Business Description: Wedel’s Nursery, Florist and Garden Center had its beginning in 1946 when Harley Wedel opened a produce store at 1832 S. Westnedge, the North end of Westnedge Hill. From the family farm in Portage Township, produce from forty acres of sweet corn, squash, melons, and fruit from the orchard was taken into Kalamazoo and sold at “Wedel’s Fruit and Produce Store”.
In 1953 some evergreens, trees and shrubs were planted behind one of the farm sheds. Harley soon had the love of plants in his blood and it wasn’t long before he put his entire effort into the nursery business.
In 1955 all produce was cleared out and Harley opened Kalamazoo’s first complete one-stop garden center and retail nursery sales lot –” Wedel’s Evergreen Gardens.” Rapid growth followed with the nursery sales lot expanding three times within six years.
Due to the need for more sales area, Wedel’s Nursery and Garden Center moved in 1969 from 1832 S. Westnedge to its second location in the city of Portage at 5922 S. Westnedge.
In 1972, Wedel’s moved its nursery stock growing operation from its Portage location on Angling Rd. to an 80-acre farm at 5085 S. 34th St. in Galesburg. We now grow most of the nursery stock sold at our garden center.
Purple phalaenopsis orchidIn 1982, Wedel’s opened a florist department and became a member of both Teleflora and Florist Telegraph Delivery System.
In 1988, after many years of planning, Wedel’s embarked on a major remodeling/modernization of the business. Completed in 1988 were new business offices, customer checkout area, new bedding plant greenhouse, new pole building at the nursery, and construction of a new landscape supply area.
In August, 1989, the long awaited expansion of the Garden Center was begun. A new building was constructed to join the existing garden center sales area to the customer checkout area. Added were new tropical plant greenhouse, florist shop, expansion of garden shop, new roof on old building, florist design room, walk-in flower cooler, etc.
In March, 2001, Wedel’s Nursery, Florist and Garden Center opened Southwest Michigan’s Premier Horticultural Center at 5020 Texas Dr. The new facility incorporates larger, more spacious aisles, covered walks that lead into and out of our Nursery area, permanent planted display gardens, a large permanent pond area complete with flowing creek and two bridges, a conference area for clubs and organizations, a rental department, bulk landscape materials, expanded Annual & perennial display and greenhouse area, larger floral design and display area, a gorgeous solarium flanked with columns and large fountain, the area’s largest selection of garden & landscape decorations. We are also very excited to announce the opening of the Garden Party Cafe which serves food and drink in a garden like setting inside the brand new Wedel’s Nursery, Florist and Garden center.
The management of Wedel’s, Inc. feels we now have not only the best horticultural service, but also first class facilities to serve Southwest Michigan’s horticultural needs.
The founder of Wedel’s, Harley D. Wedel, went home to be with his Savior and Lord on April 27, 1998, at the age of 91. Harley enjoyed the people he worked with, our customers, and plants of all kinds. He worked at the garden center through his 90th year. He also enjoyed an extensive flower and vegetable garden at home. We miss him.
God has blessed our business over the years and we are thankful to Him.