Retailers who put their weight behind the Be Plant Wise campaign by ordering posters and leaflets to display in their shops can expect a special note of thanks from the GB Non-Native Species Secretariat.

The Secretariat, part of a DEFRA agency, is responsible for spreading the message about the harm non-native plants can do if they get into the wild and helped create the Be Plant Wise campaign to tackle the issue of aquatic plants invading the countryside.

It is now writing to all the shop-owners who previously asked for Be Plant Wise campaign materials to say a special thank you for supporting the fight to raise awareness about the problem.

“We wanted to say thank you to the businesses who’ve been in touch with us to ask for our shop display materials. Without their support it would be a lot harder to raise the public’s awareness about this issue. By making their staff and customers aware of how important it is to responsibly manage aquatic plants, they’ve all helped to prevent the spread of invasive non-native species into our natural environment,” said Dr Niall Moore from the GB Non-Native Species Secretariat.

“Many of these will be OATA members and it’s always pleasing when a government body takes the time to acknowledge and say thank you for the help that busy retailers are playing in tackling this important issue,” said OATA Chief Executive Keith Davenport.

“Hopefully warmer weather is just round the corner which will bring more customers into shops wanting to spruce up their ponds with new purchases. So it’s a great time to carry on spreading the message and we hope all shops selling aquatic plants and fish will be ordering their free Be Plant Wise shop display items to continue to hammer home the message.”

Retailers can order a free Be Plant Wise display kit for their shop by emailing the Secretariat direct here.