Spring on hold - but for how long?
As "the beast from the east" causes garden centres to close in Kent and the south east GTN has been looking back through the GTN Bestsellers data to when we last had a cold March in 2013...
As "the beast from the east" causes garden centres to close in Kent and the south east GTN has been looking back through the GTN Bestsellers data to when we last had a cold March in 2013.
In that year, as you see in the graph above, there was a noticeable dip in sales at the start of March as we expect to see this year with this weeks snow and the freeze predicted to run into next week too. Then there was a good weeks trading in the middle of March around Garden Re-Leaf Day followed by more cold weather at the end of the month.
Everyone is now hoping that this cold start to March is not followed by more cold weather later as in 2013, fingers crossed. It does however place even more importance on implementing Garden Re-Leaf Day promotional ideas to get people back out to garden centres after the big freeze.
Garden Re-Leaf Day is Friday 16th March so make sure your teams get involved to help make up for lost sales this week and next. To find out more about Garden Re-Leaf Day go to: https://www.greenfingerscharity.org.uk/gardenreleaf
One of the great fun-draising ideas is the Garden Re-Leaf Plantathon which always generates loads of local press coverage and extra sales during March. Last week saw the first drop in plant sales year on year in the GTN Bestsellers Plants Sales index. Keep up to date with which are the best selling plants across the UK every week with a subscription to the full GTN Bestsellers service. You can buy an annual subscription for only £145 using this link, it will seriously improve your sales during the year.
Bridgford Garden Centre gets set for Easter business
After months of hard work Newspan Building Solutions have handed over Bridgford Garden Centre for the next phase of the development. With two weeks left of fit-out works, this fantastic looking building will be ready for the all-important Easter trading period...
After months of hard work Newspan Building Solutions have handed over Bridgford Garden Centre for the next phase of the development.
With two weeks left of fit-out works, this fantastic looking building will be ready for the all-important Easter trading period.
All steelwork, roof and wall cladding, glazing, doors and mezzanine floor construction have been completed by Newspan to provide a modern, high spec garden centre that customers will love.
The existing play barn has also been extended by Newspan and a new covered walkway installed between the garden centre and play barn for seamless trading!
Visitors will soon be able to explore the all-new 9,500 sqm garden centre building and extended Ed's Play Barn for a great day out with the whole family.
The main building is welcoming and bright thanks to the fixed ridge roof lights and white portal frame.
The cold house and external canopy have Victorian style lattice rafters, creating a more vintage feel and automatic ridge vents will keep the climate at a comfortable level.
Bridgford promises to become a true destination garden centre with plenty to offer for the whole family.
Wyevale unveils its first Garden Trends Report
Wyevale Garden Centres has launched its 2018 Garden Trends Report, offering an in-depth look at the key influences and insights shaping the UK’s garden retail market – now worth over £5bn annually...
- The in-depth report highlights the key influences and trends shaping the UK’s garden retail market – now worth over £5bn annually
- A survey of more than 15,000 garden-lovers revealed five key trends: Nano-Gardening, Houseplant Mania, Eco-Gardening, Global Gardening and the Social Side of Gardening
- Insight into the new breeds of gardeners and their desires to nurture, entertain, encourage wildlife and grow their own fresh produce
- Sea-change in demands as 67% of Brits now get their gardening knowledge via the internet, and 46% of Brits believe that social media will influence gardening trends in 2018
- Wyevale Garden Centres’ mission to demystify gardening: 69% of under-45s believe they have fewer gardening skills than their parents
Wyevale Garden Centres has launched its 2018 Garden Trends Report, offering an in-depth look at the key influences and insights shaping the UK’s garden retail market – now worth over £5bn annually.
The report has gathered the expertise of Wyevale Garden Centres’ senior horticultural team and over 15,000 garden-lovers from across the UK, combined with data to map out what’s gaining ground and losing face in the garden, and the new breeds of British gardeners taking the industry in exciting directions for 2018.
The past year has been an exhilarating one for the growth of gardening, as new waves of amateur, enthusiastic gardeners join in the horticultural action, many of whom are often lacking in time, space and gardening confidence. 69% of under-45s believe they have fewer gardening skills than their parents, and interestingly only 7% of people who have been gardening for more than 30 years consider themselves experts.
Wyevale Garden Centres has identified a need to demystify gardening and offer easy solutions for all levels of expertise and garden size.
As the largest garden centre retailer in the UK, Wyevale Garden Centres is uniquely placed to feel the pulse of the gardening public and has identified five key trends for 2018:
Changes in home ownership are having knock-on effects on the way we garden. Space-starved gardeners are behind the trend for vertical growing as they add height to their balconies and courtyards with climbers, outdoor shelving and hanging plants. The bijou edible garden is making its way indoors, with 66% of people now growing plants in the kitchen, and many more introducing them throughout their homes.
The trend for bringing the outdoors in is proving more popular than ever as Brits create green, jungle-like atmospheres in their homes. The aesthetically striking, impossible-to-kill cacti and succulents tick all the boxes for trend-led millennials; while the nation’s burgeoning interest in wellness has also filtered through to gardening. Healing houseplants are on the rise at Wyevale Garden Centres, as 68% of people now consider the health and wellbeing properties of a plant before purchasing it.
Today’s environmentally aware consumers are turning towards a gentler, more holistic approach to problems in the garden, with a greater concern for wildlife and a political understanding of the way Grow Your Own can decrease our food’s carbon footprint and air miles. From plot to plate, organic is also on the rise, and 67% of people now consider themselves to be eco-conscious when it comes to gardening. Further, Wyevale Garden Centres found that 82% of Brits would like to attract more wildlife into their gardens, while 37% deem wildlife to be the most appealing garden feature.
