Enhancing garden centre environments

By 26th September 2018Blog, Garden Centres
An example of a hot-dip galvanised canopy roof from Fordingbridge

Garden centres have evolved over time to become significant retail outlets. In some cases, this has resulted in carelessly thought out retail spaces with flustered customers the consequence.

In simple terms, your garden centre environment is there to protect customers and stock from the British weather while offering a seamless customer experience. It is helpful to understand how your garden centre will perform at its busiest, in the depth of winter, and in the height of summer. People will naturally gravitate to a garden centre that makes them feel comfortable and relaxed.

Here are some successful garden centre applications and project examples that could inspire you to create an optimal customer experience and subsequently grow your revenue.

Retail areas

Consumers increasingly look for quality and unique retail environments that are comfortable to spend long periods of time in.

Timber retail environments

Timber is a material with a unique charisma – the appearance of timber, in terms of its colour range and surface texture, is probably the primary reason for its dominance in garden centre applications.

Reasons to choose a timber frame

Hillier garden centres were determined to make sure they adapted to ever-changing market dynamics by extending their plant retail areas at their Bosham and Braishfield sites with timber structures. The large open spans allow further flexible retailing and contributed to a significant rise in sales from the two sites.

Steel retail environments

Steel is perfect for functional applications. The cost-effective material can span great distances that can be perfect for larger retail areas – like this application at Ashton Park Garden Centre.


Walkways are an ideal solution to protect garden centre customers from the turbulent British weather and to guide them through external plant areas. Ashtead Garden Centre and Fordingbridge worked together to design and build a series of sustainably sourced timber walkways finished in a light oak stain, nestling perfectly into the surrounding context.

Inspiring buildings

Fordingbridge believe that all buildings should be inspiring no matter what their size, use or budget. We utilise a proven fabric first approach to construction and can help garden centres develop to offer all year round services, including shops, cafés and diverse plant retail areas, like this project at Walkers Garden Centre.

Fordingbridge are also able to convert your existing canopies into insulated retail areas like this recent project at St Peter’s Garden Centre.

Fordingbridge is uniquely positioned to help you make the most of your garden centre environment. With over 50 years’ of experience in the garden centre industry, we can guide you through the lifecycle of your project, from concept to design, right through to installation and handover.

Contact our team to request a call back, brochure, or for any other queries.

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