We take a trip to Newent Plant Centre and visit a nursery with a difference.
Visitors to the Newent Plant Centre in Gloucestershire can certainly be in for an inspirational time. It is not only that they grow a great range of quality plants for sale but that each one is displayed in the most creative way.
There is no trace of any A-Z rows of plants and certainly no gimmicks lurking between the plants as impulse buys; what will be seen are gloriously colourful displays of plants laid out in informal groups to show them off at their best. All of the plants are well labelled and are for sale.
The Newent Plant Centre is owned and run by Kate Clowes and Mark Moir. Both are hands-on knowledgeable plants people with a commitment to creating an inspirational retail business growing and selling quality plants with the best customer service. It is an inspiring place to visit if you wish to see quality plants displayed well.
Kate Clowes told me that all year round they have visitors and returning customers calling in en-route to and from holiday destinations. Being located in one of the most beautiful regions of English [and Welsh borders] countryside must also influence visitor numbers, however the plant centre is not located on a main trunk road so their reputation must play a major part in their success.
Their plant display skills are not only confined to their sales areas at the centre as Mark and Kate won their first gold medal at the 2013 RHS Malvern Flower Show. They also promote their plant centre at other regional shows including Monmouth, Usk and the Three Counties where awards and medals have been gathered.
The centre has one particular crop that it specialises in. With over a hundred varieties of Heuchera, Tiarella and Heucherellar the availability to customers is extensive with dramatic displays in the sales areas and in the polytunnels growing beds. They grow many new varieties that are not readily available in many garden centres.
Some of the colourful Heuchera collection grown at the plant centre.
Ornamental and fruit trees are bought in from two local specialist tree growers to ensure their quality, provenance and suitability to grow in local conditions.
Kate Clowes commented that the plant sales area displays certainly encourage visitors to take note of particular plants when they are performing during the different seasons. In such an inspiring place it is certainly the place for visitors to stop and make written notes on planning and developing their own gardens and working out how to fit more of the Newent Plant Centre plants in.
Indoor displays also feature in the shop area and highlight the creative skills of the staff.
The Newent Plant Centre philosophy that good displays of quality plants increases customer interest and stimulates sales is good news for everyone who enjoys visiting nurseries to stock up their own gardens, well done to the Newent Plant Centre team.