Green-fingered Brits will spend well in excess of £30m at garden centres in the run-up to Easter, according to Worldpay, with fire-pits replacing decking as the ‘must-have’ garden feature.
Figures released today by Worldpay, the UK’s leading payments processing company, show that between now and the end of March, Britain’s garden centres could see their weekly takings rise by as much as 39% against the average week as Britain’s gardeners emerge from winter hibernation.
Analysis of Worldpay’s 2014 card transaction data shows spending on gardening supplies also spiked dramatically over the week leading up to Easter when garden centres saw a 58% uplift in sales versus the weekly average for the sector. With weather forecasters predicting a scorching Easter weekend, Worldpay believes Britain’s garden centres could see record-breaking trade well in excess of £65m in the next four weeks, enough to buy a quarter of a million tons of compost.
Landscape gardeners are also expecting a windfall over the coming week, with the number of transactions 43% higher than average during the last week of March, as Brits prep their gardens for entertaining over the Easter break.
James Lanwarne of Lanwarne Landscapes Garden Design and Construction said: “This is the busiest we’ve been since before the recession – we’re booked solid until August. People are still happy to take on the small jobs themselves, but we’re seeing a surge in the number of big, ambitious projects as clients look to create an area the whole family can enjoy.
“One of the legacies of the recession is that people are more inclined to entertain at home and they want to make more use of their gardens as a result. Fire-pits are proving to be an extremely popular feature among our customers who want to make the most of their gardens as an extra space for entertaining they can enjoy all year round.”
Dave Hobday, managing director of Worldpay UK, said: “Britain’s obsession with planting, prodding, pruning and pottering fuels a billion pound industry in the UK, with seasonal businesses set to make a killing over the coming weeks.
“With only a short window to make the bulk of their yearly income, gardening businesses need to plan meticulously to make the most of traditional spikes in trading. Get stock, staffing or cashflow wrong at this crucial time of year and the result can be a real death knell for businesses that rely heavily on repeat custom and word of mouth recommendations.”