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Bestsellers of the year

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Discover which products sold the most throughout 2019 FEBRUARY 2020

Houseplant trends What to stock in 2020

Plus Nursery Open Days Preview

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Catering spotlight

Notcutts’ new 300-seater restaurant

Finding a winning formula Secrets of success from an independent garden centre


INTERVIEW

Finding a winning formula

In the middle of nowhere, Nigel Gates and his family have built a garden centre business with £8m turnover that will grow by 50% next year following the addition of a superb new farm shop. GTN’s Trevor Pfeiffer met up with Nigel in his restaurant and left with a litre of organic milk as well as this interview. Nigel Gates’ grandfather bought the original three-and-a-half acre walled garden in Cold Overton, Leicestershire, in 1948, initially running it as a market garden. Then during the 1960s and 70s they started doing more retailing and have gradually added buildings and car parking over the years. “We’ve got at least 800 car parking spaces at the moment and that wasn’t enough at Christmas. We had to have four or five of my guys trying to get to cars in and out without blocking the road,” Nigel explained. “We will be putting in another planning application because I think we’ve got a case to gain more car parking and we won’t be able to go back and ask for more retailing without the car parking in place.” Working closely with the local planning officers has been a key factor for the growth of Gates. “The village of Cold Overton only has 27 houses, so we’ve had to grow the business to attract people from Oakham, Melton Mowbray, Leicester and even as far afield as Matlock. “By developing in stages we’ve been able to argue they are just small incremental add-ons and hopefully we will keep getting the OK as we go forward. The biggest jump was the building for the restaurant, gifts and Christmas. This was the toughest one to get through, because we had a planning officer who refused it.” The planning officer told Nigel there were supermarkets asking for less than he had applied for. “I got a very top-notch planning lawyer involved and eventually after a change in the planning department we got the go-ahead without having to go to appeal. “I think we get good support with

2 February 2020

“All we’ve got to do is respond and look after customers”

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INTERVIEW

EDITORIAL & ADVERTISING Garden Trade News, Potting Shed Press Ltd Dairy Drove Thorney Peterborough PE6 0TX Tel 01733 775700 Fax 01733 775838 gardentradenews@tgcmc.co.uk www.gardentradenews.co.uk THE GTN TEAM Editor: Neil Pope neil.pope@tgcmc.co.uk Associate Editor: Mike Wyatt mike.wyatt@tgcmc.co.uk Director: Trevor Pfeiffer trevor.pfeiffer@tgcmc.co.uk Publisher: Mandy Davies mandy.davies@tgcmc.co.uk Advertising: Alan Burdon alan.burdon@tgcmc.co.uk Ben Greenwood ben.greenwood@tgcmc.co.uk HOW TO SUBSCRIBE Tel 01733 775700 or email subscriptions@gardentradenews.co.uk Subscription rates UK: £145 Subscription includes a password for full access to GTN Online plus a weekly copy of GTN Bestsellers

councillors because the bottom line on planning is it has to go in front of councillors with an officer’s recommendation. We very much try to get it that the recommendation is for approval and generally councillors have said we push for the rural economy, tourism and employment and we tick all those boxes.” Gates is one of the biggest employers in the area with 180 on the payroll. Nigel’s simple view of garden centre retailing is: “All we’ve got to do is respond and look after customers. “As a customer, if you’re thinking it looks that nice and some say they would pay to look at our Christmas displays, then you’re on a winner.” Gates have certainly done that with their newest development, the Farm Shop. With the vision of Nigel’s son Jack, who farms

450 acres with Aberdeen Angus, Beef Shorthorns, South Devons and Kerry Hill Sheep, they built and opened a Farm Shop last September that is on course to hit between £3.5m and £4m turnover in its first year. Nigel is the creative force behind the look and feel of the garden centre. “I like doing the design of the retail areas. For the Farm Shop I knew I wanted to do wooden frames and the look and feel of the restaurant would work for the shop area under the new offices. But I needed to find a statement design for the entrance. In the restaurant we have a slated roof but here I managed to persuade a Master Thatcher to build two thatch canopies, using two and half tons of reed in each roof.”

OUR PUBLISHERS GTN is published by Potting Shed Press Ltd, who also publish: * www.gardentradenews.co.uk website * Weekly GTN Xtra and Pet Trade Xtra newsletters * Garden Radio * Official Glee Catalogue and Glee Daily News Online – the only official guides to the garden industry’s leading annual trade show SMALL PRINT All material © Potting Shed Press 2020. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form whatsoever, either for sale or not, without the express permission of the publishers. The information contained in this publication is published in good faith and every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy. Potting Shed Press Ltd cannot accept responsibility for any error or misrepresentation. All liability for loss, disappointment, negligence or other damage caused by reliance on information contained in this publication or in the event of any bankruptcy or liquidation or cessation of the trade of any company, individual or firm mentioned, is hereby excluded.

Continued on page 4.

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February 2020 3


INTERVIEW

Continued from page 3. The Farm Shop, including Organic Milk on tap from a farm 1.2 miles up the road, is already starting to increase the frequency of visit to the centre and that is increasing turnover in the garden centre and restaurants too. The development has meant an extra cost is looming. “We’ve just had to order a new ground sub-station at a cost of £200k to provide more power to the site. PreChristmas we were having to turn off the air conditioning in the offices to free up enough supply to keep the refrigeration units going. “It’s a good job we moved to LED lighting throughout the centre two years ago because that not only saved us money it also allowed for spare supply to get us to here.” When planning for extra car parking spaces, with the extra electric supply in mind, Nigel is also preparing for the installation of electric car chargers. “Rather than go for fast charging, which uses masses of power, we will go for top-up charging.

4 February 2020

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After all we want people to spend some time with us – we are a destination not a motorway services.” Gates is actually about 20 miles from the nearest dual carriageway so every development is about making a visit special. Nigel invested £16k last year in three balers for cardboard and plastic so that they could tidy up the centre as well as deliver sustainability advantages. As with many other garden centre owners Nigel was interested in buying one of the Wyevale Centres up for sale last year. “Dobbies bought it and I now think we are better off just having one site and really keeping on top of it,” he admitted. With a big, albeit sloping, site Nigel and his family have plenty of further expansion in mind. “I still think a kids’ play area could be a the real attraction and potentially another restaurant is on the horizon. “Our restaurant that seats 390 is at capacity, the 140-seater coffee shop gets full and we were serving another 80 in the Christmas Pop-up café in the planteria. So we need to look at another restaurant area and create a different offering.” The key to everything at Gates is doing it well. “It’s not like we can bolt it on and it’ll work because you’re passing, we are in the middle of nowhere.” And having established a popular garden centre in the middle of nowhere, Nigel says: “I wouldn’t be gutsy enough to build this new Farm Shop in its own right here. Not without a garden centre in the first place. The footfall of the garden centre has generated the word of mouth recommendation that has built this new area of business for us.” You can read more about the sustainability features in the Gates Farm Shop in the GTN Sustainability Directory that you received with this issue of GTN. And when you are passing Gates make sure you stop and buy some of their Organic Milk from the vending machine, it really tastes good!


