Stephen H Smith is in talks to sell garden centre to M&S

Local sources report that Stephen H Smith is in talks with Marks & Spencer about opening a store on its site on the outskirts of Scunthorpe. See more... Read more

Closure dates set for Focus DIY stores

The administrators have published the closure dates of the Focus DIY stores, with the first 10 closing on June 19th. More than 31 stores have been sold to B&Q and 13 to Wickes. Asda are also taking some. Click on the website button below. Read more

Almondsbury re-development to start as soon as possible

Park Garden Centres are to start work as soon as possible on the first phase of the £5m redevelopment of its garden centre at Almondsbury. See more... Read more

Dobbies offers £66,000 to support local growing

Dobbies is seeking to fund the transformation of communities around its garden centres with bursaries worth £66,000. These are distributed through its “Here We Grow” programme. See more… Read more

Plant sales up 19% at B&Q

B&Q credits Alan Titchmarsh with improving the quality and distribution of its plants. It sold over 1 million more plants this spring, with 24-pack bedding showing the biggest growth. See more... Read more

Amenity suppliers report a buoyant market

Growers attending the HTA Amenity Suppliers meeting, held last week at Coles Nurseries in Leicestershire, reported a healthy market with trading much better than anticipated at the beginning of the year.

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Tesco and Dobbies announce first joint site

As expected, Tesco has revealed that it will operate the supermarket next to the garden centre that Dobbies has long planned to open in a retail complex at East Kilbride, near Glasgow. See more... Read more

120 Focus stores likely to close

There is speculation across the UK press that the administrators of Focus will today announce the closure of more than 120 stores. See more... Read more

Palmstead Nurseries to open 1 hectare glasshouse

Next Friday, Palmstead Nurseries open a 1 hectare glasshouse near Ashford in Kent to grow over 1.5 million young plants a year using the latest equipment and technology. See more... Read more

Dobbies says it is easier with Tesco

In an interview in the Scotsman, James Barnes restated his ambition for Dobbies to become the leading brand in UK horticultural retailing with 100 garden centres. See more... Read more

New Owners for Ace Equipment

Anne Llewellyn has joined in a joint venture with Richard Alan Group to form a new company manufacturing Ace trolleys. Roger Llewellyn has retired. See more... Read more

Suppliers question timing of Focus demise

The moment that Focus DIY went into administration could not have been worse for gardening suppliers. The end of April is often the time when they are owed the most by retailers. The trade association, GIMA, has questioned the timing. See more... Read more

Squire’s gathers Shoots

DJ Squire & Co has added the 3 Shoots Garden Centres to its portfolio of 11 around London. The deal was completed today. This story has been updated - See more... Read more

Sales surge at Farplants thanks to new Finishing Centre

Investment in a new Finishing Centre has paid off for Farplants with output reaching 1900 trolleys in a single day. Year to date sales are 28% up and April sales have been phenomenal. See more... Read more

Almondsbury garden centre wins approval to re-develop

Park Garden Centre wins approval for a £5m re-development of its flagship Almondsbury store. See more… Read more

Garden centre sales fall for the third successive year

Garden centre revenues in May have fallen for the last 3 years and this year they were 15% lower than in April, according to the GCA. Garden furniture sales suffered especially. See more... Read more

Lee Mowle sells Stewart Group to Private Equity

Six and a half years after rescuing Stewart Plastics from administration, Lee Mowle has sold the Stewart Group in a deal valuing it at £17m. The buyer is private equity firm, ECI. See more… Read more

Extension will double the size of Garden Wise

After protracted negotiations, Garden Wise (Dumfries) has won permission to double the covered retail area of the garden centre. Work starts in July. See more... Read more

Shares fall after worse than expected results from Home Retail

Home Retail Group has experienced further significant decline at Argos while like-for-like sales at Homebase edged higher thanks to the weather. See more... Read more

Early warning helps retailers prepare for new Titchmarsh TV programme

The first of Alan Titchmarsh’s new gardening series is due to air on Friday. GIMA has been helping the makers to source products and is keen to alert suppliers and retailers ahead of each show to items that will be featured. See more... Read more

Sinclair calls for legislation to force consumers and growers to end their use of peat

William Sinclair has issued a fresh call for the government to legislate against the use of peat in horticulture as it revealed a six-month increase in sales and pre-tax profits. See more... Read more

Everris – a new global professional chemical brand

Following the sale of Scotts Professional Division to the Israeli based speciality chemical company, ICL Group, a new global professional brand has been unveiled, named Everris. See more...
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Unusual spring weather forces Claire Austin to cancel Iris Field Open Days

The unusually high temperatures and light levels this spring have sadly taken their toll on the iris fields. The iris flowers are so far forward, that there will be no blooms left for the field open days, which had been scheduled for 2-4 June 2011. Read more

Reports of Garden & Leisure linking with Waitrose are premature

Reports of a tie-up between Garden & Leisure and Waitrose are somewhat premature. Any agreement is subject to planning permission, which has yet even to be submitted to the Shrewsbury planners. See more... Read more

Wickes to take 13 Focus DIY stores

Having sold 31 stores to B&Q, The administrators of Focus DIY have sold a further 13 to Wickes. See more… Read more

New Garden Centre planned for Rushden Lakes

LXB, shareholder in The Garden Centre Group, plans a new garden centre and retail development near Northampton. See more... Read more

Marshalls warns that uncertainty remains despite 10% uplift

Paving and hard landscaping supplier, Marshalls has reported a 10% increase in revenue for the first 4 months of this year. Order books are shorter, but the domestic market remains resilient. See more... Read more

Focus DIY seeks administration

The BBC has reported that Focus DIY has issued a statement saying that it intends to go into administration. Focus trades from 178 stores in the UK. Ernst & Young are the intended administrators. See more... Read more

Bank confirms positive talks to extend TGCG terms

Lloyds Bank and The Garden Centre Group are in positive discussions about extending their banking terms. This should supply funds for expansion. See more... Read more

John Woods accounts show progress since MBO

Investment, new technology and a singular focus on adding value for the customer has led to strong progress at John Woods Nurseries since the 2007 buy-out from Notcutts. See more... Read more

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