Plant Detectives, founded in 1996 by Art Laster has a 10-acre operation in Chester, New Jersey. Plant Detectives is both a wholesale and retail nursery with an assortment of trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, hard goods, and landscaping supplies. Heide Taylor, the Retail Manager of Plant Detectives, always struggled with their old and dilapidated greenhouses. Knowing that an opportunity existed to increase sales and improve upon the retail shopping experience, Heide and Art decided to tear down the old greenhouses and construct a new, more attractive Rimol Matterhorn greenhouse.
After getting through the two-year permitting process with the town, they purchased their new 1,500 square-foot greenhouse last fall and constructed it over the winter. The construction went extremely well with the excellent installation manuals and on-site technical support of Rimol’s New Jersey sales representative, Matt Hand. The construction of the greenhouse had a few complicated features, such as a connection to the main building, and the addition of glass on some of the walls to entice the high amount of vehicle traffic that passes by their garden center every day on Route 206. “Our new Matterhorn greenhouse is a much better “look” from cars passing by every day, and the appearance from the road creates such a splash to the entrance to the garden center,” said Heide.
The new greenhouse is all now under one roof, which greatly helps the shopping experience. With proper ventilation and a shade system, the plants look healthier, and the customers are happier. “The new greenhouse has a much cleaner look and is so much brighter, and the functionality of the heating and cooling is so much easier,” said Heide. In addition to using the greenhouse for plant material, the extra space also has pottery and other products on display. The visibility of the new greenhouse is already proving fruitful with a nice bump in holiday sales, and the typical spring blitz. Heide added; “our new retail displays are much better now, with both plants and hard goods, and we are elated that everything is under one roof with easy access into the greenhouse from our nursery and main building.”