest growing technologies available.
Nunan’s Garden Golf is a very well-designed garden atmosphere with no structures such as dinosaurs and windmills, but rather a walk-through beautiful garden featuring their own greenhouse-grown plants. Much of the unique material is labeled so customers can just flip over their score card and write down the plants they like to buy later. They recently opened a new, onsite restaurant called Cafe Sarina, which will be providing lunch for attendees the day.
Russell’s Garden Center, Wayland
Family-owned Russell’s Garden Center has been in business for more than 140 years, since 1876! Originally a farm market, Russell’s converted to a wholesale business delivering vegetables and flowers to Boston’s Haymarket Square.
Today, Russell’s continues to grow into one of the largest garden centers in New England. Inside, you’ll find many shops, including garden, plant, floral, gift and toy, flower, candle, bird, water gardening and seasonal decor.
Russell’s is a “socially responsible business” and has been a leader in creating partnerships with people and organizations of all social and economic backgrounds in their local area.
Russell’s keeps customers coming in after the Christmas season with the Wayland Winter Farmers Market which takes place every Saturday mid-January through mid-March, with more than 135 vendors over the course of those 10-weeks. They also host the summer market.
Weston Nurseries, Hopkinton
For over 94 years, Weston Nurseries has been a destination for exceptional plants and comprehensive advice. Customers are accustomed to finding solutions quickly, so Weston deliberately selects their products and curates innovative displays with a focus on answering questions and presenting solutions.
The GCA Summer Tour will be visiting their Hopkinton store, where they aim to help customers discover limitless possibilities to create their own backyard paradise. Their friendly and experienced staff of well-trained horticulturists guide attendees through the expanse of trees, shrubs, perennials, and annuals, helping seasoned and new gardens alike to discover the best selections for their specific situation.
Weston also operates a wholesale landscape supply center at both locations, and hosts the Hopkinton Winter Farmers Market, which features fresh produce, including organic produce, fruit, grass fed beef, pork and lamb, free range eggs, cheese, jam, honey, fresh baked bread, maple syrup and a few artisans, to help improve nutrition by providing greater access to fresh local produce, educate residents about nutrition and sustainable agriculture and to build community.
Wolf Hill Garden Center, Ipswich
Wolf Hill Garden Center has been a family-owned and operated business since 1978, built on strong family values and dedication which they say is the root of their success.
Beginning with one landscape division located in Gloucester, Massachusetts, they quickly grew into a retail store for garden center products and landscape supply materials, serving both homeowners, first-time gardeners and local contractors. Since then, Wolf Hill has expanded to add an additional two retail stores in Ipswich and Salisbury,Massachusetts, adding much to their product offerings. They now carry landscaping and garden center supplies, bricks and pavers, nursery stock, indoor and outdoor furniture, gifts and garden accents and, they deliver all over the North Shore.
Wolf Hill prides themselves on offering their customers a high-quality selection of plants and the expert guidance, stocking annuals, perennials, trees and shrubs as well as a wide variety of vegetable and herb plants and tropical plants.
They say it’s their informative staff that really sets them apart from the IGCs and Big Box stores. GCA will be visiting their Ipswich location.
The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Boston
Established in 1872, the Arnold Arboretum is a National Historic Landmark. Founded as a public-private partnership between the City of Boston and Harvard University, the Arnold Arboretum is a unique blend of a respected research institution and beloved public park in Boston’s Emerald Necklace.
Occupying 281 acres, the Arboretum’s living collection of trees, shrubs, and woody vines is recognized as one of the most comprehensive and best documented of its kind in the world. The living collection is supported by detailed curatorial documentation, herbaria containing more than 1.3 million specimens, extensive library and archival holdings, and a 43,000-square-foot state-of-the-art research center. These facilities and holdings, along with 75 full-time staff, provide the basis for research and education by Harvard faculty and students, Arboretum scholars, and visiting scientists from around the world. Investigations focus on examining plant diversity from genomic, developmental, organismic, evolutionary, and ecosystem perspectives.
Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Boston
Located in downtown Boston, steps away from the waterfront, Faneuil Hall Boston is as alive today as it was in 1742 when our nation’s fathers proclaimed it “The Cradle of Liberty.”
Over 70 retailers and 40 office tenants occupy the 200,000 square feet of retail and 160,000 square feet of space on Boston’s iconic mixed-use festival marketplace. Customers enjoy unique, locally loved and nationally recognized shops while indulging in the worldwide cuisine at the restaurants, pubs and in the world-famous Quincy Market Colonnade.
Faneuil Hall will be the end-of-day stop on Wednesday for an evening to explore the marketplace and catch dinner with friends.
IGC retailers are encouraged to make their reservations at our host hotel Embassy Suites by Hilton Boston Waltham now. Boston is a popular summer destination and books up early.
GCA Summer Tour Boston is open to members and non-members alike. Register today and enjoy early bird savings at https://www.gardencentersofamerica.com/register.htm.