Mail-order firm You Garden thrives despite launch in 'eye of the storm'

Peter McDermott, owner of mail-order plant retailer You Garden, says his new company has survived despite launching "in the eye of the storm" in December 2011.

McDermott left Lead the Good Life in April 2011 after selling the gardening shopping channel, mail-order and internet company that also trades under the name Garden Bargains to Ideal Shopping Direct, an independent TV and online shopping business, for an initial £5m in January 2010.

After gardening leave, he launched You Garden, which mainly runs on-page adverts for specimen plants. He said results were "broadly in line" with his expectations, despite poor weather.

He stands to turnover in excess of £300,000 selling 18,000 Olympic bouquet cut flower rose bushes at £20 from Chessum/Schreurs.

McDermott predicted 2013 will be "a cautious year because everyone's had a stinker in 2012, but demand will be better as long as there's fair weather".

He said pent-up demand could kick in as early as autumn and grow your own and Mediterranean big-impact plants will be important. Customers buying "fewer, better plants is a trend that will continue into 2013 - not 100 or 250 but two or three dozen".

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