THE owners of a garden centre have dug out their tools to make sure people won’t be short of flowers to plant when the coronavirus crisis is over.

Cardwell Garden Centre directors Drew, Kieran and Stefanie Gallagher have been looking after thousands of seedlings and plug plants inside a giant greenhouse. The family decided to completely close Cardwell for business on March 23 to protect customers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Staff have been put on furlough until the centre reopens, meaning it is left to the three directors to look after their massive stock of plants in the early stages of growth in the 12-acre nursery. Geraniums, begonias, petunias and Bacopas are just some of the flowering plants they are watering and caring for. The Cardwell bosses are hoping the current restrictions will be lifted in time for the garden centre, near Gourock to re-open and allow people to restock their gardens.

Drew Gallagher said: “These are extraordinary times we are living in and only the second time the centre has been closed since our father, Eric opened a nursery in 1962. The last time was in 2018 when the Beast from the East brought unusually freezing cold temperatures and heavy snow.”

He added: “The plants growing in our nursery need a lot of attention, so Kieran, Stefanie and myself are going back on the tools to make sure we have top quality plants for gardeners when we come out the other end of this crisis."

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