Montgomery’s Denver Retail Report

Slideshow: Denver Retailers

It has been cold in Denver. On Saturday, it snowed but the temperatures were in the 70s Sunday with warming throughout the week forecasted. With the cold weather, the products currently on shelves looked remarkably good with some items like calla lilies being more adversely affected.

Home Depot
Home Depot had a good assortment of products. Clearly, it is prepared for the spring season to get into high gear. There were several geraniums SKUs that really looked good, including some 12-inch baskets of the new Calliope.

In the perennials sector, all items are coming from out-of-state suppliers–one from Arizona and one from California. The Bonnie Plant Farms displays had been picked over, indicating consumers are preparing to plant more vegetables even with bad weather.

Lowe’s has vastly improved its in-store merchandising with clean and well-organized displays. Additionally, all items were accurately priced. Overall, product quality was respectable, and Lowe’s offered a wide range of sizes and price points.

Walmart has made the biggest improvement in product quality and merchandising. Arguably, these Walmarts were among the better stores we have seen this year.

The stores have adequate inventory but are not overcrowded like they were in the past. It appears Walmart is sticking to the basics and putting a greater focus on sell-through and the reduction of discards. It has enough of the premium items to interest the consumer. I saw some of the plants of the new Calliope geranium at Walmart in both baskets and patio pots.

Costco (Lone Tree)
Costco’s store in Lone Tree, Colo., had the best array of upscale containers and baskets I’ve seen outside of some of the better independents.

–Pedestal urn 16-inch at $92.99
–18-inch clay urn at $64.99
–20-inch moss hanging basket at $66.99
–14-inch upscale color bowl at $25.99
–14-inch flowering annual trellis at $36.99
–14-inch patio at $44.99
–13-inch fiber handing basket at $29.99
–14-inch patio vegetable trellis at $22.99

Costco (Parker)
This Costco had a totally different product mix from the Lone Tree store and also a different vendor.

– 15-inch patio combination pot at $22.99
–20-inch window box at $25.99
–12-inch hanging basket at $16.49
–14-inch coco fiber basket at $23.89
–10-inch premium basket at $13.79
–8-inch geraniums at $8.99
–6-inch geraniums at $21.69

Costco (Parker) offered a number of other traditional annuals, but the upscale containers were the stirs. All items were high quality and lots of color. The vendor is Tagawa Greenhouses in Brighton Colo., is the vendor.

Tagawa Garden Center
Tagawa Garden Center knows how to sell green goods using some of the best merchandising you will see in any garden center. Tagawa uses a lot vignettes to focus on the various categories, and it uses signage as well as any retailer. It also completely separates annuals and perennials completely, and each area is a shopping experience in itself.

Tagawa sells roses in heated greenhouses and obviously uses those houses to force the roses into flower for the selling season. The garden center exhibits what I would guess to be an acre of roses. In the patio container group, Tagawa has more sizes and designs than any retailer I’ve visited in the past three years.

It has so many items and price points, it would take a full day to compile everything–we had only an hour. Every plant was marked with the retail prices, so it was always easy to know what you were buying. And talk about the importance of color. It abounds here.

Tagawa is selling its geraniums produced either in rice pots or fiber pots and has great POS signage indicating geraniums are grown in containers certified by Veriflora as biodegradable or compostable. The garden center is pricing the quart SKU at $7.99 and the 1 gallon SKU at $14.99. That’s a far cry from the pricing at the national retailers.

Denver has more successful independent gardens per capita than any other area of the country, and it makes you wonder why? My take is that independents have separated themselves so well from the national retailers by leading, not following.

If you were to compare prices between the two, it would be clear Denver independents have not attempted to get into the low-price game. It seems to me some of the highest prices in the country can be found in Denver.

Retailers Visited
Retailer Store No. City Annuals Perennials Vegetables
Walmart 3638 Westminster Color Star Color Star Bonnie
Walmart 2213 Westminster Color Star Color Star Bonnie
Walmart 3824 Westminster Color Star Color Star Bonnie
Walmart 5341 Broomfield Color Star Color Star Bonnie
Walmart 1231 Thornton Color Star Color Star Bonnie
Lowe’s 2432 Westminster Color Star Tri-B-El Modeno Bonnie
Lowe’s 1989 Westminster Color Star Tri-B-El Modeno Bonnie
Lowe’s 0304 Arvada Color Star Tri-B-El Modeno Bonnie
Lowe’s 1903 Lakewood Color Star Tri-B-El Modeno Bonnie
Lowe’s 0246 Northglenn Color Star Tri-B-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1548 Thornton Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1524 Broomfield Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1517 Westminster Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1508 Lone Tree Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1503 Thornton Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Home Depot 1502 Arvada Tagawa Hines-El Modeno Bonnie
Costco   Lone Tree Tagawa   Tagawa
Costco   Parker Color Star Color Star Color Star
Tagawa Garden Center   Centennial Tagawa Center Greenhouses Tagawa


Retail Prices Denver Metro
Item Size Home Depot Lowe’s Walmart Tagawa Garden Center
Annuals Basic 606   2.48 2.25 4.99
  4-inch   1.19    
  6-inch   2.48 3.00  
  306     5.00  
  1004 1.99      
  1803 1.48      
  T-16 8.97      
Annuals Premium          
Geraniums 4-inch 2.78     7.99
  6-inch 4.97   4.75 14.99
  8-inch 7.97      
  Quart 3.97   3.50  
  1G 4.97      
Item Size Home Depot Lowe’s Walmart Tagawa Garden Center
Garden Club Select Quart   3.48    
  1G   4.98    
GCS Perennials 1G   5.98    
  8-inch   8.98    
Vigor Quart 3.97      
  1G 4.97      
Wave 6-inch 4.97      
Perennials Quart 3.47 3.48 3.00  
  1G 4.98 5.24 4.75 9.99-19.99
Hanging Baskets          
Basic 10-inch 10.97 9.98 12.00 29.99
Premium 10-inch 16.97 14.98   29.99
Geranium Calliope 12-inch 24.97   22.00  
Coco Fiber 12-inch   27.98   39.99
Moss Basket 16-inch 59.97      
Premium Combo 12-inch 24.97      
Fiber HB 13-inch 34.97      
Patio Pots          
Geranium Calliope 12-inch     21.00  
Geranium 10-inch   14.98    
Fuchsia 12-inch 16.97      
Square Combination 14-inch 32.97      
  24-inch     25.00 39.99
Patio Basic 10-inch   12.98    
Gerbera Lollipop 10-inch   24.98    
Color Bowl 14-inch   14.98    
Bonnie Vegetables 9-pack   3.48 3.00  
  4-inch 2.98 2.98    
  5-inch 3.48 3.48 3.25  
  1G 5.98 5.98 5.00  

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