What’s happened to all the plants?

We’ve been fortunate enough that our customers have been extremely supportive during lockdown. Now that we have opened our gates again, it’s been great to see everyone. However, many of you are asking about stock and availability, so we wanted to explain our situation.

When lockdown was enforced, garden centres closed overnight. The result of which was that millions of spring plans were gridlocked on UK nurseries.  Summer plug plants continued to arrive but there was no space for them to be planted.  Neither spring plants nor plug plants can be held for a later date.

Most UK nurseries had to suspend all plant production. Without the space and cash flow from spring sales, most were forced to furlough staff. Without knowing when garden centres would be able to reopen, nobody knew when they could confidently resume planting.

Where safe and sensible, thousands of unsold plants were donated to good causes. Many garden centres set up for home delivery, but could only handle a small volume of their usual sales due to the inefficiency of packing and delivering each individual order.

After 9 weeks of closures, Scotland’s garden centres were allowed to reopen, but with only 2 days notice! Many nurseries made the gamble to re-start planting earlier – but after a minimum of a month’s gap. Summer bedding takes around 5-8 weeks to grow from plug plant to saleable product hence we are currently in the midst of that gap.

Please bear with us whilst we try to jumpstart our industry.

Thank you and happy gardening!