Unfortunately for the 1,600 customers who ordered and paid for plants at Kelways last autumn, Ipeco says it can do nothing; as creditors, none of them has high priority. As potential future clients, though, surely they have top priority? Mr Johnson should be honouring those orders, if not this season, then next.
READERS with long memories may remember a campaign in this column to improve mail-order services offered by nurseries. Kelways, the peony specialists from Langport in Somerset, came in for more than the usual amount of criticism. When receivers were called in there in December, it looked as if the nursery, which supplied peonies for Monet's garden, would disappear altogether. Now it has been rescued by Chris Johnson of Ipeco Holdings, an aero-engineering company that has already saved McBeans, the orchid nursery in Sussex, from a similar fate.