Campus & Community / Magazine Feature

Neighborhood garden shop will bloom again

The owners of the Garden Patch have finally left the building.

Three generations of the Vestal family have run the familiar garden shop at East Evans Avenue and South Washington Street since the 1950s. That ended July 6, when Fred and Carole Vestal sold the business to Ayers Enterprises Inc. for $505,000.

“They got in their motor home and are touring the West Coast,” says Ben Vestal, a commercial real estate broker who handled the sale for his uncle, Fred Vestal. “They ran it for 20 years. But they’re retiring.”

Ben Vestal’s parents and grandparents previously ran the shop, which sold seasonal plants in the spring and summer and Christmas trees and holiday wreaths in the winter.

Vestal says Ayers Enterprises will continue to operate the business as a garden shop. Changing the use of the 6,270–square–foot property across from Campus Cycle would require rezoning, a potentially sticky issue with neighbors wary of expansion of the Evans Avenue commercial corridor.

“Their preference was to leave it as a retail garden supply,” Ben Vestal says, noting that the opinions of neighbors carried great weight with how the deal moved forward. 

Owners of a variety of restaurants and even a hair salon inquired about purchasing the property, he says, but the Vestals turned everyone down until Andrea Ayers made an offer that would keep the business as a garden center.

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