Tag Archives: garden centres

‘Bee friendly’ plants contain pesticides says study

A new study by scientists from the Universities of Sussex and Padua in Italy has highlighted that many garden plants which are marketed to the public as being ‘pollinator friendly’, may in fact contain pesticide residues which could be harmful to the insects.

In a paper published in Environmental Pollution, the researchers said, ‘These plants are often treated with pesticides during their production. There is little information on the nature of pesticide residues present at the point of purchase and whether these plants may actually pose a threat to, rather than benefit, the health of pollinating insects.

‘This study screened leaves from 29 different ‘bee-friendly’ plants for eight insecticides and 16 fungicides commonly used in ornamental production. Only two plants (a Narcissus and a Salvia variety) did not contain any pesticide.’

Although the authors admitted that, ‘The net effect on pollinators of buying plants that are a rich source of forage for them but simultaneously risk exposing them to a cocktail of pesticides is not clear,’ retailers said they were addressing the issue.

In a statement to The Independent, B&Q said, ‘All our plant ranges are grown in line with current regulations. The research referenced was carried out last year. We announced in April 2017 that our flowering plant range, available from February 2018, will be grown free from all nine neonicotinoid pesticides.’

Aldi also questioned some of the claims in the study: ‘Since October 2016, Aldi has not sold any bedding plants with neonicotinoids,’ it said in a statement. ‘“In addition, we have never sold any plants under the RHS Perfect for Pollinators programme.’

Photo Caption: Scientists claim that plants sold as being good for pollinators could actually harm them.

Photo Credit: RHS

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HTA to hold study tour to Netherlands

The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) has arranged a study tour to the Netherlands from 8–10  February 2017.

As well as an exclusive tour of the Dutch design company Elho head office the tour will include visits to some creative garden centres, alongside the 6th edition of the Garden Retail Experience event in Boskoop, including the event’s gala dinner.

The study tour group will also attend The Auction in Aalsmeer, with a behind the scenes look at the workings of the famous clock from former buyer Paul Moors, Garden Centre Fresh and a guided tour from FloraHolland giving an overview of the whole process.

HTA Event co-ordinator Alexa Stillwell comments “The trip promises to be an exciting and educational experience and our retailers are really looking forward to being inspired and bringing home lots or ideas and concepts to try in their own stores.”

If you are interested in joining the tour or want to find out more, contact events@hta.org.uk.

Photo Caption: Attendees at Garden Retail Experience (TREx) 2016

Photo Credit: TREx

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Flower Show Forum returns for gardening clubs to review the fruits of their labours

Gardening clubs and horticultural societies from Dorset, Somerset and beyond are currently reviewing the success of this year’s flower and horticultural show calendar, as they prepare for the second Flower Show Forum of the year, being held at Castle Gardens on Thursday 15 September. Following the momentum gained at the inaugural forum in March, where gardening clubs, horticultural societies and flower show organisers shared their concerns and devised a plan to rejuvenate membership and revive the traditional shows, Mike Burks, managing director of The Gardens Group, will chair this second Flower Show Forum in Sherborne, Dorset.

Mike explains; “I am really looking forward to hearing how the advice given by our panel, which included Susie Corr from the Royal Horticultural Society’s Affiliated Societies team, has been implemented by these clubs and societies. It will be a really valuable exercise to review what worked and what didn’t, as we gather to evaluate and reassess the barriers that shows are still coming up against. These discussion points will help shape the topics for the next forum, which is scheduled for March 2017. We will also be announcing an exciting new initiative, which we’ve been working on, as we continue in our efforts to help grow membership of gardening clubs and increase entries into shows.”

The Flower Show Forum is free to attend and will be held in The Butterfly House at Castle Gardens in Sherborne from 7pm.

Photo Credit: Iwerne Minster Produce and Horticultural Association’s Summer Show

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