Sautter’s Floral and Greenhouse goes to auction

After 51 years in business, Sautter's Floral and Greenhouse closed its doors and went to public auction.

Posted on May 4, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on May 4, 2013 at 10:55 a.m.

Even on 27 acres of land, you could hear the auction calls from Toledo Road when the breeze blew just right.

Sautter’s Floral and Greenhouse Garden Center went to auction Friday, May 3, after seeing its final day of business on March 29 following 51 years in operation.

“I figured now’s the time to get out now that the getting’s good,” Ted Sautter said in an Elkhart Truth article published March 27. “It’s all changed. The younger generation’s just not buying roses.”

Sautter’s wife, Katie Sautter, said that it’s tough to see the garden center go, but after a lifetime of gardening, her husband was ready to retire from owning a business.

“Ted’s been gardening since he was about 12 years old,” Katie said. “He used to sell turnips to the local farmers when he was young.”

Phil and Jason Hahn of Hahn’s Auctioneering in Nappanee were on hand throughout the day, leading the crowd of interested buyers from tractor to trailer to greenhouse, calling and hollering and taking the highest bids in order to clear out 51 years of business inventory in just one day.

“Sold!” Phil Hahn called out from the crowd gathered along the last row of greenhouses. “This one’s going down to Kentucky with this man to grow some tobackey.”

While Sautter’s work is done in Elkhart, his half-century legacy allows others to keep on growing.

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