Changes in climate conditions, an increase in travel to exotic locations, and concerns about food provenance post-Brexit are just three issues directly driving changes in the way that Brits garden in 2018. These changes will open up exciting opportunities as exotic, Mediterranean species make their way into Brits’ gardens; however, Wyevale Garden Centres has revealed that only 2% of gardeners in the UK feel that they have the knowledge to adapt to a changing climate.
Traditional and experienced gardeners have been met with a new generation learning from an entirely untraditional source: 67% of Brits are getting their gardening knowledge via the internet and social media rather than at their grandfather’s knee. By inviting people in digitally, we are becoming more likely to invite friends into our gardens, using every opportunity to relax, socialise and dine al fresco. There is a growing desire to turn the garden into the ‘fifth room’ of the house, with Wyevale Garden Centres responding to demand with an increased range of outdoor living furniture and accessories for 2018.
The Garden Trends Report offers a comprehensive look at the gardening landscape for 2018 and the years ahead, with Wyevale Garden Centres determined to keep abreast of the trends and continue to provide gardeners with the tools and knowledge they need to achieve more in the garden.
For more information, visit www.wyevalegardencentres.co.uk.
“Futuristic” and “Surf Gipsy” are two of the latest fashion trends that have inspired Allensmore Nurseries’ resident designer, Victoria Atkinson, to team up with garden designer, Stacey Gibson in the creation of a new range of Added Value Products for Spring 2018.
“Futuristic” is defined by embossed textures, bespoke fabrics and liquid or metallic finishes, whilst “Surf Gipsy” is bohemian in essence and is inspired by global travels to beach destinations and a surf-inspired vibe.
Allensmore’s new range of ready-planted containers feature weathered rope-look wicker & zinc, painted ceramics and sun-bleached terracotta and have a distinctly feminine touch. Plants are in hues of white, pink and soft blues, many with a delicate fragrance, generating even greater appeal for Mother’s Day sales.
The Allensmore Easter 2018 ready-planted Added Value container range takes its inspiration from bird’s nests and bee hives.
Soft, white-washed wooden barrels and wicker baskets in a wide range of sizes are planted with a profusion of cheerful, fragrant Spring flowers, all designed to capture attention at point of sale and stimulate impulse sales.
2 Litre and large pot perennials, together with citrus fruit trees, complete Allensmore’s Easter 2018 ranges.
Jane Davies, Allensmore’s Commercial Director, commented: “Victoria and Stacey have looked closely at the latest interior designs and colour trends in creating our lovely new Spring ranges of Added Value products. They have incorporated bright fresh flower colours, contrasting with subtle soft textures and colour washes for our containers. We have designed the range to suit all budgets and tastes and to look fantastic at point of sale.”
The Allensmore Nurseries Mother’s Day & Easter 2018 catalogue is available now.
After GTN passed on a number of comments from readers last week, Gardman CEO Pete Utting gave us this statement regarding their progress in solving the delivery issues from their new Daventry warehouse:
"We are improving but we haven't quite fixed it yet. I think the 2 weeks before Easter will see us through the backlog of orders.
"Customers will continue to see sporadic issues for a couple of weeks, but I am very confident we are close to resolving the issues.
"The issue still is as I explained before which is we have been taken by surprise from the perfect operational storm of
1. A new infrastructure
2. New people
3. New warehouse management system
"It is not any one of these things that have caused the issues, but a combination of all three. Whilst we did very significant planning with lots of experts we have still had issues.
"We will not rest until we have fixed the issue and we are throwing lots of internal and external resources to re-instate our previous very good service.
"Finally - we are not in financial trouble and the management is not changing . I will FIX this issue."
Squire’s Garden Centre in Woking now open
Squire’s Garden Centre on Littlewick Road in Woking is now open again with a great new look. Following a significant extension the stunning new garden centre offers an inspirational plant area, complete with an outdoor canopy to keep you and the plants dry; and a much bigger shop, offering a wider choice of gardening products, gifts and garden furniture.
Stunning new Café Bar at Squire’s in Woking.
Squire’s Garden Centre on Littlewick Road in Woking is now open again with a great new look.
Following a significant extension the stunning new garden centre offers an inspirational plant area, complete with an outdoor canopy to keep you and the plants dry; and a much bigger shop, offering a wider choice of gardening products, gifts and garden furniture.
Visitors on March 4th can take advantage of a massive 20% off any garden furniture suite or BBQ.
The Café Bar has also been extended and completely refurbished giving it a light and airy feel, plus there’s a beautiful outdoor verandah where you can sit and admire the plants. There’s now also a full waiting service, so you can order food and drinks from the comfort of your table.
Plus every Sunday lunchtime in March there’ll be live music from Surrey-based classical guitarist Richard Veitch between 12.30pm-2.30pm.
Sarah Squire, Deputy Chairman at Squire’s commented: “Squire’s in Woking has been completely transformed yet still remains one hundred percent true to our horticultural heritage.
"It’s beautifully designed and landscaped to fit within the surrounding area, and truly retains its sense of place.
"We hope it will be a centre that the community can be really proud of, as a local hub, a place for family and friends to get together in comfortable and relaxed surroundings. We very much look forward to welcoming our customers back, and to meeting new ones.”
On Friday 16th March come and have a chat with Sarah and her father Colin in store when they shall be planting containers to raise money for the charity Greenfingers.
Then on Saturday 17th March gardening guru Charlie Dimmock will officially open Squire’s in Woking. She’ll be at the garden centre all day, so come and meet her and enjoy the following activities.
Loyal customers June & John were first through the doors of Squire’s Woking, which re-opened on 23rd February.
Inspirational new plant area with canopy at Squire’s Woking.
Squire’s team are looking forward to welcoming old and new customers.
Stylish new shop at Squire’s Woking.
