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Four Oaks Trade Show Review

Four Oaks is a long running, commercial horticultural show held anually. Held in a 23 acre nursery site in Cheshire, the exhibition covers an area of 17,000m² under glass with additional outdoor areas.

We attended Four Oaks in collaboration with our partner Elmer Print of Denmark who were showcasing their range of printable tray wraps and pot sleeves. With our brand new exhibition stand in place, we were looking forward to showcasing our range of horticultural labelling products.

Although the event seemed quieter than on previous occasions, the number of enquiries we received was up, which is really positive news for IML!  At one point over the two days, the ‘Tour Of Britain’ cycling race passed by just outside the venue, and many show visitors gathered outside to watch and enjoy the sunshine, which certainly made it feel quieter inside!

However, as well as the quantity, the quality of individual enquiries we received was better than last year, which made the show a worthwhile event for us. The enquiries we received came from a mixture of existing and prospective customers.

One of our main reasons for attending this year was to launch our new horticultural label product – fully customisable plant picture labels. We’re pleased to say this launch was a huge success! We were confident our customers would love this new product, and the reaction exceeded our expectations. Which is understandable; never before has there been the option for nurseries and garden centres to have the ability to design a pictorial label. With our pictorial labels, you can:

  • Update the description and care instructions to suit regional growing conditions
  • Add an image of your choosing from a stock database, HLS or import your own
  • Add corporate branding if required anywhere on the label (prominently or discreetly to suit your marketing strategy)

These pictorial labels perfectly blend the needs of horticultural marketing and production departments.


We are currently in the process of following up on these leads and prospective orders for delivery late 2016/early 2017.

Many of our offers at the show were focused on benefiting our existing customers. For example: discounted OKI colour printers, discounted upgrades to HLS software, a free printing system health-check. We always aim for long-term relationships with our customers, and so we don’t reserve our best offers for new customers only!

We feel confident that the announcement of Four Oaks being up for sale this year presents an exciting opportunity to revitalise the show, which has retained the same branding and format for many years now. Four Oaks is well recognised and respected as being the biggest and most influential show of its kind in the UK. We believe the show will benefit from new ideas and strategy, whilst maintaining some recognisable features and traditions of Four Oaks which will, hopefully, come through new ownership working in collaboration with existing event organisers.