Garden retail sector remains optimistic despite sales performance setbacks

The HTA Retail Management Group has found that 2008 sales are level with 2007 at its latest meeting.

Retail group chairman Caroline Owen said: "Everyone is there or thereabouts, compared to last year. Life is tough because of the economy, but maybe that's when garden centres do well - if people aren't going on holiday abroad. Big-ticket items are struggling but people still want to use their gardens."

Garden & Leisure operations director Carol Paris said: "It's been a very strange year. January and February were good, March was poor, April appalling, May good and June was disappointing. We're where we were last year but not on budget. Members of the retail group say they are between flat and four per cent down. Plants and garden sundries have been good with us but big-ticket furniture and barbecues are poor. But given the poor April we've done OK."

An HTA representative said: "There was a degree of optimism about the meeting and a feeling that despite the credit crunch people were still visiting garden centres (footfall and average sales were up for the majority).

"They also felt that the garden centre offered a 'sanctuary', somewhere for people to visit instead of going to a shopping mall although it was recognised that increased fuel prices may have an impact on out-of-town destination centres."

- Bird care, catering, plants and sundries are up, while furniture, barbecues and water gardening products are down.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Electric car charging: an opportunity for garden centres?

Electric car charging: an opportunity for garden centres?

There are 11,700 electric car-charging points across the UK but only eight at garden centres, so more can be done to take the opportunity in garden retail.

Dazzling display of new plants at Four Oaks Trade Show 2017

Dazzling display of new plants at Four Oaks Trade Show 2017

A wide range of first-time exhibitors and established names will showcase a wealth of new varieties at September's Four Oaks Trade Show, says Matthew Appleby.

Product and service showcase

Product and service showcase

Fresh solutions to production problems can be found among the array of products and services being introduced at the Four Oaks Trade Show, Sally Drury reports.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES

Our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation

Read latest articles