Miniature Gardening at the Big Garden Centers
Every so often, I wrestle myself away from the office for a “recon mission” to tour the local nurseries in the greater Seattle area. After studying and promoting this wonderful hobby for many years, I am always looking for signs that the “big” nurseries are paying attention to this miniature garden niche that has been spreading like wildfire on the Internet.
And this year, it looks like the fairy and gnome gardening has become popular enough for the big nurseries to cater to the trend in at least some way – thankfully.
And we must be thankful for what we can get.
Running a full nursery and garden center is no easy feat. Not only is it extremely seasonal, they must deal with a living inventory that is susceptible to the unpredictable weather that can change in a moment’s notice. (Think the of the 60+ tornadoes that went through North Carolina over one weekend last week.)
Owning a garden center can easily be more than the average entrepreneur can handle. Most people who have “been there and done that” or at least worked in the industry would never attempt such an unpredictable business and I have a high level of appreciation and respect for any nursery retailer.
Linking this point with miniature gardening in any form, we realize that the nursery that has brought miniature or fairy garden items into their store is out of a love of plants and gardening, not to make a buck or two – because that’s all they would make, after all! The big “full-sized” plants, trees and shrubs are what really what puts food in their fridge and pay the staff for their tireless efforts.
So, go and check out your local nursery for miniature and fairy garden supplies. There is always something there that you can use for your mini garden scenes, projects or gift-giving ideas this season and if you can’t find any miniature accessories, at least look for some small-leafed ground covers to act miniature “bedding plants.”
Groundcover sedums are great for the full-sun gardens but look for the small-leafed ones.
Or perhaps you could get a small tree or a miniature/dwarf conifer to anchor the miniature garden bed. There has been a little surge in recent years in alpine perennials and rockery plants that you may find will work as well.
Then to help you even further, I have just posted the instructions on How to Make a Miniature Garden in the online store. It is the instructions that were only accessible by purchasing one of our complete Miniature Garden Kits – but now you can download them right away and learn how to do-it-yourself with your own plants and materials.
Happy spring and happy nursery shopping!
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