Recently I visited two garden centres in Christchurch to purchase some plants for the garden and one for a gift.
It was disappointing to see that there were few people there. It got me thinking. Both of these could have been a lot better if instead of being a nursery they should be destinations.
Imagine if there were fantastic displays of plants for sale or even displays of plants not for sale. A few ideas include
Home garden that changes regularly
Seasonal displays of colour similar to public gardens
Native plant garden in conservation week
The patio garden
The Vegetable garden
Seasonal displays for Mothers day, Christmas etc.
Art in the garden
There are many ideas for display.
At this time of year roses seem to be the thing but they are all pruned and deciduous so are quite boring and unattractive. Fruit trees are another and I am sure a better display with information packs and sample fruit might do a better job.
It would be wonderful if a garden centre turned itself into a destination rather than trying to compete with big box retailing.