NEWS UPDATE

TALKING POINTS 5 STORIES THAT MADE THE HEADLINES

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Bord na Mona is changing its name to The Greener Gardening Company, effective 1st February. The name change encapsulates all retail customers that trade with Bord na Mona Horticulture, Bord na Mona UK and White Moss Horticulture. The company continues to be a wholly owned subsidiary of Bord na Mona Ireland. 2020 is set to be a big year for the business. The company has announced a new peat-free range of products, Happy Compost, which created astounding interest at Glee, and received a ‘best in test’ performance against all major competitors in trials conducted at University College of Dublin.

People News

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One of the great benefits of AMES UK acquisition of Kelkay has been investment to drive business expansion. The site near Snaith, from where Kelkay’s aggregate and paving operations are run, has been expanded by over 20% in preparation for the forecasted increase in garden centre business. AMES UK have demonstrated their confidence in the team and the future growth of the business by funding a £1.5m investment in warehousing and logistics as well as new packaging machinery, all of which has been installed since August.

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Johnsons Seeds has started to replace its unique plastic plant label on the back of all its standard packets with a compostable version. Made from 100% renewable FSC certified material, the new label has been produced using highly sustainable methods. The new labels have been put to the test by the team at the Johnsons offices in Kentford and their trials have shown that the compostable material performs just as well as the plastic label in a planting environment. Furthermore, as it’s fully compostable, the material will break down in the soil and eventually be absorbed. Whilst some Johnsons packets will still feature the plastic version for a while until stocks have run through, customers can expect to start seeing the compostable label on some packets this season.

Hillier Nurseries has unveiled plans for its ‘greatest ever’ RHS Chelsea Flower Show exhibit in 2020. The Stihl Hillier Garden will be a momentous celebration of the company’s 155-year history and achievements, as it aims for a landmark 75th consecutive gold medal. Hillier holds the world record for the most consecutive gold medals at the show. The company will be taking centre stage with its vast exhibit in the Grand Pavilion. It will be an immersive walkthrough, winding around the famous central monument bursting with planting inspiration throughout. The stunning display will cover a phenomenal 387.5m2, a staggering 85% increase on the 2019 garden.

Sue Allen has taken over as chair person of the Greenfingers Charity following the retirement of John Ashley. Sue is a well-known face within the garden retail sector, having established Millbrook Garden Centres in 1979 with her late husband, Dick. Now run by her extended family, Sue splits her time between sitting on the Board of Trustees for the Garden Centre Association and is Chairman of the GCA Trust. In addition to the role of Chairman, the Greenfingers Charity AGM also saw three trustees step down at the end of their tenure. Leaving their post were Scotsdale’s Caroline Owen; Dennis Espley previously MD of Squire’s Garden Centres and now Non-Executive Chair of the Tillington Buying Group; and CEO of Somerton Group, Carol Paris. The Board also voted in two new trustees with both Tammy Woodhouse, MD of Millbrook Garden Centres, and Richard Capewell, being warmly welcomed by the Greenfingers Charity board.

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Evergreen Garden Care has announced the appointment of David Domoney as its brand ambassador. The partnership will see David produce a wide range of stimulating content to motivate and support all gardeners to have successful gardening experiences and help unlock the love of the garden for all to enjoy. The content will span insightful blogs, videos and promoting a variety of inspiring horticultural activities such as how to grow your best garden, growing in any space, gardening to support the environment, and gardening for better health and wellbeing.

Full versions of these reports first appeared in GTN Xtra, our weekly e-newsletter mailed direct to registered email addresses to keep readers in touch with industry news as it happens. To register, send your email address to: trevor.pfeiffer@tgcmc.co.uk and put ‘GTN Xtra’ in the subject line.

6 February 2020

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Wildlife World, Europe’s leading designer and manufacturer of wildlife products, has appointed Mark Pitman to its management team. He has joined the business to lead the company’s marketing function, alongside a progressive development plan for future growth. Mark has over 30 years experience in the horticultural industry, working for Notcutts, Capital Gardens, Hillier Nurseries, and most recently for the John Lewis Partnership, at Longstock Park Nursery in Hampshire, on the Waitrose & Partners Farm, Leckford Estate.


OUTDOOR LEISURE

Committed to using responsibly sourced materials

Member Spotlight Zest 4 Leisure

In the first of a new ‘outdoor leisure’ series we put the spotlight on LOFA members Zest 4 Leisure, who will be showcasing their new product lines at SOLEX 2020. How valuable is membership to LOFA? To be part of an organisation that represents the very best brands within the UK garden industry is of huge value to Zest 4 Leisure, thanks to the credibility that it provides within the industry. What does the organisation offer you in terms of support, guidance and advice? LOFA provides a variety of services and support, such as advice and access to trade industry research, which are valuable for product design and customer insights. How important is sustainability for the industry as a whole and you as a company? Sustainability is a key factor not just for the industry but also for Zest 4 Leisure which is committed to using responsibly sourced, sustainable FSC Certified timber. Zest’s zero timber waste policy for UK manufactured products ensures any timber waste is chipped and used in its own set of biomass boilers at the Saltney warehouse and distribution centre. As more customers are investing in quality and with some moving away from the previously popular plastic garden furniture sets, preferring products made from responsibly sourced timber, Zest 4 Leisure is proud to work with timber that is kinder to the environment, allowing customers to be at one with nature in their gardens, and which can be enjoyed for many years.

Is SOLEX a must-attend trade exhibition for your company? Zest 4 Leisure has been attending SOLEX for six years and we see it as a ‘must-attend event’. It is an ideal trade show at which Zest can invite garden centre and on-line retail customers onto the stand to showcase and present its bestselling ranges. Last year the company saw a significant increase in the number of leads generated from those who were interested in Zest products. Why do you like the show so much? SOLEX is the perfect place for Zest 4 Leisure to meet new and existing customers within the industry. Zest has seen significant growth in the demand for responsibly sourced outdoor leisure products and SOLEX is the perfect event to sit and talk about the benefits of its well designed and awardwinning range. Do you try to launch new lines/products each year at SOLEX? Innovation is at the heart of everything that Zest 4 Leisure does. At SOLEX 2019,

Zest 4 Leisure launched its new and innovative Jatoba range to the industry. The responsibly sourced hardwood timber dining and leisure sets are of the highest quality and styled in line with contemporary furniture trends. SOLEX was the ideal event to launch this to the trade. What are your plans for the future? Zest 4 Leisure is part of the P&A Group, which is about to celebrate its 35th year in timber manufacture. As part of the celebrations, Zest is looking forward to launching a range of new garden products for the 2021 season later this year. In line with products being made from timber from sustainable forests, Zest 4 Leisure has recently invested in new packaging machinery, which can process a package every 30 seconds and all materials used are recyclable, further enhancing our ‘green’ credentials. Being a LOFA member has many benefits that support us in the industry and we are looking forward to the 2020 SOLEX trade show to showcase our new and innovative 2021 range to the industry.

