Plant buying habits

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I’m afraid I succumbed to my big weakness – bargain plants.  Visted my local Woolies and I had to have a look at their plant section!  I ended up with 3 water plants (they were all half price at £2.99 each), 2 lots of gladioli bulbs (BOGOF) and 2 packets of Laura Ashley seeds (BOGOF).  Generally I like to buy my plants from small nurseries, the growers at my local Malvern Spring show or from gardens I visit but I do have a weakness for Woolie bargains.  I have already bought two trees from them – the silver birch I bought last year for the princely sum of £2.99 is doing really well.

On the subject of where I buy my plants I was interested to read the article in this week’s AG about Tesco’s plans for a chain of garden centres.  They already have 25 garden centres which were formally Dobies and are reportedly planning to increase this to 100 stores within 5 years.  The stores are the mega garden centres which sell everything apart from, or maybe including, the kitchen sink.  Lucy Neville-Smith, the executive in charge of Tesco’s gardening plans is reported to believe that gardeners want a ‘destination-type’ garden centre.  I dont.  If I want a destination then it will be a garden where I may be able to buy some plants grown by the owners.  If I need compost, seed trays etc then I will go to my local garden centre, particularly the family owned one as I like to support local businesses.  I will not be driving 20+ miles to some large glorified supermarket that just happens to stock plants along with a meriad of other things.  Maybe I am in the minority but I think that the ‘real’ gardeners those who want more from their garden than a place to sit on a sunny afternoon will agree with me.  I hope this move of Tesco’s does not have the same affect on small nurseries as the big out of town supermarkets have had on small town centres

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