Survival of the fittest as nurseries go under in Hampshire

Brian Vibert, who runs Silver Street Nursery near Lymington, Hampshire, says many nurseries in his local area  are being forced to close.

He said that nursery sites often go onto the property market priced over £600,000 because the land they are on is highly valued for building development, making it “too expensive for other nurseries to take over.”

But Vibert said it has a knock-on effect for his own business: “Companies going bust [means] we are picking up more and more work as a result.”

Vibert blames high heating bills and low plant prices as some of the reasons why nurseries are failing.

He said that plants are more or less the same price as ten years ago:  “Then you could charge £1.15 to £1.20 a tray and now the price is still very similar.”

Vibert puts his success down to loyal local authority and landscaping customers, who appreciate being able to come and “pick up plants as and when they find it convenient.”

Vibert is concentrating on wholesale but advises grower-retailers: “You really need to offer customers a restaurant or a farm shop to do really well on the retail front.”

“Nurseries need to diversify to survive and find something to keep them going in the winter months as they may be fine in April, May and June producing plants but they need more to survive.”

Ingwersen and Forest Lodge alpine nurseries close this autumn.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next



Versatile and tough, this genus is easy to grow and is tolerant of a wide range of soils, says Miranda Kimberley.

How are employers in horticulture developing their offer to staff?

How are employers in horticulture developing their offer to staff?

Thanks to a skills shortage in horticulture, employers are working hard to enhance their offer to new recruits -- from training to profit-share schemes. Rachel Anderson reports on developments at six firms in very different branches of the industry.

What's new from suppliers of LEDs?

What's new from suppliers of LEDs?

LEDs can improve quality, efficiency and productivity in glasshouses and the market is booming, Sally Drury reports.

Opinion... Experience should not be undervalued

Opinion... Experience should not be undervalued

St Peter's Church in Martley, Worcestershire, was packed to standing room only for the memorial service and celebration of Mike Dunnett's life.

Opinion... Strategy needed to boost production

Opinion... Strategy needed to boost production

We face a great opportunity to increase the UK's production of nursery stock, but it will not be exploited without a strategic plan.

Opinion... quality shines out at industry events

Opinion... quality shines out at industry events

It is always a pleasure to see things done well and there were three good examples in Hertfordshire recently.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 70 Ornamentals nurseries

See our exclusive RANKING of ornamentals nurseries by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS

Tim Edwards

Boningales Nursery chairman Tim Edwards on the business of ornamentals production

Read Tim Edwards

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles