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

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

GCA names Best Garden Centres in North and South Thames

The first area winners have been declared in the competition to find this year's Best GCA Garden Centre. The awards, following judging in the North Thames and South Thames areas, were announced at two recent ceremonies. To see the winners, see more... Read more

GCA members warm to GRO

Internal correspondence between GCA members shows that those who are already active in the controversial AIS/GRO buying group are delighted with the results, even before the imminent appointment of a senior garden buyer. See more... Read more

HTA continues drive to extend Sunday trading

The HTA is surveying its retail members to support its campaign to extend Sunday opening hours for garden centres. The Government appears open to change and has asked for more information. See more.. Read more

The Love/Hate Relationship of the 21st Century Gardener

Research launched today has revealed that the importance of reducing our gardening footprint still hasn’t resonated with some gardeners, as over a quarter admit to not considering the environment as they garden. See more... Read more

RHS calls for tax cut on ornamental plants and seeds

The RHS is using interest raised by the Chelsea Flower Show to launch a petition to reduce VAT on all ornamental plants and seeds to 5%. To sign the petition, see more – open to all readers... Read more

Minister says the door is open to changes in Sunday trading law

Friday's House of Lords debate on the HTA’s bill to extend Sunday trading at garden centres was rewarded a positive response from the trade minister. See more... 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

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

Fraudster cooks up a scam on Beefeater Barbecues

Hampshire-based Beefeater Barbecues (Regent Garden Collection) has been hit by a very clever scam involving two telephone orders purporting to be from Bents Garden Centre in Cheshire. See more … Read more

RHS Update on Weedkiller Residue

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) advisory service continues to receive many calls from gardeners worried that their crops are being damaged by weedkiller residues from contaminated manures or soil improvement composts. See more... Read more

GIMA reveals line-up for 2008 Awards

David Domoney and Julie Peasgood return to host the 2008 GIMA awards, which include entries from companies who are participating for the first time. This year's entertainer is to be TV show host Roy Walker. See more... Read more

Garden centres must adjust to the digital world

Last Thursday, a seminar on effective garden centre marketing held by the HTA, gave a valuable insight into how garden centres should use the Internet and focus on providing an authoritative service rather than selling product. See more... Read more

Sales of outdoor plants down 42% in April

The Barometer of Trade produced by the GCA gives the first indication of how awful sales were in April compared to a year ago. Worst hit were sales of garden furniture and outdoor plants. See more... Read more

Double Gold for Crocus at Chelsea

For the second time in three years Crocus has constructed the winning Show Garden at Chelsea. The Best Urban Garden was constructed by Adam Frost. To see the medals earned by Hillier, Notcutts, Chessington and Squire's - See more… Read more

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