Blogs


Former UK Ambassador 1st speaker unveiled for 2018 GCA conference

Charles Crawford

FORMER UK Ambassador Charles Crawford has been announced this month (November) as the first speaker booked for the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) 52nd annual conference in Warwickshire in January (January 21 until 24, 2018). 

 

Garden centre owners, managers and their teams who attend the event in Stratford-upon-Avon will be offered expert advice by Charles on the art of negotiation on Tuesday, January 23.

 

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, explained: “Charles is a highly skilled negotiator and mediation specialist. He draws on 28 years’ experience…

Ruxley Rose judge sees ‘plant area confidence’

Stratord

THE 20 finalists in the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) Ruxley Rose competition have recently (November, 2017) been judged and there is strong evidence of continued enthusiasm for selling plants at member centres.

 

The two winners, judged to have the best plant areas, will be announced during the GCA’s annual conference at The Crowne Plaza Hotel in Stratford-upon-Avon between January 21 and 24, 2018.

 

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “During the spring our member garden centres received inspections of their plant areas. The scores from these…

Keep it friendly - Ways to keep your canine companion calm around other dogs

By their nature, dogs are a highly social species - they have a natural instinct to live in harmonious groups. However some dogs may find this more difficult than others, potentially experiencing signs of anxiety when they are around other dogs. 

Whether it’s seeing other dogs in the park or living with another four legged friend at home, it’s important that your pooch is calm and comfortable when encountering other dogs. 

As part of their “Happy Dogs, Happy Days” campaign, Lintbells, manufacturers of premium pet supplement YuCALM Dog, is working with dog behavioural…

Festive Favourite Top Up with Smart Garden Products

Smart Garden Products - night lamps

Smart Garden Products can help you achieve some excellent sales in the run up to Christmas – and it’s not too late to top up your orders! From stocking fillers to stunning solar, we can offer something for every price range.

Our stylish Outside In Lantern range offers a wide range ofclassic and contemporary options for the home or garden, either to create a festive atmosphere or as a quality Christmas gift and these would be complemented by our Faux Flame and Flickering LED battery powered flameless candles – available in a popular merchandising unit.

With several new…

Blooming Success for Blackwood Tenant

Blooming Success for Blackwood Tenant

A green fingered Blackwood tenant has been rewarded for his skills by winning the housing and care provider’s prestigious gardening award.
 
Edward Stanton, who has been a tenant at Blackwood’s Argyle Street development for 25 years, won the ‘Best Hanging Basket’ award at the charity’s AGM in Largs.
 
The 78-year-old started work on his balcony five years ago and has since installed four hanging baskets which he believes make the perfect decorations for his balcony.
 
Edward said: “I have always loved gardening and so I couldn’t believe it when I was…

Tips for looking after your garden when you are away

Tips for looking after your garden

Rune Sovndahl co-founder and CEO of Fantastic Services
 
When you are preparing to head off on your holiday and have no one to look after your garden, you might be worried about what state it will be in upon your return.

Do not despair: with a few simple hacks you can effectively look after it while you are away.

 

Preparation
The key thing about maintaining your garden when you are going away is preparation and making sure you have done everything you can to limit the work you will have to do upon your return.

Get rid of all the weeds,…

Royal Hedge Grows in Stature!

Royal Hedge Grows in Stature!

Royal Hedge is part of the Dongen based nursery Boomkwekerij E. de Jong in Holland.  For the past 22 years this nursery has grown young trees, 3x transplanted trees, pleached trees, big solitaire, multistemmed trees and also trees and hedging material in containers.

 

'Royal Hedge' for Screening
In summer 2015, they launched a range of grasses which can be used to create a 'Royal Hedge'. This was a new profile for the 'Royal Hedge' concept and is used mainly for screening. The 'Royal Hedge' is produced in bags from 50cm long. This is very easy to plant and makes a…

Hillier celebrates the Magic of Christmas

Hillier celebrates the Magic of Christmas

Hillier has announced the Christmas trading plans for its 12 garden centres, all themed around The Magic of Christmas.

The busy calendar launched yesterday (9th November) with each centre hosting an exclusive, invite only preview evening where guests got a sneak peek of the Christmas displays,products and offers.

