In 1928 John George Fraser took up residence at 6 Ploughlands, Dundonald a smallholding about 5 acres in size. Smallholdings had been set up to allow a family to live reasonably self sufficiently without the need to employ anyone outwith the family. John George grew 25,000 roses per year plus shrubs, vegetables and tomatoes. The business was called John Fraser and Sons.
In 1939 the Second World War erupted and as part of the war effort the government stipulated that most of the plants grown at 6 Ploughlands should be edible with perhaps only a thousand roses grown. This was allowed in order to allow the many different varieties of roses grown by Frasers to be maintained. Once the war had finished this stock could be increased fairly quickly in order to allow the nursery to flourish once again, achieving production levels last seen at the beginning of the war.
In 1949 Alex Fraser one of John George’s sons took over the business and moved into the smallholding in 1950. Alex increased rose production to about 30,000 per year. In those days the roses were only grown in open ground, not in pots, so every winter the plants were manually lifted and delivered locally, or sent by carrier or train to places as far afield as Southern England. The business also exhibited at local flower shows in Ayr, Irvine, and East Kilbride winning many Gold and Silver medals over the years
In 1976 Alex retired from rose growing, closed the business and rented the 5 acres to a local farmer as pasture for cattle.
In 1980 Douglas, Alex’s son started growing and selling plants from the site once again and with the help of his wife Anne and his parents Alex and Bunty, built up the business that became Frasers Garden Centre of Dundonald.
In 2017 Douglas after owning the business for almost 38 years decided to retire and sold the Garden Centre to local couple Ron and Bernadette and the site was renamed Eden Garden Centre after the couples love for the Eden project in Cornwall and some of the further meanings of the word Eden.
(Above - Photo of the site taken on the 23rd of June 1974)