Garden retailers sign up to industry Xylella statement

Following an emergency Xylella meeting held last week at the HTA, garden retailers have signed up to support a joint industry plant sourcing statement about Xylella fastidiosa.

The statement, which incorporates the existing HTA Ornamentals Management Committee statement, reads as follows:-

“As a minimum standard, the following businesses have taken the decision NOT to knowingly purchase any host plants originating from regions where the disease Xylella is known to exist. The decision has been taken after detailed consideration as to the potential catastrophic impact the introduction of the disease could have to the UK environment, coupled with the ever increasing number of host plant genera of this disease. This is in line with DEFRA’s good practice recommendations.”

The HTA is aware that this is a minimum standard and therefore individual businesses are encouraged to develop their own policy for managing the risks posed by Xylella fastidiosa.

The following retailers have signed up to the statement.  Orchard Park Garden Centre, St Peters Garden Centre, Henry Street Garden Centre, Aylett Nurseries Ltd, The Gardens Group, Klondyke Group, Scotsdales Garden Centres, Hillview Garden Centres, Notcutts Garden Centres, Haskins Garden Centres, Alton Garden Centre, Burleydam Garden Centre, Fresh @ Burcot, Fosseway Garden Centre, Squires Garden Centres, Hillier Garden Centres.

For the full list of businesses, including growers and retailers signed up to the statement, please see:https://hta.org.uk/plant-and-disease-alert-xylella-fastidiosa.html

Any businesses wishing to show their support for the statement should email policy@hta.org.uk in order for their name to be added to the list.

Commenting on this Raoul Curtis-Machin, HTA Director of Horticulture comments, “Retailers attending the meeting felt that a joined up industry statement for all sectors would be stronger. It became apparent that retailers felt inadequately informed about procedures to follow and the potential impact of Xylella fastidiosa throughout the supply chain. As a result a five point plan has been developed to inform about good practice with regard to plant health management.”

Xylella fastidiosa symptoms on Prunus (cherry). Courtesy: Donato Boscia. CNR – Institute for sustainable plant protection, UOS, Bari (IT) Laboratory, Angers (FR)

Xylella Five Point Plan

Under EU emergency measures there are additional plant passporting requirements for all professional operators sourcing Xylella host plants. This means that all those trading professionally in these plants must issue and retain passports where the plants are being supplied to another business entity, such as landscapers, designers and retailers. It also includes plants being imported direct to the final user.

All those involved in the commercial supply and receipt of host plants should:

  1. Check plant passports arriving with plants are correct and keep the plant passport to aid trace back if necessary. Label and keep records of the identity of all received batches of plants, including where the plants came from and when.
  2. Source from known suppliers or visit suppliers to view their processes, procedures, biosecurity arrangements and the plants they grow.
  3. Make sure that imported plants both originate from, and are sourced from, disease free areas. Details on infected areas are found at:http://ec.europa.eu/food/plant/plant_health_biosecurity/legislation/emergency_measures/index_en.htm.
  4. Maintain records of pesticide treatments and destroy old or unusable plants.
  5. Comply with the UK national requirements to notify the UK Plant Health Service about certain species of plants under the ‘EU Plant and Tree notification scheme’.

For trade guidance and information about Xylella priority hosts, follow the links from this page:https://www.gov.uk/guidance/protecting-plant-health-topical-issues#new-eu-emergency-measures-against-xylella-fastidiosa-a-bacterial-disease-of-plants

The authorities have also identified six High Risk plants:https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/assets/uploads/Xylella-host-info-note-version3.pdf

For more information about plant passports and keeping updated with legislation:https://www.gov.uk/guidance/plant-health-controls

For more information about plant health: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/ or contact: planthealth.info@apha.gsi.gov.uk, 01904 40138.

GCA North Thames award winners announced

The Garden Centre Association on Thursday, July 27 unveiled its winners for the North Thames region during a presentation at Ayletts Nurseries in Hertfordshire.

