From Gardener's Supply (

Gardener's Supply: Proudly Employee-Owned

Will Raap

Founder Will Raap serves pie to customers at our annual celebration of employee ownership.

As of December 2009, Gardener's Supply is 100 percent employee-owned, ensuring that customers can expect excellent products and service from people who own the company.

Vermont has long been known for its frugal, creative and independent citizens. In part that's what fueled a decision, made 25 years ago, to invest in our employees. In 1987, after our third year in business, we adopted an Employee Stock Ownership Program (ESOP) that allows all employees to earn stock and share in company profits.

By engaging staff as owners, we unlock the creativity and commitment needed to be responsive to customers, sustain a vibrant focus on gardening and cultivate a compassionate corporate culture. Employees are encouraged to learn about all aspects of our business, so they can be active participants in shaping our business future and can contribute to our mutual success. When you do business with Gardener's Supply, you are directly and fully supporting a Vermont business that is owned and operated by all the employees who work here.

In business, success is usually a blend of luck and hard work, and that has certainly been true for Gardener's Supply. But we also attribute our own business success to a few other important factors.

One is the customers we serve, who are always eager to give us their feedback and good ideas. You make us better every day, and we thank you.

Second is a commitment we made from the start: to keep our feet firmly in the garden.

Third is our bright and motivated staff: the people who develop the products, create the catalogs, answer our phones, pack the boxes and pay the bills.

To learn more about employee stock ownership programs, go to the ESOP Association.