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Gloucestershire Business News

Stroud business is blooming as gardeners go green

An organic gardening business near Stroud is seeing a huge rise in sales, as green fingered growers look for eco-friendly ways to manage their gardens during lockdown.

Gardening Naturally is a small, family-run business based near Aston Down, who specialise in organic solutions that allow gardeners to grow fruit and vegetables without the use of pesticides.

One of their top-selling products this season are nematodes - microscopic worms that eat garden pests without harming other wildlife

For gardeners who want to ditch the chemicals but keep their vegetable patch looking vibrant, these little creatures really are the way to go.

The 2mm-long worms aren't visible to the naked eye, but they work their way into common pests and kill them in a humane way, without the need of pesticides.

They come in packets of 10 million, which will cover the size of an average back garden and can be applied using a watering can or sprayer.

Julie Brandreth, director of Gardening Naturally, said: "During the current lockdown, business is booming. We're seeing lots of people taking up gardening for the first time, as well as experienced practitioners who may have more time to try out something new.

"What we're also noticing is that more people are looking for environmentally-friendly ways to create their perfect outdoor space, without the use of pesticides or harmful, toxic chemicals.

"For the organic grower, nematodes really are an amazing biological weapon and a great way to get rid of those creepy-crawlies who like to nibble your crops. They're super easy to use and can be delivered by us straight to your door."

Unlike chemical sprays that may drift off target, these little worms make sure that other wildlife is not affected and will help get rid of bugs and slugs without harming in anything else in the process.

The nematodes arrive in a sachet which should be mixed with water, then applied with a watering can or hose attachment to a soil that has been well watered. It normally takes between three and seven days to see results, with the maximum effect occurring over two to four weeks. And because the nematodes disintegrate the pests from the inside out, you won't see dead insect bodies as you would with a chemical knockdown.

Ms Brandreth added: "We are one of the UK's biggest distributors of nematodes and are pleased that so many green-fingered growers across the Cotswolds are ditching chemical pesticides for kinder, organic gardening treatments. We've seen a surge in sales this year, which is a trend that looks set to continue throughout the summer.

"People around the world are turning to gardening as a soothing, family-friendly hobby - but they want to do that in a way that's kind to the environment. That's why we're providing customers with all the tools they need, including netting, traps and barriers which ensure they'll be eating their fruit and veggies, and not the insect pests!"

"We are blessed with a wonderful temperate climate here in the Cotswolds, and with people spending more time at home than ever before, this is the perfect opportunity for local people to re-connect with their gardens and create a beautiful outside space."

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