Greenstreet Gardens of Lothian, a relative newcomer among garden centers in Maryland, was the surprise regional winner in a contest designed to reward the most innovative garden centers in the country.
The center, owned by Ray Greenstreet, was named to the Revolutionary 100 list by Today's Garden Center as the Northeast region winner. Size and revenue are not factors in the judging. Leadership and innovation were.
"The average age of some of these centers is 50 years," said Greenstreet. "We've only been here as a garden center for five."
Greenstreet and his wife Stacy, native Marylanders, purchased what was then Windmere Nursery, a rooting station which sold to wholesalers and retailers, 10 years ago. Greenstreet had been a salesman for Ball Seed Co. in New York, but wanted to raise his family in Maryland.
"We wanted them to grow up on a farm where we could build good character," he said.
Greenstreet gave the public some access to the plant material he was growing, but soon realized he needed a retail outlet.
"We are here in southern Anne Arundel county so we knew we had to be a destination," said Greenstreet.
The goal was to provide soup to nuts for gardeners, but also to provide family entertainment.
"We try to provide a service for planting, but also a place for people to come and spent time with the family."