Maxted unveiled Garden Centre Futures - Opportunities for Growth, a Garden Industry Monitor special report. He said under 35-year-old visits were up one third and garden centres must target younger people to maximise lifetime spend, which is £6,000.
Between 2006 and 2010, the proportion of the population to visit garden centres increased from 52 to 62 per cent.
Maxted said garden centres now had a niche as a female-friendly shopping environment for relaxation and browsing.
He added that keener gardeners are increasingly identifying retail nurseries as the plant specialists. Maxted said garden centres were seen as more expensive, but "added value justified that premium".
GARDEN CENTRE SALES
Outdoor plants 19%
Garden sundries 18%
Home and giftware 11%
Outdoor living 8%
Pets and aquatics 8%
Bulbs and seeds 3%