Spot amazing topiary at Squire’s Woking.
Squire’s Garden Centre, Littlewick Road, Woking, GU21 4XR.
T: 01276 858446
Home and garden gadgets supplier, Creative Products is reporting a successful first year at Glee at Spring Fair, with visitors showing a real interest in the company’s refreshed packaging and product range.
Products which were particularly well received include the new Thermo Gloves – a practical, user friendly alternative to traditional oven gloves – as well as Creative Products’ Fast Fix Hook and Loop Tape, which received recognition for its versatility around the home and garden in the first Glee at Spring Fair New Product Awards. Providing a quick and easy solution to securing plants and young trees – as well as a multitude of items around the home – Fast Fix offers a reusable solution in place of string, wire or regular tape.
Commenting on his experience of the exhibition, Managing Director Mark Hall said, “Glee at Spring Fair has provided us with a great platform from which to maximise our business opportunities as we get ready to embark on another financial year. It’s provided us with a second bite at the cherry after an excellent Glee last September.”
Creative Products is renowned for its unique ‘no risk’ retail opportunity, meaning products are supplied on a fully sale or return basis. The company has gone from strength to strength in recent years, with 2018 seeing an investment in new, contemporary packaging and on-trend products.
Mark continues, “As our first exhibition of 2018, it was hugely reassuring to see such a tremendous response from both existing and new customers. The Irish market showed particular enthusiasm for our products, to the point where we’re now looking to source additional staff for the area!”
For more information on Creative Products and the company’s unique sales strategy, visit www.creativeproducts.ltd.uk. Retailers interested in working with the company should contact the sales team on 01476 564 230 or email email@example.com
Yorkshire Air Ambulance is reaping the rewards of a charity partnership with Dean’s Garden Centres in York and Scarborough which has raised £26,000.
The seeds of success were sown when staff at the family run business chose Yorkshire Air Ambulance as its charity of the year for 2017.
A range of events and fundraisers took place at Dean’s Scarborough and York centres throughout the year including festive days, bake sales, tombolas, second-hand book stalls, Yellow Yorkshire Day and YAA merchandise sales.
The company’s charity coordinator Laura Dean said: “Dean’s is proud of its roots in the community and we think it’s important to support local charities.
“Every year since 2002, staff nominate a Charity of the Year and we have so far raised over £265,000 for a range of good causes. It is very popular with customers and staff and something we are very proud of.
“We worked very closely with Yorkshire Air Ambulance and there was a lot of support for a charity that anyone could need at any time.”
Dean’s Garden Centre staff visited the rapid response emergency charity’s Air Support Unit at Nostell to hand over their cheque and meet helicopter paramedics and crew.
YAA East Yorkshire Community Fundraiser David Hebden said: “We cannot thank Dean's Garden Centre enough for their hard work and tremendous effort, an outstanding donation that we are truly grateful for.”
Pictured: Deans Garden Centre staff meet Yorkshire Air Ambulance crew and fundraisers during a visit to Nostell Air Support Unit to present their cheque for £26,000.
Zest 4 Leisure announces 2018 charity partner
Zest 4 Leisure has announced Action for Children as its charity partner for 2018. The charity, which has been operating for 148 years, helps disadvantaged children across the UK and works closely with other charities, local authorities and health services...
Zest 4 Leisure has announced Action for Children as its charity partner for 2018. The charity, which has been operating for 148 years, helps disadvantaged children across the UK and works closely with other charities, local authorities and health services.
Aiming to raise £10,000 across the year, employees of Zest 4 Leisure are gearing up for a number of challenges, the first of which is the iconic London Marathon. Managing Director, Steve Morgan, is aiming to complete the Marathon alongside two colleagues.
Steve said: “There are so many children in the UK that need help and support and I know the work that Action for Children does makes a real and lasting difference to the lives of thousands of children across the UK and particularly in Mold and Flintshire.
“I hope our efforts at the London Marathon encourage others to get involved by donating or raising funds for Action for Children, enabling it to continue investing in its vital research and its help and support for so many children.”
Later in the year there are plans for 50 PLUS Zest 4 Leisure employees to run the Flintshire 10k challenge dressed as pandas following the success of 2017 when 45 completed the distance in record time. Other fundraising challenges will include more marathons, 10k road races and an IRONMAN triathlon.
Supporting local communities and, in particular, children and young people is something that Zest feels strongly about, hence the selection of Action for Children as the charity partner for 2018.
In the UK alone, there are over 1.5 million children suffering from some form of neglect. All money raised by Zest 4 Leisure this year will go towards helping the charity continue to do their vital work so ever pound donated will make a big difference.
For example, just £5 could pay for emergency overnight support for a young person on the verge of homelessness. £10 could help pay for swimming and hydrotherapy lessons for a child with a disability. £20 could pay for food parcels to help parents feed nutritious meals to their children and a £50 donation could pay for a one-to-one counselling session for a child who has been abused.
Nikki Booth, Action for Children’s fundraiser in North Wales and Shropshire said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been chosen to be Zest 4 Leisure’s charity of the year in 2018.
“We have seen some of the extraordinary events this longstanding family-run business has been involved in over the years to raise money as well as Steve Morgan’s uncanny ability to motivate people to run marathons for other good causes! We are incredibly grateful we will now be the focus of their endeavours this year.”
Zest 4 Leisure, a family run company, has a long-standing history of raising money for good causes and in the last five years it has specifically chosen to support just one charity each year. Past fundraising efforts include a variety of events, from marathons, cycling to Paris, the Welsh 14 Peaks Iron Man challenges to sponsored football matches and even an ‘It’s A Knockout’ event.
