“Things got burnt out and had to be replaced,” said owner, Ken Kinsch. “So it was good for us but not so great for gardeners.”
People with a green thumb spent a lot more green to keep gardens from browning, boosting business at Kinsch’s this summer.
So far, Kinsch said he's seen sales peak twice this season, once when people planted then again after many flowers and plants that had died were replaced.
“We even had some of our regulars come in 7 or 8 times this summer,” Kinsch said many of his customers could not get their gardens to grow.“It was a hard season to figure out,” Kinsch said the drought and extreme heat made it difficult to keep things alive.
The ideal temperature for planting is between 60-85 degrees; plants tend not to grow in anything higher than that.
“Really, it was the heat,” said Kinsch, “People watered but it was just so hot for so long.”
Less than a mile away from Kinsch's, Jeff Goldfine tended to his lawn and garden at the corner of N. Brockway and W. Sherman in Palatine.
“It’s definitely been a lot more work this year,” said Goldfine, “I mean, it’s been like 100 degrees everyday.”
Every summer, Goldfine said he and his wife plant flowers and vegetables but this year, the avid gardeners did not have a lot of luck. “We bought a few things this year but those new plants didn’t seem to make it,” said Goldfine.
A few pops of color scatter still the landscape of his home, potted flowers Goldfine’s wife bought after the flowers she planted died.
Most of the plants and flowers along the couple’s walkway have already wilted. “All these bloomed early and then died,” Goldfine said as he reeled in the hose from his front yard.
He and his wife water their lawn and garden every night but the bushes that surround the couple’s home just could not survive the heat.
“They’re terrible, hopefully they will be leaving us soon,” Goldfine said as he pointed to the line of brittle, brown bushes. “We were able to rip some of them up but it’ll cost us about $1,000 to get them all removed.”
Goldfine plans to replace the bushes next year; a purchase Ken Kinsch is expecting a lot of people to make.
“Next year will be big for us because a lot of people lost shrubbery,” Kinsch said he prefers to see gardens flourish but this summer’s weather did help his business blossom.
“Overall sales were good, we did well,” Kinsch said, “So I guess it worked out for us.”
In order to keep plants and flowers alive in the extreme heat, Kinsch recommends people to plant early (April-May), freshen soil, mulch, and water thoroughly in the mornings or evenings. Kinsch added it is also wise to plant things that thrive in the heat, like knockout roses, sedums and peppers.