An Extension of the Store

Arett Outlook May 2016

You may want to give the mantra “leave work at work” a second thought. Annette Gutierrez is the owner of garden lifestyle store Potted in Los Angeles, California, and her home is the envy of any customer.

In the following interview, Gutierrez talks to Lawn & Garden Retailer about building credibility and knowing what trends compel your customers.

L&GR: As the owner of Potted, do you feel like your home has to have a gorgeous garden?

Annette Gutierrez: Yes, absolutely. It’s like the old saying that “the cobbler’s children have no shoes” from many, many years ago. I think things like that are by the wayside. You have to be a reflection of what you’re selling.

We’re more of a lifestyle brand in the sense that we want to evoke an image, a feeling. My garden is always changing because I want to work something out or try this or that. It’s a bit of a testing ground as well.

It’s been on The Garden Conservancy Tour and featured in Sunset magazine. It’s a calling card for sure.

Our professional life is an extension of what we enjoy so for me standing around saying, “Let’s try this,” and that I get paid for that, ultimately, is the best thing in the world. It’s a win-win for sure.

L&GR: The tagline of Potted is “indoor style for outdoor living.” What do you think that means for today’s consumers?

Gutierrez: When you decorate the inside of the house you have textiles, you’re thinking about draperies, you’re thinking about art, you’re thinking about all that kind of stuff. We really took the idea that your outdoor rooms are the same as your indoor rooms – they’re rooms – and that when you start thinking about it that way, the decorating becomes very similar to the interior.

Many people have outdoor living rooms like I have right outside my kitchen. There’s the outdoor kitchen, the outdoor dining room.

You can easily recreate the same ideas outside, but outside is so harsh. Our idea behind that was to try to curate choices that could support the outdoor conditions.

Anything that will hold up outdoors and is also beautiful is what we look for, and it’s not that easy to find. It’s getting better with the idea that people want choices and want the outside to be a reflection of their home, so that’s where that tagline came from.

L&GR: When customers come into your store, what are they asking for that they weren’t aware of a few years ago? What trends have you been seeing?

Gutierrez: What’s so great about the air plants is that people can live in an apartment in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia or Timbuktu; it doesn’t matter.

Anybody can use them inside, and they’re fun and easy. Although, they’re not as easy as everyone seems to want them to be.

I laugh when people come into the store and say, “We don’t have to do anything to them.” I’m like, “Well, they’re a living plant; they need water.” There’s this misconception. What’s great about them though is you can put them anywhere.

You know the Portlandia [sketch comedy television show] “Put a bird on it” joke? We always say, “Put an air plant on it!” We used that hashtag a lot on Instagram for a while. They’re fun. I think I have 50 air plants in my house. People who normally couldn’t have a garden experiment with them and then they get braver.

I’ve been noticing more interior plants. People are really getting over this thing about not having a houseplant.

I think more and more people are really embracing them because there are so many more choices now, and people have really freed themselves from spider plants hanging or something like that.

(Article provided by Lawn & Garden Retailer)

Orcon Live Beneficial Bugs

Arett Outlook May 2016

Spring is here and Orcon Ladybugs and Lacewings are ready to fly your way. We have plenty of live beneficial bugs, packaged and ready to ship – praying mantis, ladybugs, earthworm (red wigglers), grub control, flea destroyer, and beneficial nematodes, to name a few. Plus we have specialty beneficial insects you can offer without having to stock live bugs, available as pre-paid certificates (formerly known as mailbacks).

Recently the city of Irvine CA, population 236,000, voted to use organic pesticides as the first line of defense fighting bugs. It is a trend that is growing, especially with homeowners. As more and more people look to natural and organic solutions, beneficial insects can fill that need.

While Orcon/Organic Control, Inc. offers 10 live bugs, they also have a complete line of beneficial insects that you can carry without having to stock live bugs. Their Pre-Paid Certificates (Certs) are like gift cards, redeemable for live bugs. Your customer purchases the Cert from you, then contacts Orcon and Orcon sends the live bugs directly to your customers’ door. From favorites like beneficial nematodes to specialty insects like aphytis for scale control, to predatory mites for spider mite control, Orcon has 14 Pre-Paid Certificates to choose from. They also offer a free counter display, with the purchase of four or more cases.

