Horticulture Industry Guide


Here you will find sources of information such as market research (statistics, trends, developments), key companies, trade magazines, newsletters, and Internet sources.

This guide will be useful to anyone starting a business within the horticulture industry and also for those wanting to further their knowledge within this area.


Start-Up Information


COBRA logo

The Cobra database contains practical fact-sheets on all aspects of starting, running and managing a small business – including information on writing business plans, marketing, company structures etc.

It also covers the practical aspects of how to start and run particular types of businesses – outlining necessary skills, regulations, licences and legislation etc. and highlights other sources of information and advice available.


Business Opportunity Profiles (BOP)

Fencing Contractor BOP461
Florist BOP055
Garden Centre BOP070
Garden Designer BOP252
Gardening Service BOP290
Landscape Gardener BOP014
Plant Nursery BOP159
Tree Surgeon BOP134


Mini-Business Opportunity Profiles (MBP)

Garden Furniture Maker MBP357
Garden Consultant MBP145
Urban Garden Designer MBP144


Sector Guide (SEC)

Horticulture, Landscaping and Garden Products SEC025


Market Research & Statistics 

If you are planning on starting a business you will need to be aware of the latest trends, developments and opportunities within your industry which can all be found from market research.

Market research also covers market size and forecasts, consumer demographics and attitudes, the key players and products and will often include SWOT and PEST analysis showing areas of strength, weakness, opportunities etc.


EMIS logo

  • United Kingdom – Home & Garden Products (MarketLine)


IBISWorld logo

  • Agricultural & Forestry Machinery Manufacturing in the UK
  • Florists in the UK
  • Flower & Plant Growing in the UK
  • Flower & Plant Wholesaling in the UK
  • Forestry & Logging in the UK
  • Garden Centres & Pet Shops in the UK
  • Household Appliance & Garden Equipment Repair in the UK
  • Landscaping Services in the UK
  • Pesticide & Other Agrochemical Manufacturing in the UK


Mintel logo

  • Consumer Attitudes Towards Cut Flowers and Houseplants
  • Garden Products Retailing

Passport logo

  • Gardening in the United Kingdom
  • Home and Garden in the United Kingdom
  • Home and Garden Specialist Retailers in the United Kingdom


Local Data Online

Provides a birds-eye view of the makeup and complexity of the retail and leisure offering in a chosen location.

Review key trends over time:

  • Vacancy rates
  • Occupancy trends
  • Retail mix

Understand demand profiles through demographic data such as:

  • Employment statistics
  • Average weekly earnings
  • Crime rates
  • Unemployment
  • House prices

Also, contact details and individual reports of companies in the digital communications industry are available from our electronic sources: Market IQ.


Business News & Journals

In order to find the latest news on your topic it is always worth searching NewsBank and EMIS.

You will find articles from specialist business and academic journals, as well as newspapers and magazines. You may also find market research reports and case studies. As well as profiles of leading industry figures.

You will also find articles covering recent developments, and predicting future trends in your industry.


Internet Sources

Websites containing free sources of industry statistics, information and contacts.

Alpine Garden Society

The Society is for anyone interested in alpine plants, rock gardening and rock garden plants or any small hardy plants and bulbs. Has specimen seed list, details of foreign tours and information about shows in the UK.

Arboricultural Association

The Association sets standards of practice for tree surgeons, as well as running courses and publishing research into plant and tree health.

Association of Professional Landscapers

A specialist national group within the Horticultural Trades Association. Provides advice, education, research, public relations, benchmarking indexes and representation services to its members.

British Association of Landscape Industries

BALI is the national body representing landscape contractors in the UK. Included on the site are news items and a notice board.

British Florist Association

Primarily aimed at professional florists however does have a consumer section with flower care tips and other information. Has an online directory of florists which can be searched by region. There is also information about courses and shows.

Chartered Institute of Horticulture

Includes information about the institutions and organisations offering courses, events worldwide and consultants. Also included is a bibliography covering ‘Research Round the World’ taken from the Institute’s journal The Horticulturalist.

Commercial Horticultural Association

The trade association for suppliers to commercial horticultural growers. The site provides a buyer’s guide to exporters/manufacturers and distributors, information about new products and listings of trade shows in the UK and overseas.

Flowers & Plants Association

Promotes cut flowers, indoor plants and other aspects of commercial floriculture. Membership is open to anyone working in the cut flower, indoor plant and related areas, including wholesalers, importers, exporters, retailers, growers, colleges, distributors, manufacturers and publishers.

Garden Centre Association

Provides a garden centre association members’ directory which can be searched by name or area and a list of UK events.

Garden Industry Manufacturers’ Association

The Association describes itself as the ‘major trade association in the UK garden market’. The site gives general news, information about the GIMA awards and useful industry links. Plus a New Products digest.


Covers topical items (e.g. company results and price comparisons) and events world-wide. There is also a section which provides advice from industry specialists on a wide variety of subjects.

Horticultural Trades Association

Has information about the HTA services and recent research. The full database is available to HTA members only and details about joining the Association are given.

AHDB Horticulture

Provides ‘near-market research and development for the benefit of UK horticulture’. The site includes news items and details of UK events.

Horticulture Week

The latest news, jobs and technical advice for nurseries, edibles production, garden retailing, landscaping, parks.

Horticulture Week – What Kit?

Buyers’ guide for landscape, turf, grounds maintenance, arboriculture, horticultural and amenity equipment. Includes tests, reviews, buying advice and product information.

International Society for Horticultural Science

Apart from giving information about the Society (including the events it organises and the text of its journal Chronica Horticulturae) the site allows the user to search the latest edition of the ISHS Horticulture Research International directory.

Landscape Institute

The Landscape Institute provides a professional home for all landscape practitioners including landscape designers, planners, scientists, managers and urban designers.

Leisure and Outdoor Furniture Association

LOFA is a trade association representing over 80% of the UK’s manufacturers and suppliers of garden furniture, barbecues and accessories.

National Society of Allotment and Leisure Gardeners

Gives information about the Society’s advice/legal services and lists allotment and gardening societies both in the UK and abroad.

Professional Gardeners Guild

Website for professional gardeners employed in private gardens and estates.

Royal Horticultural Society

Gives news, information about events worldwide, a full list of gardens open in the UK, advice about popular gardening topics and details of RHS libraries.

Society of Garden Designers

Professional membership body representing garden and landscape designers.

Soil Association

Charity and organic certification body providing facts and figures about the organic food and horticulture sector, including market information for organic growers.


Please note that every effort has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, however some recently acquired items may since have been added to the collection. Please ask for help at the enquiry desk.

Images by Andew Michaels, lizjones112, sha-put-ski under a Creative Commons license

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