Carol singers were at each centre to entertain guests whilst they tasted the new festive menu, drank mulled wine and perused the decorations, plants and giftware on display. Each centre also launched its ’tradition tree’, where shoppers are invited to write down…

Kent & Stowe silent sales assistant builds Lawn spend

Everyone aspires to have a nice lawn, whether it is a beautifully manicured centre piece or simply a focal point for family social activity. It is no surprise that the combined sales of Lawn Seed and Fertilisers in the UK is estimated to be in excess of £100 million.

Although this is a huge and important category, how often do we see consumers visit a store for say a bag of lawn fertiliser and leave with just that, missing all the accessories that would help them to achieve the results that friends and neighbours admire.

Kent & Stowe are masters of space management and…

Haskins Garden Centres announces competition to celebrate National Tree Week

Haskins Fruit Tree

Haskins is encouraging gardeners to make the most of National Tree Week with a new competition to win a tree for the garden, school or local community.

National Tree Week takes place from Saturday November 25 until Sunday December 3. First initiated in 1975, it is the UK’s largest tree celebration annually which launches the start of the winter tree planting season.

Haskins is celebrating this festival of trees by offering customers the chance to win their own Ornamental or Fruit Tree, up to the value of £50. The winner will be chosen the week before National Tree Week in…

REG TAYLORS WELCOME HOMEWARES BRAND LIBRA

LIBRA

Family run garden centre, Reg Taylors, based in Southwell, Nottinghamshire has opened a new 50 sq ft concept showroom, offering a range of furniture, lighting and accessories from British homewares brand Libra. 

The new space brings together handpicked products from Libra’s extensive portfolio, styled into inspirational displays which draw on the brand’s exclusive themes. Taking their cue from the year’s most influential design trends, each theme showcases Libra’s signature style and dedication to craftsmanship. 

Adding to the garden centre’s beautiful 25 acre site, which…

Garden centre customers update their wardrobes for new season

clothing

THE NEW autumn/winter season saw garden centre customers stocking up on warm clothing and accessories during September (2017) according to the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) Barometer of Trade (BoT) report.

 

Total sales in clothing departments across GCA member centres was up 32.24% compared to the same month last year (2016).

 

Iain Wylie, GCA Chief Executive, said: “It’s no surprise that as the weather began to turn, customers at our member garden centres stocked up on cold and wet weather gear in preparation. These days it’s not just gardening attire…

Pooch & Mutt Use Body Painted Models To Expose Issues In The Pet Food Industry

Dog model

Pooch & Mutt, the makers of “Health Food for Dogs with Nothing to hide”, have enlisted the help of four models body-painted as dogs, a top music producer and an award-winning film director to highlight some of the problems with the pet food industry.

Whilst naked models body-painted as dogs might not be the obvious way to talk about pet health and nutrition, there is a need to do something different when 87% of the £34m* spent on pet food advertising in the UK is controlled by the confectionery giants Mars and Nestle.  

What is there to expose? As Pooch & Mutt point…

Wide range of garden items sought by German and Romanian buyers at Gardenex ‘Meet the International Buyers’ event on 30th November

buyers meeting

Buyers from a specialist German online retailer and mail order company that specialises in British products, as well as garden distributors from Germany and Romania (each with an online presence too) will be travelling to the UK on 30 November 2017 to meet with UK suppliers. 

 

The Romanian company is not only looking to extend its offering in its home market, but also plans to extend online sales into some neighbouring markets in  south-eastern and central Europe. The two buyers will be participating in the latest ‘Meet the International Buyers’ event which offers…

1Bonnetts Garden Village to Open Christmas Shop

Bonnetts Garden Village is to open its main store on Saturday 11th November,
having traded since late May in plants, the ‘Garden Village’ is now
really taking shape!

 

Phase 2 of the main store, that will open its doors this Saturday will
feature the most extensive Christmas display in the area, with several themes
from Scandinavian, through traditional Red and Gold to Woodland, and more. A
full range of indoor and outdoor lighting, as well as artificial trees are
included within the department, with fresh potted Christmas trees…

Holly and Mistletoe Auctions return to Burford Garden Store for the festive season

Holly and Mistletoe

A historic Christmas tradition is returning to Burford House Garden Store as they welcome back the UK’s largest and most popular Holly and Mistletoe Auctions for the third year. 

 

The Tenbury Wells store, part of Hillview Garden Centres, will host the world-famous auctions which are held annually on the last Tuesday of November and the first two Tuesdays of December (28th November, 5th and 12th December).

 

Dating back to the Victorian times, the mistletoe plant is very important to the people of Tenbury for many centuries. Mistletoe is abundant on the many…