The Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) and the American Nursery and Landscape Association (ANLA) announced last Friday that they have decided not to proceed with plans to merge the two organizations.
In confirming the decision, PLANET President John Gibson CLT, Swingle Lawn, Tree, & Landscape Care, with locations in Colorado, said, “Although we achieved encouraging momentum, we have decided that it is in the best interests of the memberships of both organizations not to merge at this time. The PLANET board of directors is focusing on alignments that are still being solidified coming out of the PLCAA/ALCA merger of 2004.”
The ANLA-PLANET merger task force embarked on a full-scale evaluation after determining last summer that there was sufficient reason to consider the creation of a single, national industry trade association. The current memberships of the two associations are largely based in different sectors of the green industry, and the merger would have brought together agricultural nursery production, wholesale distribution, retail garden centers, landscape design/build/installation, lawn care, landscape management and interior plantscaping services.
“When you make this kind of investment — volunteer and staff time, as well as financial resources — it is critical to ensure that you are making the right decision at the right time for the good of both organizations,” said ANLA president Buzz Bertolero, Navlet’s Garden Centers, with locations in California. “Our thorough investigation substantiated the potential of an ANLA-PLANET merger, and we plan to continue working together as green industry associations and re-examine this possibility in the future.”
There is no doubt that some important groundwork has been laid for the future by the due diligence efforts undertaken this year, and a merger would have a dramatic positive impact on the industry. In the meantime, the two organizations intend to remain aligned in delivering services, expanding public outreach and exerting political influence.
Jointly, the ANLA and PLANET represent more than 6,000 green industry business professionals nationwide that specialize in the growing, selling, installing and maintaining of plant material.
For more information, contact the PLANET offices at (800) 395-2522 or the ANLA offices at (202) 789-2900.