Reader Panel - Do you think the autumn planting campaign will boost sales?

The HTA has launched a "Plan It, Plant It this Autumn" campaign to extend the gardening and selling season. We asked industry figures whether they think that trade is likely to keep going this year

Writer

"It's entirely dependent on the weather - if we get an Indian summer then sales will go up. If nursery stock isn't there, then they will buy bulbs or bedding or whatever.

"I'm optimistic. Soil is currently quite moist, although it is drying out fast, and there are going to be a lot of empty pots and beds after this season.

"Come August bank holiday and the first two weeks of September, trade could be pretty buoyant."

Peter Seabrook, garden writer

Marketing director

"The Plan it, Plant it this Autumn PR" campaign is going very nicely. We are getting members to tell us about autumn events - planting containers or bulbs or more general events.

"It's a call to action for the industry to get behind a single concept and talk to media contacts about gardening and driving even more interest in writing and broadcasting about gardening than might otherwise have been the case."

Andrew Maxted, marketing director, HTA

Marketing manager

"We always have a big push in the autumn.

It's the optimum time for planting. We put seasonal deals into the garden centre that relate to autumn activity, with lawn rakes and fertiliser grouped together.

"It's easy to miss that autumn period when summer furniture is still selling potentially and Christmas is coming forward ever earlier, so we make sure that there is a dedicated area for six or seven weeks from 20 August."

Sally Reed, marketing manager, Notcutts

Marketing manager

"We are running a leafleted campaign for autumn with really good offers and promoting autumn as a key gardening season.

"It's the first year we have run a campaign like this.

The aim is to launch it at the beginning of September in three hit dates, all distributed by October half term."

Gabbie Robinson, marketing manager, Frosts garden centres


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