Gardening centers and DIY studio adapt under 'Safer at Home' order

Posted at 6:18 PM, Apr 26, 2020

MILWAUKEE — As Wisconsin’s ‘Safer at Home’ order remains in effect, businesses are continuing to find ways to adapt, both in the gardening and arts and crafts industries.

Nurseries and gardening centers have been considered essential businesses since Governor Tony Evers issued the ‘Safer at Home’ order in March. Many garden centers don’t open until this time of the year when the weather gets nicer, but others like Plant Land in Milwaukee opened up in March.

Pull up to Plant Land and you’ll find flowers and vegetables galore. However, you will also find some changes.

Co-owner Karen Jorgensen-Matt said shortly after opening, they had to adjust the way they do business.

“We’ve gotten a lot of calls for curbside pickup which we’re happy to do, deliveries you know within a certain radius,” Jorgensen-Matt said.

They posted signs encouraging social-distancing. Employees are now wearing masks and plexiglass separates them from customers at the checkout station. They’re also monitoring the number of people in each greenhouse.

When it comes to business, Jorgensen-Matt said they’re a little down for this time of the year, but vegetables sales are way up.

“I had a couple come yesterday spend the most I’ve ever seen on one vegetable order,” Jorgensen-Matt said.

She’s seeing a lot of first-time growers, who are wanting to control what goes in their bodies, or looking to try a new activity.

Amy Burmeister decided to take a drive from Muskego Sunday to pick up some peonies and herbs.

“I think it’s a good way right now to just get some fresh air and sunshine,” Burmeister said.

For those cloudy days Pin-It Live Studio in Milwaukee is selling art boxes filled with supplies and project instructions for those families looking to get their creative juices flowing.

Owners of the do-it-yourself studio, Katie Garcia and Garrett Sheskey, said because their business also has a full bar, it’s considered a tavern under the state order. As a result, they had to shut down and cancel birthday and bachelorette parties.

“This is you know new to all of us, and how can we adapt staying inside our houses and yet still being creative,” Garcia said.

So far, they said this new model is helping them get through these tough times, along with families looking for something fun to do.

“They have been able to really show us what their imagination is able to come up with,” Sheskey said.

Plant Land is allowing in-person shopping with limitations, curbside pickup and delivery with geographic restrictions.

To purchase one of Pin-It Live Studio’s boxes click here. Besides the art and project boxes, they also have a special birthday box and will soon have one for Mother’s Day.

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