An IPSOS Mori poll of more than 2000 people, commissioned by the RHS, found that 78% said they grow plants either inside or outside. Of those who grow plants, about a third (32%) say they are beginner gardeners, 38% say they are intermediate gardeners and just 3% say they are expert gardeners. The research also found that 90% of people have access to space to grow outdoor plants, flowers or vegetables.
The shifting housing market in the UK has brought out two particular changes for British gardeners – people are coming to gardening later and gardeners are getting smaller.
As we’ve written about before, people are accessing the housing market later. While their parents were buying a first home in their 20s, the likelihood is that young people today are either living with their parents – and most probably not helping out with the gardening - or renting a flat, which is unlikely to have garden space.
All this means that we might be in our 30s or 40s before getting our first garden. Even then, that garden is likely to be smaller than in the past. According to the financial services company, LV, between 1982 and 2013, the average British garden shrunk from 168 m2 to 163.2 m2.
But, even in a small space, British people still love their gardens. Recently, Euromonitor predicted that gardening will continue growing, leading to garden product related sales of £4.3 billion in 2021. In 2016 the UK domestic garden leisure market - which includes garden furniture, barbecues and accessories - grew by 6% in value terms, compared with 2015.
Also, on a positive note, as our lives become increasingly frenetic and stressful with mental health very much on the agenda – the good news is that gardening, on the whole, makes us happy. It can get us out in the fresh air and provides some much-needed exercise. Gardening can bring about a sense of peace and wellbeing and can relieve stress, while an afternoon outside could also get us talking to our neighbours and passing the time of day with people walking by. So, it can also relieve loneliness, another issue having a big impact in today’s society.
Here at CooperBurnett our residential property team enjoys helping a variety of clients – from those buying their first property with some green space to people purchasing large country estates and farms. To find out more, give us a call on tel: 01892 515022.