Mike Ward started Ward's Garden Center in April of 1976. The store was located at 2702 N Taylor Ave, right across the street from the current store. When Mike opened the store he used his saving as well as his Father-in-law Clayton Magie's good financial statement. Doing so allowed him to open a line a credit with lawn and garden distributors like Ferti-Lome and Hi-Yield. The only catch was he had 30 days to sell over one half of his initial inventory, if he didn't he was sunk. Obviously he did because 41 years later here we are. The company has grown from the initial store into multi business operation. Mike wasn't always a garden man. Mike has a license as an electronic engineer, working all through high school and college as t.v repairman. He started working at Woolworth's in 1969 and was with them fro seven years, in the seven years he was with them he was transferred eight times. That's when he decided to use his marketing skills to open his own business. Ward's started out as a Garden Center that sold bedding plants, pots, potting soil and Ect. He quickly realized he would need something to supplement the winter months. Ward's Pet Shop was opened in the winter of 1976 and had a small variety of animals. In 1984 Ward's joined Chemlawn Franchise and was with them for 5 years, in 1989 they started their own spin off and created Chemcare. Chemcare is still around and services all of southwestern Kansas. During the 80's Ward's had many other smaller businesses. like Ward's Lawn Mower Repair, Ward's Floral and Ward's Wholesale Produce. In 2001 Ward's expanded and opened the Ward's Garden Café. The café has a wide selection of meals available as well as Blue Bell ice cream. Today Ward's is still a family ran business with daughter D'Arcy in charge of Home & Garden Décor buying and placement. She does all the beautiful displays and design placement in the store. D'Arcy also does much of the marketing. She currently works for Garden City School District. Mike's granddaughter Symone can often be found in the store on the weekends helping out and making us laugh. She is currently to young to work here but I predict she will when the time is right. Mike's son David followed in his father's footsteps and has a successful Landscape Design and Lawn Maintenance "Next To Nature" in Overland Park, KS. Mike's wife Claudia is still his biggest fan and supporter. She can be found in the store multiple times a week visiting with the employees and customers. Mike Ward has always been a hard worker. That is evident since you will never come into the store to find he has a day off. Mike closes the store 4 days a year and still comes into work to care for the animals.Mike's dedication to the store is the reason for his success. He believes customer service is the key and works hard to maintain the best customer service in Garden City.
Ward's wouldn't be what it is today without the customers.
Thank You for the continued support throught out the community