Another empty storefront likely coming to WC: Smith & Hawken closing all its stores

The garden store chain, which started with a Mill Valley store selling high-end English gardening tools, is going out of business and closing all 56 of its retail stores, including its location in Walnut Creek.
The Marin Independent-Journal says the company, headquartered in Novato, will begin to offer going-out-of-business sales today. So, it’s hard to say how long the Walnut Creek store will remain open. Until it sells off all its inventory, I suppose. And then there will be another empty storefront–unless another business moves in soon to replace it.

Smith & Hawken is actually owned by the weed killer, Ohio-based Scotts Miracle-Gro Co., which decided to close the company after failing to find a buyer. Smith & Hawken’s sales had dropped 22 percent during the first two quarters of the current fiscal year, the Independent-Journal said.

9 thoughts on “Another empty storefront likely coming to WC: Smith & Hawken closing all its stores

  1. Not at all surprised. Nice store but could never figure out why they also sold their brand at places like Target. Seems to be in direct competition to their branded stores.

    As to the WC store…bad location.

    This type of store is bound to be affected by the downturn in the economy. Sells lots of pretty things that nobody really needs but are fun to buy. First type of merchandise to be eliminated in one's shopping priorities.


  2. From the Dallas Business Journal:

    Retailer Neiman Marcus Inc. saw its total sales drop 19.4 percent in the month of June.

    By the end of the five-week period on record, the company's sales were at $323 million, down from $401 million a year earlier.

    Dallas-based Neiman's comparable same-store sales, or sales at stores open for 12 months or more, fell 20.8 percent, hitting $317 million for the month of June, down from $401 million a year earlier.


  3. Williams Sonoma, Restoration Hardware are not doing well either. I will be so sad to also see these two stores go. I used to love the original Smith and Hawken. I used to scrounge up my hard-earned college part- time job pennies to be able to shop at the Berkeley Smith and Hawken back in the 80s. I still treasure some of the items I bought way back when. They are still beautiful in my eyes to this day. No more good music, no beautiful stores to shop, no promise of a lovable career. What is there to live for?


  4. Totally agree, while it is true that some of the merchandise is not what it used to be at Smith & Hawken, I do have many items I had for a very long time and still very much treasure them.
    And while it is said to for customers not be able to shop there anymore it must be very devastating for the staff, which in my view was some of the best sales staff I have ever met, to lose their jobs in this economy.


  5. Hello, who is doing well in this economy beside people processing foreclosures and bankruptcies.

    Smith and Hawkin had a bad business model and is being cast away by a parent company. I did like the high quality garden stuff which is rare in the new cheap, through away model that is prevalent at most retail shops.


  6. I don't know what you mean by “Hello, who is doing well in this economy beside people processing foreclosures and bankruptcies.”?

    Did you mean it was inappropriate for 10:45 to think of the staff for losing their jobs? Most people having a job are doing well compared to people loosing their job in my book.

    Maybe Smith & Hawken corporate owner had a bad business model, but I doubt that this was the sales staff's fault.

    What is wrong with you people if all you can think is of empty store fronts and bad business models and not see that there are lives involved in these issues as well?

    So let me make clear, that as a customer of the store, I would like to express my gratitude and compliments to the really fantastic staff at the WC store.


  7. No, I don't think 10:45 was inappropriate but rather I agree with the poster.

    It's sad that this economy is wreaking havoc of the employment of individuals. I don't blame the sales staff for closure but rather the corporation for failing the employees.

    I wish the best for the staff.


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