NGB Continues to Inspire Home Gardeners
National Garden Bureau (NGB) is reaching home gardeners in record numbers. So far in 2021, NGB, the gardening industry’s only non-profit ambassador, has interacted with nearly 10 million home gardeners, providing information and inspiration.
The organization increased interactions and activities this year with several new programs that engage and inspire gardeners to grow more. Since mid-October of 2020, NGB has had more than 6.8 million impressions, a quarter of a million new website visitors, reached more than 100,000 through social media and has increased e-newsletter circulation 98%.
“In order to keep all of the new gardeners interested, we need to provide easy-to-find information and ideas,” says Diane Blazek, executive director. “Our focus has always been to educate home gardeners, giving our members additional ways to communicate their product messaging and share their expertise. This year we took that to a whole new level.”
New and enhanced 2021 outreach includes:
Year Of Program
Each year, National Garden Bureau selects one type of annual, perennial, bulb, edible and shrub to feature as the “Year of” crop. NGB promotes those choices throughout the year in articles, press releases, interviews, social media and speaking engagements, providing more and more exposure to the industry and home gardeners. Because the program has been so well received, a new category of Houseplants will be added for 2022.
Ask the Expert Webinars
NGB hosted a dozen Ask the Expert webinars covering high-interest topics for home gardeners. More than 20 member experts shared their growing knowledge and provided inspiration directly to home gardeners in a live experience for the more than 2,500 consumers participating.
2021 marked the first year for a partnership between NGB and KidsGardening.org. The two groups are working together to combine their audiences in an effort to grow and sustain the booming interest in gardening across all age groups. The collaboration has doubled the number of consumers, families and educators both non-profits will reach.
Green Thumb Award
2021 ushers in the return of the popular industry Green Thumb Award. Originally developed and managed by the former Direct Gardening Association, the Green Thumb Award recognizes outstanding new garden products that are unique, innovative, solve a gardening problem or create a new gardening opportunity. Winners are voted upon by industry professionals and will be announced in December.
NGB purchased the GreatGardenVideos.com domain giving members the ability to easily promote their videos to home gardeners. The SEO driven website brings gardeners to one location where they can search by member company or brand. With just one click, visitors are directed to each member’s YouTube channel.
Grant Programs and Contests
NGB also manages the Therapeutic Garden Grant Program, a philanthropic outreach to promote the healing ability of gardens across North America. Each year, the grant awards $5,000, split between three therapeutic garden programs. The top three finalists are chosen by a panel of Therapeutic Garden Experts, with winner levels determined by online voting. 2021 also saw the return of a video contest for the Year of the Sunflower. Consumers and industry members were invited to submit a video that showcases the beauty and appeal of sunflowers. Winners were recently announced and can be viewed on the NGB website.
“We are very proud of everything we’ve accomplished this year,” Blazek said. “We are excited to build on these new and existing programs, bringing the benefits of gardening to even more home gardeners in 2022.”