“Two fundamental issues will drive gardening trends in 2015—erratic weather patterns and a growing concern for the environment,” according to Tom Tiddens, supervisor of plant health care at the Chicago Botanic Garden. He has predicted increasing focus on:
- Cumulative Stress: Several years of erratic weather (drought followed by prolonged, record-breaking cold) have had a cumulative stress effect on many plants, especially evergreens. Stress causes a lack of plant vigor, increasing plants’ susceptibility to pests and diseases.
- Rainwater Management: Rain gardens temporarily hold rainwater, relying on specialized native plants to wick up to 30% more water into the soil than a typical lawn, minimizing the pollutants that flow into storm drains. The native plants used in rain gardens also provide habitat for birds, bees and beneficial insects.
- Corresponding Color Schemes: Gardeners will move toward more monochromatic displays, such as using shades of red alone, or shades of purples and blues together in the same design. Increased use of leaf interest will provide texture and shades of green. Pollak also predicts home gardeners will use their outdoor spaces more and more for relaxing and entertaining, increasing the demand for outdoor decor.
- Less is More: New compact hybrid perennials will be making their way into the U.S. market next year. New breeding efforts have produced dwarf versions of Japanese anemones (Anemone x hybrida) that are perfect for containers or the front of the border. New compact cultivars of little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) will become more widely available in 2015.
- Birds, Bees and Butterflies: The increased availability of equipment and support, both online, and at better garden centers, and botanical gardens will help boost the number of backyard beekeepers. There wukk be a continued rise in bird- and pollinator-friendly gardens filled with nectar-rich and native host plants, fueling a continuing upward trend in the demand for organic, pesticide-free and non-GMO plants and products.
Garden Media Group released its annual garden trends report for 2015. “Unearthing the Best Life” identifies nine consumer trends that will shape the garden and outdoor living industry and resonate in the coming year.
- The New Consumers: The millennial generation (18-35), making up 25 percent of the population in the United States, is bigger than the baby boomer generation and continues to grow. Young men are spending $100 more per year on plants and garden products than the average consumer. Hispanics, the fastest growing segment of the U.S., have a cultural tradition of growing food for their family and sharing with friends.
- Wellbeing: Consumers want to make the world a better place with products that are environmentally friendly and safe for pets and children.
- Garden-tainment: People are estimated to spend $7 billion on outdoor décor in 2015. They will use their outdoor spaces as an extension of their homes to entertain.
- Bite-Sized Decadence: Small container gardens will pack a lot of punch in 2015.
- Rebel-hoods: Neighborhood residents are rebelling against and campaigning for the reversal of ordinances. They will work to transform the neighborhood to the agri-hood – complete with urban chickens, bee keepers and lawn-less landscapes.
- Color Pops: This year, use trending color palettes – ranging from vintage to muted rustic to teal – to show off personality outdoors.
- Portable Gardening: The rise of “NOwners” who prize freedom over homeownership is fueling modular flexibility that allows for unique design and personalization. They are renting, sharing and bartering and want their gardens to travel with them.
- Bed Head Style: Purposefully un-styled outdoor spaces are the result of intentionally working within the natural landscape. This casual landscape style expresses an effortless personality with an “anything goes” attitude.
- Smoke Your Garden: With an increasing number of states decriminalizing marijuana, more people will begin growing their own and need seeds, plants and products.
(Garden Media Group specializes in home, garden, horticulture, outdoor living, lawn and landscape industries, offering innovative PR campaigns designed to secure top media placements and partnerships.)