To support the company in its fundraising challenge for Action for Children, please visit: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-display/showROFundraiserPage?userUrl=PAGroup-Zest4Leisure-2018&pageUrl=3
Plastic container manufacturer Aeroplas has launched a polypropylene plant pot range which it says is suitable for recycling collections from households.
The ‘Eco Pot’ range was created in order to “move forward” the company’s beliefs that its plant pots should be included with kerbside collections.
The Tipton-based company describes itself as a “leading manufacturer of shrub containers, thermo pots and transport trays”. To prove the range was recyclable, the company last month provided plastics trade body RECOUP with samples of plant pots manufactured from 100% reprocessed carbon-free polypropylene for testing.
Carbon pigment plastic products of all colours absorb Infra-Red from detection systems, which makes sorting for recycling of these products much harder. The company say that by making the carbon-free pots, they will get through the system and can be reprocessed providing they are clean.
Tests were carried out on samples at the TOMRA testing centre in December 2017. The samples comprised of 8 different colours, including black, and were 100% correctly identified as polypropylene by sorters.
While 76% of local authorities collect pots, tubs and trays, there are only a handful who collect plant pots as part of a kerbside collection service. Some independent garden centres do offer a pot recycling service but issues around the quality of material due to cleanliness has made some pots difficult to re-use.
Also, many plastic gardening bedding packs are black which has been difficult to detect at sorting facilities. Aeroplas say that by making the products carbon-free, this has enabled them to be detected and thus more easily recycled.
RECOUP chief executive Stuart Foster commented that he sees “no reason” why the pots shouldn’t be included in household recycling collections and hopes it will send out a positive message.
“This is Aeroplas saying to the leadership that an ideal solution for an industry roll-out of pot collections is needed, alongside UK local authorities changing the message it delivers to recyclers to explain that plant pots can be recycled. The release doesn’t resolve all issues at once but does help show that at least some plant pots can be recycled effectively.
Mr Foster added that sometimes when manufacturers stop using black-plastic packaging, it still contains carbon-pigment so can sometimes not get through the system so it is not always a case of just changing the colour of plastics.
He said: “You have to look at what pigment is used which can be difficult. Whenever this pot goes in it will go through the system and is now for rest of industry to adopt the same principles. We need evidence it will get through and be recycled.”
Aeroplas say it will continue to develop the pots over the coming months and are “delighted that they can prove that not all plastic packaging should be seen in a negative light."
New Triple Action Soil Enricher - Bloomin Amazing™ - launched in Dorset
A new and sustainable by-product from the renewable energy sector was launched at Poundbury, Dorset, last week to a team of sales agents and garden centre retailers. Bloomin Amazing™ which is a by-product of a pioneering Anaerobic Digestion project that injects gas into the national grid is a light, almost odourless, nutritious, soil conditioner...
A new and sustainable by-product from the renewable energy sector was launched at Poundbury, Dorset, last week to a team of sales agents and garden centre retailers.
Bloomin Amazing™ which is a by-product of a pioneering Anaerobic Digestion project that injects gas into the national grid is a light, almost odourless, nutritious, soil conditioner.
The unique technology behind has been developed and championed by a joint venture between The Duchy of Cornwall and local Dorset farmers.
The new product, Bloomin Amazing™, has the ideal technical properties to make it a high performing mulch, soil conditioner and plant feed all in one multipurpose product with unique 3 in 1 action making it a real innovation for the bagged growing media sector.
The company claim that it is set to become a benchmark product in the independent market for garden soil conditioners and has received great praise from local experts who have been trailing the product: “I’ve been using Bloomin Amazing™ on both my own and client gardens for several years. It’s a wonderful soil conditioner and nutritious weed suppressant that makes a huge difference to all types of soil. I love that it’s so light and easy to move around, unlike manures and conventional composts which are always so back-breaking! Now that it’s available in garden centres I’ll be recommending it to all my clients” Catharine Watson, multi Gold medal winner at RHS Chelsea and renowned floral designer.
With great sustainability credentials it means it is poised to meet the aspirations of modern gardeners and disrupt the bagged media status quo.
Nick Finding, West Country Soil Improvement Managing Director says, “The project has been several years in the making, developing out of our very successful renewable energy activities. I always knew our byproduct was great for my own garden, and of course we’ve used it to great effect on our farms. But it wasn’t until we began testing it extensively, and then discussing it with garden centre retailers, that we
realised we had a successful retail product on our hands.”
West Country Soil Improvement has recently made a substantial investment in a state of the art bagging line located immediately adjacent to their anaerobic digester plant in Dorset. “It’s the market research
and sales feedback that gave us the confidence to make a major investment in bagging equipment so we are ready to commercialise the product widely.”
One of the unique benefits of Bloomin Amazing is that it is by product from a feedstock of only 2 crops - maize and rye grown as ‘break' crops. So there is no waste going into the digestion process, therefore absolutely no contamination with plastics, grit, glass etc, and a much more consistent product!
The Rainbarrow plant produces 8,000 tonnes with a potential for 500,000 bags. We will be able to pack 12 – 14 bags per minute.
We are trailing joint promotional activity with retailers – particularly highlighting the sustainability credentials of the product. We are also investigating a number of other recycling and upcycling opportunities around the packaging.
Bloomin Amazing™ will be available for delivery to garden centres in the South & West from early March in 70L bags with a suggested retail price of £7.00
To find out more about Bloomin Amazing™ go to www.bloominamazing.com
E-mail Nick at firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 01305 889525
Outback’s 4-burner gas barbecue Jupiter proved to be star of the show when the company scooped Wyevale’s Supplier of the Year excellence award in the Best Product Development seasonal category for Spring 2018 Awards.
The soar-away success of the Jupiter 4 returned the highest sales in its category in last year’s seasonal nominations among Wyevale buyers and, said Outback UK chief executive Mark Osborne, “has led to a substantial increase in orders by the top garden centre group for the 2018 season."
