Garden Centers of Colorado

COVID-19 Resources and Business operations

GCC remains dedicated to supporting the IGC community in Colorado. The following resources and information links are provided to members as guidance. This is an ever changing situation and information will be updated as soon as possible. Check back periodically for new updates. 

Colorado Resources

CO 4th Updated Public Health Order 20-24: March 26 through April 26 (extended from April 11): Stay home except for essential needs. Critical Businesses are exempt and encouraged to stay open, but must comply with Social Distancing Requirements (6 ft. distancing, hygiene, and cleaning) at all times and implement strategies, such as staggered schedules or redesigning workplaces, to create more distance between workers unless doing so would make it impossible to carry out critical functions. 

CO Executive Order D 2020-039: Face Coverings: Issued April 17, effective through May 17: Directs the CO Dept of Public Health issue a public health order requiring that workers in Critical Businesses and Critical Government Functions, where workers interact in close proximity with other employees or the public, to wear medical or nonmedical cloth face coverings that cover the nose and mouth while working, except where doing so would inhibit that individual's health; and, to the extent possible, wear gloves when in contact with customers or goods if gloves are provided to workers by their employers.


Additional Resources:

Colorado SBA: SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans in Colorado

Colorado COVID-19 Resource Page and Business Resources

City of Denver Stay at Home Order. Updated Order 4/23/2020

Public Health and Executive Order resource page

Denver Business Assistance Program

Eagle County

Jefferson County Stay at Home Order

Boulder County Stay at Home Order

Weld County 

Tri-County Health Department

Business operations


Business Operations: Ideas and Suggestions from the GCC Board of Directors

GCC supports the IGC community in Colorado as essential business and encourages all members to develop the appropriate safety measures that work best with your location. Safety of employees and customers should be your top priority by following CDC guidelines and complying with executive orders. 

The Board of Directors of GCC has compiled this running list of suggestions and ideas to consider as we deal with our changing business operations. 

  • Sanitize carts, baskets, register stations and common public areas on a regular basis. 
  • Ask customers to wear masks and gloves when entering your store or encountering your employees. 
  • Always require employees to wear mask and gloves and encourage regular hand washing. 
  • Provide sanitizing stations throughout your store. 
  • Practice social distancing (6’ apart) with proper signage. Consider assigning a staff member to monitor customers in aisles and at checkout points. 
  • Get your website store launched as soon as possible. 
  • Based on your square footage, limit the number of customers in your store to encourage safe, social distancing. 
  • Establish ‘call-in’ or ‘online’ ordering services so your customers are not required to shop in the store. Reassign staff to answer calls, pull orders and oversee curbside delivery. 
  • Clearly mark curbside delivery locations and signage for customers to remain in their car or truck to limit interaction with employees. 
  • Establish a clear policy on credit card and mobile payments to limit cash exchanges. 
  • Consider offering special benefits for your repeat or loyal customers such as ‘make a reservation’ to shop in the store. 
  • Mark your aisles as ‘one-way’ to encourage customer flow through your store. 
  • Post signage in the store asking customers to not gather too long in certain areas and to only the enter the store if they have a purchase to make. 
  • On your website, social media, blog postings, and advertisements, promote the healthy benefits of gardening and encourage customers to visit your safe and compliant store. 
  • Consider apply for a loan through the SBA to relieve debt, retain employees and assist offset finances for the coming months. 
  • Think about your inventory now and for the next couple of months knowing the ‘buying season’ may be delayed. Connect with other garden centers to share in order purchasing and product delivery. 
  • Consider offering senior hours just like the grocery stores and/or special programs for seniors for curbside pickup or delivery. 
  • Continue offering your classes through videos and post to your website or Facebook page. 
  • Even though it may be too early to plant, ‘color’ is a great motivator for customers. Promote color on your website. 
  • Now is the time to post any current or future job openings. Consider how best to train new employees under these conditions before their first day of work. 
  • Create a pleasant and safe buying experience for your customers. Make it easy for customers to understand your rules and guidelines for instore shopping. 
  • Have regular team meetings via conference or video call to review safety measures on a regular basis. 
  • Train your employees to respond to customer questions about safety and health situations. Consider written rules for each employee to carry with them. 
  • Don’t forget to regularly sanitize your kitchen areas, lockers, bathrooms, breakrooms, water fountains, refrigerator, and storage rooms. Don’t forget to sanitize commonly shared registers, computers, telephones, doorknobs-basically a good bleach scrubbing of all surfaces. 
  • If unclear to employees, determine the proper management point of contact so employees feel comfortable reporting unsafe situations. 
  • Promote seeds, starters and vegetable gardens to customers. This is very popular right now and top sellers for beginner gardeners as well. 
  • Don’t forget to promote houseplants in case customers don’t have outdoor space for gardens. 
  • Make sure employees know not to come to work if they are feeling sick or have been in contact with someone who has the virus. 

This list will be updated, so check back often.  GCC members should email our Association Director with any updates to your operations so we can add to this list:  

Tell Us About Your Business Operations

GCC Member Status During COVID-19 (pdf)