Perrywood Garden Centre picked up the award for Garden Centre of the Year in the Destination Garden Centre (DGC) category while Sunshine Garden Centre picked up the accolade in the Garden Centre (GC) category.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “Our North Thames regional awards made for a very enjoyable evening for all in attendance and it was great to see the garden centre teams be rewarded for all of the hard work they have put in this year. “Ayletts Nurseries was the perfect host for the evening and Inspector Gordon Emslie’s findings, which he presented on the night, were extremely interesting.”

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant went to Poplars Garden Centre (DGC) and Thurrock Garden Centre (GC).

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre was awarded to Marlows Home & Garden Centre.

Iain added: “We will now have a break before the final regional awards evening for Scotland and Northern Ireland, which takes place on September 7 at Klondyke Mayfield.”

The full results for the North Thames region GCA area awards are as follows for the GC and DGC categories:

Garden Centre of the Year: Sunshine Garden Centre (GC) and Perrywood Garden Centre (DGC)

Customer Service Award for Best Customer Service: Sunshine Garden Centre

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: Squires Garden Centre – Twickenham joint winner with Squires Garden Centre – Windsor

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: Perrywood Garden Centre

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Marlows Home & Garden Centre

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: Thurrock Garden Centre (GC) and Poplars Garden Centre (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: Sunshine Garden Centre (GC) and Ayletts Nurseries (DGC)

 Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: Squires Garden Centre – Shepperton (GC) and Perrywood Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: Squires Garden Centre – Shepperton (GC) and Altons Garden Centre (DGC)

GCA’s South Thames area winners revealed

The winners of the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) South Thames regional awards were revealed during a presentation evening yesterday (Wednesday, July 26, 2017) at Castle Gardens in Dorset.

The title of Garden Centre of the Year in the Destination Garden Centre (DGC) category was awarded to Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone and the Garden Centre (GC) category award went to Squires Garden Centre – Hersham.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “This was our fourth regional awards meeting of the month and it was a great success. I’d like to offer thanks to Castle Gardens for being brilliant hosts and congratulate all our very deserving award-winners, who were inspected by Michael Cole.

“Other awards on the night included The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity, which was awarded to Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone and the Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre, which went to Hillier Garden Centre – Braishfield.

“We’re now looking forward to the penultimate regional awards night for the North Thames area tonight at Ayletts Nurseries in Hertfordshire. The final awards night will take place on September 7 at Klondyke Mayfield to announce the Scotland and Northern Ireland area award winners.”

The full results for the South Thames region GCA area awards are as follows for the GC and DGC categories:

Garden Centre of the Year: Squires Garden Centre – Hersham (GC) and Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone (DGC)

Customer Service Award for Best Customer Service: Haskins Garden Centre – Ferndown

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: Stewarts Garden Centre – Christchurch

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Hillier Garden Centre – Braishfield

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: Squires Garden Centre – Hersham (GC) and Haskins Garden Centre – Southampton (DGC) joint winner with Chessington Garden Centre (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: Squires Garden Centre – Hersham (GC) and Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone (DGC)

 Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: Squires Garden Centre – Hersham (GC) and Ruxley Manor Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: Squires Garden Centre – Long Ditton (GC) and Stewarts Garden Centre – Christchurch (DGC) joint winner with Haskins Garden Centre – Roundstone (DGC)

The GCA represents nearly 200 garden centres nationwide. Through sharing information and its inspection programme the GCA helps members to achieve high standards in customer service, plant quality and reliability.

GCA award winners announced for Midlands area

Members of the Garden Centre Association (GCA) yesterday (Tuesday, July 25, 2017) received awards for the Midlands region at a presentation hosted by Planters Garden Centre – Tamworth.

Webbs, Wychbold was awarded Garden Centre of the Year in the Destination Garden Centre (DGC) category and Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne picked up the accolade in the Garden Centre (GC) category.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “A great night was had by all in attendance at our third regional awards evening and the awards are testament to the dedication, hard work and effort put in by all of the garden centre teams.

“A big ‘thank you’ goes to Planters Garden Centre – Tamworth for hosting the shindig and to Inspector Alyson Haywood, who presented her findings on the night.

