Sales of outdoor plants at garden centres across the country were on the up during June (2015) according to the Garden Centre Association’s Barometer of Trade (BoT) results.
Sales rose 15.42% compared to the same time last year (2014).
Iain Wylie, GCA Chief Executive, explained: “It’s great to see core categories, such as outdoor plants, soaring and we have the Great British weather to thank for it after staying unusually dry and warm.
“Other good performers during the month were clothing, which was up 12.3%, houseplants up 11.2% and catering, which rose by 11.7%.
“The good weather continued into July so we hope to see sales in these categories continue to rise.”
The BoT results are the only official GCA trading figures to be released.
Richard Cumming, Managing Director at Orchard Park Garden Centre in Dorset, which has recently become a GCA member, said: “Like all garden centres we are very much at the mercy of the weather, but being in the South West we have a better deal than most.
“Certainly this year has been good enough with outdoor plants, and composts and pots of course, showing significant sales growth along with giftware and of course the coffee shop. Good weather makes us a good destination and we can benefit from that in so many ways.”
The GCA BoT reports are compiled using actual sales figures and provide an up-to-date trading position statement. They are made available mid-month following the end of the prior month after all member garden centres have submitted their results.
Russell Winteridge, General Manager of Barton Grange, commented: “Sales of plants were particularly strong in June and we also sold more planted containers than we have in recent years. Elsewhere we had strong sales in houseplants, home décor and giftware, and across all our food offerings in the restaurants and the Farm Shop.”
The BoT reports allow members to compare their trading positions with other centres.
Gary Carvosso, Managing Director at Coolings Nurseries in Kent, said: “2015 has been an excellent year for plant sales at Coolings Nurseries running second only to 2011 in which we had near perfect weather.
“Hardy plants led by the perennials had a superb month with a 14% increase on last June with bedding up 23%. Overall growth this year on plant sales is 7%.
“After a slow start to the season, plants and associated core garden product sales have held up well, which is fundamentally good news for the industry. This also makes a change to catering leading the departmental increases for some time.”