Zest 4 Leisure will again be exhibiting at SOLEX at the NEC on July 7-9 July 2020. For moreinformation about the company visit www.zest4leisure.co.uk

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

February 2020 7


PLANTS

Houseplant trends for 2020 With houseplants having experienced a major resurgence in recent years, garden centre retail guru Roger Crookes looks at the trends for 2020.

If you had said to most garden centre operators five years ago that houseplants were going to be one of our biggest growth areas as we enter the next decade, there wouldn’t have been many who said they could see that coming. The past few years have seen some amazing developments in houseplant sales, with foliage plants, succulents and cacti being high on the agenda for what has often been a younger customer than we are used to serving. The fact that younger customers, including children and teenagers, are really interested in growing these plants is perhaps one of the most exciting opportunities for our trade – if we can ensure that they succeed, and gain confidence, they could help us bring plants and gardening right into the centre of modern living and our community culture for many years to come. It was with these opportunities in mind that several garden centre houseplant buyers travelled with Javado UK to the Royal Flora Holland trade show last November, to see what was happening right in the centre of the European houseplant trade. Here are some key observations from the trade show.

‘Healthy planet and healthy home = happy me’ This has been building as a priority for many young people, having seen all the media coverage of worldwide environmental concerns, they want to connect with plants in their everyday lives and in their homes – even if they only have a one bedroomed apartment. Many of the theatre displays and messages at the show focussed on these potential buying motives.

Our thanks to Javado UK for organising the tour; as is often the case with a trip like this, much of the benefit came from focussing exclusively on houseplant opportunities for two days and chatting through the ideas and challenges with other garden centre teams – what a great trade to be in!

8 February 2020

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PLANTS

The colourful jungle

Green and variegated foliage has been in demand for the past year with the variegated Cheese Plant being an example of what can happen when demand outstrips supply. These much sought after plants were visible on a few grower stands…but there was a year’s waiting list for just one or two plants, which were commanding extremely high prices. So there were plenty of other options to provide the desirable combination of tropical looking leaves and some rich colours. Anthuriums, Alocasia. Bromeliads and Calathea were prominent on many stands.

And finally… what could be next? Several growers were talking about the increased sales of houseplants growing in water instead of compost, often presented in glass vases - these could be great ‘easy to care for gift’ lines? Some suppliers were offering bunches of dried flowers (which took me right back to the 1980s in British Garden Centres), and they were attracting quite a lot of attention … I wonder if we could see a return of dried flowers to our product mix over the next few years.

‘Small and juicy’ succulents Aloes, Crassula, Echeveria and Sansevieria were of course everywhere in a variety of shapes and sizes of both plant and pot – it seems that within this group of plants we may need to be able to put aside our personal taste, and accept that our customers are looking for something quirky and different and are prepared to pay for it!

Many growers were experimenting with pots and promotions that will appeal to children and younger adults for these volume sellers – having seen younger customers buying these plants over the last couple of years, I had to ask myself how have we adapted our merchandising of cacti and succulents to appeal to our younger audience … there may well be more opportunities here?

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

February 2020 9


VIEWPOINT

Simply the best Associate editor Mike Wyatt examines how garden centres manage to thrive while the high street suffers. Britain’s high street bosses must be green with envy as they compare what is reported to be their worst ever year for retail sales with the resilient performance of garden centres in 2019. A gloomy, some say bleak, Christmas period was the last straw for businesses struggling for growth during the year, with only online sales defying a lacklustre trend – the 9.4% year-on-year increase in December contributing to a fourth quarter 11.3% ahead. Uncertainty over Brexit and wavering consumer confidence clearly played their part, so what is it about garden centres that keeps their noses in front? In part, it’s the nature of the core product. Plants and gardening give consumers a means of beautifying their surroundings when the greyness of the times descends. And garden centres are increasingly the places to go in search of a greener lifestyle. (Check out GTN’s Sustainability Directory circulated with this issue). But that, in itself, I would argue, is not enough without an outstanding retail experience. With plenty of space and convenient parking, investment by garden centres has enabled them to build an enviable lead over the high street when it comes to the experience economy. As I write this, we wait to learn which outlets have been named garden centres of the year in the Garden Centre Association’s annual awards, based on scores achieved in the nationwide standards inspections. Last year, it was Bents Garden & Home and The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (and by the time you read this, you will know whether or not they have managed to hang on to their crowns…). Nobody who has visited either, or the winners in any year, can have come away unimpressed by the achievements of these magnificent examples of independent garden centre retailing. They earned their accolades by being simply the best, (thank-you Tina Turner for that line…) in every aspect of the business, from point of sale creativity to cleanliness and customer service. It all adds up to WOW Factor…something not always evident on the high street, where the repetitive, often formulaic uniformity of

10 February 2020

the big brands often makes a big yawn more likely than a broad smile. The operations of the best independents demonstrate an astonishing attention to detail that comes from an intimate relationship with their local consumers. They know their market, they know the competition – and they play to their strengths. This is trickier for larger chains, although those who allow individual stores a fair degree of autonomy without compromising the parent brand undoubtedly come close. Often, it’s the vision of an independent owner that creates the vital spark that truly makes a difference. We were reminded of this on a tour of the new farm shop Gates Garden Centre at Cold Overton in Leicestershire, the latest development at this increasingly impressive family-owned destination site. While farm shops can sometimes seem like an afterthought, simply cashing in on a trend, proprietor Nigel Gates has created an attraction likely to hit £3 million turnover in its first year, thanks to a strong emphasis on freshness and local provenance, plus valuepriced everyday food products alongside the more esoteric choices. Meat sold in the butchery includes that from neighbouring farms (one of them run by Nigel’s son Jake) – and the vending machine that dispenses fresh organic milk from a dairy farm just 1.2 miles away is one of the store’s most popular features. (See Trevor Pfeiffer’s interview with Nigel on pages 2-4). The design, layout, shopfitting and stocking policy come together in one of the most exciting garden centre farm shops we have seen. As Tina Turner so passionately sang: “You’re Simply the Best. “Better than All the Rest” That’s what garden centres have to be to outperform the high street.

Being eco friendly Here were spotlight Garden Centre Overstrand, near Cromer in North Norfolk, and its eco initiatives. General manager Sam Lowe explained how he and his team were trying to provide a business that had community, family and friendship at its roots and as its core values. “Becoming more eco friendly and having a stronger commitment really isn’t that hard once you change a few working practices, and look through current suppliers and group ranges together. “The hard thing is maintaining it and ensuring that all your team are on the same page. Once this is running I then ensure that this is at the forefront when dealing with suppliers, stocking lines and sourcing new lines and brands. We have always been focused on supporting UK within our plants and where possible our sundries lines. “In regard to customers, and their shopping styles, we have always attracted customers who are trying to create natural allotments, or pesticide free gardens. It’s good to engage in tales with these customers and gain knowledge from their unique techniques. “I feel that customers are more responsive if you engage with them about the positives of a product and explain the reasons behind the change in supplier or why the price has increased. None of us will convince all customers to change as there will always be the ones that are led by price or they have always done it this way. “At Glee most suppliers had something green/ eco or plastic free to shout about, whether this was just because their competitors were doing something or they wanted to support this trend. “I really hope that we can all carry on and make a change within this important industry, and we really should do so as we have such an impact on our countries wildlife and nature, and we have the opportunity together with our suppliers to help educate both new younger gardeners as well as the older more traditional ones. “Our ultimate goal is to become a business that can reduce its carbon footprint in as many ways as possible, continually looking and changing suppliers to support this, working on our day to day business practices, educate our staff and customers on these changes and why we feel that they are important. It’s a challenge that with discipline and tweaks to our business we hope to see further positive changes.”

Above: Sam Lowe, the general manager at Garden Centre Overstrand. Discover more about this North Norfolk centre’s drive towards being eco friendly in our Sustainability Directory.

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Spacious 300-seater restaurant opens at Notcutts in Ditchling

©NOTCUTTS

CATERING

Notcutts Garden Pride Garden Centre in Ditchling, East Sussex, has opened a new restaurant with bright and spacious dining for up to 300 people. Garden Pride, said: “We are thrilled that our new restaurant is now open and that customers can experience our new look throughout the garden centre. “Our restaurant offers a fantastic dining space with rural views across the South Downs, as well as a new alfresco terrace and children’s play area which will be hugely popular. We hope local people will pop in and explore everything we have to offer.” The garden centre will be hosting an official opening event to celebrate the new restaurant and refurbishment project in the coming months. 4For more information visit www.notcutts.co.uk

The feature cake counter is one of many new additions at the Notcutts Garden Pride restaurant.

12 February 2020

©NOTCUTTS

refurbishments include an improved layout with upgraded flooring, lighting and roofing. There is also a wider shopping variety for customers, with new concession partners The Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Cotton Traders joining Procook, Pets Corner and GBC. In recent months, a state-of-theart, vented plant canopy was installed, measuring at an impressive 1,000 square metres, almost double the size of the garden centre’s original canopy. The new canopy has enabled the Notcutts team to stock a wider range of plants and gardening supplies, and to keep plants in an optimum condition through the changing seasons. Gary West, general manager at Notcutts ©NOTCUTTS

The restaurant project has been part of a centre-wide Notcutts refurbishment which began last year, including upgrades to the layout and a new state-of-the-art outdoor plant canopy. The new restaurant, which is the largest across Notcutts’ 18 garden centres, is now serving freshly prepared breakfasts, lunches and afternoon teas with comfortable seating for a relaxed dining experience. The restaurant also has a new feature cake counter with a selection of Notcutts’ popular home-made scones and traybakes, as well as a south-facing alfresco terrace which seats a further 80 people, and an outdoor children’s play area for little ones to enjoy. Throughout the garden centre,

The new restaurant at Notcutts Garden Pride looks out at a new children’s play area and outdoor terrace.

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NURSERY OPEN DAYS

Nurseries set to give plant buyers early season look at 2020 ranges Europlants and Classiflora will be opening their doors to trade visitors over the next few weeks. Here’s a taste of what’s in store...

Europlants (19-20 February). Europlants is the UK agent and distributor for leading Tuscan producer Vannucci Piante, so a delicious hot & cold buffet lunch is on offer for visitors, who will be able to enjoy a great atmosphere and celebrate 29 years of Europlants. Visitors will also be the first to view the company’s large selection, take advantage of some excellent promotions, get professional advice from Europlants’ expert team, and network with fellow professionals. To find out more details visit the Europlants website www.europlants.net/opendays.php

Classiflora Zelari (4-5 March) hold their Open Days on the first Wednesday and Thursday of every March. These dates have become established on the horticultural calendar and are a ‘must’ for all buyers to kick start the forthcoming season. The extensive range of plants is individually selected from ten different European countries with a large proportion of the total offering sourced from the ‘Green Capital of Europe’, Pistoia – in particular from Zelari Piante. Visit www.classiflora.com or call 08700 600 420.

14 February 2020

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February 2020 15


ANALYSIS

BESTSELLERS OF 2019

The garden centre industry started the New Year full of optimism following a successful Christmas trading period. Here we take a look at the Bestsellers of the Year with a particular emphasis on Christmas products, garden products and plants.

Christmas Chart The total volume of the Christmas Top 100 2019 is up by 15.5% on 2018

Christmas breaks all records! Wow, what a Christmas for garden centres. The GTN Bestsellers Top 50 Chart volume sales were up by 12.7% on 2018 and 7.3% ahead of the previous best set in 2017. Highlights of the year were: 4History & Heraldry’s Personalised Gingerbread Hanging Decoration was the overall bestselling line for the season. 4Suki’s Personalised Reindeer Hanging Decoration was another high-level new entry at No 4 for the season. 4Christmas chocolates and sweets featured high in the bestsellers again. Lindt Chocolate Santa Sleigh was the highest chart climber overall, moving up 31 places to No 30 in the GTN Top 100 Christmas Products.

Core growing activity soars Core gardening growing activity, as measured by the volume of growing media products sold in the GTN Bestsellers chart, reached an all time high. 2019 ended 6.2% up on the previous record set in 2018. Highlights of the year were: 4Evergreen Garden Care Levington Multipurpose + John Innes, 56 litres, topped the year end GTN Bestsellers Chart. 4Westland Jack’s Magic All Purpose Compost, 60 litres, was at No 3. 4Forging the way ahead for peat free compost sales Westland New Horizon All Plant Compost, 60 litres, finished the year as the 11th bestseller.

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2019 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50

2018 New 1 2 New 10 4 New New 17 9 New New 15 13 20 New 16 New New 36 14 New New New 46 New 31 New New 61 New New New New 5 52 21 New 39 New 38 New New 51 Re-entry 37 New New Re-entry New

