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Three plant experts put themselves in the shoes of garden designers at FutureScape 2015

Three passionate plant experts took to the stage at The Passion is in the Plants debate that delved into how nurseries work with landscapers and garden designers. Richard McKenna from Provender Nurseries, Angela Halksworth from Tendercare Nurseries Ltd and Nick Coslett from Palmstead answered questions from Jim Wilkinson and the audience.

The three experts started off explaining what they would want from nurseries if they were garden designers themselves and what they find most frustrating when designers and landscapers make an order. An overall response was that they would want to deal with someone who is interested in the project and can make the complex process easy. All three experts agreed that when landscapers or designers ignore their advice or suggestions and they assume the nursery will be able to supply a plant immediately extremely frustrating.

The debate moved on to the plants themselves. When talking about clients seeing the products before buying them, the panellists gave a range of answers: Richard said that half of their orders are delivered blind; Nick reported that over 80 percent is sold unseen and Angela commented that 70 percent of their stock has been seen by the client. All three panellists did agree that the most common mistake when garden designers and landscapers make is that they don’t analyse the soil before purchasing a plant.

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