Here are a few of the specialty beneficial insects available; see their catalog for a complete listing:

  • Predatory mites aggressively go after spider mites, other mites, and thrips, and eat them right up. They can be used indoors or out and are a popular control for cash crops. The Predatory Mite Cert has been the fastest growing Pre-Paid Certificate for the past two years.
  • Trichogramma, for caterpillar control, works on webworms, tomato horn worms, and budworms – 230 in all. An egg parasite, it is best to release when you see the moth or the first sign of damage.
  • Aphytis melinus controls scale by laying an egg under a young scale, thus killing it. Cryptolaemus is a small beetle, only about 5 mm, with a black body and an orange head. They dine on mealybug and the Cryptolaemus larvae look just like a mealybug-a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
  • Delphastus is another small beetle with a large appetite for whitefly.

Whether you choose live or Pre-Paid Certificates Orcon has the right bug for your store and your customer.

Order Now Using Program Number: O32D1

Attract Finches with Specialized Finch Feeders

Arett Outlook May 2016

Finches Eat Differently Than Many Other Wild Birds; Give Them a Feeder Designed Specifically for Them!

Finches are a favorite among many backyard birders across the country. Their tiny stature, feisty attitudes, and beautiful, bright colors are entertaining to watch as they fly from feeder to feeder in search of their next meal. They are some of the most unique songbirds known to visit bird feeders, and if you’re willing to cater to their specific needs and preferences, attracting finches can be fun and rewarding!

There are quite a few varieties of finches and sparrows that visit bird feeders all over North America. Most are year-round birds and will stay in your area throughout all seasons, however, a few species located in the southern United States may migrate north to Canada for breeding during the summer months.

Some finch species are easily identified by the unique colors the males display. House Finches and Purple Finches have beautiful raspberry colored feathers on their heads and necks, while others, like the American Goldfinch, have vibrant yellow and black markings all over in the spring and summer months.

Finches eat mainly seeds and insects, and they are particularly fond of smaller seeds like black oil sunflower and Nyjer® at feeders. Black oil sunflower seed is more of an all-around seed choice that many bird species love. But, if you’re looking to appeal mainly to the finch species, offering Nyjer® seed is a great choice since many larger birds won’t eat it.

Nyjer® seed is extremely nutritious for these tiny birds. The high oil content of Nyjer® provides loads of energy that these guys require. Once the oiliness dries out from the seed, it loses its attractiveness to birds. That’s why it’s important not to overfill feeders when using Nyjer®, and always store unused Nyjer® seed in an airtight container. To make the seed in your feeder last a little longer, gently shake your feeder every day to jostle up the seed and prevent seed clumps and mold from forming.

Although popular, Nyjer® can be quite pricey. Because Nyjer® has such a small kernel, it easily can fall out of regular bird feeder ports. Instead, you will need a feeder with ports that have a tiny, slit-like opening so you don’t waste your expensive Nyjer® seed. An added bonus when choosing to offer Nyjer® is that squirrels prefer Nyjer® less than most other types of bird seed. That’s right, squirrels will likely leave your finch feeders alone if you choose to offer 100% Nyjer® seed!

If you want to attract finches to your yard, put out a feeder that is specifically made just for them like the Perky-Pet® 10 Inch Metal Finch Feeder. This metal bird feeder is designed without perches to allow for only clinging birds, like those in the finch family, to cling anywhere on the feeder’s surface area and pull out seed. And because there’s no perches, you can see more birds eating from this feeder than you would with a traditional bird feeder. The tiny holes all over this feeder securely hold Nyjer® seed so it won’t spill all over the ground, and the sturdy metal construction resists damage if it should fall or be knocked to the ground.

The Perky-Pet® Select-A-Finch Tube Feeder is another great feeder option for attracting finches to your yard. This feeder also holds Nyjer® seed, and is designed to not only cater to finches, but even more specifically to goldfinches. Goldfinches are the only finch variety that will eat seed while hanging upside down. They’re known to be finicky eaters, so providing them with a feeder that’s all for them will increase your chances of attracting these bright yellow beauties.

