association comment GIMA members promise more sustainable

seed, plant and bulb sales in 2019 GIMA’s seed, plant and bulb suppliers are getting ready for a busy early spring, with more focus than ever before on product innovation to adapt to the industry-wide drive for ‘greener gardening’ products

Made from harvesting aggressive waist-high bracken, which impedes grazing and wildlife habitats, Dalefoot’s new compost has been developed with award- winning lily growers HW Hyde & Son, using it to grow ‘gold medal’ bulbs at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

“Our new Bulb Compost feeds for two years and has already proved a hit with customers looking to stock a good quality peat-free product designed specifically for bulbs,” said Jane Barker of Dalefoot Composts. Johnsons Kitchen Seed Sprouter (RRP £11.99)

is a new addition to the company’s Microgreens range of seeds and kits, specifically designed for kitchen windowsills. The Sarah Raven retail range has been refreshed for 2019, and the Jekka’s Herbs display will now feature free recipe cards

for customers to take away and use at home. Carrots will take centre stage in Mr. Fothergill’s

new variety line up for the 2019 season. Supporting the international ornamental plants industry organisation, Fleuroselect, and its ‘Year of the Carrot’, the company has added four new varieties to its existing selection. Mr Fothergill’s has also partnered with BBC Children in Need to introduce two children’s seed packets, Sunflower Pudsey and Pumpkin Pudsey — with 30p from each packet sold benefitting the charity. Suttons retail plant ranges will all arrive in 100% peat-free compost from 2019 as the company commits to help retailers to benefit from the trend for ‘greener gardening’. Now with outstanding water retention properties, plants potted in it will have over three months of feed in the compost to support them. Spear & Jackson has added two new bulb planters to its Traditional Stainless range of hand tools, featuring mirror-polished stainless steel heads for improved rust resistance, minimal soil adhesion and easy cleaning.

Gardeners like wildlife…

and wildlife lovers like gardening The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) discusses how to tap into the crossover between gardeners and wildlife enthusiasts

It will come as no surprise to hear that gardeners and wildlife lovers go hand in hand. The latest HTA Market Information special feature on wildlife looks at the crossover in demographics and interests between keen gardeners and those who love wildlife. It also looks at how the industry can tap into this and highlights some garden businesses who are already working with their local Wildlife Trust. People who regularly do gardening as a hobby or get a good deal of pleasure from their gardens, are more likely to like learning about nature and wildlife than the general population. • 24% of keen gardeners usually watch environmental/wildlife programmes on TV

• 47% of keen gardeners bought wild bird food in the last year (versus 24% of the general population)

• Gardeners are twice as likely to be a member of a wildlife or animal trust

• 46% of garden lovers agree they would 16 |

never buy toiletries or cosmetics that were tested on animals

• The hedgehog National Garden Gift Card design continues to sell more than all the other designs put together!

People with an interest in wildlife are more likely than average to get a good deal of pleasure from their gardens or regularly do gardening as a hobby. The average British adult spends £87 per year on their garden, but the average garden spend amongst Wildlife Trust members is over twice as high.

Some HTA members are currently working with their local Wildlife Trust (17%) or are interested in doing so (55%), and their collaboration provides mutual benefit.

Key benefits include: • Showing your customers that you are supporting a cause that is important to them

• PR and brand awareness – helping to reach larger new audiences

GCU November/December 2018

• Education for business and staff alike which can be passed onto customers

The report includes case studies with: Black Birches Garden Centre and Shropshire Wildlife Trust Squires Garden Centres and Surrey Wildlife Trust Bosworth’s Garden Centre and the Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire & Northamptonshire.

Download the full report from: information/special-features.html

Ian Clark from Taylors Bulbs is urging retailers to keep stocked up on Amaryllis, right up until Christmas. “We have had a very busy autumn season, added value products continue to sell well and Amaryllis sales remain strong,” he said. “We are now taking orders for summer flowering bulbs, onions, vegetables and seed potatoes, and our ‘Summer Flowering Bulb of the Year’ is Ranunculus Purple Heart.” Thompson & Morgan Head of B2B sales Joseph Cordy said quality and brand propositions remained a positive driver for sales within the category. “Customers are generally prepared to pay a little more for a product that presents better value because it works consistently and offers something a bit different,” he noted. “Strong brand propositions and licenses are still key for seed companies; customers need to be given a reason to pick up one brand of seed over another one.”

• For further information please contact GIMA on (01959) 564947 or

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