SUPPLIER – Product description – BARCODE HISTORY & HERALDRY Personalised Gingerbread Hanging Decoration - 886767243818 HISTORY & HERALDRY Personalised Angel/Snowman Hanging Decoration - 886767124810 SUKI Angel/Snowman Personalised Hanging Decoration - 5053154290020 SUKI Personalised Reindeer Hanging Decoration - 5053154249981 HISTORY & HERALDRY Personalised Christmas Storybook - 9781780707419 LINDT Teddy Bear 10g - 96022078 FOSTERS TREAT CO Chocolate Gold Coin Net - 5023944055337 SUKI Personalised Unicorn/Dinosaur Hanging Decoration - 5053154259324 SCENTSICLES Christmas Tree Assorted Fragrances - 846396011080 PLAYWRITE Christmas Jingle Stick - 5016064095239 JENO Floral Gold/Red/Silver Holly Pick - 5056055375520 LINDT Chocolate Snowflake - 42394082 THE MILLFORD COLLECTION Scented Pine Cones - 5035221004624 SAGE DECOR 11cm Robin Clip Red/Green - 5036059105309 THE MILLFORD COLLECTION Pinecone Refresh Oil 15ml - 5035221006710 IMAGES ON FOOD Reindeer & Santa Gingerbread - 5034865701319 KAEMINGK LED Tealights White pack of 6 - 8717427245274 FESTIVE GINGERBREAD Reindeer - 5034865709025 WIDDOP & CO Christmas Novelty Soap - 5017224670174 PLAYWRITE Magic Snow with Shovel - 5016064104863 FESTIVE Luxury Holographic Thick Tinsel 2m - 5020244028825 KAEMINGK 9cm Black/White Penguin Hanging Decoration - 8719152685394 KAEMINGK Owl Glass Bauble 6cm - 8719152702930 KAEMINGK Willow Xmas Tree Ring Grey 28cm - 8718533139648 PREMIER Gold Metal Wreath Hanger, 30cm - 5016971013975 KAEMINGK Iridescant Glitter Snow Carpet 1.2m x 0.8m - 8719152420780 LINDT Children’s Advent Calender - 5012454067282 BON BONS Christmas Hot Chocolate Spoon - 5060352659979 SMART GARDEN Three Kings 20 LED Sparkly Snowman - 5050642035453 LINDT Chocolate Santa Sleigh - 4000539726408 PREMIER 13cm Flikabright LED Candle - 5053844275924 KAEMINGK Micro 15 Battery Operated LED Lights - 8718533915228 GISELA GRAHAM Feather Robin on Clip Tree Decoration - 5030026138789 WIDDOP Gingerbread Cookie Hand Soap - 5017224768833 HOMETOWN WORLD Santas On His Way Personalised Book - 9781789217742 ARMITAGES Good Boy Dog Advent Calendar - 5000239103911 HOLIDAY SPECS 3D Christmas Glasses Reindeer - 748486999950 WAX LYRICAl Holiday Time Pot Pourri - 5015802211580 SNOWTIME Battery Operated Colour Change LED 8cm Acrylic Snowman - 5029936677006 KAEMINGK Rose On Clip with Glitter 14cm Blue - 8718533496017 HOLIDAY SPECS 3D Christmas Glasses Santa - 748486999967 LINDT Santa’s Little Helpers Christmas Chocolates - 4000539701221 PREMIER Lametta Silver/Gold/Red 50cm - 5016971000975 THE MILFORD COLLECTION Cinnamon Cones & Berries - 5035221009186 PREMIER Ornament Hooks Twin Pack Green - 5050882224846 KONSTSMIDE Reindeer, 23cm, Battery Operated - 7318301582037 KAEMINGK Mini Tree with Jute Sack - 8716128805459 JENO Robin Pick - 5056055375506 KAEMINGK Oxblood Rose Clip - 8718533800524 COTTAGE DELIGHT Christmas Crackers - 5021039026910

www.gardentradenews.co.uk


ANALYSIS

Get the GTN Bestsellers charts every week for only £145. Take out a year’s subscription now, email karen.pfeiffer@tgcmc.co.uk

ALL EPOS PRODUCTS INDEX

Overall movement full year 2019

+4.2% on 2018

-1.9% +1.5% on 2017

-1.9% +2.0% on 2016

Volume sales movement compared to last week and year to date across all garden centre sales in the GTN Bestsellers EPoS database.

Top 100 23rd September to 22nd December (weeks 39-51) 2019 2019 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100

2018 New New 78 New New New 24 New New Re-entry New 66 30 New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New Re-entry New New New New New New New New New New New New New New New Re-entry New New Re-entry

SUPPLIER – Product description – BARCODE WAX LYRICAL Holly Jolly Pot Pourri - 5015802211597 TIMSTOR Santa Hanging Decoration - 5414070162219 KAEMINGK Rose On Clip with Glitter 14cm Gold - 8718533800548 JENO Gold/Silver/Champagne Bird Pick - 5056055375537 PREMIER Window Sticker 12cm - 5050882094623 WAX LYRICAL Cracking Christmas Reed Diffuser 180ml - 5015802212075 HOLIDAY SPECS 3D Christmas Glasses Snowman - 748486999929 BON BONS Santa Chocolate Lolly - 5060247760476 WAX LYRICAL Holly Jolly Reed Diffuser - 5015802212068 LOTUS IMPORTS Small Festive Fruit Pick - 5032859245191 KAEMINGK Christmas Tree Wicker Ring Large - 8718533139631 KONSTSMIDE Water Filled Dickensia Lantern - 7318302864002 PREMIER Wine Glass Hanging Decoration Clear/Gold - 5053844191545 BON BONS Christmas Rudolph Lolly - 5060352651911 SMART GARDEN Three Kings Santa & Friends Mat 40x60cm - 5050642038355 FOUNTASIA Santa & Snowman Table Decorations - 675238790537 PREMIER Novelty Wreath Hanger 30cm - 5053844134429 KAEMINGK Silver Snow Carpet 1.2m x 0.8m - 8719152420728 KAEMINGK Rose On Clip with Glitter 14cm Silver - 8718533800531 PREMIER “Santa Please Stop” Sign 76cm - 5016971041060 PREMIER Acrylic Wine Glass Tree Decoration Silver - 5053844197196 SMART GARDEN Three Kings Jingle Bell Necklace - 5050642045902 LINDT Bear Advent Calendar - 5012454062324 KAEMINGK Rose On Clip with Glitter Velvet - 8719152229352 ALBERT PREMIER White Chocolate Coin Net - 5413368000769 PREMIER Colour Your Own Hanging Dec 12cm - 5050882275831 DAVIES PRODUCTS Silver Poinsettia Stem 28cm - 5013206256527 DAVIES PRODUCTS Silver Glitter Ribbon 2.7m - 5013206259498 PREMIER Tree Decorations Colour Your Own Characters - 5050882312819 WINNIE THE POOH Christmas Pudding Book - 9781405294621 KAEMINGK Artificial Snowflakes 100g - 8718533511789 PLAYWRITE Light Up Christmas Spinner with Neckcord - 5016064105044 KONSTSMIDE White Santa LED Water Lantern - 7318304364203 SMART GARDEN Three Kings Holly Jolly Mat 40x60cm - 5050642038324 IMAGES ON FOOD Santa Gingerbread - 5034865702101 PREMIER Gold Poinsettia Pick - 5053844236635 SMART GARDEN Three Kings Festive Wibbly Wobbler - 5050642033947 LOTUS IMPORTS Traditional Berry 3 Stem Pick - 5032859245139 STEENLAND Choclate Coins 70g - 8718800006482 PREMIEr 18cm Flickabrights LED Candle - 5053844275931 FESTIVE White 12cm Poinsettia Clip - 5020244198047 KONSTSMIDE Fibre Optic Santa With Sledge & Reindeer - 7318304205001 MACKIES Pigs in Blanket Crisps - 5039378002588 KAEMINGK 60 Warm White Micro LED’s - 8718532525183 POOHS Christmas Adventure Book - 9781405281911 PREMIER Pick Glitter Ball Red/Gold - 5050882276418 THE MILFIORD COLLECTION Christmas Pot Pourri Large Bag - 5035221004129 PREMIER Colour Your Own Christmas Hanger 20cm - 5050882275886 SWIFT Silver Peacock Fern Spray - 5029316450786 KINNERTON Chocolate Sprouts Net 75g - 5010775197152

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

Great year for Veg-2-Gro sales 2019 was a great year for Veg-2-Gro sales, almost getting back up to the heady heights of 2015. Up to the end of September (when we stop producing a Top 50 chart) 2019 sales were up by 39% on last year. Highlights of the year were: 4Overall Veg-2-Gro sales in the GTN Bestsellers charts were dominated by Quantil young veg plants. Clearly veg plant sales benefitted from more ‘normal’ weather during the growing season. 4Quantil Tomato Gardeners Delight 8cm was the No 1 bestselling veg plant of the year.

Wild Bird Care sales recover slightly After the turmoil of the Gardman fire at the start of 2018, Wild Bird Care sales recovered slightly in 2019 to be 5.6% up on 2018 but were still running at 14.5% down on 2017 levels at the end of the year. Highlights of the year were: 4Gardman Fat Snax, tub of 50, were once again the runaway No 1 bestselling Wild Bird Care product. 4Westland Peckish Complete Energy Balls, 6+6 free were the No 3 Bestseller. 4Tom Chambers Sunflower Hearts 2.5kg closed the year at No 6 in the GTN Chart.

Turn the page to discover the bestselling garden products and plants of the year February 2020 17


ANALYSIS

Plants Bestsellers Chart – Whole Year 2019 2019 2018 Plant genus

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49

1 2 3 5 4 9 6 7 10 8 12 13 15 20 16 19 23 17 11 24 22 33 25 18 38 35 21 34 26 30 28 29 44 31 27 32 39 36 45 37 40 53 48 49 46 43 57 60 66

Zonal Geranium Primula Cyclamen Petunia Tomato Begonia Dianthus Pansy Viola Fuchsia Rose Osteospermum Lavandula Impatiens Lathyrus (sweet Pea) Lobelia Erysimum Nemesia Bellis Verbena Dahlia Pepper Salvia Bacopa Heuchera Poinsettia Narcissus Strawberry Hedera Cucumber Hebe Orchidaceae Campanula Ericaceae (Heather) Calluna Chrysanthemum Calibrachoa Cosmos Tagetes Argyranthemum Helleborus Hyacinth Bean Courgette Hydrangea Festuca Lupinus Scabiosa

50

41

Antirrhinum

Spathiphyllum (peace Lily)

Volume Sales Increase Increase

Increase Increase Increase Increase Increase Increase Increase Increase

Increase Increase Increase Increase Highest Climber

Increase Increase

+50% Increase

Increase Increase

Increase Increase

Increase Increase Increase

Garden Products Garden products saw their first upturn in volume sales since 2014. 2019 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50

2018 1 2 New New 3 9 34 7 10 13 New 12 14 33 New 40 25 19 Re-entry 21 24 New 59 48 65 35 38 New 87 New New 36 23 New 47 New 43 49 New 63 New New New 53 50 42 Re-entry 27 New New

SUPPLIER – Product description – BARCODE EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Levington Tomorite 1L + 30% Free - 5010272182620 FITO Drip Feeder For Orchids 32ml - 8006320027705 CREATIVE PRODUCTS Bottle Light - 5060247072319 SMART SOLAR Eureka! Neo Light Bulb Lantern - Clear / Blue / Pink - 5050642012263 WOODLODGE Small Pot Feet - 5021346110852 Woodlodge Heritage Pots Stackable 27cm - 5021346396621 EVERGREEN Miracle-Gro Rose & Shrub Continuous Release Plant Food 1kg - 5010272076516 SBM Baby Bio Original 175ml - 50371280 SBM Provanto Ultimate Bug Killer, Ready to Use, 1L - 3664715006565 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Roseclear Ultra, Ready To Use 1L - 5010272088212 SMART SOLAR Crystal Nickel Stake Light - 5050642012799 NEUDORFF Sluggo Slug & Snail Killer 800g - 4005240136133 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle-Gro All Purpose Soluble Plant Food 1.2kg - 5010272182651 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Evergreen Levington Tomorite 1L - 5010272064483 SMART SOLAR Bug Lights - 5050642027373 WESTLAND Lawn & Turf Dressing 25L - 5023377844881 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle-Gro Evergreen Complete 80 sq m + 25% - 5010272200072 WOODLODGE Pot Feet Large - 5021346111026 EVERGREEN GARDEN Care Miracle Gro All Purpose Plant Feed - 5010272185447 ALGON Organic Algae Remover Patio Cleaner - 5060028700011 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Myst 300ml - 5025644911814 SBM Phostrogen Soluble Plant Food 80 Watering Can Size - 5000371053518 STEWART Flower Pot Saucer 8 inch Terracotta - 5022938844148 FITO Cacti Drip Feeder - 8006933055676 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Bugclear Ultra Gun 1L - 5010272090093 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Roundup Total Ready To Use 1.2L - 5017676018012 SBM Toprose 1kg - 5000371050524 EDLEMAN Monet Pot Round 15.5cm - 8718861496475 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Evergreen Complete 360 sq m + 10% Extra Free - 5010272183320 SMART SOLAR 25 Super Bright Orbs 15 Lumen - 5050642020251 WESTLAND Orchid Water, Ready To Use, 720ml - 5023377005619 FITO Drip Feeder Orchid 5 Pack - 5060494310356 EVERGREEN Miracle-Gro All Purpose Soluble Plant Food 500g - 50308583 CREATIVE PRODUCTS Zoom Torch - 5060247071930 EVERGREEN Miracle-Gro Slow Release Azalea, Camellia & Rhodo Food 1kg - 5010272076554 SMART SOLAR Martini Stake Light 3 lumens - 5050642012126 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Weedol Gun Pathclear 1L - 5010272013153 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Pot Clear 15cm - 5025644911623 SMART GARDEN Meanagerie Garden Deco Bobbly Bird - 5050642018753 VIVID ARTS Plant Pals Robin On Stick - 5055195014290 APTA Verona Half Pot 26cm - 5022413558263 GREENKEY Mini Mister Mixed Colours - 5060059281053 APTA Pot Topper 1kg Bag - 5022413560761 WOODLODGE Spang Pot 4 inch - 5021346364910 SBM Baby Bio Orchid Food 175ml - 50371341 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Roundup Fast Action Ready To Use 1L - 5017676000284 STEWART Flower Pot 7 inch, Terracotta - 5022938834149 VITAX Slug Gone 3.5L - 5012042140441 TOWN & COUNTRY Ladies Flexigrip Triple Pack - 5020358001868 SMART SOLAR Flaming Torch with Cool Flame - 5050642025164

The volume of the Top 50 plant genera and groupings for the whole of 2019 dropped by 3% on 2018. So, after the tipsy turvy year of 2018 a year that was more “normal” weather wise resulted in fewer plant sales. Highlights of the year were: 4The Top 3 plants for the year were Zonal Geraniums, Primula and Cyclamen. 4Begonias moved in the popularity stakes to be the 6th most bought plant of the year. 4The biggest increase of the year was seen from Heucheras.

