Trendy?

I often wonder what other goes through other gardener’s minds when they read or watch Garden Trends reports.

There are a shocking number of posts like these, from Extensions to the RHS to blogs to magazines and companies looking to sell something new. They range from ideologies to specific plants, from space use to products. Of course, I read a few of them because I am interested in what new things will (maybe) be available to me. But I’m often left lacking the sense of excitement that I was hoping for.

New plants are, lately, just more compact versions of existing plants. This is great news for those with similarly compact spaces, but the last thing I want or need in a plant is for it to be smaller.

New gear is increasingly hyper-specific or over-engineered, or worse eye-searingly expensive. Patio chairs and planters that start at 4 figures? Hard pass.

Color trends is another one that I don’t fully understand. It makes more sense to me with interior design or fashion, but I’m not sure I fully understand its application to my perennial beds. Nor do I want to see less color options in nurseries in favor of swathes of said color of the year.

The ideological trends have seemed to stall out in a repeating pattern over the past few years too: Low Maintenance, Urban Spaces, Indoor/Outdoor Living, Pollinator Friendly, Get Kids Involved, Gimmicky Food Gardens, and Houseplants. All great ideas and topics, but seemingly nothing new.

I’m sure its already obvious that these trends don’t do much to sway me (I like what I like, even when no one else does and I can’t get it locally), but I’d be lying if I said they didn’t impact me. We all know these trends manifest themselves in local nursery stock, books, speaker topics, and they clearly drive content across all media platforms.

How do you, fellow gardeners, interpret these trends, if at all? Do you notice their impact locally? Do these trends inform and/or impact your garden year to year?

1 thought on “Trendy?”

  1. I guess not all trends are created equal. Some are welcome and have deep roots – and I hope they continue. Others are mere fashion. It’s true that there is a big push for more compact plants – I had not thought about that, partly because we have limited space and I have an interest in such plants. Most new plants are weird, in my view, often in colors that are not appealing or suitable. And I don’t like variegated leaves. If new stuff fits in with what I already like, I may buy it, otherwise I pass.

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