Montgomery’s Charlotte Retail Report

Montgomery's Charlotte Retail Report


Home Depot featured two pumpkin-face containers–a 10-inch
and a 12-inch–that were interesting items with a Halloween theme.
for more photos from Jerry Montgomery.

Marketing consultant Jerry Montgomery visited Charlotte, N.C., in late October and toured garden centers at Home Depot, Lowe’s and Walmart to see the fall product. He also stopped into Pike Nurseries. Below are his findings, and you can view a slideshow of Montgomery’s Charlotte tour:

Much like Atlanta, Charlotte has been plagued with rain and unseasonably cold temperatures. The two days I was there, night temperatures were in the high 30s and the day temperature was 52°F and 62°F on Sunday. Stores were well stocked with garden mums, pansies and other fall plants.

Charlotte is a market Metrolina Greenhouses dominates. Metrolina is the vendor for Lowe’s and Walmart in the area. In this market, you see some of the best product quality and merchandising. Quality and merchandising are second to none.

Lowe’s

These stores are some of the cleanest, neatest and best merchandised Lowe’s stores in the country. The product quality is outstanding, as well.

A great selection of patio pots from 7.98 to 23.98 featured outstanding product quality and were, of course, expertly merchandised. In these stores, you see a real emphasis on the end caps that are highest impact areas.

Lowe’s offered a Majestic Giant premium pansy program in a quart and 1-gallon sizes merchandised in blocks of color for a very effective display. The Majestic Giant program features colorful pots and a large locking label, and all plants were full of flowers. We did see a few of the Rebound Pansies but the Majestic Giant SKU was far more dominant.

Home Depot

Home Depot offered a range of garden mums and pansies in an array of sizes and pricepoints with the 209 Pansy SKU seemingly as the best value. Home Depot had more focus on the outside aprons with far less impact inside the garden center. Home Depot featured two pumpkin-face containers–a 10-inch and a 12-inch–that were interesting items with a Halloween theme.

Walmart

Much like Atlanta, garden centers did not use all their floor space for green goods. Walmart appeared to be very focused on inventory control. The product quality and merchandising was way above average, and Walmart focused on the pricepoints of less than $5 retail. Still, the stores had a nice offering of larger sizes in the $10-$20 range.

Pike Nurseries

Only one Pike Nurseries store is located in Charlotte, but you could again see the Armstrong touch with very good merchandising and above average POS signage. As we observed in Atlanta, Pike Nurseries is staffed with knowledgeable and friendly personnel that goes out of its way to provide customers the information they need.

Summary

Charlotte is interesting because it is the home territory for Metrolina Greenhouses, arguably one of the few premier vendors to the national retailers. The merchandising in Lowe’s was second to none with well-organized displays, high-impact end caps, above-average packaging and excellent product quality. Walmart stores were some of the best in the country with excellent product quality, neat displays and sizes and pricepoints that speak to its customer base.

In marketing programs, Lowe’s offered a 1-quart and 1-gallon Majestic Giant Pansy program that was well packaged, heavily flowered and displayed in color blocks. It was the only item we observed that was sold by variety with all other pansies offered generically.

The Ready Refill patio container program at Lowe’s was an interesting way to create repeat sales, offering refills for all four seasons using the one container. The consumer can have a year-round patio container with refills available for less than $20.

Even with poor weather, there was a lot of good products at the three national retailers. However, we did see a number of pansy displays with little to no color. One of the SKUs that was above average in color and quality was the 209 Pansy at Home Depot from Stacy’s Greenhouse.

Table 1. Retailers Visited

Retailer
Store Number City Annual Vendor Perennial Vendor
Lowe’s 2352 Charlotte Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 0489 Huntersville Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 2636 Denver Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 0595 Mooresville Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 2368 Kannapolis Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 0697 Concord Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 2750 Troutman Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 2650 Belmont Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 0457 Gastonia Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 0377 Charlotte Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 1134 Matthews Metrolina Layman
Lowe’s 1060 Charlotte Metrolina Layman
Home Depot P3606 Charlotte Baucom Stacy’s
Home Depot 3646 Charlotte Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3639 Charlotte Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3607 Kannapolis Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3638 Cornelius Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3606 Gastonia Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3601 Pineville Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3662 Charlotte Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Home Depot 3602 Matthews Baucom-Stacy’s Stacy’s
Walmart 4274 Denver Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 1156 Mooresville Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 2005 Kannapolis Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 1027 Concord Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 5481 Charlotte Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 5085 Belmost Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 1385 Gastonia Metrolina Metrolina
Walmart 5063 Charlotte Metrolina Metrolina
Pike Nurseries   Charlotte Sunbelt-Wenke Monrovia


Table 2. Retail Prices, Charlotte, N.C.

