What’s All the Hype About Urban Outfitters’ New Terrain Garden Center?
Many of you may be following Urban Outfitters’ (aka UO) new Terrain At Styers Garden Center in Concordville, Pennsylvania. It’s the latest brand edition to the UO family and the company plans to add 50 more stores across the United States over the next few years. If you haven’t seen the photos yet, they are quite inspiring. A twitter friend, Arcadia1, asked me what I thought the impact would be on what she referred to as the “Northwest Geek World” of gardening. Here’s a snippet of my unadulterated opinions on the subject:
Disclaimer: what I am about to share is my personal opinion and I don’t seek to offend anyone with my views on gardening.
Generation Gaps Have Emerged
So, I’m a 30-something that feels somewhat removed from the gardening community. Not that I actively seek out my “kind,” but many gardeners seem to be 20 years older than me and love to nerd out on what they know about horticulture. Don’t get me wrong. I love science. I was almost a Biology major, but hated the math, so I settled for a Psychology degree instead. Anyway, I can’t stand it when some gardeners (not labeling everyone here) try to show off their beyond-the-practical-use minutia of garden knowledge, make you feel stupid when you can’t pronounce Latin, or just plain act like a know-it-all.
Where is This Going?
What does this have to do with Terrain you might be asking? Well, my strong impression is that people who garden as a hobby are typically older people. And older people are, well, getting older. No one has yards like the cute, little retired couple down the street from me anymore. Gardening, as a hobby, doesn’t much appeal to the Gen Xers and Y’s like it does to the boomers. Life is way too complicated these days. Why? The birth of technology and the Information Age. Yes, I agree, gardening can be soothing, a great stress reliever, and good exercise, until you don’t have time to take care of it. For me, there is a fine line between maintenance and out-of-control.
Gardening needs to have a purpose in order for Xers and Y’s to start digging in, no pun intended. Why waste a sunny weekend digging in the dirt if I can go shopping, entertain with friends, or go wake boarding? And man, if it ain’t cool, then I ain’t doin’ it. (FYI, I do garden on a sunny day, all weekend in fact, I was pretending to be my friends)
Out with the Old. In with the New
What is Terrain to me? An influential vehicle of getting the younger generation excited about gardening. It’s not just a hobby that your grandmother made you do as a kid. You can actually impress your friends with the food you make from your garden, your fabulous outdoor accessories inspired by nature, and that houseplant is actually a decoration and not just a thing that collects dust. I feel that Urban Outfitters, with its target for young, thirsty trendsetters, can help keep the garden community alive after the boomers have, well, you know. See what others are saying about Terrain at Oh, Joy!
So go on, help me nerd out on my psychobabble and share your comments on the expansion of UO’s Terrain Garden Centers. I dare you to disagree with me.