Scotts Q4 makes up for challenging start to fiscal 2013

Scotts Miracle-Gro has made up for lost time in the second half of the year, finishing with fiscal year sales essentially flat from the previous year.

The company's full year net sales were $2.82 billion, after a 9% increase in the second half, including a 10% increase in the fourth quarter.

"Despite dramatic delays in our season due to poor spring weather, consumers were highly engaged in the second half of the year, allowing us to exceed our guidance," said CEO Jim Hagedorn." He also pointed to the success of Project Max, the company's cost-cutting and productivity initiative.

Still, the CEO described the consumer marketplace as "soft." The company's outlook calls for sales growth of 2% to 3% in fiscal 2014.

In the fourth quarter, Scotts sales of $443 million, compared to sales of $401.2 million in the fourth quarter last year. The net income line showed a loss of $19.4 million, compared to a loss of $40.1 million in the same quarter last year.

For the full year, the company's net income was $161.1 million, up from $106.5 million in fiscal 2012.