PASADENA, Calif. - February 21, 2007 - Monrovia Growers and Armstrong Garden Centers have teamed up to introduce a new retail concept - called the Monrovia Boutique. The signature store display was launched at Armstrong Garden Centers' Pasadena location, and will be rolled out in various sizes and formats to all 36 Armstrong stores.
The Boutique is a 1,200-square-foot area dedicated to Monrovia plants. A display, designed by top landscape designers, tastefully incorporates the Monrovia brand with an extensive plant material and outdoor living products.
"For the past decade, Monrovia has been branding itself to consumers, conveying the message that we grow premium plants that will thrive in their garden, " explained Bob Smiland, chief sales and marketing officer. "People walk into a garden center, looking for Monrovia plants and asking for our exclusive varieties. We don't want to make them search all over the garden center to find what they want."
Smiland points out that consumers are used to retail establishments selling this way. "In a department store, if you like a specific designer, you'll see all of their clothes in one area. It's a natural way for consumers to shop for their favorite brands."
Armstrong Garden Centers' shoppers will encounter dozens of Monrovia plant varieties in the Boutique, and see ideas for combining plants, creating interesting containers, creating an outdoor living space, and identifying great specimen plants. The plant material will change regularly to maintain interest and inspiration, offering themes such as Cottage, Classic and Tropical.
The Monrovia Boutique concept isn't without its challenges. "Our first concern was how to keep the area stocked with Monrovia plants," Smiland said. "But the partnership with Armstrong has given us the confidence that it can be done. They are eager to make this concept work and have a well-trained, dedicated staff who make it a priority to keep the display looking its best."
Mike Kunce, CEO of Armstrong Garden Centers, agrees. "Our 700 nursery professionals have been trained on the growth habits, care and special benefits of hundreds of Monrovia varieties," he said. "We are eager to see how our customers like this shopping experience."
Kunce points out that Armstrong and Monrovia have a long history together, dating back to the 1920s when founders John Armstrong and Harry Rosedale worked together to bring about changes in the way trees and shrubs were introduced to the home gardener. "So it just makes sense that we would team up again," he said.
Photos Available Upon Request
Background on Monrovia:
Monrovia is one of the world's largest producers of container grown plants, with more than 2,000 different varieties. Since it was founded in 1926 by Harry E. Rosedale, the company has introduced hundreds of patented plants, more than 200 of which are Monrovia exclusives. Monrovia plants are shipped to independent garden centers nationwide from its nurseries in Visalia and Venice Hills, Calif., Dayton, Ore., Springfield, Ohio, LaGrange, N.C. and Cairo, Ga. Throughout its history, Monrovia has pioneered many new technologies and new plant introductions. It remains a family owned entity. To find the nearest garden center that carries Monrovia plants, visit www.monrovia.com.
Background on Armstrong Garden Centers, Inc.:
Armstrong Garden Centers, Inc. is an employee owned company founded in 1889. Armstrong Garden Centers serves California gardeners and is the largest independent retail nursery company in the Western United States, specializing in the largest selection of roses (over 950 varieties), many developed and exclusive to Armstrong Garden Centers. With hundreds of nursery people to help answer those tough gardening questions, Armstrong guarantees customers' success."