Like a well-kept lawn, Blue Grass Sod Farms Ltd. is experiencing healthy growth.
The 45-year-old Red Deer County-based business announced on Tuesday that it was acquiring another longtime local horticultural business, Dentoom’s Greenhouses.
Blue Grass president Bruce McEwen said their retail operations will be moved from their Hwy 11A location west of Red Deer to Dentoom’s high-visibility site on the same highway closer to Hwy 2.
“We’re really excited about it,” he said, of the move that officially takes place on July 1. “The move allows us to provide a broader array of quality products to our customers.”
McEwen said the deal provides an opportunity for a one-stop retail experience and acquiring Dentoom’s four acres of greenhouses allows Blue Grass to significantly expand its annual and perennial inventory locally.
“We’re going to start moving some stuff there in June,” he said, adding it will take a little time to complete the transition.
Dentoom’s will also be used for the sod side of the business, which provides 500 acres of sod annually. As well, Blue Grass also has 60,000 trees growing in nursery and operates a 10,000-square-foot greenhouse in Calgary, which is operated by Bruce’s brother Bill.
Dentoom’s owner Lori Bradley was also enthusiastic about the change.
“I think it’s going to be great,” Bradley said. “The two companies are so different but yet so alike, and I think it’s just going to be taken to the next level with their resources and our resources.”
Lori, daughter Rebecca and son Zachary will all stay involved in the joint business.
McEwen said the desire for a better retail site was a big part of the deal. Dentoom’s site will become the wholesale and retail centre and operations will be managed out of Blue Grass’s existing location at Range Road 282 north of Hwy 11A.
Blue Grass employs about 70 in Red Deer and 130 in Calgary full- and part-time, and the Dentoom’s deal will add another six full-time staff. Terms of the sale have not been disclosed.
Dentoom’s was purchased in 1991 from its namesake family, which started it in 1954 and ran a small greenhouse in north Red Deer.
“We brought it up from a little tiny greenhouse in Red Deer that had been around for years and expanded it out on Hwy 11A in 1997, and ever since the business has just been growing,” said Bradley.