£25 million to fight the spread of Phytophthora kernoviae

The government has announced today £25 million to fight the spread of Phytophthora kernoviae and Phytophthora ramorum. This gives a clear indication of the potential threat of these diseases to our woodlands and the nursery industry. See more... Read more

E.coli in garden centre fountains

A report has appeared that E.coli has been found in fountains at seven Welsh garden centres, putting the health of visitors at risk. See more... Read more

Average GC shopping basket grows by £3.60 in 12 months

One in four garden centres increased sales during December. For the year as a whole, sales fell 2%. The latest figures from the GCA Barometer of Trade also show that average customer spend in 2008 increased by £3.60. See more... Read more

ITV & RHS seek the People's Gardener

ITV’s Alan Titchmarsh Show and the RHS have launched the search for the People's Gardener. They are seeking nominations for anyone whose passion for gardening benefits their community in some way. See more... Read more

Keep writing says HTA – it’s working (Updated)

Intensive lobbying appears to have softened the damaging draft legislation on the Placing of Plant Protection Products on the Market, on which the EU Parliament will vote on 12th January. However, concerns remain and there is still time to write to your MEP. See more... Read more

2008 Review

Gardenforum reported on 18 garden centres changing hands last year. There was also the demise of wholesaler Spread, and a difficult year for Sir Tom Hunter’s investments in Dobbies, Flying Brands and Wyevale. For a review of 2008 and what to watch in 2009, see 'more'... (This article open to non-subscribers to see what you missed!) Read more

Garden Centres are streets ahead for Christmas

The winners of the 2008 GCA Christmas display competition are Barton Grange, Brock, in the category for larger centres and Castle Gardens at Sherborne in the class for garden centres with sales under £3m. The judge said she was absolutely blown away. See more... Read more

Wisley at Risk from Commercial Waste Management Sites

The RHS is calling on people who love gardens and gardening to help it fight two planning applications for commercial waste management sites near its largest garden, at Wisley in Surrey. See more... Read more

Lifetime Achievement Award for Whitehall Centenarian

Highlights of last night's Garden Retail Awards include 3 wins for the newly refurbished Sidmouth Garden Centre and a Lifetime Achievement Award for Whitehall Garden Centre's centenarian owner Phyllis Self. For all the winners, see more... Read more

HTA welcomes Benn’s support and understanding

Possible draconian laws to eliminate a wide range of potentially invasive garden plants, and EU pesticide legislation were among the topics discussed by industry leaders at yesterday’s meeting with Hillary Benn, the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. See more... Read more

Conference shows how to survive a recession

HTA members who attended this week's business leaders’ conference heard that we are facing the toughest time ever for business directors. Innovation is the key to survival, but this does not come naturally to companies with over 20 staff. Creativity needs to be worked at. See more... Read more

Prices to rise by 10% or more next year

Prices will rise 10% or more next year. Will volumes decrease by an equivalent amount? No, say exhibitors and retailers at Glee, the garden industry can expect some growth next year. See more... Read more

Early signs that the garden sector is not immune from the crisis

Dudley Transport has suspended deliveries for two weeks while its owner, Kinglea Plants, rationalises its customer base. Uncertainty has also arisen over the financial security of Baugur, a shareholder in Wyevale. See more ... Read more

New look for Ruxley Rose competition

The new look Ruxley Rose competition will keep garden centres focused on plants at a time when their attention might be diverted by Christmas decorations. See more... Read more

Last Chance to Enter Thrive's Blind Gardener Competition

Anyone who knows the enjoyment of gardening and has a visual impairment should sign up now so that their skills can be recognised and celebrated in Thrive's popular annual Blind Gardener of the Year competition. Closing date is Monday 15 September 2008. See more for details... Read more

New Monthly Nursery Round-up by Peter Dawson

Here’s the first round-up of news from British nurseries by Peter Dawson, former editor of Nurseryman and Garden Centre magazine. His new monthly ‘column’ will provide news and views from the growers across the country. See more... Read more

Good advice for the recession

What are the prospects for 2009 and how do we survive? This was the foremost question for delegates at the recent Garden Centre Association conference and GIMA meeting. Gardenforum distils the advice from both events. See more... Read more

GCA names its garden centre of the year

Bents claims the title GCA Garden Centre of the Year 2009, just ahead of last year’s winner, Webbs of Wychbold. All in One, Donaghadee, Poplars Nursery and Taylors Bulbs were among the other winners. See more... Read more

Garden centres should become champions for change says Smit

In September, Tim Smit said garden centres would be the most important UK industry in the next 10 years as scares emerge about food and fuel security. Gardenforum asked Smit to explain what he meant and what garden centres should be doing about it. See more… Read more

Plan for the worst says Charles Notcutt

There was valuable advice on beating the downturn on the first day of Contact 09, the three day conference for UK nurseries organised by the HTA. See more... Read more

Christmas trade very much a 'curate's egg'

With both Next and Debenhams reporting lower sales in the Christmas period, garden centres appear to have fared the festive season better than the high street retailers. See more... Read more

What recession? Say NZ garden centres

Proof that garden centres are recession resistant comes with news from New Zealand of record sales of plants and seedlings. The RHS is promoting Grow Your Own in 2009 as consumers look towards home for their leisure activities. See more... Read more

Call for gardening organisations to work together

Garden Organic has called for a joined up approach from leading garden organisations to encourage food security and bio-diversity by promoting growing at home. See more... Read more

Jury out on VAT reduction

The 2.5% cut in VAT in the run up to Christmas has presented garden centres with a headache. How do they implement the reduction? See more … Read more

GIMA accuses GRO of ‘Divide and rule’

GIMA has warned members that they need GRO like they need ‘A hole in the head’. In reply the new buying group says the view of the manufacturers misunderstands the concept of GRO. See more... Read more

It’s not about pretty planting and neat lawns, says Mintel

The latest Mintel report sees signs of a new generation of gardeners with different needs. Garden centre consolidation is slowing, but the long-term survival of the traditional garden centre is questioned. See more... Read more

Butterfly World Project opens with Future Gardens next year

Phase one of a stunning £25 million Butterfly World Project will open next June with Future Gardens, a series of show gardens launched by Sir David Attenborough and David Bellamy. When completed, the 25-acre site near St Albans will have display gardens in the shape of a caterpillar, a tropical biome and 10,000 tropical butterflies. See more... Read more

IGCA heads for the North West in 2009

The IGCA (International Garden Centre Association) Congress is to return to the UK after 12 years. In 1997 the event was hosted by London, the Southeast and Scotland. In September 2009 it will be the turn of the North West. See more... Read more

Northern Garden Centres break from Future Marketing

Five northern garden centres have left the buying group Future Marketing with effect from the first of September. They will be working more closely together as the Trans-Pennine group. See more... Read more

HTA wins support in fight to lift Sunday Trading restrictions

The HTA is to meet the government in October backed by overwhelming support from its members in favour of exempting garden centres from Sunday trading restrictions. This will add weight to the Bill currently in the House of Lords. See more... Read more

To see earlier stories - Look in the News Archive