Great plants and great advice to help them
With the most California Certified Nursery Professionals in Northern California,
Sloat Garden Center has become one of the premier garden centers in North America, offering quality products, broad plant selection and knowledgeable customer service.
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Sloat Garden Center started in 1958 as part
of G.E.T. Department Store. The first store, which was
only seven thousand square feet, was located at the corner of 34th
Avenue and Sloat Boulevard in San Francisco.
In 1968 the store moved to a larger location
and the name was changed to Sloat Garden Center. Always
independently owned, over the past five
decades Sloat Garden Center has grown to 10
stores serving San Francisco, Marin, and Contra Costa counties.
Sloat Garden Center, the Bay Area’s largest independent nursery, started in 1958 in the Sunset district of San Francisco. Dave Geller, the original owner, ran the business out of an old building at the corner of 45th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard. Geller wasn’t sure what to do with his building, so he thought he’d try a plant nursery.
He turned the garage into a sales area and the backyard into a garden center (at the time the property was shared with a gas station).
Sloat Garden Center soon became a discount nursery under the umbrella of San Francisco’s discount department store, GET, in which Geller was a tenant.
In 1962, current owner Dave Straus (pictured above) came to work at Sloat as a 14-year old, unloading 40-pound bags of manure for a Washington’s Birthday sale. He was soon loading cars, unloading trucks, sweeping, cleaning, watering, working in customer service and eventually becoming a manager. By the time Straus was 21, he was traveling to southeast Asia and making pottery connections for a local import company. Once he returned to Sloat to work full time at age 23, he never left.
In 1968 Dave Straus bought into the company as a minor partner and over time bought out Dave Geller. Additional locations were opened beginning in 1973. In 1985, Vice President and part owner Ted Warshauer joined the team.
In 1993, Sloat made the decision to focus on the highest quality plant materials and garden products. “What we sell enables us to offer a guarantee of satisfaction that is second to none,” explains Dave Straus. “And we have never waivered from that decision.”
Now, fifty years later, Sloat is firmly established in the Bay Area. Over time we have become the largest independent pottery importer in the U.S., with strong ties to many other independent garden chains that purchase their pottery through Sloat.
Looking back on almost five decades with Sloat Garden Center, Dave reflects.
“Obviously I love plants and gardening, but over the years, the pottery part is what I’ve enjoyed the most,” he explains. “It gave me the opportunity to travel, design product, pick new glaze colors and work with many different factories in many different countries. Bringing this beautiful pottery to our customers is a joy in itself. At Sloat we love helping Bay Area gardeners do what they do best – and that’s garden!”
A program to help generate funds for your school or group.
Over the past 50 years, Sloat Garden Center has supported our local communities by donating thousands of dollars to schools and civic groups throughout the Bay Area. We are continuing this support in by expanding our Growing up Green program.
CLICK HERE for details