Monty Don blasts garden centres for ‘choosing to harm’ the environment

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Also criticising the availability of “mass-produced disposable” plants, the TV presenter urged customers not to buy these products to help protect the environment. The 65-year-old admitted that cheap plants do bring joy to people. But he said the cost to the planet is not worth it. Instead, he said, we should be trying to grow our own.

Writing about climate change in the Gardeners’ World magazine, Monty said: “If you don’t care about this then you are sticking your head in the sand, not least because it will affect the quality of life for your children and grandchildren, let alone for the sake of diversity of life on this overcrowded planet.”

He said the responsibility is on gardeners, but also on the garden centres they shop at.

He said: “For gardeners, this means we have to consume connections.

“Start with the lowest hanging fruit – never buy peat in a potting compost.

“And don’t buy plants that are grown in peat.

“No garden centre should stock these things.

“If they do, then they are actively choosing to do harm.

“We should not be buying cheap, mass-produced disposable plants.

“We should either grow them ourselves or buy them locally from small producers.”

Earlier this year BBC Countryfile presenter John Craven urged gardeners to stop using peat compost or risk losing the “UK’s version of the rainforests”.

The veteran broadcaster warned that extracting peat from “healthy bogs” – a vital store of carbon – and selling it as compost was still widespread, despite pleas from the Government and conservationists.

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