“Jupiter’s striking black and stainless steel bodywork, with a 30cm removable centre to hold a griddle or pizza stone, caught the eye of Wyevale customers at an attractive price for which rival suppliers can charge considerably more for a similar barbecue," he said.
Pictured, right, at the Stoneleigh Conference Centre presentation ceremony are Outback national accounts manager Brian Jordan, alongside Wyevale trade and marketing director Paul Emslie and the company’s head of trading Hayley Thornton.
Brian almost made it a double celebration – but was beaten into second place in the Wyevale nominations for Best Accounts manager.
For further information contact Mark Osborne on email@example.com, 07795422871.
This month marks the launch of a new electric barbecue which can be controlled via your phone and sets a new standard for the humble barbie.
Grillson, made in Germany, is an electric wood pellet grill which is unlike any other on the market. It can do everything from cooking pizza to searing steak and can be linked to an app on your phone, which means you can control your barbecue from anywhere in the World.
Leading barbecue expert Paul Yates, who reviews barbecues on his site www.barbecue-smoker-recipes.com is a big fan of the Grillson range. He said: “The Grillson is going to revolutionise the barbecue market.
“When it comes to outdoor cooking, it probably doesn’t get easier. Forget hours trying to light charcoal and being glued to the barbecue to end up with a burnt sausage, with the Grillson simply plug it in, put the food on the grill and specify on your phone how you want it cooked, the Grillson does the rest!”
Wood pellet grills are relatively new to the UK, but the Grillson is unique, as unlike other wood pellet grills which can only cook like an oven, the Grillson can also act like a true barbecue and is capable of searing steak, and acting like a traditional grill. It can also reach temperatures far higher than any other wood pellet grill on the market, which means it can also be used as a pizza oven.
Paul said: “The Grillson range is the top of the tree when it comes to a wood pellet grill. It’s the first time we have an electric powered barbecue which offers the same versatility as the traditional charcoal barbie.”
Cooking works by igniting wood pellets with an electric glow plug, air jet technology then blasts heat and fire into the grilling area. The beauty of the technology is it not only makes barbecue cooking a breeze, with accurate and stable temperature, according to Paul it actually can produce better tasting results, with the smoke from the wood pellets offering a superior way to flavour the food.
There are five models in the range and the Leif Grillson Premium and the Bob Grillson Premium offer the app control on your phone. Temperature probes in the barbecue relay information to the app which alerts you when the food is ready to serve.
The app offers the ability to specify personalised cooking results for different meats, for example users can select beef, and then select their preferred option e.g. medium rare, the app will then alert users when the beef is at the perfect consistency.
The Grillson products start at £2,399.00 for the Leif Grillson to £3,999.00 for the Bob Grillson Premium S. For more information visit www.bbq-barn.co.uk/grillson.php or en.grillson.com
See photo gallery from TREx
The Garden Retail Experience, TREx, in Holland clashed with Spring Fair this year so GTN Xtra couldn't make it there, but here is the official post event report and a gallery of over 200 photos that you can use for inspiration and ideas. Next year the dates of TREx are February 12th, 13th and 14th which is after Spring Fair. If you'd like to join us on a trip to this unique retail event please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
THE GARDEN RETAIL EXPERIENCE 2018
We happily look back on a successful TREx 2018 on 7 and 8 February. The new event location at De Beursfabriek in Nieuwegein provided new impetus and positive reactions from both visitors and participants.
There were plenty of innovative cases, concepts, and presentations for green retail to see and experience. And all this in a continuously great atmosphere.
The ultra-green floral entrance allowed visitors to step right into a spring atmosphere. After which a catchy introduction video displays the TREx 2018 theme in two amazing minutes: From Stores to stories. Then, through garden presentations, the four main customer segmentations for the garden centres were further explained.
That the customer was the focus of TREx 2018 could be seen across the entire event: in the presentations by the 150 participants, in the various inspiration squares, and in the keynotes by Chantal Riedeman (From Stores to stories), Jos Burgers (One fan per day), and Richard de Hoop (Future music in the garden industry) on the main stage.
Each TREx day ended with a series of TREx Talks. In ten minutes, ten prominent figures, including Jacky Michels (GroenRijk), Andries Breel (Qidos), Jeroen van de Schenk (Performance Solutions), René Spaanderman (Kega), and professional cyclist Laurens ten Dam (Team Sunweb), shared their vision on the theme From stores to stories.
The new location in Nieuwegein gave the event a more modern appearance and brought more dynamics, exciting routing, and new surprising elements such as the flower concept stores, the catering squares, and the arena.
The increased size also worked out well. There was 50 percent more surface area and 25 percent more participants. And partially thanks to the new central location, many more trade visitors were able to visit us.
The portion of foreign trade visitors also grew significantly: in addition to German, Belgian, and French visitors, we also welcomed British, Italian, Spanish, Irish, Swiss, and Japanese people. The number of visitors increased by about 50 percent to 3,483 people.
In addition, more garden centre employees have spent an active day, partially thanks to the special Growth Factor programme set up with Tuinbranche Nederland. Special florist activities were organised and flower presentations were created in collaboration with DPK Florist Magazine: this resulted in more florist visitors.
TuinZaken Retail Awards 2017
Prior to TREx 2018, on Tuesday 6 February, the professional jury awarded the TuinZaken Retail Awards 2017, the coveted prizes for the garden centre industry, during the stylish TREx Gala. The often surprising results also show appreciation for well-known names in the industry.
