Garden Center Dos

Jennifer Zurko

Seattle-area retailers sure do a lot of different things to impress their customers. And you can do these, too!  

DO have a water feature

If you have the room, and can handle the installation and maintenance, the beautiful pond and waterfall at the entrance of Squak Mt. Greenhouses is an inviting place to stop and take in the scenery while shopping their outdoor nursery area. Flower World has a couple of water features inside their garden center, too—this one with fish and turtles.

DO show how trailing plants trail

Squak Mt. had a neat way to show off trailing varieties, using 2x4s and plain old gutters. Simple, but effective.

DO chalkboard signs  

Are you sick and tired of us talking about cool signage? No? Good, because we keep seeing cool signage. Squak Mt. used slate-and-chalk signs throughout their garden center. Wells-Medina Nursery has a whole wall where they can hire someone to create a chalk mural or include info on important events and sales promotions.

DO follow trends

Regardless of whether you think the Pilea peperomiodes craze is silly or fleeting or both, it doesn’t hurt to take advantage of the latest plant or color trends. City People’s Garden Store is right on with the monstera trend with their display of plants and matching décor.

DO have a store pet

Keeping rodents away and bringing your regular customers coming back are great reasons to have furry friends to act as unofficial mascots. City People’s Garden Store has a pair of sister cats that their customers have come to love. And Shaun Murphy, owner of the Indoor Plant Shoppe, brings his French Bulldog Penny in every day. Getting back scratches from customers is an added bonus.


DO something cool

Shaun Murphy’s Volkswagen Beetle with a trunkful of succulents = Insta-worthy.

DO be adaptable

When Flower World wanted to expand their farmers market, they had to figure out what to do with the dying 200-year-old tree on the property. They cut it down, but kept most of the stump, building the expansion around it. They use it as a “table” to display their veggies and herbs. GP