Serving Western New York For Over 75 Years
Menne Nursery, since its inception in 1939, has been an innovative leader in the nursery industry in Western New York. We are committed to beautifying the gardens and homes of our customers throughout the seasons by providing a wide selection of high-quality products and services, along with friendly, knowledgeable staff. It is the goal of this company to make every visit to Menne Nursery a pleasant experience for the whole family while providing a fun and rewarding place to shop, work and do business.
A History of Menne Nursery
For over 75 years, Menne Nursery has been helping to create beautiful gardens and beautiful homes while growing right along with Western New York. In 1939, Menno S. Mennes purchased 5.6 acres of land containing a house, a barn, a glass greenhouse, and a cottage. Today, the property has grown to over 10 acres and of the original buildings, only the house and one barn remain. By 1944 Menno was selling farm products and nursery stock at a roadside stand. Over the years, barns, offices, and storage buildings were added. With the help of his wife, Bertha and his father-in-law, Fred Howarth Sr., the little roadside stand grew to
include a retail nursery with a small greenhouse and a landscape division. In 1963, the majority of the business was sold to Bernard Stangler, who eventually became partners with Fred Sr's son, Fred Howarth II.
In 1972, Ben and Fred II replaced the original garden shop with a new facility. The shop allowed more shelf space for a larger array of products and provided paved outdoor shopping areas, a unique idea at that time, allowing customers to use specially made shopping carts. A florist division was added, along with a larger poly greenhouse for tropical plants. The Christmas Shop began to grow by leaps and bounds at this time. New storage facilities were built to house products, equipment, and bulk materials.
In 1980, Fred Howarth II became owner of the nursery with his wife Ida. Their four children and spouses became part of the business and continued to build it as a family. New parcels of land were acquired at this time allowing more retail selling space and helping to accommodate the ever-growing landscape design and installation division.
Fred Howarth II retired in 1991, as plans were being made to replace the poly greenhouse with new, expanded, glass-covered greenhouses. Gary Sokolowski, son-in-law of Mr. Howarth, was appointed president of the corporation and continued to see the new greenhouse project through to completion. With the help of the third and fourth generation Howarth family members, Menne Nursery remained a leader in the Nursery industry in Western New York, offering a family-oriented, full-service garden center alternative to big box stores and mass merchandisers.
In 2002, Gary and Kathy Sokolowski became owners of Menne Nursery. The new 11,000 square foot covered shopping area, improved curb appeal and expanded product lines are only the beginning of their long-range plans. They still consider Menne Nursery to be a family business with some original family members and longtime experienced employees continuing to carry on this tradition. They are determined to continue to offer a wide selection of high-quality products and services along with knowledgeable staff and a pleasant shopping experience. At Menne Nursery & Garden Artistry, our valued customers remain the focus of our daily business.
In 2017 Gary Sokolowski retired and the decision was made to close the retail store at 3100 Niagara Falls Boulevard, at that time Kathy decided to keep reopen the company as Menne Garden Artistry, to focus solely on landscape design, construction, and maintenance. Now located at 108880 Transit Road in East Amherst as a full-service landscape firm, focused on residential as well as commercial services form maintenance as new construction. While there have been many changes throughout our years in the business we are still committed to being a leader in the western New York landscaping Industry and look forward to servicing you for many more years.