The TuinZaken Retail Awards 2017 were awarded in eight categories. The Karel Verdonschot Award was awarded to Gerard Berkelmans and Peggy Leurs won Retailer of the year 2017. The TuinZaken Product Awards went to: Talen Tools (Garden maintenance and tools), Duyvesteyn Plants (Interior green), Van der Starre (Exterior green), By-Boo (Interior decoration and atmosphere), Esschert Design (Exterior decoration and atmosphere), Beeztees (Animal products).
From stores to stories
The umbrella theme of TREx 2018 is From stores to stories. This is about the transition of garden centres from physical distribution sites to multichannel locations. Storytelling, discovery, experience, and offering solutions for consumers play an important role in this. TREx consists of a large concept store designed as a garden centre. Here, on various inspiration squares and in the stands, innovative cases, concepts, and presentations for green retail with the latest products of the 2018 spring/summer collections were shown. With the use of things like technology, social media, and long tail order in store applications and in line with the wishes and needs of modern customers.
In short, if you want to stay aware of the latest developments and trends in the garden industry, a visit to TREx is enough to be fully up to date in terms of your knowledge and experiences.
TREx 2019 will take place on 12, 13, and 14 February 2019 in De Beursfabriek in Nieuwegein.
TuinZaken Retail Experience is organised by
TPK Media & Events | Publisher of TuinZaken, Garden Retailer, and DPK Florist Magazine
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Planning permission has been granted to build 40 homes on the site of the former Wyevale Garden Centre in Folkestone.
The proposal for the old garden centre, which is extremely close to Folkestone Central Station and the town centre, includes demolition of the buildings on site.
It will include two one bed flats, two two bed flats, 11 semi-detached houses with three bedrooms, 13 semi-detached houses with four bedrooms, 11 four bed terraced houses and one detached five bedroom house.
Pictured: Plan of the site.
Leading national pet product wholesaler Vital Pet Trade has appointed Jacqueline Sutcliffe to the new role of National Sales Manager for garden centres.
Director, Sunny Sharma says existing and prospective customers can benefit from this extra dedicated layer of support, which is additional to its current network of regional support.
Jacqui has had a long and successful career including 15 years working in the garden centre trade. She has worked across a range of products, from gifts to greeting cards and garden furniture, as well as Christmas products. Her passion for the trade is clear and she will be a well-known face to many.
Jacqui says she is excited to be taking on this new challenge, “I was impressed by the energy and dedication of the management team at Vital Pet Trade. It’s the leading pet products wholesaler in the UK but it’s by no means sitting back and resting on its laurels. With UK exclusive distribution of marketing leading products from the US, as well as its newly revitalised own-brand Mayfield range, there’s so much to offer. I feel confident I can recommend a great core range for anyone just getting started with a pet section, or identify some new lines for those looking to expand their offer or improve sales.”
The team at Vital is also able to merchandise a pet category to fit the available space, making it easy to establish fixtures that offer the benefit of incremental sales all year round.
Vital will also be at PATS Sandown this year on stand J7 and in the Vital Grandstand where the company is partnering with leading manufacturers to offer exclusive offers not available anywhere else at the event.
To discuss how Vital delivers great results, contact Jacqui by email at email@example.com. Visit Vital at PATS Sandown on 20th/ 21st tMarch, find out more at www.vitalpetproducts.co.uk, or telephone 01837 883000.
Horticultural expert and plantswoman extraordinaire Carol Klein will officially open the Blenheim Palace Flower Show on Friday, June 22nd.
The hugely popular BBC Gardener’s World presenter will be on hand to launch the 5th annual show, which runs from June 22nd-24th at the Oxfordshire UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A multi award-winning gardener, Carol is a much-loved television personality whose own Glebe Cottage gardens were made famous in a six-part TV series and accompanying book.
As well as opening the show on the Friday, she will also be giving two talks over the weekend on her favourite plant-based subjects.
The Grand Floral Pavilion forms the centrepiece of the Show and features the UK’s finest nurseries and growers giving expert advice and gardening ideas. It is guaranteed to be a riot of colour, fragrance and weird and wonderful plants.
A highlight for 2018 will be the brand new ‘Orchid Tunnel’ which leads into the Pavilion. Visitors will be able to walk through the tunnel and see over 1,000 orchids from all over the world.
With workshops, talks and demonstrations taking place throughout the event, you’ll be guaranteed to learn something new and take inspiration for your own gardening project.
Visitors can also enjoy fabulous food and drink as well as an outdoor Plant Village and live entertainment throughout the weekend.
Visit the shopping village featuring over 250 stands selling everything from unique garden gazebos, greenhouses and arbours to beautiful flowers, gardening sundries and hundreds of other products.
The Home and Country Living Pavilion showcases a selection of original, handmade giftware, jewellery and luxury goods.
Enjoy fabulous samples and tastings at the Food and Drink Pavilion with a wonderful range of artisans and purveyors from Masons Gin, Truckle Cheese Sausages to Dips and Marinades – there will be something to tickle all taste buds!
Admission to the show includes entry to the Park and Gardens so visitors can also make a day of it exploring Blenheim Palace’s Formal Gardens and 2,000 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown Parkland.
What: Blenheim Palace Flower Show
When: Friday 22 June – Sunday 24 June 2018
Why Visit: Discover an unmissable horticultural event set in the stunning grounds of Blenheim Palace.
Admission: Park & Gardens Ticket required: Adult £16.00, Concession £13.00, Child £7.40, Family (2 Adults & 2 Children) £43.00
Picture credit: Carol Klein
Flowers on your patio all summer long. Elegant stems, long green leaves and elegant blue or white flowers made up of a host of small calyxes: Agapanthus, also known as the African lily, is a look of splendour on the terrace or patio. You can create attractive lines in your outdoor space with this plant, which features plenty of greenery at the base, smooth stems in middle, and flowers that resemble blooming fireworks as the crown. Agapanthus is easy to care for and attractive to look at, with rich flowering from the beginning of the summer until the start of autumn. One thing that's good to know: Agapanthus produces more flowers every year.
