Local Garden Tours – Can They Help Grow Your Floral Business?

Millions of consumers are offsetting digital life stress by learning to be nurtured by nature. What does this trend mean for your floral business?

Gardening has long been the world’s most popular pastime. This healthy hobby is trending-up once again as millennials dig growing their own food and flowers.

In the US alone, at least 75 percent of the population enjoys some form of gardening. Garden tours are becoming increasingly popular with plant enthusiasts across the country.

Photo: Stacey Markuten

How can this help grow your profits?

Find Flower and Plant Enthusiasts

According to gardening columnist, Don Kinzler, gardening is a $36 billion-dollar business.

Tour ticket-buyers are obviously flower and plant enthusiasts. They’re willing to spend time and money attending floral or garden events. They might also be interested in purchasing the gardening tools or flower arranging materials available in your store.

How can you connect with these buyers? If your floral business isn’t participating in local garden tours, it might be something to consider.

Let’s look how you can benefit from gardening trends by visiting a local tour.

Hudson Garden Tour             

Each June the Hudson Garden Club holds its annual Home and Garden Tour. Beautiful homes and lovely gardens in the historic Western Reserve city are showcased.

Photo: Stacey Markuten

Starting in 1947, the tour has evolved to include both homes and gardens. Floral arrangements designed by Garden Club members using fresh material from local Hudson gardens are featured in each home on the tour.

What are the possible benefits for your floral business of participating in a tour?

  1. Connecting with the community

The garden tour is a cornerstone of Hudson Days - a community-wide celebration. The tour is one of many activities throughout the city.

Photo: Stacey Markuten

Tour proceeds fund the Garden Club’s annual scholarships, grants, school programs, mentoring workshops, tree planting in Hudson and community gardening projects.

Participating in a local garden tour in your area might help to grow your client list. How?

Connect with gardeners in your community.

  • Donate to the garden club tour
  • Offer a scholarship in the name of your business
  • Provide flowering plants for a gardening project
  • Work as a volunteer or give a floral demonstration
Photo: Stacey Markuten

How can your floral business participate in a tour or schedule events for the same day?

Offer a hands-on flower arranging class featuring tips for using garden flowers.

  • Encourage students to bring in their garden flowers
  • Offer a pre-mixed bundle of flower for those who prefer to purchase blooms
  • Create a sales display of flower arranging tools and containers
  • Promote the class in your shop, print and online
  • Post photos of students enjoying the event

Roses are America’s favorite perennial. Offer DIY classes that feature planting, growing or arranging roses.

Research which other garden trends are emerging in your area and introduce those new ideas to your potential clientele.

2. Introduce Urban Gardening

Many weekend gardeners face too little space or too little time for their gardens.

Urban Gardening is topping the trend charts by changing the way we think about gardening. Urban dwellers are bringing their plantings to a smaller, more manageable scale with container gardening.

Photo: Stacey Markuten

For those customers wanting easier garden maintenance suggest planting multiple plants in a raised bed planter. Easier access and one-stop watering are two obvious benefits.

What other tips and supplies can you offer urban gardeners or floral enthusiasts?

Photo: Stacey Markuten

If you don’t sell potted or outdoor plants and floral hanging baskets, now may be the time to explore those options. Introduce the live plants with a hands-on demo day - hopefully in connection with the garden tour. Let your customers know you’ve added these items to your product line.

If your business is a garden center, consider offering both adult and children’s DIY classes for planting container, windowsill, or herb gardens. Offer a class on making terrariums.

3. Fish for new customers

Photo: Stacey Markuten

How can you encourage water-feature buyers to become your customers?

If you have expertise with building waterfalls or creating fish ponds and have those materials to sell - share the info on the date of a local home and garden tour.

  • Ask in advance if your in-store event can be added to the tour
  • Give a demonstration and offer step-by-step handouts
  • Invite a knowledgeable speaker to speak on the subject in your store
  • Advertise the event in the local newspaper and on your social media
Photo: Stacey Markuten

Create impulse sales in your floral business on tour days.

  • Set up a sales display of waterfall and pond materials
  • Create a ‘Pop-up Shop’ of outdoor floral and foliage plants
  • Offer a discount for water feature kits that are pre-ordered
Photo: Stacey Markuten
  • Join a ‘Farmer’s Market’ selling potted plants and hanging baskets
  • Sell on-site, but offer Monday pick-up or delivery to tour attendees
  • This is an eco-chic group, offer them eco-friendly products
Photo: Stacey Markuten

Sound like a lot of work?

Maybe you just want to forget the plans with plants and hang a hammock in the garden so you can spend time there!

Consider adding products for others who would rather kick-back too!

  • Hammocks, shade tents, outdoor benches
  • Garden décor, pottery containers or stools
  • Auto watering systems, flower and plant foods
  • Picnic or outdoor party items

How can these ideas help you grow your floral business?

Since gardening is trending-up, it’s a great time to consider gardening and flower arranging products for your floral business. Be sure to offer products appropriate to the growing season you will be selling in.

Reach out to consumers in new ways to let them know your shop is a resource for items they may want or need.

When participating in local gardening events, you can meet new potential customers. Tailor your floral events year-round to accommodate their needs.

What suggestions can you share in the comments below for growing this segment of your business?

Do you participate in local garden tours? If so, what benefits have you experienced?


Thanks, Gloria Markuten!

Sharon McGukin December 18, 2019

What wonderful floral ideas presented by Sharon and lovely garden photo compositions by Stacey.

Gloria Markuten December 18, 2019

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