Greater Manchester has a pretty extensive choice of garden centres – some huge, some small and independent. Most of them provide a pretty decent cup of coffee too.
If you’re looking for gardening services in Manchester, and a wide range of plants to choose from, these are the places to visit.
Part of the Notcutts chain, the Ashton Park branch has thousands of plant varieties, outdoor furniture, a pet shop, and home and giftware. For the connoisseur, there’s even a soil testing service (so you can check which plants will be happy in your garden) and the option of a personal shopper.
The restaurant/café is particularly huge here, with hot and cold options, cakes and pastries. Bank holiday sales can be pretty intense, so plan ahead if you’re in need of new garden furniture.
Great for: Browsing and taking advantage of their regular half price sales.
Daisy Nook Garden Centre is just opposite Daisy Nook Country Park in Oldham. Their main selection of products is divided into outdoor and indoor living, including patio ornaments, plant life, furniture, and garden care. When you’ve stocked up on fertiliser, Café Riverside serves Rainforest Alliance Certified coffee and fresh cakes.
Their Gardeners’ Club meets on the first Wednesday of every month for a brew and a chat. You don’t have to register or prove your knowledge, it’s an informal meet up for gardening enthusiasts.
Great for: A community feel.
Part of a small chain, J.Parker’s Flixton Garden Centre has a “large plantaria” of plants, trees, shrubs and more. You can also buy wild bird and pet care items, outdoor furniture, and gifts for the outdoorsy person in your life.
Parkers were established in 1933 and have remained a family-run business. Their Flixton site has been recently refurbished, so it’s looking shiny and new, and now has a café serving local food.
Great for: Decent prices and a warm welcome.
Owned by a former BBC Gardener of the Year, Bluebell Cottage Gardens are open from March to the end of October each year. The online shop is available all year round. Many of the plants for sale are propagated from Bluebell’s own nursery, and they strongly encourage customers to bring back old plant pots for reuse. Pesticides are also limited at Bluebell Cottage Gardens.
The neighbouring gardens have an admission price but are well worth a visit. There’s also a “rustic” café and tea room.
Great for: Environmentally conscious products and the personal touch.
Source: Parkers Garden Centre
Not too far from an allotment site, Bud Garden Centre is a small, independent with a lot of character and charm. All their plants are UK grown, and customers can also buy locally made gifts and accessories.
Bud Garden Centre’s owner, Brenda, supports British nurseries because the plants don’t have to travel as far, they’re usually healthier as a result, and the soil is generally peat-free.
Great for: Supporting a small business and receiving bespoke advice.
Whether you’re looking for a huge 50% off sale, or a niche, independent nursery down a long country lane, Manchester has plenty of choice.