Driving from Placerville to Coloma via Hwy. 49 you pass this house. It has had the same landscape for at least the last 20 years. This area is called â€œGold Countryâ€ and that is the theme here. The giant piece of â€œgoldâ€ gets a yearly coat of fresh paint. While itâ€™s not my idea of a xeriscape landscape it is unique and as such could be called â€œgarden artâ€.
Sleepy Hollow Nursery in Placerville closed last year after having just remodeled the store. They did a beautiful job of construction. They put in a coffee shop complete with the giant espresso machine that you see at Starbucks. Six months later they were closed. While there are a lot of reasons this store didnâ€™t make it the final straw, according to the owner was the new Home Depot that went in a block away.
Walking through the Placerville Home Depot you come across all sorts of dead and dying plants that are just left in displays that can only be called â€œthoughtlessâ€. This was the final straw for Sleepy Hollow? This Home Depot sent shivers through all sorts of business when it opened last year. This is what everyone is afraid of? I read an old German proverb the other day that sayâ€™s â€œFear often makes the wolf appear bigger than he really is.â€
I think that if Sleepy Hollow had changed their focus a bit they might have been able to capitalize on the close proximity of The Depot. I would think that it would be a great opportunity to highlight the differences between the nursery and the Home Depot. Why not even mention you closeness to The Depot in advertising. Everyone knows where the Home Depot is. Not everyone knew where the nursery was. â€œWeâ€™re just a block away from the Home Depot, but a world away in style, quality, service, etc.â€ Maybe instead of worrying about the arrival of a new chain store we should be excited to show how we do things better.
I think the days of running in fear of the box stores should be over. As much as they tout their new â€œfocusâ€ on customer service and quality they will never be able to do it the way a quality independent can.