18 February 2020

Garden products saw their first upturn in volume sales since 2014 during last year, with the GTN Bestsellers Top 50 chart volume increasing by 8.1% on 2018 levels. 4Evergreen Garden Care Levington Tomorite 1L + 30% Free was the No 1 bestselling product by volume over the whole year. 4Woodlodge Small Pot Feet increased sales by 19% but dropped to No 5. 4Creative Products Bottle Light was the new entry of the year, storming the GTN Chart at No 3 overall for the year.

www.gardentradenews.co.uk


ANALYSIS

Chart Top 100 2019 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100

2018 62 54 New Re-entry 55 New 30 64 93 18 New New 58 29 70 New New New 84 New 6 New New New New New New Re-entry 72 86 28 90 80 New New New New New New Re-entry New New 71 77 New New 83 20 New New

SUPPLIER – Product description – BARCODE GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Myst 100ml - 5025644918639 STEWART Clear Drip Saucer, 5-6 inch - 5022938842083 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle Gro Pour ‘n Feed 1L - 5010272185393 STEWART Flower Pot 8 inch Terracotta - 5022938835146 PLANTWORKS Empathy Rootgrow 150g - 5060160320023 STEWART Flower Pot Saucer 10 inch, Terracotta - 5022938846142 EVERGREEN GAREN CARE Miracle-Gro Slow Release All Purpose Plant Food 1L - 5010272076578 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Bug Clear Ultra Vine Weevil Killer 480ml - 5010272090147 WESTLAND Fish Blood & Bone 1.5kg - 5023377845888 ELHO Corsica Single Easy Hanger - 8711904251697 WESTLAND Growing Success Slug Killer Advanced Organic - 5023377003592 SMART SOLAR Bonanaza Firefly Balloon - 5050642031141 APTA Standard Pot Feet - 5022413003381 HOZELOCK Hose Gun Starter Set - 5010646051101 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Pot Clear 12cm - 5025644911616 SMART SOLAR Eureka! Firefly Lantern Large - 5050642020442 STEWART Flower Pot 3inch Terracotta Multi-Pack - 5022939830140 BOTANICO Trigger Sprayer 600ml - 5016227010550 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Focus Drip Feeders 38ml - 5025644916376 JOHNSON Quick Lawn + Germinator 500g - 5055040400551 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle Gro All Purpose Plant Food 1L - 5010272090451 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Roseclear Ultra 2, Ready To Use 1L - 5010272184044 SMART SOLAR Rainbow Crackle Globe Stake Light - 5050642032674 WESTLAND Organic Chicken Manure Pellets 10kg - 5023377844614 TILDENET Weed Block Mat Bulk Roll 1x100m - 5032042000569 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Pot Clear 17cm - 5025644911630 FITO All Plants Drip Feeder - 8006933054921 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle-Gro All Purpose Concentrated Plant Food 1L - 5000308601362 ELHO Corsica Easy Hanger Trio - 8711904251871 GROWTH TECHNOLOGy Orchid Pot Clear 13cm - 5025644913658 GARDMAN Nickel Solar Marker Light - 5024160886675 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Miracle Gro Ericaceous Liquid Plant Food 1L - 5010272090499 EVERGREEN GARDEN CARE Weedol Rootkill Plus Gun 1L - 5010272086379 KENT & STOWE Traditional Bypass Secateurs - 5060396791802 SMART SOLAR Eureka Firefly Lantern - 5050642020282 STEWART Flower Pot Terracotta 10 inch - 5022938836143 WESTLAND Gro-Sure All Purpose Plant Food 1L + 50% Free - 5023377007989 VITAX Acer Fertiliser 0.9kg Pouch - 5012351120110 WESTLAND Fish Blood & Bone 4kg - 5023377007873 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Orchid Pot Saucers 13.5cm - 5025644912767 TOWN & COUNTRY Premier Leather Gloves Medium - 5020358011058 VITAX Hydrangea Feed 1kg - 5012351096095 GROWTH TECHNOLOGY Cactus & Succulent Focus 100ml - 5025644913788 WOODLODGE 5 inch Standard Spang Pot - 5021346364927 APTA RHS Sky Blue Pot Toppers Bag - 5022413557280 SMART GARDEN 14 inch Coco Basket Liner - 5050642000161 HOZELOCK Double Male Connector - 5010646037464 GARDMAN Ice Orb Light Mini, pack of 2 - 5024160886712 SMART GARDEN 12 inch Coco Basket Liner - 5050642000147 ROWAN STICKERS Wheelie Bin Numbers - 5055279100000

While the rest of UK retail, via the BRC, was reporting the worst trading for November and December on record with total sales down 0.9% compared with the same period in 2018, garden centres were trading at all time highs, according to GTN Bestsellers Epos data analysis. During November and December 2019 the GTN Bestsellers All Sales index grew by 9% on 2018 and was 10% ahead of 2017 levels. That great end to the year meant whole year volume sales growth for 2019 of 4.2% over 2018, setting a new record as recorded by GTN Bestsellers over the past 10 years.

Keep abreast of changing trends in garden centre shopping... GTN Bestsellers is the best way for garden centre retailers and suppliers to keep abreast of changing trends in garden centre shopping. Compiled every week using EPOS data from a panel of garden centres that represent around £100m of annual turnover, GTN Bestsellers compares sales week on week and year on year from exactly the same centres every week. That means the changes represent real shopping patterns, and of course because the charts are based on volume sales rather than turnover it charts real sales growth, and decline, and most importantly measures real growth in activity. That’s why with confidence GTN Bestsellers can report that more gardening activity is taking place as measured by the volume of growing media sold each week. GTN Bestsellers can also highlight the growth of gardening in pots and containers through the increased frequency of pots appearing in the Top 50 weekly chart which wasn’t the case so often when the charts were first published in 2009. More recently pot feet have overtaken pot toppers as the bestselling container gardening accessory and regularly appear in the Top 5 products of the week. For three years now GTN Bestsellers have been collating all plant sales data to produce a weekly plant sales Top 50. What better way to make sure you maximise plant sales than to follow our plants Bestsellers charts and use that to drive hotspot sales and of course related garden product sales? A subscription to GTN Bestsellers costs just £145 per year, an investment that could be paid back immediately by stocking a new bestselling line or maximising on promotional opportunities. To buy your subscription e-mail karen.pfeiffer@tgcmc.co.uk or subscribe online using the link in the GTNXtra enewsletter at www.gardentradenews.co.uk

Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive British Retail Consortium, said: “2019 was the worst year on record and the first year to show an overall decline in retail sales.” GTN Bestsellers says: “This just goes to show how in touch with their customers garden centres are and how well they are adapting to changing customer requirements. More and more people are visiting garden centres and spending more while they are there. A record year for volume sales shows the real growth potential of our sector.”

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

February 2020 19


VIEWPOINT

2020...the year when social consciousness will drive interior and exterior trends more than ever before VICKY NUTTALL DIRECTOR OF GIMA The start of a new year is a time for change, with many of us declaring the old adage ‘new year, new me’. But trends within the home and the garden benefit from an update, too. In early 2019 GIMA members were given an insight into influences that would be shaping future styles, thanks to our new collaboration with consumer and design trends intelligence agency, Scarlet Opus, and as the year unfolds, we’re dipping back into these trends to remind ourselves what 2020 will look like, and provide members with lastminute inspiration. Scarlet Opus identified four key trends that, whilst wildly different, shared a common theme, and that was social and environmental consciousness. From sourcing recyclable and responsible materials, to supporting communities, encouraging improved mental and physical wellbeing, and limiting our impact upon the world in which we live, trends are influenced more by a desire to protect the world versus instant gratification or design for design’s sake. Expect to see consumers making more demands of the products they purchase. 2020 is set to be a year that celebrates colour, texture and pattern more than ever before, each reflecting the world around us and what must be protected. The GenZ and millennial influence will see more oceanic and botanical trends come to the fore as the impact of programming such as Blue Planet drives design inspiration.

