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The Blog: Let's Talk Gardening

Employee Spotlight, Candy Kitchen

Our employees are what truly make McDonald Garden Center a diverse and unique place to work and shop. We have some pretty amazing people with many backgrounds and different personalities who have a real passion for what they do, and Candy is no exception! Most of you know Candy from our Independence location in Virginia Beach, but most recently she was promoted to Visual Merchandiser at our Great Neck location.

On any given day, you can find Candy creating stunning visual displays, moving merchandise around the store to keep inventory appearing fresh and appealing, assisting and providing customers with inspirational ideas for their home and garden, or helping her fellow employees with whatever that might need. We asked Candy to share some things about herself and here’s what she had to say:

How long worked at MGC?

I have worked here since May, 1997. So, 21+ years!

What roles have you had over the year?

While I have always worked in the decorative and the patio departments, I have learned so much over the years that I can answer just about any question, in any department. Our customers don't always understand the concept of different departments, and I think they appreciate continuity of service. I prefer not to send customers to another department unaccompanied, so even if I don't know the answer, I go with the customer, so I too can learn.

What's your favorite part about working at MGC?

My favorite thing is the relationships I have built over the years. Not just with other employees but especially with customers. So many have turned into friends! I also enjoy teaching others, from doing classes to teaching new staff procedures.

Where do you get your inspiration from (books, catalogues, etc.)?

My inspiration comes from lots of different places. Magazines, pictures, from market, coworkers, and of course, Pinterest.

What's your favorite season at the Garden Center?

My favorite season is Christmas, of course. I like helping customers achieve the perfect holiday look. It's fun to teach people things they don't think they can do, like tying a bow, decorating a wreath, using ribbon in a tree, adding lights to unexpected places, etc. Don't misunderstand - I love all the seasons, but the holidays are my fave.

What's your favorite plant?

It would be hard to pick a favorite plant! I love Japanese Maples (I have 8). A sentimental favorite is German Iris (reminds me of my Grandmother), Solenia begonias (they do so well in my yard), pansies, black and blue salvia. See, I told you it's hard to pick one!

Other things you may or may not know about Candy

She’s an avid reader (she’s read about 70 books so far this year). She also enjoys knitting and crocheting, and of course, gardening. Candy has two, grown daughters and four grandchildren. Her fur babies (two dogs) keep her on her toes at home. She moved to Norfolk (Ocean View) when she was twelve and has pretty much been there since.