With the Select-A-Finch Tube Feeder, you have the option of changing the ports to attract either all varieties of finches or just goldfinches, making this the perfect 2-for-1 finch feeder! You can choose where the perch is placed by rotating the ports. When the perch is underneath the port, you’re able to attract all finches to this feeder, but if the perch is above the port you’re sending a message to all other birds in the yard that this feeder is only for goldfinches!

Finches are great birds to have visiting your feeders. Many varieties of finches, like House Finches, travel in large groups, so if you attract one, you’re likely to attract a whole flock of 50 or more birds! By offering a feeder designed specifically for finches, you’ll make your yard the hot spot for multitudes of cheerful birds all year long!

Order Now Using Program Number: W75S9

Increase Sales with Solution to Poison Ivy Problems

Arett Outlook May 2016

Every gardener’s nightmare: an accidental brush with poison ivy while working in their garden or yard. This run-in with poison ivy can lead up to three weeks of misery causing people to avoid the enjoyment of gardening. Simply put, removing fear of the severely itchy, allergic skin reaction will keep people outdoors, and in need of garden center products.

Remove the fear with a product that works!

With Zanfel in hand, gardeners no longer have to fear a potential run-in with poison ivy. Zanfel Poison Ivy, Oak & Sumac Wash is the only product clinically shown to remove the poison ivy plants’ oily toxin (called “urushiol”) from the skin, anytime after outbreak of the rash. Once the oil has been removed during a Zanfel washing, itching stops (in 30 seconds), and the skin is immediately able to begin the healing process. For most mild to moderate cases of poison ivy, within 24 hours 75 – 80% of the rash will be gone.

Zanfel is a specially formulated wash for allergic skin reactions to poison ivy, oak, or sumac. The most important step to eliminating the rash is to remove the poison ivy plants’ oil that has absorbed into the skin. Zanfel is a safe, soap-based product that has no known side effects.

Zanfel is a new way of treating poison ivy. Instead of using other over-the-counter products that only “shut off” the itching for an hour by treating the symptoms as the urushiol toxin remains on your skin, for many cases of poison ivy, Zanfel is a once and done treatment. For your customers, Zanfel is also an alternative to the time and expense of a clinic visit, co-pay, and prescription.

Sales and Profitability Opportunity!

Why does Zanfel Poison Ivy, Oak and Sumac Wash present a profitable opportunity for you? Zanfel is sold in only a number of targeted retailers. There is a reason for that. Every summer the large drug chains never seem to purchase enough Zanfel inventory as there are always “holes” on the retail shelf where the Zanfel Poison Ivy Wash is supposed to be. The brand loyalty to Zanfel is immense and focused! So what does that faithful Zanfel user do when it’s not on the retail shelf? They go to another store looking for it! This is why there is a huge sales opportunity for the nursery, landscaping, and garden centers.

The poison ivy sufferer is already in your store making other purchases, sometimes before or worse, during a current poison ivy outbreak. This is the sales opportunity that has just been presented to you. When your customers are in your store making their purchases, just imagine how pleasantly surprised they will be knowing that you also provide a successful treatment for their poison ivy challenges – Zanfel!

Store merchandising of Zanfel is the key. First you have to let people know that you stock Zanfel. Zanfel proudly provides a number of sale enhancing marketing and point-of-purchase materials, to help move your Zanfel inventory through the cash register and out the door. An example is the simple yellow window banner, which appears to be hand-drawn. This simple banner has proven to be an incredible selling tool, literally bringing Zanfel users into the store where the window poster is placed. Zanfel also provides, in addition to window posters, other materials such as poison plant identification posters, consumer educational brochures on poison ivy prevention and treatment, Zanfel product information handouts, and shelf talkers. All of these items can be ordered and reordered from Zanfel in any quantity, free of charge.

Zanfel is available for immediate ordering as a case pack of twelve eaches, (Arett Sales Item # Z61 53787) or as an attractive 6-piece Zanfel Counter Unit for display purposes, (Arett Sales Item # Z61 73787). Zanfel is available through the Super Savings April/May 2016 Program.

Got Poison Ivy? Get Zanfel. It Works!

Order Now Using Program Number: MS615