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The 10 Most Searched-for Plants in 2023, According to the NetPS Plant Finder Tool

Red creeping thyme (Thymus praecox ‘Coccineus’) emerged as the most searched-for plant on the NetPS Plant Finder Tool in 2023, signaling a shift in customer preferences. And while trees and shrubs continued to dominate the charts, making up 79 of the top 100 plants, this year’s list revealed surprising new favorites alongside enduring classics.

“Our data shows that shoppers are using the Plant Finder tool on their local garden center’s website for pre-shopping planning,” says James Kohut, President of Northscaping and developer of NetPS. “Gardeners are researching plants considered to be long-term investments, problem-solving, or more expensive: trees, shrubs and larger perennials.”

Functional, problem-solving plants, such as the creeping thyme, dominated the list at 63 of the top 100. Hedge and screening plants make up 13 of the top 100, with arborvitae being the most popular hedge plant compared to boxwoods in previous years.

With more than 35,000 plants and counting, the NetPS Plant Finder Tool, used by 250+ nurseries and garden centers across North America, is the most robust plant database on the market. In 2023, it was searched more than 23 million times by landscape designers, contractors, home landscapers, and gardeners.

The top 100 plants are based on which plant pages were viewed the most as a result of these searches. Users generally search for established plants and well-known varieties more than the newer, more recently named, and branded plants.

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Here are the top 10 plants from the complete list:

  1. Red Creeping Thyme (Thymus praecox ‘Coccineus’)
  2. Red Sentinel Astilbe (Astilbe x arendsii ‘Red Sentinel’)
  3. Sunburst Honeylocust (Gleditsia triacanthos ‘Suncole’)
  4. Raspberry Splash Lungwort (Pulmonaria ‘Raspberry Splash’)
  5. Sester Dwarf Blue Spruce (Picea pungens ‘Sester Dwarf’)
  6. Green Giant Arborvitae (Thuja ‘Green Giant’)
  7. Amur Maple (Acer ginnala)
  8. Variegated Bishop’s Goutweed (Aegopodium podagraria ‘Variegata’)
  9. Bloodgood Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’)
  10. Tricolor Willow (tree form) (Salix integra ‘Hakuro Nishiki’)

When converting internet views to in-store traffic and purchases, retailers should use investment plants such as these to draw customers into the store and entice them to purchase annuals, houseplants, and impulse buys at the point of purchase.

“Even if trees and shrubs aren’t your biggest sellers, these draw customers off your website and into your store,” says Kohut. The NetPS Plant Finder Tool can help you stay informed about customer preferences, tailor product offerings, and strategically plan inventory and marketing efforts to attract customers both online and to physical stores.

The complete Top 100 list is available on the NetPS Plant Finder website here.

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