A shift in consumer attitude may signal a market gain for independent garden centers and local retailers this year, according to the Garden Writers Association Foundation’s “Early Spring Gardening Trends Research Report” released last week. In mid February, 47 percent of consumers survey indicated they plan to purchase most of their spring garden plants at a garden center or local retailer compared to 44 percent at mass merchants, according to the survey conducted by TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence. In prior years, consumers favored mass merchants over garden centers by a margin of 52 percent to 39 percent in 2006 and 51 percent to 40 percent in 2005.
This report is now available online and free to all Garden Writers Association members. For more information, visit www.gardenwriters.org and select the Gardening Trends Research tab.