Wyevale tops poll in first Gardeners' World Awards

Wyevale Garden Centres have been named best garden centre in the first Gardeners' World Awards while roses topped the polls in the best loved and the most hated plant categories. See more.... Read more - members only

Garden centres compliment suppliers after an exciting spring

Garden centres have complimented suppliers on how well they managed an exciting and frustrating spring. Garden centres report that 2009 sales are 6% – 17% ahead of last year but are cautious about Christmas. See more... Read more - members only

It's Gold for Crocus and Hillier

Crocus constructed two of the three gold medal winning gardens including ‘Best in Show’ for the Daily Telegraph. There were golds also for Hillier, David Domoney and Taylors Bulbs. For all the winners, see more…(this article is open to all) Read more - open to all

Don’t miss The Big Lunch

Garden centres that ignore The Big Lunch will be losing out on an important opportunity to connect with their community. July 19th is likely to become a national focal point of the summer. See more... Read more - members only

Easter boost for UK Garden Centres

The mixed weather across the country this Easter weekend appears not to have deterred gardeners as many garden centres report strong trading – particularly with regard to grow your own, plants and core gardening products. See more - This story is open to all... Read more - open to all

5% U-turn too late for rates bills

The Chancellor has made a last-minute decision to defer the full 5% increase in business rates. This year rates will increase by 2%, the remaining 3% will be phased in over the next two years. However, businesses will have to pay the full 5% for at least the next four months. See more... Read more - members only

£850k reward for Choice

Choice Marketing members are celebrating the completion of another successful year with a huge rebate of £850,000 for achieving agreed targets with their key suppliers. See more... Read more - members only

February snow hit small garden centres

Despite recession, snow and frozen ground, members of the Garden Centre Association will be pleased that sales were only 11% behind last year, which had been 21% up on 2007. Smaller centres were, however, more heavily affected. See more... Read more - members only

Four Oaks Direct holds Flower Power Fair

Around 20 nurseries from the North of England will be selling a range of garden and house plants on Mother's Day at the first Flower Power Fair of 2009, which will be held at Four Oaks Direct. See more... Read more - members only

£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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - members only

HTA Conference takes to the rooftops

Last year it was at the Stock Exchange, this year the HTA Conference will be at the Kensington Roof Gardens. Celebrity speakers led by ex-BBC political editor John Sergeant will be joined by key figures from the trade. See more... Read more - members only

Masked raiders hit Midlands garden centre

Masked raiders armed with handguns and a crowbar attacked a security guard and tied him up outside a Wyevale garden centre on bank holiday Monday. See more... Read more - members only

Odds on for a barbecue summer

"After two disappointingly-wet summers, the signs are much more promising this year. We can expect times when temperatures will be above 30 °C, something we hardly saw at all last year." So says the Chief Meteorologist at the Met Office. See more... Read more - open to all

Total Retail +1.2%, Garden Retail +7%

BRC-KPMG figures for the first 3 months of 2009 show retail sales grew 1.2%. Provisional figures from the HTA show garden centre sales grew 7% over the same period. The difference is most dramatic in March. See more... Read more - members only

Watch BBC Gardeners' World Special on peat

If you missed the BBC Gardeners' World Special on peat, which featured several industry leaders, watch it now. Click on the link below. Read more - members only

Nurseries see first signs of re-ordering

Cautious optimism about the state of the liner market; news that Wyevale plans plant production at 13 locations; results from the second British Plant Fair and an update from Hillier Nurseries all feature in the latest round-up of UK growers from Peter Dawson. See more... Read more - members only

GCA seeks scholarship candidates

Each year, the Garden Centre Association Trust awards two scholarships to support students undergoing horticultural training. The GCA is looking for nominations for the academic year that starts this autumn. See more... Read more - members only

BRC Director-General to address GIMA

“Let's face it; things are in a mess at the moment. And the thinking that got us into the mess isn't going to get us out of it.” Advice from one of the challenging speakers at the GIMA meeting to be held on March 26th. See more... Read more - members only

Mass online vote to find best garden centre

Gardeners’ World magazine, with a circulation of 330,000, has unveiled the Gardeners’ World Awards. Anyone can vote in the on-line survey, which is looking for the best and worst in gardening, including the best garden centres. See more... Read more - members only

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 - members only

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 - open to all

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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - members only

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 - open to all

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