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The new 80-piece collection picks up on the growing trend for living spaces closer to nature. UK houseplant sales are forecast to top £4 billion this year with 18-34 year olds the biggest fans. Foli8’s offering breaks new ground with the plants cradled in compostable pots made of coir, coconut husks that are usually discarded. The UK sector currently uses 500 million plastic pots a year many of which still end up in landfill.
Post Brexit there is also an opportunity for small businesses to start propagating plants here in the UK
Matt Anderson, co-founder Foli8
Second generation cousins and joint CEOs Matt and Darrell Anderson run the family landscape design and floristry business from a six-acre nursery in Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire, where the houseplants (from £9.50) are brought on after propagation overseas.
“Lockdown accelerated our plan to diversify and expand,” says Matt. “We have continued our commercial services caring for our clients’ plants. Demand was down, although picking up again now.
“Post Brexit there is also an opportunity for other small businesses to start propagating plants here in the UK. It’s trade that died out, but the market is changing and we would very much like to hear from any entrepreneurs taking this route.”
Renowned as an expert in corporate planting for the past 44 years, parent Planteria, which was founded in 1977 by brothers Brian and Phil Anderson, employs 75 staff and had a £8 million turnover last year. Foli8 has a new 15-strong workforce and is targeting £1 million of sales.
Most popular plants are easy care succulents, aka “the unkillables”, and those evoking tranquillity such as the Peace Lily. One the Elephant Ear even absorbs sound.
Coir pots encourage stronger roots and health plants. Repotting is super easy with the old planter just slotting into the bigger new one and avoiding root damage in the process.
The Andersons’ hot ticket is the feathery-leafed, tropical Ming Aralia (£22) that exudes a spicy aroma.
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