“Other awards on the night included the Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre, which went to Webbs, West Hagley and the Customer Service Award for Best Customer Service, which was awarded to Webbs, Wychbold.”

The next regional awards meeting for South Thames, will take place at Castle Gardens in Sherborne, Dorset this evening.

The full results for the Midlands region GCA area awards are as follows for the GC and DGC categories:

Garden Centre of the Year: Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne (GC) and Webbs, Wychbold (DGC)

Customer Service Award for Best Customer Service: Webbs, Wychbold

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Webbs, West Hagley

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne (GC) and Webbs, Wychbold (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: Fairways Garden Centre – Ashbourne (GC) and Webbs, Wychbold (DGC)

Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: Stratford Garden Centre (GC) and Webbs, Wychbold (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: Stratford Garden Centre (GC) and Webbs, Wychbold (DGC)

Rising Stars shortlist announced

Westland_Rising_Stars_LogoThere was friendly rivalry at both the Westland/GCA Rising Stars North and South masterclass earlier this month, when all presented the results of their projects to the group, showing they have driven sales across spring as a result of their learning.

A total of 12 made it through to the third and final masterclass in October where they will bid for a place in the final, taking place at the GCA Conference in Stratford-upon- Avon from January 21-24.

Keith Nicholson, Marketing Director from Westland Horticulture said: “This is the time of year when the competition really starts! Already the Rising Stars are achieving big successes for their garden centres and this will only continue as we move into the third and final stage.”

The final candidates (in no particular order) are:

Northern Group 

1.Andreea Robertson – GardenWise

2.Jack Moyers – Barton Grange

3.Jayne Scott – Klondyke Daleside

4.Sarah Postlethwaite – Fron Goch

5.Emma Blackmore – Bents

Southern Group 

1.Mathylda Mucha – Millbrook

2.Jack Shilley – RHS Wisley

3.Tora Cook – Perrywood

4.Clark Lambert – Garsons Titchfield

5.Lisa Collingbourne – Squires Twickenham

6.Alexander Cawley – Squires Stanmore

7.Samantha Davis – Haskins

Ian Wylie, Chief Executive of the Garden Centre Association said: “The Rising Stars Programme is all about developing the talent in the garden centre industry for its continued success. It is great to see them already putting their new found knowledge into practice at their own garden centres with great success.”

Ian Boardman, IBBIS director and training facilitator for the group said: “The standard was very high – with lots of learning and many examples of large sales increases. Managing time and communication became the secrets to doing well in their projects.”

Harley’s Flowerbed Design Will Shine All Summer Long

Squire’s Garden Centres have announced that Harley Silvestri, age 9 from Hampton Hill Junior School, is the winner of their competition to design a planting scheme for a flowerbed at the Environment Agency’s lock on the River Thames in Teddington.

220 children aged between 6-11 from Hampton Hill Junior School, The Russell School and Latchmere School took part in the competition, which is run by Squire’s in conjunction with the Environment Agency.

The children were given a template of a circular flowerbed with a sundial in the middle, and were invited to suggest colours and patterns that could be planted up. The design brief was the Sapphire Jubilee, to celebrate Her Majesty’s sixty five years on the throne. Sarah Squire, Deputy Chairman at Squire’s and Mandy Marshall from the Environment Agency’s River Thames Waterways Operations team judged the designs, and the children who created the best designs in each age group from each school were invited to a prize giving afternoon tea with their parents at Squire’s Garden Centre in Twickenham on 6th July. All children who attended received a certificate and a goody bag from Squire’s, and Harley Silvestri’s winning design has been planted up at Teddington Lock.

Sarah Squire, Squire’s Deputy Chairman commented “We were overwhelmed by the number of entries this year, and the time and effort that the children put into them, so congratulations to everyone who took part. It was lovely to meet the finalists at our special prize giving afternoon tea party. We awarded winners for each age category, and the overall winner of the competition was Harley Silvestri. His design was chosen as it followed the Sapphire Jubilee theme nicely with the colours that he selected. His design has been planted up at Teddington Lock and it looks absolutely stunning. I’m sure that visitors to the lock will enjoy the special Sapphire Jubilee planting scheme all summer long.”