Think inky, bleached designs, and a rich palette of aquamarines, iridescence, purple and green. Houseplants, especially amongst Gen Z and millennials – the biggest, most powerful and ‘woke’ demographic in our history – will remain popular as they continue to build their own little corner of green in a world of ‘generation rent’. ‘Togetherness’ will be big in 2020. Expect to see more community-based projects, whilst interior and exterior design will incorporate products that bring people together such as larger outdoor dining areas, and developments in Grow-YourOwn including ‘food adventures’. There will be an increased demand for products that protect the environment, whilst even the smallest spaces become hubs of activity through plants, soft furnishing and accessories, and colour. Motifs will include rainbows and hands in abundance, reflective of a more inclusive and accepting society. The theme of hands and human features will be popular on motifs and designs as we become increasingly focused on cultivating human qualities of kindness, emotional connections and gentleness in a world of technology. Those craving a

“2020 is set to celebrate colour, texture and pattern more than ever before” 20 February 2020

life away from screens will look to sun-baked spice tones, toasted almonds and warm cinnamon, whilst developing a muted, controlled sense of design, and focus on softness, gentleness and comforting shapes. Technology will be intuitive, discreet, unobtrusive and personalised to enable consumers to reconnect with the natural world. Drawing strong influences from Japan, which will be thrust into the limelight come the 2020 Olympics, consumers will look recreate the Japanese ‘Art of Living’ with a muted colour palette, that allows materials such as wood, fabric and natural textures to take centre stage, including charred wood which is earmarked to be huge this year. Garden furniture will be modular, enabling multi-functional use, lines will become curved, fencing and screening will become slatted to allow for natural light to create points of interest. It’s all about creating a zen environment while embracing a contemporary version of century-old style. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Each theme is vast, but offers an exciting look at what is to come. Many GIMA members have created products to meet these trends, and we’ll see more as 2020 progresses. We’ll be arming members with further insight at our Consumer & Design Trend event on March 26th, where we’ll be investigating trend predictions for 2021. This event helps members to stay ahead of the curve, and I hope you’ll be able to join us as we take a look into the future! 4For further information contact GIMA on (01959) 564947 or info@gima.org.uk

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

Garden Re-Leaf Day is taking place on Friday, 13th March 2020.

New home for Garden Re-Leaf Day Sponsored Walk & Cycle Challenge The annual Garden Re-Leaf Day Sponsored Walk and Cycle Challenge have become an integral part of the Garden Re-Leaf activities, and this year the event will be finding itself a new home within the heart of the Chilterns. The 2020 start point will be Chilton Garden Centre, acquired by British Garden Centres in September last year. From here the walkers will have a choice of a 10-mile or 20-mile route, both of which will take them on a stunning tour of the Chiltern Hills, a designated area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Cyclists will also embark upon either a 25, 50, 75 or 100-mile route that could take in the 276m elevation that enables the Chilterns to provide stunning views. The HTA team have offered to plan the walking routes, as well as opening the doors to its office ‘Horticulture House’ in Chilton as the end point for the day’s activities, where refreshments and a welcome place to rest will be made available. In 2019 over 120 people took part in the walk, with 15 more showing real pedal power by taking part in the cycle challenge. However, for 2020 the Greenfingers team is hoping to far exceed these numbers. If you want to find out more about how to get involved in Greenfingers Garden Re-Leaf Day 2020, contact the Greenfingers office on 01494 674749 or email Linda@greenfngerscharity.org.uk


EVENTS

All the new launches under one roof

Discover all the latest pet products at PATS Sandown PATS, the UK’s number one pet industry exhibition, is the best place to source new products, according to a growing number of garden centres. As the pet sector has become an increasingly essential part of garden centre retailing, PATS Sandown (taking place on February 9-10) and PATS Telford (September 27-28) have become vital dates in the industry calendar. Dobbies is now the biggest garden centre group in the UK and the company views the pet sector as an important growth opportunity. A spokesperson for Dobbies Garden Centres, said: “We have visited the PATS show for several years, and find it’s a great opportunity to catch up with all of the key suppliers from the industry under one roof. “There’s always a lot to see and the show certainly inspires us to fill the Dobbies pet department. It’s always interesting to see the new product innovation manufacturers are bringing to the market. “It’s also an extremely friendly show, from both exhibitors and

attendees – it’s what makes the PATS exhibitions so enjoyable.” Hazel Oswald from Raemoir Garden Centre, who travels down from Aberdeenshire in Scotland to PATS every year, said: “The exhibition provides great opportunities for sourcing new products and ideas for our pet department which is an integral part of the garden centre business. PATS has grown so much that a two-day visit is now essential.” It’s a similar story for Hayes Garden World in the Lake District, whose pet buying team have become regular visitors to

the pet trade exhibition. “As a prestigious garden centre with a massive presence in the North West of England it is essential that we stay on top of all trends, and PATS allows us to do just that,” said a spokesperson. “Sending buyers to trade shows involves considerable expense in staff man-hours, travelling expenses and hotel bills so having a show like PATS, which covers everything, is hugely beneficial.” 4To register for free entry to PATS Sandown and for all the latest exhibition news visit www.patshow.co.uk

www.gardentradenews.co.uk

The New Product Showcase is designed to help visitors discover the latest and most exciting products to hit the pet industry, all gathered together in one, extensive display in Surrey Hall’s Brasserie Bar. Once you’ve seen what you like, you then have the opportunity of visiting the stand of the manufacturer or supplier of that product to discuss it in more detail. There is an information card beside each product, giving details such as suggested retail price and where in the show you’ll find the item’s exhibitor.

All entries in the Showcase, sponsored by pbwnews, will judged by a panel of independent retailers for the New Product Awards on the first morning of the show, so the results will be known and highlighted throughout the Surrey and Esher Halls for the rest of the exhibition. Winning an award can be the launch pad to huge sales. Manufacturers can be confident that successful products have a great chance of becoming bestsellers because a panel of pet retailers decides the awards. And past winners admit that it can certainly increase the profile of the items to the trade. This year PATS Sandown have added a new award – Best in Show – which will be awarded by the judges to what they believe is the best overall product from the category winners.

The Awards will be presented at the New Product Showcase display at lunchtime on Sunday, 9th February. Visitors are invited to attend and cheer on the winners. Entries will be displayed under the following award categories: • Cat Food and Products • Dog Accessories and Toys • Dog Food and Products • Dog Treats and Products • Dog Harnesses, Leads and Dog Wear • Grooming Products • Pet Care Products • Small Animal and Bird Products

February 2020 21


Profile for Garden Trade News

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