The Garden Shoppe started out as a part-time operation at the holidays for owners Dave and Gerri Whetstone. In 1985, they asked Bill Braxton if they could set up shop on his property during the holidays to sell flowers for Easter and Mother’s Day, and trees at Christmas time. Not only did Bill agree, he gave them the key to the shop so that they could use the restroom.
Fast forward to the year 2000, and Dave and John Braxton are getting ready to move into their new building. “They asked us if we would be interested in doing something full-time,” said Gerri Whetstone, “so we took them up on the offer and moved into the building in November of 2000 just in time for Christmas.”
The Shoppe encompasses two floors of the old Braxton homestead as well as what can be seen on the outside of the property. As business has picked up, they have taken over the back parking lot, the inner field, and the front parking lot.
With the closing of Waterloo Gardens, Gerri has listened to her customers and adjusted her inventory to meet their needs. The Garden Shoppe offers a wide variety of annuals, perennials, and tropical plants. They provide planting services such as custom designed planters, pots, and urns. Local pick-up and delivery of your pots is also available. “I have customers who have their planters changed out four times a year,” says Gerri.
Along with the flower business, Geri and her husband Dave bought out the produce business which had previously been sharing the outdoor space. They continue this tradition and sell local, fresh produce from late June through September. Gerri says that her husband Dave drives daily to New Jersey to pick up the fresh corn and tomatoes.
In the fall, The Garden Shoppe sells pumpkins, gourds, apples, and mums. These products are locally sourced from Lancaster County. You would be hard pressed to find a better variety of gourds and pumpkins as The Garden Shoppe carries over 25 different kinds. Having a party? The Garden Shoppe has their own line of jams, cheeses, and crackers too.
Gerri and her husband Dave are grateful to Bill Braxton for giving them this opportunity. His kindness is not lost on them. Gerri and Dave hire local teens from area high schools and give them a chance.
Next time you visit Braxton’s, schedule some extra time and stop in to our neighbors, The Garden Shoppe.