German garden retail show reveals trends

Spoga+gafa trade show says a mindfulness trend is hitting horticulture, called 'attentive gardening', which focuses on "finding one's way to oneself via the work in the flora and fauna".

"Returning to the original also reinforces the desire to rediscover established things. This is being demonstrated in many facets, for example by the current boom of old types of vegetables such as chard, parsnips or turnips.

Around 2,000 exhibitors from around 60 countries will exhibit at spoga+gafa, in Cologne from 4 to 6 September 2016.

'Classics reloaded' such as Hollywood rocking chairs, foldable beach chairs and 1960's style sofas are also trends, as are modular sofas and lounge landscapes casual dining.

The "Modern Country" trend include braids and teak.

Comic prints, flamenco frills and floral patterns as well as sofa "puzzles", whose modules can be put together to suit every whim, through to sunshades with a "coat of chocolate" are also in fashion.

Taupe and metallic copper, gold and silver are the trendy colours.

Multifunctional sunshades feature integrated LEDs, infra-red heating or loudspeakers. Practical products are looking more stylish and more prevalent are smart products such as the first core temperature sensors transmitting the data of the food that is cooking directly onto the user's smartphone per Bluetooth. There are grills that can be controlled per mobile phone.

The user can link up with the "smart grill" per Wi-Fi and control the temperature, monitor the grilling time or start the self-cleaning process per app. Overall, apps are booming at the moment.

Urban gardening is one of the key buzzwords, with kitchen gardens including mini greenhouses with integrated LED lighting.

Raised plant beds are also experiencing a revival in the urban environment.

Plant pots are taking on a natural look in granite and stone and with matt, rough surfaces for instance. Terracotta is becoming more popular again. The wicker design models fit in with the "Modern Country" style. Colours are earth shades that reflect nature and pastel shades such as lavender and mint or strong green and blue.

In power tools, smart gardening is strong. There is an app, available for the Apple watch, which allows the users to steer, configure and monitor a robotic mower from their wrists. A new function of the app evaluates local weather data. Garden sensors provide data on the soil humidity and temperature so that irrigation and mowing times can be coordinated and the current weather conditions taken into account.

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