The green-fingered among us are likely itching to visit a garden centre and stock up on supplies. With us spending more time at home than ever before and peak gardening season underway, it's understandable that for many of us gardening has become a daily occurrence.
We've been making do with buying plants online, or opting for flower delivery services to breathe some new life into our gardens, balconies and living spaces, but from tomorrow (Wednesday 13 May) garden centres across the UK will open their doors.
Which garden centres are open tomorrow?
The reopening of garden centres across the UK is going ahead from tomorrow morning - with strict social distancing measures in place. UK garden centres will be open from May 13, bringing them in line with food retailers and food markets, hardware stores and some other retailers. The Welsh government confirmed they would be opening garden centres from Monday 11 May, but the situation in Scotland and Northern Ireland remains unclear.
Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) Chairman, James Barnes, revealed how he believes this will be beneficial for the public.
“Gardening benefits mental health and well-being for so many people isolating at home and the importance of having something to do at home keeps you at home. This is a hugely positive economic move," he said.
This was reflected in an official statement from the HTA, which read, ‘As this is the peak of the garden industry season - 70% of plants are sold between March and June - opening garden centres now will be welcomed by the 23m gardeners in this country and the UK garden industry.'
David Domoney, broadcaster and chartered horticulturalist, also tweeted on the matter. He wrote, 'Our Garden Centres will opening again soon in-line with social distancing guidelines. I've been petitioning Gov’t to open them for over a month as I believe that plants and nature are beneficial to our mental & physical wellbeing. Please support your local garden centre.'
Is it safe to visit garden centres and what kind of safety measures are being put in place?
You can expect to see the same measures in garden centres present in supermarkets, including social-distancing tape and Perspex screens on tills, as well as special signage encouraging shoppers to stay alert.
The HTA’s statement regarding the safety of visiting garden centres read,“It is good to see that they [the government] have recognised that the physical layout of many garden centres with large open air spaces make them suitable for early reopening. This is something we have highlighted many times to the government at all levels since the start of lockdown.'
James further clarified this point, saying, ‘The HTA has produced Safe Trading Guidance, which covers all aspects of how garden centres can reopen while ensuring staff and customer safety at all times.’
As with visiting supermarkets and shops, social distancing practices must be observed at all times. The government is recommending that the public wear a face covering and also abide by the following rules.
As well as wearing a face mask or covering, it is equally important that you are:
- Regularly washing your hands for 20 seconds at a time
- Practising social distancing
- Not touching your face
- Using your elbow or a tissue to cough and sneeze
Which businesses are likely to stay closed until later this summer?
- Restaurants and cafes
- Pubs Cinemas, theatres and nightclubs
- Clothing and electronics stores
- Libraries, community centres, and youth centres
- Indoor and outdoor leisure facilities such as bowling alleys, gyms, arcades and soft play facilities
- Hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, campsites and caravan parks
- Places of worship (except for in the instance of funerals)
Lauren is deputy editor at woman&home.com in the UK and became a journalist mainly because she enjoys being nosy. With a background in features journalism, Lauren has worked on the woman&home brand for four years. Before woman&home Lauren worked across a variety of women's lifestyle titles, including GoodTo, Woman's Own, and Woman magazine. After starting out working for a local paper in Yorkshire, her journalism career took her to Bristol where she hunted out stories for national papers and magazines at Medavia news agency, before landing a job in London working as a lifestyle assistant.
Lauren loves helping people share their stories, bringing experiences to life online, honing her interview techniques with everyone from authors to celebrities, headteachers to local heroes. As well as having a good nose for a story, Lauren has a passion for the English language and years of experience optimizing digital content to reach the widest audience possible. During her time at w&h, Lauren has worked on big brand campaigns like the Amazing Women Awards and assisted in developing w&h expert-approved Buyer's Guides—the place to go if you're looking to splash out on an important purchase and want some trusted advice. In addition to her journalism career, Lauren also has a background in copywriting for prestigious brands such as Inhabit Hotel, eco-development K'in in Tulum, social enterprise The Goldfinger Factory and leading London architect Holland Harvey, using language in all its glorious forms, from detailed guidebooks to snappy social content.
A big fan of adventure, Lauren is also a keen travel writer and loves sharing tips on where to find the best places to eat, drink, and be merry off the beaten track. Lauren has written a series of travel guides for London hotels and loves sharing her insights into a destination's cultural and culinary offerings. If you need a recommendation on any UK destination, she's more than happy to help. At the weekend, you'll usually find her hanging out with her pet cat (or anyone else's pet she can get her hands on), escaping to the countryside, or devouring a good book.
Follow her adventures @laurenkatehughes
LinkedIn: Lauren Kate Hughes
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