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HortiTrends Weekly Comment and News Digest - March 11th

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There was a good turn out for the Bord Bia Amenity Horticulture Awards 2013Despite the ongoing difficulties the mood of the sector is now one of 'lets just get on with it'. The response to the awards by the various sectors is in general positive and the awarding system is really being embraced by staff as it gives real targets to meet and improve on. Definitely the noisiest tables by far were the the three co-ops groups Glanbia, Connaught Gold and Dairygold. The DIY/Garden Centre chains have really embraced the awards judging by their numbers present on the night. There is going to be lots more competition in the future, not only between the individual centres but also between the bigger co-op stores who will be hot on the heels of the old guard 5 stars, who also did well on the night.

Congratulations to all of the winners and especially to newcomers D&M garden centre who collect their first 3*** award and who have also recently celebrated 30 years in business. Pat Fitzgerald also received his first recognition in Ireland with an award for 'Best Specialist Grower'. All in all a fun night, well organised and very much needed to recognise the hard graft put in from all who work in the landscape, nursery and garden centre sectors.

Tully Nurseries are holding an 'Open Day & Industry Seminars' on the 20th of this month which is a great example of what you can put together through co-operation with other businesses and development agencies. Aimed at the amenity landscape sector it includes a presentation by Bord Bia staff on current trends and market data in the sector. Suppliers like Enrich among others will also be on hand offering advice on soil health. There will also be a tour of the impressive facilities and a chance to have a look at the newly developed web-shop over breakfast while also flicking through the 2013 Amentiy Landscape Plant Catalog.

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          Joseph ( Editor at HortiTrends)