Family-owned Home Nursery Inc. has been growing trees, shrubs and flowering perennials for 90 years.
Located 35 miles outside of St. Louis, Home Nursery put a revolutionary focus on container-grown shrubs; and has exerted extra-careful oversight of all aspects of wholesale horticulture and employee relations.
“We are so thankful for the longevity of our business and, as a result, we’re planning to give back to our customers in 2011. We’re going to have several different special plant programs each month – from spring through fall – to celebrate our 90th with them," said Ann Tosovsky, vice president of public relations.
Key Points in Home Nursery’s 90-year history:
• Early sustainability. For decades, Home has used only rainwater collected in its reservoirs and also in spring-fed lakes, for irrigating all of its plant material. Many, if not most, growers cannot compete with this system.
• Containerized plants. Home Nursery invested very early in containerized growing to allow for ease of plant care and harvest and to allow for year-round shipping of healthy plants with very well established root systems.
• Variety of plant material. While Taxus and upright junipers are two signature plants at Home, many others are grown and sold there, including hydrangeas, boxwood and a wide array of other perennials. Home focuses on growing great plants for Midwest soils and climate.
• Housing, daycare for workers. Home was one of the first in the industry to build on-site apartments for field workers and their families, complete with a daycare center and a series of classes in English.
• “Quality programs.” This is the cache phrase for a six-year-old initiative at Home to involve their employees in continually improving the quality of products and services. “You don’t have to be in top management to be a problem solver at Home,” says Ann Tosovsky. “We want to get everybody involved.”
What some of Home's customers are saying:
“We are so fortunate to have a company with such first-class nursery stock,” said June Hutson, senior horticulturist at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. “We have obtained a wonderful diversity of plants from Home and are never disappointed with the quality and service.”
“Home Nursery has been a supplier for Hillermann Nursery & Florist for well over 50 years,” said Sandi Hillermann McDonald, owner of the Washington, Mo., garden center. “With the economy as it has been, Home Nursery is even more important to us as a local, sustainable vendor. The diverse availability of product and quality is great. And the company’s staff has been with them a long time, which makes it even easier to work with them. They are great plant people growing great plants.”