Ian was born and raised in northern England gaining a love of the outdoors from his parents who were avid gardeners. Working for nurseries and landscapers before and during college, Ian has a BSc (Honours) in Horticulture from the University of London and was magna cum laude in his Postgraduate Diploma in Business Management (now referred to as an MBA) at Medway College, also in England.

Working in the economics department at Manchester University led to several years learning and teaching the business of the land-based business as Professor of Management Studies at Merrist Wood College of Agriculture and Horticulture.

He left the public sector and formed a consultancy aimed at helping the garden industry at all levels, thrive and prosper. His early work for retailers and growers in Britain led to similar projects in France, Belgium and Germany, with six years consulting, training and speaking to groups in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and of, course the US.

Ian, now a US citizen, and his wife Lisa (who holds a BS in Horticulture from Michigan State) have operated a consulting firm together for 25 years from their home and garden in Elk Grove, CA. They have assisted hundreds of independent garden centers, nurseries and home goods retailers in a wide range of topics ranging from developing a profitability model to sales team building, from product marketing feasibility to retail design and merchandising.

Ian has helped start-ups survive those first challenging years and re-tuned older established businesses for an improved bottom line. He has been through family-transition challenges, strategic planning retreats, worked with architects and engineers, designed retail sites from the ground up, developed their budgets, and trained salespeople, managers and buyers.

All this in-the-trenches experience, working with some of the best independent retailers in the business has made him a sought after speaker throughout North America and Europe. Ian’s insights are also valuable to numerous suppliers and marketers trying to penetrate the garden category or improve their position, and he has been on retained by some of the most well-known brand names in the industry.

In 2011 Ian began working with National Gardening Association to analyze and write a report on the data collected in their annual National Gardening Survey. Ian’s writing and speaking on the consumer trends and behavioral changes in this excellent report have become a strong feature of his current work for the garden business.