UK: South West Growers Show viewed as top place to do business

Next month’s South West Growers Show looks set to be crowned as the region’s top horticulture event. Visitors to this year’s show have revealed that the event – which takes place on Wednesday 2 October 2013 at The Matford Centre in Exeter, Devon – is considered to be one of the foremost business-to-business environments for the commercial horticulture industry.

Chris Storer, owner of Plymouth based Prospect Plants said : "The South West Growers Show is an invaluable meeting, selling and buying opportunity for all in the industry. We always visit the show and have done for many years as it offers us a very valuable forum in which to meet others in the industry, see what's going on and get a view on new trends and marketing.”

Andrew Spilsbury, Chairman of the show said : “The quality and number of visitors at any show is critical to its ongoing success. Providing exhibitors with buyers and ensuring that those visitors have buying power are the two critical elements that made last year’s show stand out. At the outset, we aimed to develop the event as a show for growers, run by growers; this has certainly helped in positioning it as an excellent business forum. We are heartened by the positive comments from visitors such as Prospect Plants and wish them – and all our exhibitors and visitors – a successful 2013 show.”

This year’s show will include a designated display area for new products and new plant introductions; judges - Sally Drury from Horticulture Week, Iain Park, Chair of the South West branch of the Institute of Horticulture and Director of Grounds at Exeter University and Bob Joy, who recently retired from commercial growing and has been a long term member of the South West Growers Group and champion of the show - will frequent the area during the show and determine a winner for the show’s Best New Plant Introduction, Best New Non-Plant Product or Service and Best Nursery Stand Awards.

The show will be opened by Richard Harnett of Kernock Park Plants, who has been involved in the Horticultural industry for over 30 years as both a grower and as a former horticultural advisor with ADAS.
Following on from the success of the workshops at last year’s show, visitors will again be offered the opportunity to take part in free workshops and seminars on a wide variety of subjects.

Confirmed speakers include Tim Pettitt, Science Team Manager at Eden Project in collaboration with the HDC and Raoul Curtis-Machin, the new Head of Horticulture at the Horticultural Trades Association. Further information, including timings, will be available from the website ( in the next week.

Firmly established as one of the leading trade shows for commercial horticulture, the event is aimed at growers and plant buyers – ranging from garden centres and retail outlets to local authorities and the landscaping industry – it brings together key growers and suppliers of specialist horticultural equipment and services.

The event’s committee comprises of Chairman Andrew Spilsbury from award winning Whetman Pinks, the UK’s main grower of perfumed pinks since 1936; Mark Taylor, business development manager of Cornwall-based young plant producer Kernock Park Plants; Adam Powell from family-run nursery Talaton Plants; David Jackson from Jackson & Son, East Devon’s plug and pot plant specialist; Les Lane of XL Horticulture, Murray Richards of St Bridget’s Nursery and Garden Centre; Bill Finch of Somerset-based WeeTree Wholesale Nurseries and Peter Rider of Rainbow Plants, wholesale supplier of hardy nursery stock to garden centres and landscape contractors across the South West.

Admission is free.

For further information please visit or call 01404 821982.

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