Greenworld – Spring 2016
Horticultural Marketing, Retailing
and Landscaping in Australia
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or plant sales to grow, garden centres
need to attract the elusive Millennial
shopper. These are the ‘Gen Y’ group
now in their 20s and early 30s and up until
now, gardening hasn’t been on their to-do
list. Lots of thought, promotion and social
media posts are being directed at this group
to get them interested and it seems it just
may be working.
According to research from the US, sales in
garden centres there have stopped declining
and indeed have begun to grow. The largest
growth has occurred among the Millennials.
These encouraging figures are quoted in Ian
Baldwin’s annual analysis of the National Garden
Association’s National Gardening Survey and
(August, 2016). The
study reflects sales behaviour in 2015 and shows six
million more people are participating in gardening
and of these, five million are Millennials.
The Millennials are particularly interested
in edible gardens and are discovering the
joys of growing food in containers, gardens
and even in community gardens. They are
also rediscovering indoor plants, macramé
hanging baskets and Japanese hanging plants
known as ‘kokedama’ or Japanese moss balls.
These cute little living decorations are all the
rage right now.
Holding a kokedama workshop is bound to
have Millennials on your doorstep. I look at
how to make these new-style hanging plants in
our focus on hanging baskets (see pages 18−20).
Like all hanging plants, kokedama are
highly susceptible to drying out. A colleague
in Western Australia put out a Facebook
alert after the first warm day recently
warning everyone about the fire potential
of kokedamas. She’d let one dry out, left it
on an outdoor sink and found it starting to
smoulder as the sun’s rays began to heat up.
I’ll be adding ‘soak your kokedama’ to my
summer gardening checklists!
It is about size
In this issue we also introduce two growers who
are doing things big. Lauren Butler discovered
what goes into growing sandalwood when she
spoke to Ken Robson and Matt Barnes from
Tropical Forestry Services (TFS).
This company has the largest plantations
of sandalwood not just in Australia but
anywhere in the world. Sandalwood is a
partially parasitic plant so research into how
to grow it successfully has meant working out
how to grow its host plants. It’s a fascinating
story and reassuring to know that Australian
research may be helping save these plants,
which are threatened in the wild. Read all
about these interesting plants on page 32−33.
Kerrie Hart from Harts Nursery in the Gold
Coast hinterland is almost finished building
a vast nursery with lots of state-of-the-art
technology. He says relocating his nursery from
its outer city site opened up the opportunity to
future-proof the business (page 30−31). Harts
was one of the 80 exhibitors that took part in
Green Expo held in August on the Gold Coast.
Rachael Blake was there for
story begins on page 10.
Queenslanders have been busy over the
past few weeks showcasing their plants at
Nambour’s Queensland Garden Show in
July and at the Ekka following Green Expo
in August. Paul Plant reports on displays
created for the Ekka by Australian Institute of
Horticulture members (see page 22).
There are spring shows coming up right across
Australia that put the spotlight on plants and
gardens and help make spring the
busiest time in nurseries,
garden centres and gardens
Harts Nursery has a new site in the Gold Coast hinterland, state-
of-the art buildings and technology all designed to future-proof
Kokedama (or Japanese moss balls) are trendy right
now especially with Millennial shoppers.