Since 1983, Snepvangers Garden Plants has been located on the outskirts of Molenschot. Proud owner is Stephan Snepvangers. “37 years ago, my father bought a 1.5 hectare corn field on this site. According to the stories, this was the most barren piece of land in the wide area,” laughs Stephan. But that was not an issue, because Snepvangers built a greenhouse on it and started growing plants in pots as one of the first gardeners. That golden idea was the beginning of this green adventure.
Growing in pots was a lucrative concept. For example, Snepvangers were able to sell plants all year round and were no longer dependent on the seasons. But that’s not what made the company great. Those were stephan’s father’s green fingers. He immersed himself in ornamental shrubs that have ornamental value all year round. “He got cuttings from everywhere,” says Stephan. “That’s how he made the call to people when he saw a beautiful plant in their garden. And with those cuttings he went to work in the greenhouse.” The Skimmia was soon a favorite. And still this evergreen serster is the showpiece of Snepvangers. “It is not a difficult plant for the people at home, but growing it is a different story. You really have to have a feeling for that.” Fortunately, that feeling is in the genes of the Snepvangers.
Father on son
That Stephan took over the company from his father was not self-evident. “I studied horticulture in Wageningen and started working as a cell biologist. But that was more laboratory work than I loved, so after 3 years I went to my father’s wrists what the possibilities were.” Stephan’s father reacts pleasantly surprised. They worked together for 7 years and then his father transferred the company to Stephan 13 years ago. Symbolically, he is the first to hand over his phone with all contacts. “My father wanted to go back to how he started, with his fingers in the earth, and luckily he’s still at the nursery every day!”
In the green hands of Stephan, the company continues to grow. More automated processes, more plants and more customers. The latter is partly due to Mark Boemaars. “Mark already worked with us as a holiday force,” says Stephan. “After a failed study, he came to strengthen us temporarily and never left. He helped me call our address file and that went so well for him that he took on more and more commercial tasks.” Meanwhile, Stephan and Mark are partners when it comes to sales. Each of them has their own expertise, but they also have a lot in common. For example, the commitment to the company and their employees, the need to unburden the customer and the love for the profession.
Stephan not only has green fingers, but also his policy is green. For example, Snepvangers uses flower pots of recycled material that can be used in plastic waste thanks to the grey colour. And they fight pests with as few chemicals as possible. “I prefer biological solutions and therefore follow all developments closely. We prefer to do everything as sustainably as possible!”, says Stephan enthusiasticly. And that also applies to the relationships that the company enters into. They still have customers and employees from the first hour. So they’ve been around since 1983! Stephan finds the question to which they owe it difficult. But he’s not. At Snepvangers, a lot is possible. The lines are short, the atmosphere is informal and there is no hierarchy. And you’re always welcome. You’ll feel that as soon as you put a foot over the threshold.