HTA: Healthy Easter sales gives trade a boost

There are many happy bunnies across the garden industry after a bumper Easter weekend for the trade across the country. Many garden centres are reporting record trading days with plants and garden sundries sales particularly strong, along with catering.

Simon Fraser of Ben Reid Garden Centre in Aberdeen reported that they had few packs of bedding left and that customers were still looking for seed potatoes and onion sets.

Donaghadee Garden Centre in Northern Ireland reported very busy trading, again with plants and core product sales extremely strong.

Sally Cornelissen from Burleydam Garden Centre on The Wirral reports that she is a ?very happy bunny? delighted with the levels of sales throughout the Easter period.

Martin Cowell from Cowells Garden Centre in Newcastle commented that they had experienced the best Easter Monday ever, with supporting days equally busy.

Neil Grant of Ferndale Garden Centre in Sheffield told of a busy weekend, much more of a typical spring period with sunshine and showers encouraging genuine gardeners to the centre.

Simon Bourne from Perrywood Nurseries in Essex reported a great weeks trading all round with most things selling well with highlights being large trees (particularly with blossom on) and acers. Growing media sales were strong, as it usually the case over Easter, and it was clear that people were buying with gardening projects in mind with trellis, turf and aggregates all selling well. Outdoor leisure was very strong over the weekend with really good BBQ sales and large furniture sets were going well. The coffee shop as usual was very busy.

Sales at Burston Garden Centre in St Albans were 30% up (on 2010 figures) with plant sales up 75% and garden sundries and garden furniture both up 25%. Despite a good forecast the weather changed towards the weekend and they felt that sales would have been even better if the weather can kept to plan.

HTA Chief Executive Carol Paris comments, ?The general consensus is that the decent weather in the run up to Easter has allowed people to sort out their gardens leaving the Easter weekend to plant and replenish as well as add to existing plants. The slightly unsettled weather forecast for the second half of the weekend perhaps held people back from planning days out so that when the sun shone they looked closer to home for entertainment with resulting trips to local garden centres and nurseries, returning home to spend time in the garden. Great news for the industry.?

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