The most common Agapanthus is derived from A. africanus, with blue and white flowers. Both types offer various cultivars which differ in terms of plant shape, stem length, leaf and flower shape and flowering time. There are evergreen and deciduous varieties of Agapanthus. Breeding has produced cultivars which stay nice and compact, and are therefore very suitable for use on the patio.
• Agapanthus symbolises love. The name is derived from the Greek word ‘agape’ (love) and ‘anthos’ (flower)
• The plant is very ancient: women in primitive African tribes wear dried roots as an amulet to ensure healthy babies.
• In the home and garden Agapanthus symbolises a happy home.
Agapanthus originates from southern Africa and is native to countries such as South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland and Mozambique. The plant’s seeds have spread and been sown naturally around the globe, so they now also occur in the wild in Australia, Mexico and Europe.
What to look for when buying
• The larger the pot size, the older and more richly flowering the Agapanthus plant is.
• The compactness can vary considerably between plants. A healthy Agapanthus has long stems, foliage at the base and buds at the top.
• The Agapanthus must be free of pests and diseases. Particular look for yellow leaves, which is a sign of soil which is too wet.
Care tips for consumers
• Agapanthus likes a sunny and sheltered spot in a mixture of potting soil and sand.
• Place Agapanthus in a spacious pot with a drainage hole.
• Always ensure slightly damp soil, particularly during the growing season.
• A bit of plant food every month helps promote growth and flowering
• Agapanthus is not fully hardy, and is best placed in a cool shed or cellar if the temperature drops lower than a couple of degrees below freezing.
Sales and display tips for Agapanthus
Don’t display the plants too close together; show the full leaves and slender stems off to their best advantage. Create a mood table different sizes and some green plants in order to show the flowers even more spectacularly. The colours look their best in a setting with white and pale grey: consider zinc, whitewash or plastic with a white or silvery tone.
Patio Plant of the Year
Agapanthus is the Patio Plant for 2018. The ‘Patio Plant of the Year’ is an initiative from the Flower Council of Holland. Every year a media jury made up of editors of lifestyle, interiors and garden magazines, vloggers and bloggers examine 10 candidates at the Flower Council’s request to pick the patio plant which most appeals. For 2018 it's the Agapanthus, a blooming statement plant that is not yet well-known and can enhance any patio.
Thejoyofplants.co.uk is an initiative from the Flower Council of Holland to help consumers discover that you feel better with plants around you.
Looking for Christmas Ideas for 2018?
If you are on your way to Harrogate and wanting some extra input of ideas for your Christmas 2018, take a look at GTN's photo tours of 30+ garden centres this Christmas including:
- Aylett Nurseries
- Barton Grange
Blue Diamond Trentham
Fresh at Burcot
Frosts Woburn Sands
Haskins West End
Mains of Drum
Old Railway Line
Woodlands Ash, Kent
The best of last week's
If you missed last week's GTN Xtra, below are the most-read stories...
Garden centre customers get the 'Love Spring' message
Read more and see pictures of Love Spring at Bents
We are loving early spring sales according to EPOS data analysis by GTN Bestsellers. Six weeks into the year, total sales volumes are running at almost 11% up on last year and plant sales are racing ahead at 43%...
We are loving early spring sales according to EPOS data analysis by GTN Bestsellers. Six weeks into the year, total sales volumes are running at almost 11% up on last year and plant sales are racing ahead at 43%.
Planted bulbs are selling extremely well along with the instant colour hits of Primula and Hellebores.
As we saw at GCA Award winning Bents Garden & Home this week covered planterias are looking really attractive at the moment, no wonder customers and garden centre tills are Loving Spring.
GTN Bestsellers Top 50 sales volumes compared to the same week last year (week 6):
- Garden Products - up 2%
- Growing Media - up 28%
- Veg-2-Gro - up 13%
- Wild Bird Care - down 34%
- All Plants Index - up 56%
- All Items Index - up 14%
To subscribe to GTN Bestsellers email firstname.lastname@example.org
News that Reigate Garden Centre is set to close later this year has been met with hundreds of local residents expressing their sadness and disappointment on social media.
The Tiley family has run the centre, on Sandcross Road, for 35 years but according to reports in the local media, chief executive Gary Tiley announced that the site had been sold to property developers.
Reigate and Banstead Borough Council's development management plan proposes to remove land surrounding the garden from the green belt, with developers understood to be eyeing it up for hundreds of homes.
A public consultation on the plan is open until February 23 with residents able to give their views on the council's website.
Separate plans are currently being consulted on for 23 homes to be built on the two-acre garden centre site.
Reacting to the news on social media some have called it a “shame” that they are losing a sanctuary that “holds precious memories”. Others have stated their frustration that the popular business and its surrounding green belt land could be lost to developers.
Whitco, the catering and bakery equipment company, has announced that its CEO Jeff Whitaker has died after a short illness.
Jeff was a man for whom the word hospitality and its industry might have been invented. However, his first experience with catering was just a means to an end. He became a student at Hull Catering College, and later admitted: “I only trained in catering so that I could join the merchant navy and see the world.”
His warmth and personality suited the catering industry perfectly. This, combined with vision, charisma, energy, an enormous appetite for hard work and a commitment to taking the long- term view (“Stick at it” was a favourite mantra) laid the foundation for the growth of the company that he founded with his wife Vita in 1995.
His leadership and approach to management inspired trust among colleagues, employees, suppliers and customers. At the same time, his innovations fuelled the company’s growth and changed industry practices for the better.
