As a leading supplier of garden decking and fencing we’re obsessed with all things gardening. In this blog post we’ll explore the latest UK gardening statistics, providing you with surprising insights into this flourishing pastime. Did you know that a whopping 27 million people in the UK enjoy gardening? Would you have suspected that more than half of millennials would rather visit a garden centre than a nightclub? Let's take this journey through the thriving world of UK gardening.
Top Statistics (Editors Picks)
- Estimated number of gardeners in UK: 27 million
- Percentage that enjoy gardening in UK: 42%
- Gender distribution among gardeners in the UK: 57% female
- Percentage of gardeners aged 55 or above in the UK: 51.42%
- Millennials preferring garden centre visits over nightclubs: 54%
- Number of people that started gardening during COVID-19: Over 7 million
- Percentage of UK adults who grow their own herbs, fruits, and vegetables: 35%
- UK spending on garden goods, plants, and flowers in 2021: £7.6 billion
HOW MANY GARDENERS ARE THERE IN THE UK?
In the UK, an estimated 27 million people enjoy gardening as a hobby - 42% of the population. In terms of employment, there were around 144,400 professional gardeners and landscape gardeners in the UK in 2022.
- An estimated 27 million Brits partake in gardening activities. 1.
- 42% of UK residents enjoy gardening during their leisure time. 2.
- In 2022, approximately 144,400 people were gainfully employed as gardeners or landscape gardeners in the UK. 3.
HOW MUCH TIME IS SPENT GARDENING?
The typical gardener in the UK devotes just over 2 hours weekly, or around 114 hours annually, to maintaining their outdoor spaces.
- On average, UK gardeners dedicate just above 2 hours weekly to the care of their gardens. 4.
- Annually, a typical gardener in the UK invests approximately 114 hours into their gardening tasks. 4.
Breaking it down...
In an average year, a Brit allocates about 15 hours to mowing the lawn, 13 hours weeding, and another 8 hours beautifying sheds and fences with paint. Watering plants claims a substantial chunk of their time, taking up to 45 hours. Additionally, 9 hours are dedicated to keeping hedges neatly trimmed, while 4 hours are spent on jet washing patios to keep them looking fresh and clean. 4.
WHAT GENDER ARE MOST GARDENERS IN THE UK?
The majority of UK gardeners are women. Consumer insights data in 2014 showed that 57% of gardening enthusiasts are female. This statistic seems to hold true in the professional sphere as well; in the 2018 Hampton Court Palace Flower Show, 57% of the gardens showcased were the handiwork of female designers or teams.
- Consumer data from 2014 indicates that females make up 57% of gardeners in the UK. 5.
- A review of the 2018 Hampton Court Palace Flower Show revealed a similar trend, with female designers or teams being responsible for 57% of the displayed gardens. 6.
Battle of the sexes…
In an intriguing twist, a 2020 survey revealed close competition between genders in household gardening. 35% of men reported being the primary gardeners in their homes, only slightly ahead of the 33% of women who claimed the same. 2. This suggests a relatively even distribution of green-fingered enthusiasts across genders at home, despite women being the majority in the broader UK gardening scene.
WHAT AGE GROUP GARDENS THE MOST?
Over half of the individuals who love to garden in the UK are aged 55 and above (51.42%). This group not only enjoys a slightly higher than average income by 9%, but the majority of them (83%) also have an empty nest, without any children living at home.
- Over half (51.42%) of the UK's gardening enthusiasts are individuals aged 55 or above. 2.
- This age group enjoys an income that is, on average, 9% higher than the rest. 5.
- The majority of these older gardeners (83%) are likely to be empty nesters, with no children residing at home. 5.
Moving down the age bracket, gardening still holds considerable appeal. People between the ages of 45 to 54 aren't far behind with 41.1% enjoying this activity. The interest remains steady for the 35 to 44 age range, capturing 37.2% of green thumbs. Those between 25 to 34 are still fairly involved, representing 35.2% of garden enthusiasts. Lastly, even the youngest demographic, those aged 16 to 24, show a significant interest in gardening, comprising 31.2% of the population. 2.
