Skip to main content

Your basket is empty

No Image
Product Code: 

Find out more about our finance options here.

Close Flyout

back to article list

An Interview With | Tom Grant, Aylett Nurseries

Each month we go behind the scenes with one of our 300 expert stockists nationwide to bring you ideas, inspiration, and an insider's guide to life at the garden centre. This month we hear from Tom Grant from one of the leading garden centres in the southeast of England, Aylett Nurseries.

1.) Which part of the garden centre do you work in?

I work in the furniture and seasonal department.


2.) What is the best part of your job?

The variety it offers me and the different and new information that I get to learn. No one day is the same in the garden centre and within my role.


3) Classic or Contemporary? What is your preferred garden style?

My preferred garden style would have to be Classic, as I feel that classic is an old time great and never dies with the ages - it literally fits in with everything.


4) Solo or Social? What would be your ideal garden set up? In a cocoon reading a book in a quiet spot in the garden, or everyone gathered together for a big family BBQ?

 A garden is there to be enjoyed by everyone and for us to share with our friends and family, but it can also be your tranquil escape. I would have to therefore say that I wouldn't necessarily have a preference because your garden can be good for both and be used to socialise and also for you to get yourself lost in for some mindfulness. Having some form of natural wildflowers too for the wildlife around us is also something I'd like to incorporate.


5) What do you think is the best time of day to spend outdoors?

I believe that the early morning is the best time to spend outdoors as the garden and 'wider outdoor world' is waking up from the darkness of night and you can sit in your garden and have a cup of tea/coffee, your breakfast or just sit and admire your greenspace and just be one with nature for a short while before the day really gets started, the early morning sounds of the birds waking up, the fresh smells of the garden coming through.


6) What is the most important thing you think someone should consider when designing their garden?

The most important thing to consider is what the purpose of your garden will be - is it going to a tranquil green space just for you to get away from it all - or is it going to be for hosting large gatherings of people for all those social events that you hold. Other key questions and considerations to make are that of the size of the space you are working with, whether you want to invite as much nature in as possible, or you want it to be as clean and tidy as can be.


7) When it comes to gardening, what do you think is the one job we should all be doing this month?

Now we are into April - this is the time of year to cut out all the 'deadwood' from your garden and to watch the bulbs planted last autumn start to shoot and flower. It's also the time of year to be planning for the gardening year ahead and thinking about what you want to be doing in your greenspace for the rest of the year.


8) What is one, universal, tip you would recommend for any would-be grower?

Start small. And start easy - you can always increase the number of plants you have, and you can also increase the difficulty in which plants you decide to grow. The main thing you don't want to happen is that you get growing and then one by one everything dies, and you get disheartened by it all and eventually give up. Anyone can be a green fingered grower with the right approach.


9) What choices can we make that will benefit our gardens, and the environment?

The choices we make in our gardens can have and will have a lasting impact on both the local wildlife and the landscape in terms of the products that we use and the species that we choose to plant. We are at a crossroads in terms of climate change, and we can still all do our bit to be more environmentally conscious such as not to use compost made from peat or even better making your own compost and to plant species in our gardens that are suited to our soil types. We also need to be wary of what products we use to help protect and grow our plant life in terms of pesticides and herbicides and my recommendation would be to only use ones that have all natural ingredients in them in the first instance.


10) What do you love most about gardening, and being in the garden?

The thing I love most about gardening is that I can feel as if I am one with nature and can find a lot of mindfulness in being in the great outdoors, even if that is just in my own little oasis of calm. There is also something so magical about seeing all the different species of plants grow and how the local wildlife interacts with them, and I love seeing what can be done in my garden to attract different species of wildlife.



Aylett Nurseries is one of the leading garden centres in the south east of England, and was established over 65 years ago. This family-run business is renowned for their dedication to plants and exemplary service and their reputation is founded on their passion for horticulture and a commitment to fostering a welcoming environment for their customers.


Garden Centre Opening Times:

Monday - Saturday: 9am until 5.30pm

Sunday: 10.30am until 4.30pm

May & August Bank Holiday Opening Hours: 9am until 5.30pm