He knew how to extend hospitality to others and, not surprisingly, he enjoyed the company of friends, good food and knew his way around a fine wine list. His loyalty to friends and colleagues alike was boundless. This extended to acts of generosity that often went well beyond the call of duty.
He is remembered as both a gentle man and a gentleman possessed of a quiet dignity and a winning smile that seemed to enter the room just before he did.
He leaves a legacy of a loving family and a successful business that he built over more than 22 years.
A memorial service for Jeff will take place on 22nd March at Oundle School Chapel and after at The Great Hall.
Every week GTN receives and analyses epos data from a number of UK garden centres to produce the GTN Bestsellers charts and weekly bestsellers sales tips.
The full charts which provide useful insight into product sales peaks, new trends and new link sales opportunities are published in the weekly GTN Xtra newsletter.
As the year goes on we give sales volume comparisons with 2015 as well as 2016 to allow your teams to see variations over a three year period.
Access is by subscription only. For £145.00 per year you and your team can have access to the most up-to-date gardening sales analysis that has already helped many UK garden centres increase their sales. To subscribe call 01733 775700, e-mail email@example.com or buy on-line using this link.
Highlights of the GTN Garden Products Bestsellers chart for this week are here
Highlights of the GTN Garden Plants Bestsellers chart for this week are here
Highlights of the GTN Veg-2-Gro Bestsellers chart for this week are here
Highlights of the GTN Growing Media Bestsellers chart for this week are here
Highlights of the GTN Wild Bird Care chart for this week are here
WARNING the GTN Bestsellers Charts seriously improve the business of our subscribers. Invest 15 minutes each week in improving your sales using the GTN Bestsellers charts and your turnover and customer satisfaction will improve too.
Get the GTN Bestsellers charts in full every week in the GTN Bestsellers newsletters for only £145.00.
GTN Bestsellers is the only industry source of weekly garden centre sales information, collating Epos data from centres with an aggregate turnover in excess of £120m.
Use the weekly Garden Products and Growing Media Top 50 sales volumes charts to plan your hotspot and other promotions and ensure you have the right products in stock to satisfy the needs of your customers.
For further information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01733 775700.
Buy your subscription today and start receiveing the GTN Bestsellers charts this week.
All the latest news from the world of garden centre catering
The Klondyke Group has announced the appointment of Keren Feeney as its new Director of Catering and Food Sales. Keren will step into her new role from 1st March 2018.
Keren is currently in the role of Group Catering Manager and oversees the Group's overall catering strategy and restaurant development programme.
Commenting on the new appointment, Chief Executive David Yardley said: "Keren brings valuable know-how and passion to the company and will be an asset to the board. Her knowledge of commerce and trends will be invaluable as we look to enhance the dining experience for our customers and develop our food offering."
Keren has been with Klondyke since September 2013. Previous to joining Klondyke she was Operations Manager at Cadwaladers.
Keren commented “I am excited to take on this new role and continue to be part of a forward thinking and growing company. We are in an excellent position to capitalise on growth opportunities within our restaurants, farm shops and food halls and I look forward to driving our catering and food sales strategy and further enhancing our customers' experience."
Shop of the Year branches out, with revamped awards in store for independent retailers
The Guild of Fine Food's annual Shop of the Year awards, a competition which recognises and promotes excellence in independent retail, is now open for entry. Previously forming part of the Great Taste accreditation scheme, Shop of the Year will expand and break out on its own this year, to offer even more opportunities for small independent retailers, such as delis, farm shops and cheesemongers, to achieve a stamp of approval from respected industry experts...
The Guild of Fine Food's annual Shop of the Year awards, a competition which recognises and promotes excellence in independent retail, is now open for entry. Previously forming part of the Great Taste accreditation scheme, Shop of the Year will expand and break out on its own this year, to offer even more opportunities for small independent retailers, such as delis, farm shops and cheesemongers, to achieve a stamp of approval from respected industry experts.
The new-look Shop of the Year has four main categories, which businesses can enter themselves into, including, Best Delicatessen; Best Farm Shop or Garden Centre with Food Hall; Best Grocer, Village or Community Shop; and an award for a specialist cheese shop. In addition, for those unsung heroes in the industry, like the cheese counter assistant who knows their range like the back of their hand, or an in-house butcher that has introduced excellent hygiene procedures, there is also a Retail Hero award, to recognise the hard work of those individuals driving the business forward. A Newcomer of the Year award will be awarded at the judges' discretion to a shop that has been trading for less than 24 months.
Written entries will be reviewed by Shop of the Year's panel of expert judges, which includes Edward Berry of The Flying Fork, Stuart Gates, who has worked for both Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, award-winning retailer Tracey Colley, Georgina Mason from Gonalston Farm Shop, one of the UK's leading farm shops, and Karen Barnes, editor of delicious. magazine. The shortlist will then be mystery shopped in June and July, before the judges complete an announced visit during August.
John Farrand, managing director of the Guild of Fine Food, explains: "There are some very special independent retailers out there, who are doing wonderful things to inspire, educate and excite customers, so we felt it was about time that the deli owners, cheesemongers and grocers who are at the top of their game got the recognition that they deserve. We have over 35 years' experience in working with these people and really understand what it takes to be a success in speciality retail, and this is no small feat. In the coming years, we would really like to see the Shop of the Year logo being proudly displayed in shop windows, much like the Great Taste stamp adorns the products on their shelves, giving consumers the assurance that they are shopping in a truly excellent establishment. In the spirit of supporting the survival of our high street and encouraging people to shop local, Shop of the Year is only open to those with a 'bricks and mortar' premises, therefore no online retailers are able to enter."
Shop of the Year, which is free to enter, opened for entry on Sunday 11 February at Fine Food Show North in Harrogate. Entries can be submitted online at gff.co.uk/awards/soty and entry will close on Friday 13 April.