IPC Media’s closure of New Eden and Romsey Publishing’s disposal of
Garden Ideas signal a waning of the Charlie Dimmock-inspired trend in
Both magazines launched last year at the height of the fad, when
gardening programmes began usurping cookery and DIY shows in the
Despite popular interest in the pastime generated by TV, the bi-monthly
New Eden recorded a debut ABC of only 25,820 for the second half of last
year - significantly below IPC’s expectations.
At the start of June, IPC moved its gardening portfolio of New Eden,
Amateur Gardening and Your Garden from the Country and Leisure group
into Southbank, to join the home interest titles.
The strategy was to sell the two portfolios together. However, although
editorial and marketing has since moved to Southbank, the gardening
titles have continued to be sold by the Country and Leisure sales team,
headed by ad director Jean Christie.
The two sales people dedicated to New Eden will continue to sell the
other two gardening magazines.
New Eden had a more designer and contemporary image than the traditional
gardening fare and was aimed at urban yuppies who were new to the hobby.
Editorial had an upmarket lifestyle tone and advertising was targeted
accordingly. The current July/August issue carries ads for BMW, Saab,
Campari, Ericsson and Clinique. Features cover Hampstead roof terraces
and designers’ gardening sculptures.
One industry observer commented that New Eden was too self-indulgent,
and suggested IPC had gambled in chasing a TV audience which, it
transpired, was not interested in gardening magazines.
’Visit any garden centre or flower show and you will see that committed
gardeners are not trendy but conservative and predominantly
middle-aged,’ he added.
The bi-monthly Garden Ideas is to be folded into SPL Publishing’s
Gardens Made Easy, which launched in April. Next year, frequency will
increase to monthly.
Garden Ideas was launched a year ago as a practical gardening guide to
compliment Romsey’s coffee-table title The English Garden.
Last year’s second-half ABC for Garden Ideas was 27,294. The result for
the first six months of this year is expected to show growth in sales to
more than 40,000. However, the first half of the year is the peak period
for gardening titles.