UK Grower Focus

UK Grower Focus

This month we focus on Worcestershire based Fruit Tree Grower Frank P Matthews.

Building on Recent Success

Frank P Matthews have seen demand for their trees grow significantly in recent years and have increased production in response with 10% more stock this autumn and another 10% lined up for next year. Matthew Thomas, Sales Manager, explains how this is down to a number of factors:

“We have always put great emphasis on growing the best possible trees which has helped build our brand reputation - customers have faith that trees grown by us will perform well for years to come. Trees are often a considered purchase to it’s important to get it right.”

'British Trees, British Roots'

“Gardeners are also keen on buying British grown plants. With our extensive mother orchards providing scion wood and our own rootstock production we are able to produce 100% British stock. This has become a key selling point: gardeners like to support British growers in the knowledge that plants grown locally often do better and are less likely to come with any biosecurity risks. Our tag line ‘British Trees, British Roots’ is now on all our labels.”

New Introductions

“Another important part of our work is bringing exciting new introductions to the market. This is a long term investment that has paid dividends and adds interest to the choice of varieties available. Some of our introductions, such as Apple ‘Scrumptious’, have quickly become bestsellers. More recently Malus ‘Aros’ (top right) won Best in Show at the HTA New Plant Awards and is proving very popular in garden centres.”

Apple ‘Scrumptious’

Heritage Varieties

“The internet also enables customers to discover some of the more unusual varieties we grow, highlighting the importance of growing the extensive range we offer. Whilst bestsellers such as Plum Victoria and Robinia Frisia remain hugely popular we have also seen a marked increase in people wanting heritage varieties of fruit and more exotic ornamentals. Online shopping is a growth market too and is well suited to finding trees not easily available in garden centres.”

Excellent Customer Service

“Ultimately all of this has to be backed up with excellent customer service. We have a strong loyal customer base which we never take for granted and we aim to provide them with all the support they need in a friendly and efficient manner. We produce a good range of marketing support materials and have recently revamped our website so it has more information than ever.”

Asked whether Brexit is likely to have an impact on sales, Matthew replied: “As long as the economy is strong then we remain optimistic that the demand for trees will continue to steadily grow, there are just too many good reasons to plant a tree!”

Tel: 01584 810214.