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Garden centre in a good place to weather 'perfect storm'

Brexit and lockdown has put the squeeze on plants and shrubs. Martin McCarron says: 'The demand is just so high this year.'

A little bit of planning may just have saved the day for local gardeners and growers.

Brexit, lockdown and recent good weather may be putting the squeeze on plants and shrubs.

And reports talk of a ‘perfect storm’ of rising demand and falling supply. 

But one Glasgow business has had the foresight to plan ahead.  

West End Garden Centre pre-ordered stock months ago to allay pressures on availability. 

Owner Martin McCarron says he is confident his stocks will hold up over coming weeks.

He said: “The demand for plants is just so high this year.

“Everyone is scrambling around for stock.

“The English garden centres were open during the Scottish lockdown, so they have eaten up a lot.

“And the weather has been particularly nice as well, so plants are in such high demand.”

Martin said he pre-ordered his supplies last autumn, aware that Brexit would have an impact on flowers and shrubs coming from Europe.

'The demand for plants is just so high this year'
'The demand for plants is just so high this year'

Lockdown has also seen more people take an interest in their gardens and good early-spring weather has kick-started the season.

Martin said: “We have the plants sitting in stock in the nurseries and they can be called forward whenever we wish.

“We will have a full range of bedding and basket plants, shrubs and everything else.”

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Meanwhile, Martin is getting ready to celebrate his 2nd year in business on Peel Street in Partick.

The corner site at the West of Scotland Cricket ground has proved popular with local gardeners.

And work is well under way to open a shop in the summer.

'We have the plants sitting in stock in the nurseries'
'We have the plants sitting in stock in the nurseries'

Martin said: “The shop is going to allow us to sell a proper range of gardening products.

“Things like: indoor plants, tools, treatments for the garden - and we might even be able to do coffees.

“We will also be extending the outdoor plant-sales space.”

We have the plants sitting in stock in the nurseries and they can be called forward whenever we wish

Martin McCarron

He said: “More importantly the shop lets people know we are here - and we are here to stay.

“I feel some people thought we were a pop-up and that we are maybe just here for spring and summer and then we shut down during the winter.

“The shop lets people know that we are an all-year-round place to come.”

'The shop is going to allow us to sell a proper range of gardening products'
'The shop is going to allow us to sell a proper range of gardening products'

Lockdown has been tough on all local independent businesses, but online sales have kept Martin going.

He is looking forward to a busy summer helping meet the demand for good-looking gardens.

Martin says: “After the year we have had it’s been great to just get the doors open again and to see people coming back in.

“There is a real appetite for gardening just now. People want to get in to the garden and spend a bit of time in their yards and green spaces.

“And the weather has almost been on our side as well, which is nice.

“Gardens have been vitally important because it’s given people a place to go and enjoy planting and seeing things grow and nurturing them.”

https://youtu.be/iopFN8P_39Q
Martin McCarron at West End Garden Centre
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