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Bloom research: Bord Bia survey shows 1.3 million of us love to garden!

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According to new research launched by Bord Bia today, Ireland’s next generation gardeners will be younger, more eco-aware, GYO (grow your own) advocates, with a desire for easily maintained, compact gardens.

With 63% of the Irish population living in urban areas, and a growing number with “limited or no” space to grow, gardening within a limited space will become ever-more important. This trend is particularly prevalent in Dublin where 25% of inhabitants have no garden (source: CSO).

The Bord Bia ‘Gardening in Ireland’ study, carried out by Red C on behalf of Bord Bia, also revealed that over 1.3 million Irish people, from almost 1 million households, now garden on a regular basis. Ireland’s gardening enthusiasts, those who love to garden on a regular basis, are mainly female (69%), and 4 in 10 are over the age of 55. Some 75% of all adults surveyed believe that gardening is good for your mental health, while almost all (98%) adults who garden on a regular basis know that it is! Three in four regular gardeners consider digging to be a “pain”; nonetheless, 95% believe it keeps them fit and active.

Bord Bia launched highlights from the new report today ahead of its annual Bloom festival, taking place in the Phoenix Park Dublin from June 1st – 5th.  The full study will be published and presented to Ireland’s horticulture industry this summer. Earlier today, Bord Bia also announced FBD Insurance as an official partner of Bloom by Bord Bia, marking the start of an exciting new three-year partnership. For this year's show, FBD Insurance has teamed up with designers Liat and Oliver Schurmann, from Mount Venus Nursery in Dublin, to create an extraordinary show garden to celebrate the beauty of the wild Irish landscape. Entitled FBD Insurance’s ‘Transition’, this unique creation is sure to capture the imagination of all Bloom visitors as it dramatically transitions at regular intervals throughout the day to form new landscapes.

FBD Insurance will also create an exciting new area, FBD Insurance’s Doorsteps, to offer visitors inspiration for their own gardens. One lucky Bloom attendee will also win their dream garden worth €10,000.

‘Gardening in Ireland’: Report Highlights

The Guru V The Novice

  • 75% of Ireland’s gardening enthusiasts i.e. those who regularly garden and love it, own a large or medium garden. Some 26% live in Dublin, while 34% reside in ‘Rest of Leinster’. Almost all plant and sow flowers, herbs and vegetables on a regular basis.
  • 43% of gardening ‘fledglings and developers’ i.e. those who do some gardening but would like to or plan to do more, own a small garden, balcony or limited space. They tend to purchase plants a local DIY store and although only7% currently grow vegetables, 68% would be interested in doing so in the future.   

Gardener of the Future

  • Looking ahead, gardeners of the future will want compact gardens that are easy to maintain
  • Moreover, the need for easier maintenance options are driven by busy lifestyles, as 44% of those surveyed cite time as the biggest barrier to gardening – in particular among the young & free audience (71%)   
  • Easy to maintain gardens would encourage 75% of people to garden more and 59% say that if they could do it in a small space it would encourage them to garden more
  • GIY (grow it yourself) is still in very much in vogue –a vegetable patch or area is the most popular planned feature to have in a garden in the next 3 years (19%) among the gardeners, ahead of a patio or decking. This ranked highest among 25-34-year-olds (25%)
  • In a digital world, the gardener of the future will further embrace the benefits of new technology as a source of inspiration, advice (forums, top tips) and garden management (apps, timely reminders on planting, seasonality, monitoring water use etc).
  • The online retailing channel is still in its infancy in the world of gardeners, but this is likely to develop further in the future.
  • ‘Aspiring and Novice’ gardeners are even more attuned to their environmental responsibilities. Composting is expected, rainwater harvesting an obvious choice and local sourcing and native planting makes sense.
  • Bees too are a consideration in their plans and so too is companion planting for natural pest control.
  • 52% of gardeners say that supporting wildlife and birds is an important reason for them gardening.

GIY - Still Growing!

  • Approximately 340,000 adults (19% of gardeners) in Ireland grow vegetables regularly at home
  • Over 4 in 10 adults (43%) express an interest in GY0, 1.4 million people.
  • Interest peaks at 54% among the 35-44-year-olds

Bloom 2017

Now in its 11th year, Bloom was established by Bord Bia, the semi-state agency with responsibility for the promotion of Irish food and horticulture, as a platform to promote the best of Ireland’s landscapers, horticulture growers, and food producers. The show has become a huge success with over 100,000 visitors last year. 

Bloom 2017 festival takes place in the Phoenix Park, Dublin from Thursday 1st June – Monday 5th June. In addition to the FBD Insurance’s Transition garden, key themes for this year’s show gardens include “fake news”, dementia-friendly gardens, and Ireland’s farming and food production heritage.

Speaking at the launch today, Bord Bia’s Chief Executive Tara McCarthy said: “This year’s Bloom event will reflect many of the key themes and trends identified in our ‘Gardening in Ireland’ report. Visitors can expect to enjoy a great day out while also having an opportunity to learn from, and engage with, Ireland’s top horticulturists and food producers.”

Fiona Muldoon, Chief Executive of FBD Insurance said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Bloom by Bord Bia and we look forward to collaborating with them over the next three years. FBD recognized a strong brand fit with Bloom and its visitors. As Ireland’s only indigenous insurer, we have been insuring Ireland’s farms, businesses, and homes for fifty years and we have a strong commitment to protecting all those who want to grow.”

Tickets are on sale now on Ticketmaster and can also be purchased at the gate. Ticket prices vary from €16 - €22.50 and children under 16 go free.

For more information visit www.bloominthepark.com or follow Bloom on Facebook and Twitter @bloominthepark

Source: HortiTrends News Room