The Achiltibuie Garden is a small business located in the north-west Highlands of Scotland. Our main activity is developing and selling our unique range of hydroponics growing kits which range from those suitable for growing herbs on a windowsill to custom-designed systems for domestic greenhouses. There is a loyal and well-established customer base due to The Achiltibuie Garden taking over the business of The Achiltibuie Hydroponicum in early 2007: many customers have visited the area, seen hydroponics in action and wanted to try it themselves. Achiltibuie Garden was started by three of its directors: Julie Edwards, Alison Graham and Diana Wilding; it is now run by Julie & Alison. The company started trading in 2008 and we also have two non-executive directors who provide specialist advice and expertise.
Our relationship with our customers is really important to us and we are proud that we have retained such a well established customer base. This is mainly due to the excellent service we provide, the quality of goods we supply and our after sales care. We are always happy to talk to customers who may have questions or just want to tell us how well their systems are doing! It's not unknown for us to give advice on places to eat, visit or what traditional music is on in the village. It is extremely important to us that our customers are able to place an order from us safe in the knowledge that we do not pass on their details to a third party.
A short history
The Achiltibuie Garden evolved from the old Achiltibuie Hydroponicum, which was a visitor attraction located in Wester Ross in the north-west corner of the Scottish Highlands. It comprised growing houses demonstrating the use of hydroponics to grow a range of plants, with an associated mail order service, café and shop also part of the attraction. In early 2007 the land and buildings of the Hydroponicum were sold to a new owner who was to lease the building back to us to operate the business. We had a very successful first season where we turned the business around from making large losses to making a small profit. Sadly, we reluctantly decided that we were unable to continue operating from the Hydroponicum building which needed a huge amount of maintenance to keep it going and at the beginning of 2008 we moved our business to a temporary location nearby whilst we decided on the path forward.
What's happening now
We are currently busy selling our popular hydroponics growing kits to gardeners and enthusiasts growing mainly on a small scale, as well as growing and supplying fresh produce to our local community. We have a double span Keder greenhouse which is home to a variety of growing techniques including soil-based growing and the world famous Achiltibuie Hydroponics. During 2009, we planted a shelter belt of trees around our new site and started work on the indoor and outdoor garden areas. This work continued through 2010 and we now have a range of hydroponic systems and several raised beds indoors, whilst outside there is a vegetable and fruit garden. Our greenhouse is open for visitors and customers during the summer and by appointment in the winter months.
We are continuing to develop our growing spaces, both indoors and outside, to allow us to expand the range and quantity of produce we grow. We are also committed to improving our mail order service by reviewing and improving the products we sell and plan to continue opening our greenhouse on its site in Achiltibuie to visitors during the growing season (generally Easter until the end of October).