Item Size Lowe’s Home Depot Walmart
Garden mums T-18      
  4-inch      
  6-inch 2.48 2.97 2.50
  8-inch 4.98 6.27 4.50
  2 G   5.97  
  3 G   11.97  
Harvest basket 8-inch 7.98   5.00
Cauldron 8-inch 8.98    
  10-inch 11.98 12.99  
  12-inch 15.98 16.97  
Harvest basket 11-inch 12.98    
  13-inch 23.98    
Patina 14-inch      
Hanging baskets 10-inch 10.98 10.97  
  12-inch 15.98    
Color bowl 12-inch 11.98    
Refill** 14-inch 16.98    
Harvest basket 14-inch 21.98    
Hanging basket 14-inch   19.97 20.00
  14-inch 19.98 19.97  
Pumpkin face planter 10-inch   17.97  
  12-inch   24.97  
Pansies 606 1.78 1.78 1.75
  T-18 11.88    
  4-inch 1.18 0.99  
  306   4.97  
  209   5.99 6.00
Majestic Giants Quart 2.88    
  1 G 4.98    
Rebound Pansy 1 G 4.98    
  6-inch 2.98 2.97 2.25
  8-inch 3.98   4.00
Hanging basket 10-inch 7.98 7.97 7.50
  10-inch 11.98   11.00
Window box 16-inch     10.00
Color bowl 12-inch 11.26 11.88  
Kale/cabbage 209 5.98    
  6-inch 2.98 2.97  
  8-inch 4.98 3.97 4.50
Patio annual 12-inch 15.98    
  13-inch 23.98    
  14.5-inch   27.98  
  10.5-inch   9.97  

 

** Refill supports a patio container program Ready Refill in which the customer selects a container and Lowe’s offers a drop in refill for each season.

About the author: Jerry Montgomery is a 40-year veteran of the floriculture industry and has worked for distributor companies, breeders and large growers specializing with a focus on sales and marketing. As an industry consultant, he works for large growers, distributors and breeder/producers. His focus is to understand the market dynamics from breeder to consumer through intense retail travel, visiting almost 1,500 stores since January 2008.

Leave a Reply

More From Marketing...
PP&L CAST 2015 intros

April 22, 2015

6 Breeding Companies Serve Up New Varieties At Pacific Plug & Liner

Pacific Plug & Liner’s theme this year, Labyrinth, a conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants, was perfectly topped off (pun intended) with fascinators for the women and newsboy caps for the men. The PP&L team dressed their part to act out the gothic “conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants.” Truly, the displays looked like they practically popped out of a catalog, and the costumes were a nice touch. Retailers take heed, the fully merchandised displays at Pacific Plug & Liner are worthy of emulating. We’ll let the pictures tell the story of all the fabulous variety introductions presented at  Pacific Plug & Liner’s 2015 California Spring Trials, where Cultivaris, Cohen Nurseries, Histil Nurseries, Jaldety Nurseries, Southern Living/Sunset Collection and Pacific Plug & Liner all highlighted their 2016 introductions.  

Read More
Speedling 2015 CAST intros

April 22, 2015

Speedling Inc. Presents New Varieties From ABZ Seeds, Hem Genetics, Thompson & Morgan, Vista Farms & PSI

You name it, we saw it at Speedling's California Spring Trials location in San Juan Bautista, where five companies showed off their new introductions for 2016.

Read More
PittMoss on Shark Tank

April 22, 2015

PittMoss Wins On Shark Tank

Mont Handley, president and CEO of PittMoss, appeared on ABC’s Shark Tank on April 17 to try to get the “sharks” to invest in his peat moss alternative. Three investors from the TV show contributed $600,000 to PittMoss for a 35 percent stake in the company. Check out this clip from ABC’s website in which Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary and Robert Herjavec discuss getting on board with the product. PittMoss is an alternative to sphagnum peat moss, made up of a mix of proprietary additives and recycled paper rescued from landfill space. Handley founded the Pittsburgh-based company in 1994. What started as a small experiment grew into a full-fledged business with the help of funding provided by an EPA SBIR grant and Pittsburgh’s Idea Foundry. Today, PittMoss is available to commercial greenhouses and nurseries from Michigan to Maine to North Carolina, with plans to grow. To learn more, visit PittMoss’ website, or check it […]

Read More
Latest Stories

April 15, 2015

Redesigned SunPatiens Website Offers New Tools For Saka…

Sakata Seed America's new and improved SunPatiens website launched March 1, 2015 and provides growing information, marketing support, product location and many more tools to encourage consumer success with SunPatiens.

Read More
Keenland

April 13, 2015

Proven Winners Partners With Award-Winning Designer Jon…

Proven Winners will partner with award-winning garden designer, author and fine living expert Jon Carloftis on a new series of four LIFE + STYLE events in 2015. In true Carloftis style, food and spirits will be paired with inspiring architecture and innovative garden designs featuring Proven Winners plants.

Read More

April 13, 2015

New Consumer Website Makes Buying Roses Easier

A new website has been created as a resource tool for gardeners who are looking for a rose that fits their needs. This website is 100% consumer focused and will inspire confidence and promote rose gardening to the next generation of gardeners. Visitors will also find links to connect on social networks, such as Facebook and Pinterest. The website promotes roses, not specific brands, and that is what makes it unique.

