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Gardening: A Popular Pandemic Pursuit

Karen Richards

Gardening supply is one business that’s done well, and even blossomed, during the pandemic. Vegetable growers and landscapers both are spending more money this year. 


Stuart Leaton is the General Manager of Gray’s Garden Center in Eugene. He said demand started increasing in March and April. “On average," said Leaton, "We’re definitely at 30 percent higher in traffic than we have been, more people having time at home to kind of work on projects or spruce things up. People love gardening, it’s therapeutic and it keeps them outdoors.”

Leaton said growers stepped up production, so there hasn’t been much of a supply shortage. He expected the enthusiasm to continue, noting, “We actually do have fall hanging baskets, and those are more perennial-style plants with color that they live from now all the way ’til next spring. Mums are always a big one for the fall, and they’re starting to come in. Cabbage and kale is another group that’s famous for this time of year.”


Leaton said tall grasses that bloom about now are also favorites, and although spring is more popular, fall is perhaps a better time to plant trees.


Karen Richards joined KLCC as a volunteer reporter in 2012, and became a freelance reporter at the station in 2015. In addition to news reporting, she’s contributed to several feature series for the station, earning multiple awards for her reporting.
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