THERE is strength in numbers as far as a collective of south Lincolnshire nurseries is concerned.
Independent growers producing a variety of plants, shrubs and trees are experiencing the benefits that being part of a joint marketing initiative can bring.
Linc-Up Nurseries is a group of six nurseries :
l Gedney Bulb Company, which specialises in bulbs, herbacious plants and alpines
l Kingfisher Nursery of Gedney Hill, which grows heathers
l Golden Grove Nursery of Wigtoft, whose expertise is conifers
l D and R Simmons Ltd of Pinchbeck, which produces bulbs, plants, trees and shrubs
l Harrington Hall Nursery of Fleet, authorities on herbs, pinks, scent first dianthus and cut flowers
l C Slooten Limited, of Spalding, which works with geraniums, fuchsia, nursery stock as well as unusual plants.
Group co-ordinator Ian Wilson said the nurseries jointly produce a regular newsletter to keep customers in touch with what is going on with the individual businesses.
He explained: “Linc-Up Nurseries is a group of independent specialist growers in the Spalding area working together to provide the finest quality wholesale plants and services for their customers in the horticultural and garden centre trades.
“It’s not a co-operative in the sense of doing joint buying, but they share a customer database and we have all sorts of people on it, such as other growers, nurseries, garden centres and general landscape designers and other people connected with horticulture.
“The biggest benefit is keeping our presence in the marketplace and occasionally we’ll book a stand where two or three members will be on one exhibition stand, but they are still independent.”
Linc-Up Nurseries was originally an NFU initiative and other nurseries are occasionally invited into the group if it is felt that what the new grower produces is complementary to what is already being sold so that no two members are growing the same plants.