Read More
Rose rosette on Knockout rose, April 2012. Photo credit: Alan Windham, University of Tennessee

March 25, 2015

$58 Million In APHIS Farm Bill Funding Will Support Hor…

Nearly $58 million as been allocated by the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to support the industry's Plant Pest and Disease Management and Disaster Prevention Program, under Farm Bill Section 10007. The program will support mitigation efforts for specialty crops, including providing research and other funding to address plant pest and disease priorities for the specialty crop industry, including floriculture and nursery crops.

Read More
National Floriculture Forum 2015 029

March 18, 2015

2015 National Floriculture Forum Focuses On Marketing I…

The 2015 National Floriculture Forum, held March 6 to 7 in Minneapolis, Minn., zeroed in on the topic of marketing in horticulture and included visits to Gertens Greenhouses and Garden Center, Bailey Nurseries, Bachman’s Floral, Home and Garden and Tangletown Gardens. The annual meeting allows greenhouse and floriculture faculty, graduate students and industry partners to meet and share updates on current research, issues and initiatives.

Read More

February 18, 2015

Range Of Nursery Inspections To Protect Patented Plants…

Plant patents are under protection, and breeders are fighting for their rights to keep growers from illegally propagating protected varieties. It's something you don't want to take a chance on, because the risk is far higher than the reward. More than 300 inspections were carried out last year from New York to British Columbia and from Ontario to Florida to protect plant patents, Plant Breeders’ Rights (PBR) and branded programs.

Read More

February 4, 2015

TPIE 2015: An Electrified Industry Vibe Boosts Cool New…

The general feeling at the Florida Nursery Growers and Landscape Association's 2015 Tropical Industry Exhibition (TPIE) was upbeat and positive. Attendees were inspired by exciting new products and varieties, as well as creative new displays and innovative ideas and left energized for the season ahead.

Read More
Costa Farms Website

January 21, 2015

Costa Farms’ Launches New Interactive Website

Costa Farms is making efforts to educate consumers while pushing horticultural digital marketing forward with the re-design of its website. The new website features a fresh design and improved navigation, as well as a plant finder that gives gardeners easy access to plant information.

Read More

January 5, 2015

Growers Are Successfully Marketing The Benefits Of Pla…

Growers who are already marketing plant benefits and gardening as a lifestyle say they think this could be the best angle for the floriculture industry to promote our products.

Read More

January 5, 2015

Plants Love You Campaign Raises Plant Benefits To Foref…

Plants make us feel good. It’s a no-brainer, backed by numerous studies, but there’s more to the story. And it’s one the Canadian Ornamental Horticulture Alliance (COHA) hopes its Plants Love You campaign will tell in such a way that it will inspire people to make plants a part of their life, and on a bigger scale. COHA is an alliance between the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association (CNLA), the Fédération Interdisciplinaire De L’Horticulture Ornementqale Du Québec (FIHOQ) and Flowers Canada Growers (FCG). Inspiration for The Plants Love You campaign came from COHA’s research, which revealed that 96 percent of consumers surveyed have a favorable attitude toward plants. When COHA delved deeper into the numbers, one thing stood out loud and clear. “It quickly became apparent that while consumers like plants because they are pretty and make them feel good, few understood the environmental and health benefits plants offer.” says Frank […]

Read More

December 9, 2014

New Website For PanAmerican Seed

PanAmerican Seed's new website is mobile-friendly and has a fresh look and enhanced navigation.

Read More
What’s a pumpulent? It’s a pumpkin planted with succulents, and it’s also one of the ways Altum’s is catching customers’ attention with new products and modern marketing.

December 1, 2014

9 Digital Marketing Resolutions For 2015

Whatever your experience with digital marketing, here’s some advice for keeping your business progressing into the new year.

Read More

November 25, 2014

Conley’s Launches New Website

Conley’s Manufacturing and Sales recently launched its newly designed website, which was redesigned to create a user-friendly digital environment for customers to explore Conley's products.

Read More

November 17, 2014

Canada’s Plants Love You Campaign Educates Consum…

In a cooperative effort to promote the benefits of plants to consumers, the Canadian Ornamental Horticulture Alliance (COHA) recently launched its Plants Love You campaign to make consumers more aware of the health, environmental and economic benefits of plants.

Read More
Supertunia® Vista Bubblegum™ Petunia from Proven Winners

November 11, 2014

Plantbid Offers New Tool For Growers, Plant Buyers

Plantbid is touted as a revolutionary new tool that allows plant buyers to purchase their whole plant list at one time, from growers who provide their complete availability online. According to the company, this new offering could change the way growers and landscapers do business.

Read More
Dahlia Dahlinova Temptation Lavender from Dummen Fides Oro

November 10, 2014

Bas Pellenaars Takes On New Role As Brand Manager For D…

Dümmen group announces the transition of Bas Pellenaars from area manager to brand manager.

Read More

October 28, 2014

Zombie Adventures Are Back: GGS Releases Premiere Of Ne…

What's good for plants, but bad for zombies? GGS structures. The company released a new promotional video to get growers in the spirit of Halloween. GGS Structures ran a series of zombie movies last year, and this year, something new was released October 24.

Read More
Suzanne McKee

October 27, 2014

Use Your Data To Make Smarter Marketing Decisions

Learn which marketing metrics are important to your business, measure successes and learn where changes are needed.

Read More