Britons nurture their gardens by spending nearly £3.3 billion a year on everything from plants (£961.2m) to water features (£497.2m) to friendly gnomes (£311.1m), but 38 per cent fail to use our outdoor space for over six months at a time.
A national survey by Poundstretcher, the discount retailer, showed households spend £123.32 a year, and nearly two full days every month, maintaining their gardens. They spend 7.39 hours a week on average – and only if the weather is ‘fine’.
Mancunians love their gardens the most with three quarters saying they take pride in them , spending over two days each month maintaining their gardens, year round. People in Manchester also spend the most money on their gardens, on average £146.55 a year, nearly £25 above the national average.
However, it is not the case across the UK, with over one in ten people spending zero time on their garden. People in Cardiff claim to have the most neglected gardens in the country, blaming that on a lack of time and busy lifestyles (42 per cent) with over a third saying their garden just isn’t important to them (35 per cent), despite it adding between 5-10 per cent to the cost of a property.
Gardens are used for BBQs and garden parties (53 per cent), followed by sunbathing (50 per cent), concentrated in Newcastle (62 per cent).
A quarter of people use their garden as a dumping ground and to keep their bins (24 per cent), with people in Glasgow being the worst culprits for using their gardens as a tipping ground (40 per cent). Pets are the priority in so many British gardens (34 per cent). The ultimate garden crime is visible dog or cat muck (47 per cent), closely followed by overgrown grass (45 per cent), and weeds (43 per cent).
Only nine per cent of the nation has complained about a neighbour’s garden, even though 19 per cent say they want to.
Some 11 per cent now have a gardener, with people in Leeds the most likely to employ one (18 per cent) followed by Londoners (16 per cent) and then Mancunians (13 per cent). The younger generation are the most likely to get some help with a quarter of people under 34 paying for a gardener.Some 10 per cent of the UK has never weeded, 13 per cent have never cut the grass, 15 per cent have never planted seeds, 22 per cent never potted or watered plants and 38 per cent never built furniture.
Poundstretcher managing director Ian York said: "We were sad to find out that despite the nation spending £3.3 billion a year on their gardens, people still aren’t using them. Cost has been a huge barrier to people making improvements with nearly a quarter (24 per cent) of those surveyed citing money as a barrier.
"We believe that for just £50, a garden can be looked after for this year and years to come, and as such, launched a range of products to help make inexpensive improvements from a mere 89p including hand trowels and forks, and bags of grass seed for only £1.95. We want the nation to reclaim their gardens and not let cost get in the way of enjoying them."
Poundstretcher has 409 stores, selling over 1,000 gardening products including solar lights (89p), 50 solar fairy lights (£3.99), Westland Resolva (£2.95), Patch Fix (£1.95), Jack and Jill garden seats (£59.99).