It's garden bloggers asking the tough questions

This last week has proven an idea I have had, and maybe you shared. There are two distinct horticultural industries. There are those who service the chains and box stores, and those who service the rest of us. We are not saying one is better than the other, but they are distinct.

What works for them may not be what works for us. When asked by a garden blogger at the IGC show about what nurseries should do with overgrown plants a representative from Proven Winners said, “IGC (Independent Garden Centers) should send the plant back to the wholesaler for potting up.”

Reading a comment at Garden Rant concerning this subject a commenter said, “The Home Depot's program is Pay-by-Scan but also is better described as Vendor Managed Inventory. The grower works closely with the Home Depot merchant/buyer in driving the business with the best varieties, highest quality and most competitive prices to beat their primary competition, Lowes, in offering the customer value and quality they will return for. If a grower is not up to the task, another grower steps up to assume this lucrative business. The model works for growers who can produce merchandise, replenish and water quality plants. Plants that loose their sales appeal are taken back to the nursery and rejuvenated or composted. In most of the country, The Home Depot has the best garden centers and their business continues to grow despite the economy. Where Home Depot's are located close to quality IGC's, both prosper and there is a need for both. I can assure you, quality is winning in Florida. Check our blog link below for more on this.”

Here is comment from nurseryperson Chris directly following the above, “Rick-went to your blog because your comment sounded so positive about Home Depot garden centers being the best. No wonder, you're one of their suppliers. Do you offer the same level of service to IGC's that you offer to HD, at the same pricing? Just wondering."

Thanks Chris, I and lot's of IGC's out there are wondering the same thing. Again, there is nothing wrong with what the box stores and their suppliers are doing. Just don't try and tell us that the playing field is level, or that IGC's have the same opportunities that box stores have with their vendors. Of course we don't. I could hear the laughter coming from IGC's all over the world when Proven Winners said, "send the plant back to the wholesaler for re-potting"

A new day is dawning! Thank Goodness we have garden blogger's out there asking the tough questions.

Like Chris and other IGC's everywhere, we are still wondering...