When Lichtenfelt’s was founded in 1989 by David and Deborah Lichtenfelt, the goal was simple: provide customers with high quality plant material in a well-organized layout paired with great signage and expert gardening advice. A small wholesale operation with a few greenhouses and a used popup tent from Furman University (hence our signature purple color!) grew to over a dozen greenhouses, a half acre display garden, row upon row of container grown trees, and a full line of year round annual and perennial color.
Lichtenfelt’s reputation for excellence remained constant throughout the 1990s and into the 2000s. Seasonal seminars led by industry professionals became quite the draw for gardening enthusiasts. On any given Saturday in the spring one could find a parking lot bursting with attendees arriving early to grab a seat. Deborah also hosted a weekly gardening Q&A show on local radio which ran for nearly 10 years. After an ownership hiatus from 2008-2017, the business came back under family operation in the fall of 2017 with familiar faces and new team members alike. David & Deborah’s son, Connor, and daughter-in-law, Courtnie, joined the business and brought new energy and perspective to the team. They were joined by friend and plant guru, Jana Fredricks, who had been a part of the team for over 10 years during the 2000s.
Facilities both in-store and online expanded once again, as the garden was redesigned with additional plantings and sales area. More than 30,000 square feet of shade structures were built over existing greenhouses to provide a more pleasant experience for customers and plants alike. Meanwhile, a full scale ecommerce site began to take shape, with local pickup and delivery available for the first time. The increasing importance and accessibility of social media meant that educational opportunities could now be offered in a digital format. Seminars, how-to videos, product demonstrations, and more can now be found both virtually and through scheduled in-person events.
At the beginning of 2020, David and Deborah were ready to pursue new interests (don’t call it retirement, they say) and the business was sold a second time, but this time within the family. Second generation proprietors Connor and Courtnie Lichtenfelt hope you find the nursery to be a place where quality is valued, customers are respected, and knowledge is prevalent. Thanks to our incredible staff - Jana, Madi, Caitlin, Meaghan, Matthew, Evan, & Dillon to name a few - and the support of the Greater Greenville area, we continue to grow and are excited for what the future holds.
And the story continues...