This year, Glee is being hosted at the NEC in Birmingham and GardenSite partners David Coton, Robert Hall, Andrew Hall and David Hall are on the scene today with many colleagues including Gaby and Kayleigh from our customer services team, seeing what new and exciting products are on show as well as meeting up with both existing and new garden product suppliers.

Which Suppliers are showcasing at Glee 2021

Rowlinson

Supplier Rowlinson are showing off their new products for 2022, including a range of rattan furniture sets named Marbella. These comfy outdoor sofa sets boast heaps of room for lounging out in the garden as well as matching glass top tables, perfect for cups of tea or a quenching cocktail.

To add a touch of privacy, Rowlinson are also featuring a collection of additional pergola and canopies to their range, perfect for adding a little shelter over a seating area. New in the range are the Rowlinson Florence canopies, a modern metal canopy in both a 3ft x 3ft and 4ft x 3ft size option. Or, for a more traditional approach, a 2.4m square wooden pergola is ideal to cover a hot tub or BBQ.

Zest4Leisure

As a family run business ourselves, it's always a pleasure to meet the Zest4Leisure team which is headed up by Steve Morgan. We were delighted to see what's going on for the new season and to hear of the £400,000 investment in product development facilities and personnel. To satisfy the increased consumer demand for Grow Your Own, Zest have created the Tall Vertical Herb Stand that maximizes growing space on a small footprint with easy access to five troughs.

The new Small Space Cold Frame, designed to fit onto the bestselling Raised Herb Planter, also works as a standalone product or, when combined with the herb planter, becomes an easily accessible cold frame with greater growing depth.

One of the team favourites was Zest’s elegant Cherry Blossom Arch which was awarded this year's Glee’s New Product Award'. This arch has been inspired by Japanese architecture and is absolutely on trend, bringing an oriental feel to your garden or outside space.

With lockdown restrictions having created a new trend in outdoor entertaining, the Folding Garden Bar that comes ready-built will be an ideal multi-purpose addition to your garden, as it can also be used as a potting table before folding away easily and stored for winter.

Managing director, Steve Morgan explained:

Henri Studio

We have been selling Henri Studio products for over 40 years and the brand remains the world’s leading designer and manufacturer of cast stone garden fountains and statuary, producing classic and contemporary pieces which are all available in a range of unique finishes. Frank Honold, who is the President of Henri Studio, and his wife, Jill, who is the Head of Finance and HR, were on the stand this year for the first time at Glee having travelled across the water from Chicago where they are based. We were delighted to meet them both for a catch up since we last met in 2018 and more importantly to discuss future business in 2022 with the UK distributor Border Stoneware and our representative, Tony Hobbs. 

GardenSite currently has a huge stock of Henri studio on the ground in the UK and are exploring ways to support the trade and UK end-users with Henri Studio spares and accessories for any Henri Studio item that has been sold in the past. We are looking to expand the range and continue to support the creativity that Henri Studio is renowned for.

Altico

Altico is a new name to the gardening industry being showcased at Glee, set up by former Kelkay owner Antony Harker and run by an experienced team known within the trade. We were very interested to see what was on offer and being presented and,  we were lucky to be shown around by Antony himself, meaning that we got the full Altico experience which did not disappoint.

Altico seems to be pushing the boundaries to deliver the best in the landscaping category, with inspiring displays of aggregates and excellent packaging and point of sale support, making it easier to top up rockery or stacking aggregate bags. The choice was exceptional, with over 125 products and the entire Decorative Aggregates range is presented in 100% recyclable packaging with 30% reclaimed material added, this supported Altico’s pledge to reduce waste of single use plastics wherever possible.

Home delivery will be soon available and we look forward to being able to distribute this new brand of products in 2022.

VegePod

David explored the VegePod stand. A company offering a selection of raised vegetable beds and planters that are self-watering and combine with an integral cover to double as a mini greenhouse perfect for growing a wide variety of plants, salad produce and vegetables throughout the year whilst also being protected from the elements and predators which love to dig up your precious crops!

Vegepod's vegetable garden kits are available in small, medium and large sizes and we hope to be stocking them soon.

Bermuda

The Bermuda stand which had heaps of new and exciting products on display is ready to launch in 2022.

New products range from a very family-friendly My First Pond Kit which, as you can probably guess from the name, makes it as easy as possible to create your own pond at home. The kit includes everything you can think of (apart from the fish!) such as a pond filter, pond liner, fish net, water treatment solution and much more. Perfect for anyone looking to create a pond of their own at home.

On top of this, Bermuda has another 80+ new products eagerly waiting to be launched next year, from preformed pond pools to a new pond vacuum and decorative ornaments.

Norfolk Leisure introduce Norfolk Grills, Cook King and Ooni

Norfolk Leisure, a brand that we have already worked with successfully for many years, have now introduced a new line of innovative cooking equipment including grills, pizza ovens, fireplates and baskets. One thing that we really picked up on from our day at Glee was that these types of products have flown off the shelves this year with everyone being stuck at home due to the pandemic and wanting to make the most out of their outdoor space. We were shown around the stand by our local rep who detailed the advantages of their upcoming cooking range over other similar brands due to the thickness of the materials and the fact that they will be imported from Poland rather than China. We are very much looking forward to adding these exciting new items to our existing lines and anticipate that they will be most popular amongst keen outdoor chefs!

Veg-Trug

It was a great delight to catch up with Veg-Trug, a supplier with whom we have worked closely in the past retailing their wide range of grow-your-own planters, frames and accessories, to confirm that GardenSite can now reinstate their direct home delivery service which is back up and running after being affected by difficulties owing to the pandemic.

IvyLine

It was great to speak to a brand representative at Ivyline to show the new ranges into which they have branched out. Still showcasing their beautifully designed garden pots, Ivyline also had an eye-catching display of fire pits and chimineas they have recently launched. They explained they wanted to create products that were high in demand, on trend but also unique to their brand and they certainly delivered.

Hamac

Hamac, one of the country’s largest distributors of water features and garden ornaments, is another company that we have worked with extensively over the years. We mainly sell their ever-popular water feature range however, we were pleasantly surprised at Glee this year to see their vast range of new products, some of which included their Garden Creations range of small animal features and their new table-top water features, perfect for adding a touch of class and serenity to a small space. Our favourite newcomer was, however, their interactive Christmas range which included breathing polar-bears and dancing reindeers! Kayleigh took to their Snowman bench which we think would look fabulous in GardenSite’s Christmas Shop in Sutton Coldfield:

We spoke extensively with Hamac’s MD, Brian Hamilton, who was very positive about their future and our continued relationship which we anticipate will continue to blossom this year!

Glee, NEC Birmingham back in 2022...

Glee returns earlier next year, for the first time in the 47 year show history Glee 2022 will take place on 28th-30th June 2022 and we already look forward to it.