HTA: Councils need to take a leaf out of gardeners books

The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) is to call on councils across England to take action to make sure that the planting and landscaping promised by developers responsible for private and public projects is actually being carried out.

The move comes following a 50 per cent reduction in the amount of planting in recent years.

Research has shown that plants help improve social behaviour, reduce crime, and increase recovery rates in hospitals and productivity in the workplace.

They are also integral in improving the environment and health and mental wellbeing of those around them, according to the HTA.

It is therefore important that keeping the nation green is not a task left on the shoulders of gardeners who often fill their own land and greenhouses with wonderful examples of what developers could and should be doing.

HTA director general David Gwyther explained what the organisation hoped to achieve by going to the local authorities.

"This is a call to action," he said.

"Local authorities need to increase the frequency of their inspections on new private and public developments to ensure promised planting and landscaping actually takes place.

"Fundamentally, they should also increase the levels of planting on new, private and public developments and they should review their planning departments to ensure they have access to high quality horticultural advice."