As winter draws in and Christmas beckons, indoor plants, floral and foliage decorations assume greater significance. David Coton suggests how you can transform your home with the colourful interest of seasonal plants.
With all the numbers from yesterday's budget in mind, David Coton has been looking through some statistics in relation to the horticultural industry.
While some industries are always in the public eye, car manufacturing and financial services are two examples, it is easy to forget, or not even to know, that horticulture has a major influence on the UK economy.
According to the Horticultural Trades Association, £10.4bn is spent in the UK on garden products, tourism and services.
It's also a major employer with 300,000 people employed in horticulture and landscaping.
The value of UK plant and flower production is £2bn, although £1bn worth of plants and flowers are imported.
Tourism is another factor that makes horticulture so important with a third of tourists visiting a park or garden and contributing £1.4bn to the economy.
Following the success of the recent Hampton Court Flower Show, it's no surprise that membership of the RHS has risen quite dramatically from 90,000 to 440,000 since 2010.
The charity is hoping to pump £100m over the next ten years into developing the next generation of horticulturalists including a Northern School.
Their Campaign for School Gardening involves 19,000 schools while a Greening Grey Britain Campaign has a three year target to transform 6000 unloved spaces from grey to green.
What isn't so encouraging is a statistic from the most recent Growing Trends Survey showing that there's now three times as many paved over front gardens as ten years ago, amounting to 25% of the total.
London, Liverpool and Birmingham are the most paved over, with Edinburgh, Plymouth and the Norwich the greenest. Most depressing is that 25% of people don't worry about the consequences of this trend including an increase in the chance of flooding, although 61% are saddened by the sight.
Much more upbeat is the fact that 93% of people have a garden or grow plants, including 89% of under 25s.
Gardens are used for a variety of activities, gardening is tops with 85%, while 82% of people just use them to relax in. Over half of respondents barbecue and socialise, 42% sunbathe, and 37% watch wildlife with 51% having a specific wildlife area.
The most popular reasons for gardening are personal pleasure (71%) and the desire to create a beautiful space (62%). To attract wildlife and improve the environment comes in at 30%, and nearly as popular is that it's seen as a healthy activity.
In fact 92% think that gardening helps to relax and de-stress, a great way to lift your mood. So instead of going to the doctor when you feel low, the message is to get out into the garden.
There's no doubt that television provides gardeners with inspiration, tips and good ideas, that's why we're all looking forward to new programmes and the return of old favourites during 2019.
The InternetRetailing Growth 2000 Report was published last week and the great news for GardenSite and our customers is that we are now listed as one of the UK's top 1000 retail websites.
Although snow has arrived at the garden centre, we will be receiving new stock during February in readiness for spring which hopefully is just around the corner, and David Coton suggests the jobs you should be tackling in the garden this month.
Wood burners and open fires that require a good supply of dry, well seasoned wood, have enjoyed a resurgence in popularity over the past few years. Log stores have therefore become increasingly essential and David Coton explains the differences between the many that are now available.