May 10, 2013 |
It's Thursday morning, the air is crisp - 52 degrees - and Audrey Gillespie, Margaret Hunter, Peg Fitzhenry, and Donna Cole are exercising their annual rite of spring: a daylong trek to the Amish and Mennonite plant nurseries that straddle the Lancaster and Chester County line. The itinerary, long familiar to serious gardeners in the region, but virtually unknown to everyone else, is meticulously plotted in advance. It would take almost eight hours and 124 miles to complete, and would include nine stops - eight greenhouses and farm markets that sell plants, with a quick lunch at a Pennsylvania Dutch eatery in Blue Ball, where hamburgers cost $2.35 and lettuce-and-tomato sandwiches a nickel more.
March 31, 1987 |
W. Atlee Burpee Co., the world's largest mail-order seed company, has been sold to a group of private investors for an undisclosed price. Harvey Snyder, a Burpee spokesman, said Clayton & Dublier, a New York investment group agreed last Friday to sell the firm to B.T. and Wicks Capital, two New York investor groups, and to Burpee's current management. Clayton & Dublier purchased Burpee, whose headquarters are in Warminster, Bucks County, from ITT Corp. in December. ITT Corp.
February 27, 1991 |
W. Atlee Burpee & Co., of Warminster, the nation's leading producer and distributor of seeds for home gardens, yesterday said that it had sold a majority interest to Geo. J. Ball Corp., of West Chicago, Ill. Ball is a major commercial seed grower whose six subsidiaries have operations throughout the world. Both Burpee and Ball are privately held, and the companies would not disclose details of the agreement. "From our perspective and Ball's, this will provide us with an opportunity to take advantage of synergies and research and development in seed breeding, production and distribution," said Christian M. Troll, president and acting chief executive officer of Burpee.
March 3, 1991 |
If you've ever had the thrill of sticking a few tomato, zinnia or pumpkin seeds into dirt, applying water and watching impatiently for tiny, pale leaves to emerge, or if you sow seeds by the thousands into rich Bucks farmland, you probably know the name Burpee. W. Atlee Burpee Co. of Warminster, the proud parent of Big Boy tomatoes, Firecracker Zenith Hybrid zinnias and, new this year, Sweet Bush Hybrid cantaloupe is the largest breeder and distributor of seeds to home gardeners in the country.
November 15, 1987 |
With the first snowfall of the season on the ground Wednesday night, the Warminster Township Zoning Hearing Board made it possible for spring gardeners to purchase supplies. The W. Atlee Burpee Seed Co., a national mail order supplier of seeds for flowers and vegetables located on Park Avenue in Warminster, applied to the board for a use variance to sell garden and agricultural products from a retail store to be at 300 Park Ave. The board approved the variance, 3-0. Burpee, which has two locations on Park Avenue, has an agreement of sale with the Horsham Valley Development Corp.
January 4, 1987 |
Sooner or later, the gardener's early trip into spring will arrive in the mailbox. This year, it is 200 pages thick, with hundreds of color photographs, all put together by W. Atlee Burpee Co. (Warminster, Pa. 18974). Work started on this catalogue 12 months ago, just as you and I were choosing our seeds from the 1986 edition, and piece by piece it came together for printing late in the fall, at one of the nation's largest printing presses, in Chicago. My catalogue has tomatoes and lettuce on the cover, but Steve Frowine, Burpee's staff horticulturist, says the company puts out about 30 covers each year, testing different layouts and products.
April 17, 1988 |
Charles O. Cresson describes them as "a neat little package of hope. " They are flowering bulbs - gold and purple crocuses, quivering jonquils, iridescent tulips that burst through the chilly brown earth to color our late- winter blues with a fragrant reminder of the warm season ahead. Cresson, a fourth-generation gardener and the new manager of bulbs for W. Atlee Burpee & Co. in Warminster, thinks bulbs are a great harbinger of the gardening season. The planting work is done in the fall, "so in the spring you have the fun of watching them grow," he said.
February 8, 1987 |
Gardening is said to be America's favorite pastime, and these are the days that gardeners spend sitting by the fire, contemplating seed catalogues and the pleasure their products will bring in the spring. W. Atlee Burpee Co. is one of the seed granddaddies, and now it's branching out from Beefsteak tomatoes and Zenith zinnias into the travel game. Later this year, the Warminster-based Burpee will sponsor garden tours to Hawaii, Southern California and the Canadian Rockies, and cruises down the Mississippi and along the coast of China.
March 27, 1988 |
Charles O. Cresson, an author on gardening, has been given the opportunity to practice what he preaches. Cresson, the author of The 60 Minute Flower Garden, has been named bulb product manager of the W. Atlee Burpee & Co., in Warminster, where one of his responsibilities will be cultivating the design gardens photographed in the Burpee catalog. He also will be responsible for merchandising and strengthening the quality of the company's bulbs. Burpee is the nation's largest mail-order supplier of seeds, plants and gardening supplies for home gardeners.
April 1, 1987 |
W. Atlee Burpee Co., the world's largest mail-order seed company, has been sold to a group of private investors for an undisclosed price. Harvey Snyder, a Burpee spokesman, said Clayton & Dublier, a New York investment group, agreed Friday to sell the firm to B.T. and Wicks Capital, two New York investor groups, and to Burpee's current management. Clayton & Dublier purchased Burpee, whose headquarters are in Warminster, Bucks County, from ITT Corp. in December. ITT Corp. owned Burpee from 1979 to 1986.