As the new editor of Garden Center, it’s my goal to provide you with relevant, high-quality information that will help your garden center thrive. I offer a unique perspective, as I have a background in horticultural journalism (mainly from the commercial grower side), am a proud former 4-Her as well as lifelong gardener, currently toiling away on my own plot at the community garden. At the helm of a magazine whose industry I am still getting to know, I look forward to delving into your challenges and sharing tips to help you not only mitigate difficulties, but also further your successes.
I invite you to drop me an email, friend me on Facebook or give me a call. Your perspectives into the industry are a significant part of what makes this magazine great, and I’d love to touch base with you.
This month, it’s all about edibles. The National Gardening Association found that sales for edible gardening had increased to almost $3 billion in 2010, and showed potential for continued growth; this year, the experts confirmed that it has indeed continued growing over the last three years. What are you doing to get your slice of the edibles pie? Even though most of your customers already have their summer edibles in the ground, their visits to your retail store and greenhouse won’t necessarily stop, if you diversify your methods.
In this issue, we explore how to use the edibles newfound popularity and the healthy eating movement as vehicles to keep your customers coming back long after they cart home their flats of herbs and vegetables, including tips for the best ways to merchandise them. We show you some of the latest consumer trends that shouldn’t be overlooked due to their potential for revenue creation, and share the stories of successful IGCs who work directly with the community to better the world around them, one row at a time.
Part of your success in selling plants is influenced by the brands that you carry in your retail store. Read the Branded Plant supplement starting on page 35 for the latest information about branded plants and how to utilize them fully for maximum profit. Speaking of profits, don’t miss the Increasing Profits supplement that starts on page 73 — in it, you’ll find testimonials from garden center owners like yourself who have found the best ways to keep costs down and revenues up by using quality tools and products.
We are proud to offer you a magazine with more coverage, strategies and tips than any of the others in the industry. I hope you’ll take the time to peruse all of the articles, which have been hand-selected for their relevance to your business.
Enjoy… and thanks for reading Garden Center.