HTA figures show third quarter garden centre decline

HTA retail benchmarks from the latest HTA Garden Industry Monitor market update show mixed weather in the third quarter (July to September) meant trade at the 100 garden centres and nurseries that sent figures in was seven per cent down in July, flat in August and three per cent up in September.

This meant an overall decline of two per cent for the quarter — better than the third quarter of 2008, when sales were 4.5 per cent down against the previous year.

March and April saw increases of 30 per cent, to bring the first nine months increases to 2.3 per cent, better than the 3.6 per cent decline for the first nine months of 2008.

Positive drivers were grow-your-own, but demand for seeds and young plants rather than garden furniture pushed average transaction values down to £15.67 in the second quarter — they were £16.32 in the third quarter.

Haskins buying director Philip Evason said September seed sales were up 30 per cent with peas and beans up 60 per cent. Fruit trees were up 70 per cent. Bulb sales were up 20 per cent.


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