Relief for owners of garden centres, allowed to stay open during third state of emergency

The owner of a Windsor nursery and garden centre is thrilled they can stay open for the next four weeks, with spring just around the corner.

“We were so relieved because the product comes in and we have to sell it as soon as we can,” says Vera Dimenna, owner of Provincial Nursery and Garden Centre.

They were closed last spring, during the first wave of the pandemic and offering curb-side pickup just doesn’t work in a garden centre.

Dimenna says they have reduced their hours of operation and have hired new staff to help with physical distancing

“We have hired staff, which helps, students, to kind of monitor everything, we get complacent and we don’t realize we’re not social distancing.”

Over at Roseland Golf and Culring Club, they’re excited to keep open.

“Golf is very popular right now, so each day, we’re basically sold out,” says Dave Deluzio, GM at Roseland

“Golfs’ been booming and since COVID it’s got a shot in the arm, the sports really taking off.”

Meantime small retailer are closed for walk-in customers, but many are open and ready for business of any kind, just online.

“Everything is going on the website,” says Mackie Jones, owner of the Towne Shoppe, a clothing store in Amherstburg, Ont.

“We actually just got tons of spring boxes in so we’re still getting all of our spring merchandise in. We open em up. We’re still putting em out on the floor”

Jones offers free local delivery as another way to entice customers away from big box retailers which can only do online and curbside pickups for the next four weeks.

“We’re making it as easy as we can for our customers,” Jones says.