A Different View

Jennifer Zurko
You may not recognize this scene from this side of our two-in-one publication because it’s usually featured in Green Profit. But we thought it would be nice to give the growers who read this side first a glimpse at an industry event they don’t usually frequent.

This August marked the 11th time the IGC Show has been held in Chicago at the city’s vibrant Navy Pier. And, as every with year, thousands of retailers walk the aisles to see the latest trends in containers, garden décor and giftware, as well as what’s new in plants.

Proudly touted as the only show for independent garden center retailers, you don’t see many wholesale growers attending the show. However, some of those who have a large IGC customer base do exhibit here, as well as many breeding companies.

Ball Seed Company has had a booth at the IGC Show since the beginning and the reason why is because, like they do with growers at the California Spring Trials, it gives the company a chance to show their new products and be up close and personal to their retailer customers.

“It gives us the opportunity to influence retailers,” said Bill Calkins, Ball’s Independent Garden Center Business Manager. “Half of the people who attend this show are grower-retailers and the other half buy directly from growers. Ball’s history is built on small and mid-sized growers.”

As for the mood, it always seems to be good at this show—hey, it’s the end of summer and many retailers are already planning their impending holiday events. And the new products they bought here at the IGC Show offer a little preview of what will be in their stores next spring.

For highlights and to see what some of those new products may be, stay tuned for the next few issues of Green Profit. GT