Popular Gympie nursery eyes new expansion
PLANTS are not the only things growing at Traveston with a business expansion on the table for a popular nursery.
Natives R Us wants to build a new garden centre at its Thomason Rd home.
It would be the first independent garden centre in the Gympie region, owner Jacinta Curtis said.
“When I first moved here (in 2013) there were more than three,” Ms Curtis said.
They died off when Bunnings arrived, and she now hoped to put one back on Gympie’s map.
Not that it had been an easy task to get to this point when she took the reins.
“I had about five plants, three customers and half a staff member,” Ms Curtis said.
“It was sold to me as an existing business but it wasn’t.”
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He said she “worked my guts out” to make the business work, and over the past seven years turned it into what it is today.
“I used to pack all of the orders myself at night,” she said, before jumping in the car and heading out to drum up business.
“I’ve never worked so hard in my life.”
Adding the garden centre would allow Ms Curtis to increase the nursery’s staff from 12 to about 15-17.
She said it will not be the final piece of the nursery puzzle if approved’ other improvements are on the horizon.
In her application to the council said without it, customers would otherwise pack up and head out of the region to Cooroy or Buderim and take their money with them.
“Natives R Us Garden Centre would keep the business, employment and the dollars in Gympie,” Ms Curtis said.