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Which? Gardening Compares Plants From DIY Stores and Supermarkets

Female shoppers at garden centre shutterstock_105761693 725 x 500.jpg

Last year, Which? Gardening conducted a test to see how DIY stores and supermarkets compared on plant choice, quality and value for money.

The consumer advice organisation bought bedding plants, bulbs, perennials and small trees between February and June 2018 and grew them on to see how they performed.

According to the results, B&M, B&Q, Homebase and Morrisons offered the best plant quality, while discounters Aldi and Lidl performed better in terms of value for money. 

Aldi

- Aldi plants did well on value for money 
- Great for cheap bedding and had weekly plant offers throughout the year, arriving in stores on Thursdays and Sundays. The best varieties sold out fast. Best bargain here was Pansy ‘Spring’s Here Mixed’, at £2.50 for 20 plants.
- However, plant quality wasn’t as good as some other supermarkets.

Lidl

- What Lidl lacked in quality it made up for in value for money
- Large range, from bedding to fruit trees to tender plants; time-limited offers
- Some of the plants in plastic sleeves were unhealthy when unwrapped 

Morrisons

- Widest plant selection of any supermarket tested (from seeds to bedding plants; acers and tomatoes)
- Did well on choice, quality and value for money
Most plants were well looked-after

Tesco

- New plants each week; bargain prices (e.g., fuchsia in a 10.5cm pot for £2)
- Good value for money
- Unexpected plants including Trachycarpus fortunei (£12).
- Plants weren’t always well looked-after

Waitrose

- Plant quality – majority were rated ‘excellent’ or ‘good’
- Relatively expensive
- Choice was lacking compared with other supermarkets 

B&Q

- Garden centre levels of plant ranges (bulbs to small trees)
- Plant quality generally very good
- Competitive pricing and multi-buy offers 
- Example: Acer palmatum ‘Atropurpureum’ (£4 for a 10.5cm pot)

Homebase

- Similar to B&Q
- High score for choice and quality, although quality varied in different stores

Contact Which? Gardening 029 2267 0005 to buy the full report - available in April 2019 

Source : Insight DIY Team

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02 April 2019

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