Mandy Marshall from the Environment Agency added: “We love being part of this annual event, and every year’s winning design is wonderful and really brightens up the lock. Our staff really enjoy planting it and maintaining it to keep it looking its best. They also put all the design entries on display for visitors to admire, and people are always highly impressed with how good and how imaginative they all are. The children are so talented – it’s amazing.”

GCA reveals N.East and N.West regional winners

North East and North West regional members of The Garden Centre Association (GCA) are celebrating after picking up awards during a presentation evening yesterday (Wednesday, July 19, 2017) at Klondyke Strikes Wilmslow Garden Centre.

In the North East, Cowell’s Garden Centre was awarded Garden Centre of the Year in the Garden Centre (GC) category and Tong Garden Centre received Garden Centre of the Year in the Destination Garden Centre category. In the North West Fron Goch Garden Centre (GC) and Bents Garden & Home (DGC) received the accolade.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “The second round of our regional awards meetings was extremely enjoyable and we’d like to say a big ‘thank you’ to Klondyke Strikes Wilmslow Garden Centre for being wonderful hosts. “It was great to see our members picking up their awards, which included Klondyke Lady Green Garden Centre collecting the Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre in the North West and Tong Garden Centre in the North East. “The winners of The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity were Cowell’s Garden Centre in the North East and Bents Garden & Home in the North West.”

The next regional awards meeting for the Midlands will take place at Planters, Tamworth on Tuesday, July 25.

The full results for the North East and North West regions GCA area awards are as follows for the GC and DGC categories:

North East

Garden Centre of the Year: Cowell’s Garden Centre (GC) and Tong Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Customer Service: Klondyke Stokesley Garden Centre

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: Klondyke Stokesley Garden Centre

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: Cowell’s Garden Centre

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Tong Garden Centre

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: Klondyke Northallerton Garden Centre (GC) and Tong Garden Centre (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: Cowell’s Garden Centre (GC) and Tong Garden Centre (DGC)

 Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: RHS Harlow Carr Plant Centre and Gift Shop (GC) and Heighley Gate Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: Coletta & Tyson joint winner with Klondyke Beverley Garden Centre (GC) and Tong Garden Centre joint winner with Langlands Garden Centre – Shiptonthorpe (DGC)

North West

Garden Centre of the Year: Fron Goch Garden Centre (GC) and Bents Garden & Home (DGC)

Best Customer Service: Barton Grange Garden Centre

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: Bents Garden & Home

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: Bents Garden & Home

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Klondyke Lady Green Garden Centre

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: Fron Goch Garden Centre (GC) and Bents Garden & Home (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: Fron Goch Garden Centre (GC) and Barton Grange Garden Centre (DGC)

 Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: Fairways Garden Centre – Macclesfield (GC) and Barton Grange Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: Fron Goch Garden Centre (GC) and Gordale Nurseries (DGC)

The team from Garden Centre of the Year (GC) in the North East winner, Cowell’s Garden Centre, with (right) GCA Inspector, Roger Crookes.

 

Staff from Bents Garden & Home with their awards, including Garden Centre of the Year (DGC) in the North West, and (second from right) GCA Inspector, Roger Crookes.

 

The team from Garden Centre of the Year (GC) in the North West, Fron Goch Garden Centre, with (right) GCA Inspector, Roger Crookes, and their awards.

Rare plant is star attraction at Notcutts Garden Centres

Gardeners across the UK have a rare opportunity to plant something special in their garden, with a brand new hibiscus arriving at Notcutts Garden Centres this month. The new variety with its glorious flowers has been exclusively launched for customers at Notcutts’ 18 garden centres across the country this month.

The new Hibiscus, called ‘Starburst Chiffon’, has special double flowers that can grow up to 10 centimetres in size. The flowers have a soft pink centre surrounded by an array of pale pink petals, each with striking deep pink lines which seem to ‘bleed’ from the centre outwards.

