For Park Lane Nursery though, Autumn has been a little different this year and they have found themselves rapidly adapting to a new operating environment while meeting the needs of their customers and the community.
Garden nurseries (retail, wholesale and production) are considered essential services, but must adhere to Government advice and restrictions. Park Lane Nursery is continuing to operate with these guidelines in place to ensure their team and the community stay safe, these include social distancing throughout the nursery, only one customer in the shop at a time, and increased hygiene practices.
Manager of Park Lane Nursery, Maria Wadley says, “The impact of COVID-19 has been very interesting for us, our number one priority has been our team and their health and safety, and it’s been humbling to see everyone work together and support each other through the changes. Our retail garden centre has seen increased demand across all plant varieties including veggie seedlings, fruit trees, indoor plants, as well as garden plants across the board, people have increased time at home and are reinvigorating their gardens.”
“Being out in the garden during these beautiful autumn days is an absolute pleasure, and so good for our mental and emotional wellbeing, so I think people have really been embracing their time at home.”
“This is also prime time for revegetation and farm tree planting projects. We have had a good number of orders come through from our environmental customers, but we still have stock of a number of tube stock species which are well suited to our local environment for farms and revegetation projects.”
The team at Park Lane Nursery has quickly adapted to these changes, but have also found it to be challenging at times, “We are a really tight-knit team and to implement changes immediately where our team is working from home and rosters are changed, we miss out on seeing each other, it’s been really tough – it makes you realise how much we value seeing each other and enjoy each other’s company, whether we are working in production in the shed, sharing lunch breaks together or generally catching up.”
“We are regularly sharing information with our team on the current situation and encourage everyone to ask questions – we have even created video content for sharing the message about physical distancing”.
They have also experienced a change in the way customers are shopping with more phone orders, drive-by and pick up, plant delivery to customers to minimise contact, and also an increased engagement over Facebook.
Park Lane Nursery will be changing their opening hours during the week, and will be open Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm, Saturday to Sunday 8.30am – 3.30pm.
You can keep up to date on the Park Lane Nursery Facebook page to find out when new stock is arriving and for any further updates from the team.