Firebreak to close garden centres in Wales

The 17 day firebreak in Wales starting at 6pm on Friday will see garden centres closed for half term. But can they still offer Click & Collect? Read more - open to all

Stay at home

Edinburgh Woollen Mill calls in administrators

Edinburgh Woollen Mill, with concessions on many leading garden centres, has called in administrators to look for investors to shore up the business. Read more - members only

EWM at Poplars

Chancellor’s statement and the NHS Covid-19 app

The NHS Contact Tracing App is now live. Garden centres should download the QR code to display at entrances.  We also summarise the Winter Economy announcement. Read more - open to all

Update on new Covid-19 rules for catering - Amended

UPDATED Thursday morning… The BBC reports that restaurants without an alcohol licence will NOT need to provide tables service.  The HTA is cautious saying It looks like the rules are evolving. Read more - open to all

Garden centre sales prospered in August

Latest results from the GCA show sales are still significantly above last year, while average sales values are gently coming back to more usual levels.  Catering income has recovered strongly. Read more - members only

Houseplants up almost 50%

Gardening a lifesaver in lockdown

Squire’s Garden Centres has released the results of their “Gardening during Lockdown” survey. Read more - open to all

Sarah Squire

Begonia ‘Sweet Spice Bounty’ royalties donated for horticultural scholarships 

Plant sales of Begonia ‘Sweet SpiceTM Bounty’ have been donated to the David Colegrave Foundation (DCF) to support students studying horticulture in the UK.   Read more - open to all

Begonia SweetSpice Bounty

Lockdown attracts 3m new gardeners

New research conducted by the HTA found that almost three million gardeners sprung up this year as a result of lockdown. Read more - open to all

Scholarship Season open for horticulture students 

Five horticulture scholarships are available from the David Colegrave Foundation (DCF). Students can get up to £2,500 to put towards their studies.  Read more - open to all

 DCF past winners from Scholars Season 2019-2020

Which plant varieties will be hot for 2021?

Which plant varieties will be hot for 2021?... the industry has voted at the Ball Colegrave Trial Grounds at West Adderbury. Read more - open to all

GCA members discuss challenges of re-opening restaurants and cafés

Members of the Garden Centre Association (GCA) recently took part in a virtual forum to discuss the challenges they faced with the re-opening of restaurants and cafés. Read more - open to all

Chris Brown - Turpin Smale Catering Consultants

GCA/GIMA panel debates to improve supply chain communication

The GCA and GIMA have started a series of online panel debates to improve communication and honesty through the retail gardening supply chain. Read more - members only

Masks or No masks for garden centre staff?

From 24th July shoppers must wear masks in garden centres.  The staff don't have to.  What mask policy will garden centres follow for staff?  Will they police customers? Read more - open to all

Masked staff at Dobbies

June sales up 44% for garden centres

Garden centre sales hit record highs in June despite closed restaurants and other retailers reopening from 15th June.  Garden furniture sales gained +81% according to the GCA. Read more - members only

Will garden centres go online?

Overall online retail sales grew 34% in May. Garden e-tailers were swamped. Garden centres developed an online offer during the lock down, but will they continue?  Read more - members only

Consumer confidence is low, but is high in garden centres

HTA Market Update says consumer confidence in garden centres remains high, but it calls on them to reassure customers with safe trading protocols.  Seed sales were up 90% - an encouraging indicator for next year. Read more - members only

Pre-Season ordering more important than ever

Improved relations between the HTA, GCA and GIMA saved the industry after lockdown and now there are calls for closer partnerships between retailers and suppliers. Read more - members only

Keep garden centres open if there's another lockdown

HTA says extending CBILS repayment terms to 10 years will be helpful to growers. Keeping VAT in hospitality to 5% will help garden centre catering. But it presses Government to keep garden centres open. Read more - open to all

HTA – ‘Covid restrictions could present real difficulties’

The HTA says the new Covid restrictions for hospitality could present real difficulties for the industry given such little notice.  Also, some issues need urgent clarification. Read more - open to all

James Clark

Panel debates reality of 3m new gardeners?

Gardenforum hosted a panel debate at Glee Gathering with 4 leading retailers.  They split over whether the lockdown created almost 3m new gardeners. Read more - members only

Sponsored Swim to save the Garden Museum

In 3 weeks, Director Christopher Woodward steps into the Atlantic to save The Garden Museum. A donor is offering to match every donation £1 for £1... so lets make his eyes water! UNLOCKED Read more - open to all

Early opening of garden centres saved the industry

So said James Barnes as he announced HTA plans to double grower membership. New industry growth plans are to be developed with Government. Read more - members only

Brett Avery

The latest on import/export regulations after Brexit

A GIMA virtual seminar has updated members on import/export regulations after Brexit.  The HTA has also given an update on phytosanitary standards. Read more - members only

BHETA lobbies for future of CE mark

BHETA calls for details of the UKCA safety mark due to replace the CE mark in January, as importers must brief overseas manufacturers in time for January delivery. Read more - members only

GC sales up 16% in July despite deflated catering

Sales in July were excellent for garden centres despite a 50%+ fall in catering sales.  The latest GCA figures show sales of garden sundries continue to surge. Read more - members only

Has garden centre catering changed for ever?

Has garden centre catering changed for ever as a flurry of garden centres reopen restaurants in time to participate in ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ in August? Read more - members only

RHS careers videos to help recruitment

The RHS has created a new careers resource - - with over 60 individual films showcasing some 45 different horticultural careers.

Read more - open to all

Government refuses compensation for UK Growers

The Government has rejected calls by The HTA and NFU to pay financial compensation to UK Growers following the Covid-19 shutdown.   Read more - open to all

Gardening sales grew despite the lockdown

Growth in the overall gardening sector since the start of lockdown was 3.5% according to the second quarterly economic report from BHETA.  Read more - members only

Where’s the help for growers?

The HTA has criticised today’s mini budget with comments such as a missed opportunity and unlikely to have much impact amongst horticulture businesses. Read more - open to all

To see earlier stories - Look in the News Archive