Otten Bros. has always been about family. 1953 was the beginning point for Otten Bros. Nursery & Landscaping and the three brothers who founded the business: Bert, Joe and Leonard Otten.
Raised on a farm near Buffalo, Minnesota, the boys were from a family of fourteen children. Each brother brought his own unique skill set to their newly created business. Nursery stock growing and planting experience, carpentry, masonry and excavating knowledge and business background were the background talents used as the cornerstones for the new Otten Bros. family business.
It wasn’t long before the business began to prosper and the workload became greater than the 3 brothers could handle. The brothers hired other experienced people in specific areas such as tree-trimming and removal, patios, retaining walls, and lawn maintenance in order to expand and improve their business.
During the early years of the Otten Bros. business, many second-generation family members came in to help out at the nursery. These sons, daughters, nieces and nephews potted plants and worked on the landscaping crews. A few returned year after year and learned the art of the business. One of these second-generation family members was Leonard Ottens son, Cliff.
In 1970, Cliff became a partner in the company and by 1975 had acquired full ownership of Otten Bros. after two of the original founding brothers retired.
Originally, Otten Bros. main location and garden center was in Wayzata.
Then, in 1979, a second garden center opened in Long Lake and became the new headquarters of Otten Bros. With the business still growing, more space was needed for both the garden center and the design & landscape division. In 1985, the Wayzata center was closed and planning began for the design and construction of a new retail facility.
It took five years of planning and the last move was made to our present 12-acre site in 1991. This new site allowed Otten Bros. to offer a larger selection of trees, shrubs, annuals and perennials, as well as more complete lines of garden, landscaping materials and gift-related items. Our full service landscape design and installation department is also headquartered in our new facility.
In the fall of 2006, Otten Bros. acquired an existing garden center & wholesale greenhouse in Delano, Minnesota called The Flower Farm. Today, it is our second retail garden center location and growing range for many of the annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees we sell. In November, it transforms into Wreaths and Ribbons, a Christmas workshop, where we make our own custom wreaths, roping and other fresh greens decorations.
Otten Bros. now employs a staff of over 100 part- and full-time people. It has taken a leadership role in the garden center & landscaping industry. We are proud to be family owned and part of the Long Lake/Orono community.
Today, Otten Bros. is considered one of the premier garden centers and landscaping firms in the United States.