Written by the Symplicity team
Maritime Resilience is a series of stories on how local organizations are adapting to COVID-19.
Pandemic prompts Blomidon Nurseries to fast-track retail improvements, build online business.
When the pandemic started, the team at Blomidon Nurseries weren’t sure what to expect. The seasonal business had not yet started, but they were in full production mode, growing the 40,000+ annuals and more than 700 varieties of perennials, plus shrubs and trees and ordering the yard and garden tools, materials and other products they would need for their wholesale and consumer customers. As public health restrictions came into effect, general manager Andrew Palmer worried about how business restrictions would affect revenue.
The first priority was to adapt the work environment to keep employees safe. Palmer says Blomidon introduced new sanitation processes and established social distancing rules right away. The 35-person team received training and there were regular check-ins to ensure processes were running smoothly.
As the retail season kicked off in April, Blomidon Nurseries saw a lot more interest from customers looking to plant their own flower and vegetable gardens. They couldn’t keep up with the constant stream of information requests via social media and phone.
The team also realized they had no way to deliver the products to customers who could no longer travel to the nursery. Customer demand was high, but the walk-in store was no longer the best retail option.
Since the website launched the team at Blomidon has been able to keep up with the steady stream of retail inquiries and orders. Deliveries are happening all over the region. Palmer says they’re adapting as they go to make improvements to better serve customers and streamline their systems.