Sad news on the gardening front, folks: last Friday, April 2, the Geo. W. Park Seed Company, Inc., and the Jackson & Perkins Company voluntarily filed to reorganize under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the District of South Carolina.
The 142-year old Park Seed Company offers ornamental and edible seeds and plants, while the 138-year-old Jackson & Perkins is a global name in roses. Park Seed Wholesale, also listed in the filing, has been providing retailers and growers with products since 1870.
According to their press release, “The horticulture industry is challenging and highly seasonal in the best of times. As the general economic situation declined starting in 2008, demand for luxury, non-essential purchases dropped sharply. All of our brands experienced significant decreases in sales for core products, including roses, perennials, and garden-inspired gifts.
“This created cash-flow issues that worsened with each passing season. Despite deep cost-cutting and numerous attempts to execute supplier payment programs on our own, we simply could not meet our short- and long-term operating cash requirements. Seeking court protection and restructuring is clearly our best option for returning to a position where we can focus on delighting our customers and resuming sound relationships with our supply chain partners.”
The companies contend that through the process they will be able to keep gardens blooming. Customers should not be affected by the filing, so if you’ve been mulling purchases you should still plan on ordering. Their garden centers, call centers, and websites are open.