Bill Van Wilgen, owner of Van Wilgen’s Garden Center in North Branford, Conn., has been recognized with the state association’s highest award of merit for 2009.
The Connecticut Nursery & Landscape Association praised Van Wilgen for "emerging as one of the state’s preeminent garden center experts."
"He is a grower at heart," says CNLA Executive Director Bob Heffernan in presenting the award. "While many garden centers choose to be retailers of others’ plants, Bill invests in branding his own plants–‘Van Wilgen Grown,’ the label says.
"He is a natural leader. Not only has he created one of the state’s most prominent garden centers and taught us all how to follow his example, he is a consummate sharer. He’ll share the secrets of his successes and failures with any colleague. Just ask him."
Heffernan adds that Van Wilgen took a business that is off the beaten path and turned it into a destination. Van Wilgen also served as President of CNLA and also the Connecticut Greenhouse Growers Association.
Van Wilgen’s Garden Center is one of this year’s Revolutionary 100 Garden Centers for the Northeast. For more information on the garden center, click here.