Bred in Norfolk by Dr Roderick Woods, the new hibiscus plant produces a rich abundance of flowers from July through to September, and can grow into a nicely shaped shrub with an average height of 175 centimetres. The plant is low maintenance, can survive in temperatures as low as -25 degrees and is ideal for adding a splash of summer colour to any garden, sunny terrace or balcony.

Stuart Andrews, Plant Buyer for Notcutts, said: “We’re very proud to offer customers an exclusive launch for the stunning Starburst Chiffon Hibiscus. We stock a wide range of plants at all our garden centres year-round, but it’s particularly exciting when we can provide gardeners with something extra-special.

“The Starburst Chiffon hibiscus is a truly unique and beautiful plant that will add a ‘wow factor’ to any outdoor space. Also, as Hibiscus are hardy and flower late in the season, it will keep your garden looking bright and colourful until early autumn.”

Customers are invited to visit their local Notcutts Garden Centre to take a look at the new Hibiscus Starburst Chiffon. The exclusive plant is available to buy in all 18 Notcutts centres from July 2017.

FEEL LIKE YOU’RE FIVE AGAIN!

A survey by Squire’s Garden Centres has found that 72% of people spend more than 3 hours gardening each week, which is great for health and well-being.

However, getting out in the garden is not just about serious horticulture, 84% of people surveyed have ‘played’ in the garden in the last year, by doing handstands, cartwheels, used a hula hoop or even run through a sprinkler just for fun! The statistics are even more interesting when you consider that the majority of respondents (85%) were aged fifty plus.

  • 33% have run through a sprinkler
  • 23% have done yoga, pilates, or used a fit ball in the garden
  • 21% have been on a swing or slide
  • 16% have used a hula-hoop
  • 15% have jumped on a trampoline
  • 14% have skipped in the garden
  • 7% have done a handstand or cartwheel

So get out in the garden – tend the plants, but try a childhood activity that will make you feel like you are five again, it’s fun and free!

GCA Wales & West winners receive awards

The Old Railway Line Garden Centre scooped the most awards during the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) Wales & West regional awards evening yesterday (Thursday, July 13, 2017) at Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre in Somerset.

The Welsh garden centre took home seven awards including Garden Centre of the Year in the Garden Centre (GC) category while Bernaville Nurseries in Devon won the same accolade in the Destination Garden Centre (DGC) category.

Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of the GCA, said: “The first of our regional awards meetings was a great success and we’d like to say a huge ‘congratulations’ to all of the very deserving winners as well as a massive ‘thank you’ to Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre for being the perfect hosts for the evening.

“Other awards on the night included the Dick Allen Award for Most Improved centre, which was won by Plymouth Garden Centre, and the ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant, which saw Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre take the crown in the DGC category and The Old Railway Line Garden Centre in the GC category.

“We’re now very much looking forward to the next meeting for the North West/North East region, which takes place at Klondyke – Wilmslow Garden Centre on Wednesday, July 19.”

Staff from Old Railway Line Garden Centre with (second right) GCA Inspector, Andy Campbell and their awards.

The full results for the Wales & West region GCA area awards are as follows for the GC and DGC categories:

Garden Centre of the Year: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (GC) and Bernaville Nurseries (DGC)

Best Customer Service: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre

Environment and Community Award for Best Environmental Practice: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre

The Barton Grange Trophy for Innovation and Creativity: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre

The Dick Allen Award for Most Improved Centre: Plymouth Garden Centre

The ifse Award for Catering Excellence for Best Garden Centre Restaurant: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (GC) and Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre (DGC)

The GIMA Award for Best Garden Products Retailer: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (GC) and Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre (DGC)

 Best Indoor Lifestyle Retailer: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (GC) and Cadbury Garden Centre (DGC)

Best Outdoor Living Retailer: The Old Railway Line Garden Centre (GC) and Cadbury Garden Centre (DGC) joint winner with Trelawney Garden Centre (DGC).

For further information, please call 01244 952170. Alternatively, please visit www.gca.org.uk