Reader Panel - How are garden designers and landscapers managing right now?

We asked a selection of landscapers and garden designers exhibiting at the Cardiff Flower Show about how their businesses were faring in challenging economic times.

LANDSCAPER

"Trade has improved this year with people not going on holidays. Spending cash on gardens gives them a return on their investment.

"This year a lot of people are asking for veg beds and they like water features too. They want low maintenance - they are spending the same sort of budgets.

"Cardiff is our target market - we see a lot of our previous customers here."

Paul Moruzzi, partner, Broxton & Moruzzi Landscapes

LANDSCAPER

"We've had very positive feedback from the show. This is my first show garden so it's a learning curve. It's been extremely busy since the good weather started.

"People with smaller budgets are more price conscious than they used to be. They are getting several quotes and trying to keep their costs down.

"At the higher end, people are happy to spend what they always have. Styles have not changed a lot. Indian sandstone is always popular."

GARDEN DESIGNER

Ben Brook, owner, Ben Brook Landscaping

"Last year everyone was complaining about the recession and things slowing up. We went into the winter a bit light and came out of the other side a bit light.

"We have work three weeks ahead but it used to be 12 months. We're doing smaller jobs and less complete landscaping.

"We used to do a lot of new builds and larger houses but they're not changing hands so there is less of that. There's just as much garden maintenance though."

Lynne Allbutt, owner, Lynne Allbutt/GANDIY Gardening

LANDSCAPER

"Last year people were using plants more than hard landscaping and that is still the case. People made redundant see landscaping as an easy way to make money, but they don't have the necessary background.

"A recent quote I did, they said they'd had one half as much. I was able to see the quality and it had no preparation. If a quick fix is what they wanted that's what they got, but quality work costs and people don't understand that."

Paul Melvin, owner, Alfresco Landscape & Garden


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