DO MILLENNIALS ENJOY GARDENING?
Perhaps surprisingly, 75% of millennials say they enjoy gardening, spending an average of two hours weekly tending their plants. Their view of horticulture has changed too, with 83% now considering gardening as 'cool'. Moreover, more than half of millennials (54%) would choose a trip to a garden centre over a night out clubbing!
- 75% of millennials have indicated their enjoyment in cultivating plants. 7.
- Young adults dedicate nearly two hours each week to nurturing their cherished plants. 8.
- 83% of this age group now regard gardening as 'cool'. 8.
- Over half (54%) would prefer a visit to a garden centre over a nightclub. 8.
Covid-19 Gardening Trends
HOW MUCH DID GARDENING INCREASE DURING THE PANDEMIC?
The COVID-19 pandemic sparked a gardening boom in the UK. In 2020, 77% of people said they were gardening more or the same amount and over 3.5 million new gardeners emerged. This trend intensified, and by 2022, 7 million new gardeners had taken up the activity.
- In September 2020, 77% of UK residents said they had maintained or increased their gardening activities compared to pre-pandemic levels. 9.
- The pandemic inspired over 3.5 million people to start gardening in 2020. 10.
- By May 2022, the total number of people who had taken up gardening exceeded 7 million. 11.
A seedbed for new careers...
In 2021, The Royal Horticultural Society's (RHS) work-based programmes experienced a significant influx of applications, witnessing a spike of 58%, the highest recorded in decades. Among the hopeful applicants, nearly three-quarters were individuals seeking a fresh start in their career path, underscoring the role of gardening as a therapeutic, yet potentially professional pursuit. This trend was particularly notable among younger age groups, with the 25-34 year bracket representing 39% of applicants, followed by the 35-44 group at 17%. 12.
WHO GARDENED THE MOST DURING THE PANDEMIC?
During the pandemic, an overwhelming 93% of women turned to gardening more frequently, with a significant one-fifth of them being young women aged 18 to 24. In contrast, only a mere 8% of young men in the same age group increased their gardening activities.
- In 2020, a substantial 93% of women found themselves gardening more frequently, with 20% of this group falling within the 18-24 year-old range. 9.
- Just 8% of young men aged 18-24 reported an increase in their gardening activities. 9.
Grow Your Own
HOW MANY PEOPLE GROW THEIR OWN FOOD IN THE UK?
In the UK, about a third of adults (35%), cultivate their own herbs, fruits, and vegetables. Furthermore, 28% of British adults report having dedicated vegetable patches in their gardens.
- 35% of UK adults cultivate their own herbs, fruits, and vegetables. 13.
- In 2021, nearly three out of every ten adults in the UK, or 28%, said they had vegetable patches in their gardens. 14.
Step up the younger generation...
A sizeable 43% of gardeners under the age of 40 engage in home vegetable cultivation. In contrast, those aged 60 and over trail behind, with only 32% actively growing their own.. This represents a surprising trend in UK gardening habits across the generations. 15.
HOW MUCH DOES THE UK SPEND ON GARDENING?
The UK's spending on gardening has seen significant growth recently. In 2020 UK households spent around £6.2 billion on gardening goods, plants and flowers. This spending surged even further in 2021 to £7.6 billion.
- In 2020, UK spending on garden goods, plants and flowers hit nearly £6.2 billion. 16.
- By 2021, this figure jumped to £7.6 billion, reflecting notable growth. 17.
We've discovered that gardening is a popular pursuit in the uk, with an impressive 27 million people, or 42% of the population, participating. This enthusiasm isn't limited to any specific age group either, with 54% of millennials now preferring a visit to a garden centre over a nightclub! The pandemic played a role, bringing over 7 million new gardening enthusiasts into the fold. These figures, combined with a massive UK gardening expenditure of £7.6 billion in 2021, are a testament to the enduring appeal and growing importance of gardening in the UK's cultural and economic landscape.
1. calculation = 42% of the UK population of 64 Million
3. https://www.statista.com/statistics/319328/number-of-gardeners-and-landscape-gardeners- in-the-uk/