Mild weather leads to strong start for garden retail

December temperatures were four degrees centigrade above average and January weather has followed suit, which has led to garden sales at "spring-like levels".

QVC presenter Richard Jackson said: "We were delighted with the sales  over the weekend. In fact, it was our best ever garden launch on QVC. Sales for the two Richard Jackson’s Garden shows were way above forecast and achieved spring-like levels. Everything sold exceptionally well, from plug plants to Flower Power plant food. Sales of compost sales were exceptional too, we sold just under 2500 x 70l bags of compost which is pretty amazing for the first weekend in January."

Growers Plants 2Gardens and Montrose of Guernsey also had impressive returns on QVC.

Squire's Garden Centres saw the week from Christmas to New Year 22 per cent up. The group is promoting a 'Blue Monday' plant offer, titled after the name given to the third Monday in January, which is widely reported to be the most depressing day of the year. 

Squire’s have developed a list of ‘pick me up’ plant recommendations, naming the key things to look for as colour, scent, good foliage, and the ability to withstand cooler temperatures.

Squire's deputy chairman Sarah Squire said: "We find that customers need a bit of extra inspiration at this time of year. There are a number of easy and relatively inexpensive plants that will bring some colour and life back into your garden. It is also, of course, well known that caring for plants has a positive impact on mood and wellbeing and therefore, is the perfect activity for this time of year."

The five recommended plants are: Minature Daffodil Tete a Tete, Winter Flowing Heathers, Viburnum Tinus, Hamamelis ‘Witch Hazel’ and Hellebores.

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