Smith and Hawken, the down hill spiral

Lot's of people wondering what is going on with Smith and Hawken, the garden supply company owned by Scotts/Miracle-Gro. We have talked about this company before, when the last rumor of Scotts selling the brand. Judging by the negative reviews at Dave's Garden it won't be long. Besides the quality of the tools going down, it's the lack customer service that is the biggest complaint. It's no secret Scott's want's to sell the brand.  Who will buy it is another question. When a brand starts getting negative publicity year after year trying to resurrect it becomes harder and harder. Sometimes it's just better to start anew. I watched this company from the get go, visiting their stores in Berkley, and Palo Alto, well over 20 years ago.The stores we're so cool because they promoted quality tools from England we hadn't seen before. Cheap shovels that fell apart and had to be replaced every year was the norm. Suddenly there was a place promoting quality, which was so novel then.

I don't fault Paul Hawken for selling the brand. Nor Scott's for buying the brand. It was just a strange marriage from the beginning. It seems another example of a large corporation looking beyond it's core, and trying to buy a certain reputation and customer. With instant messaging and reviews available for all to see it's getting harder and harder for companies to fake it.