B&Q expects 30% rise in grow-your-own sales thanks to Alan Titchmarsh-fronted campaign

B&Q has said it expects grow-your-own sales to rise by a further 30% in 2010.

In a new campaign using the byline "Britain's number 1 garden centre", the 330-store DIY/garden chain is also employing TV gardener Alan Titchmarsh as its new partner to give customers advice. B&Q is also using GardenWorks, run by garden centre consultant John Connel, to train staff to give demonstrations to customers on grow-your-own.

Horticulture manager Steve Guy said: "Grow-your-own has been a real success for us. No question it is still moving forward into another year. I don't see why it shouldn't be another 30%. We're up against the weather with the long-term forecast not great — but it feels like growing weather, slightly cooler and wetter."

B&Q has standardised livery across the range and is keeping on its organic range. But its core lines are biggest sellers.
"A lot of people tried it for the first time last year with tomatoes and salads but it would be good if they branched out into more unusual stuff."

Demonstrations will be after Easter, with at least 2 staff from each store trained and able to train other in their own stores.
Guy said peat would not be short this year despite wet weather causing poor harvests last year, with supplier Bord na Móna having enough stored to supply B&Q.

B&Q-commissioned research by the Future Foundation has found 36% of people want to grow their own in 2010, up from 25% in 2009.


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