Here Comes Christmas! Garden Treasures is ready for the Season
by Manning Lee | Photos by Maire Mcardle
Garden Treasures, the local Easton nursery, offers an array of festive gifts, holiday trees, plants and home décor ready for the season
There’s a season for everything and now it’s time to celebrate the holidays. Many of us begin our plans for the season by “decking our own halls.” While decorating is part of the fun, it also sets the stage for the part of the holidays that truly matters — the gatherings which help us reclaim the joy of the season.
Perhaps no one on the Eastern Shore knows more about holiday decorating than Amy Brown, the owner of Garden Treasures in Easton. Brown began her journey working at Garden Treasures half a lifetime ago at 14 as a freshman in high school. She went on to college earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Education, but when all was said and done, her heart drew her back to Garden Treasures to purchase and run the business in 2012. As a wife, mother of three small children, she champions the balancing act of running a successful business and raising her family.
“My kids come to work with me a lot. They’re a part of it. If I’m here on a Saturday, I don’t feel bad because my husband has got my son out working the Christmas trees with him or I’ve got my daughter in here learning how to make bows. It’s good for them. It makes what we are doing here an actual family business,” explained Brown.
Brown recalls her own memories of Christmas growing up.
“I don’t know that I paid attention to anything other than our Christmas tree. I think that’s why in my own house it’s all about the tree and each ornament’s meaning. That’s where our focus is. We certainly had Christmas traditions, but my memories have so little to do with tangible things. Here, customers can find something special for their homes, but we don’t want our customer’s decorating to take away from what Christmas should be about,” Brown said.
Every year, the mainstay of Garden Treasures’ holiday fineries is the Christmas tree. Brown recalls that in September, it seemed all hope was lost for her small business to secure any supply of Christmas trees. Because of a tree shortage that began in 2008, supply has been extremely difficult to procure the last few years. Matters only got worse when Brown’s regular tree supplier canceled her order she’d placed months earlier.
Brown credits a small Christmas Tree farm in Canada in saving Christmas this year! Thankfully, Garden Treasures secured a great hybrid of two of its most popular trees. The hybrid, called a Fraser/Balsam Hybrid Fir, combines the qualities of both the Balsam Fir and Fraser Fir, producing a beautifully shaped tree with excellent needle retention and a delicious fragrance.
Moving to other live decorations for inside the home, Garden Treasures offers such holiday season favorites as poinsettias, cyclamen, Norfolk Island pines, amaryllis bulbs, Christmas cactus, and camellias. These flowering plants are popular every year because they are like adding the cherry on top of every decorated home. Brown boasts the poinsettias as the best flower of the season. Garden Treasures has been sourcing poinsettias from the same farm for many years and customers come from all over to find these famed plants.
Most people think of Garden Treasures as a place to purchase plants and flowers for the holidays, however there is also a gift store inside to help complete everyone’s decorating and gifting needs. In fact, there is almost as much of a variety inside of the store as there is outside. Their best-selling gifts include Old World Christmas Tree Ornaments which are a mouth-blown, hand painted ornaments, a favorite of the Brown family.
“I collect the Old World Christmas Tree Ornaments. I would be embarrassed to tell you how many I have, but I can say that it’s time for a second tree and maybe one for the kitchen for all of my food ornaments. We get new ornaments each year for the kids. Each child has their own personality. This year I plan on purchasing a lipstick ornament for my youngest because she covered herself in my makeup. For my son, I want to purchase the lion because he is just wild and out of control and he likes to growl and be silly,” Brown described.
Each year in January, Brown travels to Atlanta to discover and purchase the next year’s best decorating styles. This year is trending towards non-traditional Christmas colors. We will be seeing pinks and pastels, blues, silvers, and whites along with the traditional reds and greens. Also, trending are floral enhancements and a nice selection of artificial garlands for decorating the perfect Christmas tree.
“One thing that I’m trying to impress upon my customers is not only to decorate their trees with ornaments, but also to incorporate sprigs of berries and artificial flowers into them as well. Also, I’m encouraging my customers towards using ribbons and bows in Christmas trees too,” Brown added. “We want to help people make their homes beautiful, so they can get back to doing what is important,” Brown concluded.
This year we as we contemplate decking our own halls in whatever style it takes to make our season bright, boldly decked or simply stated, Garden Treasures’ wish is to help set the mood for the season so that the holidays can truly be what they are meant to be about — the gathering.