It’s easy to take a trusted friend for granted — until you know they are going away for good.

After 31 years of helping customers select plants, shrubs and trees, Wischmeier Nursery, Garden Center and Gift Shop, 240 Jonesville Road, will permanently close sometime in early July.

Immediately after the announcement was made earlier this month, customers began flocking to the 6,990 square-foot facility on the north side of Garden City, said 17-year employee Chad Scott.

While it’s easy to assume liquidation discounts were a big incentive, similar savings offered during past sales have only attracted about 50 people over a weekend, according to founder John Wischmeier Sr.

In contrast, about 10 times that number of customers have shown up during the past two weekends, he said.

“I couldn’t believe the response!” John Wischmeier said. “And every other person is telling us how much they are going to miss us. It makes you think, ‘Hey, where have you guys been?’”

For more on this story, see Thursday’s Republic.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.