Garden visitors say plants need more and better labels

Significant numbers of visitors to gardens would like improved plant information, a new survey has found.

In the Garden Visitor annual market research and report, 40% of garden visitors said they would like to see ‘better information about the plants in the beds and borders'.

Some 24% said garden information given to visitors on arrival could also be improved, according to the report, conducted by Tenneson Marketing Services and Consumerdata.

The report includes the results of two surveys, the first of 1,000 adults over 16 which monitored visits to gardens, historic houses and other visitor attractions, and a second ‘ad hoc' survey which looked at the visiting habits, motivations and attitudes of 1,028 garden visitors and 890 visitors to historic houses.

 The report's author Malcolm Tenneson said the main survey concentrated on a sample of people over 35 and especially those older than 45.

Of the UK population last year of just under 61m, 40% of adults made a visit to a garden, historic landscape or park - which the report found ‘compares favourable in a highly competitive visitor attraction market with other cultural sectors - 44% said they visited museums and 35% historic houses, castles and palaces during 2009.

Other findings included that word-of-mouth recommendation is still a key element in promoting gardens (steady at 62%), online media is growing as an area of finding information about gardens to visit (up 6% to 28%, with 15% going straight to a garden's own website), and calls for better facilities include more seating around gardens (44%) and better or cleaner toilet facilities (29%).


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