One in five gardens targeted by thieves

Green-fingered thieves pilfered pot plants, flowers, hanging baskets and trees from one in five gardens over the last year, according to new research.

Burglars are uprooting horticultural hoards worth £72.21 on average, said insurer More Than.

Some 20 per cent of those surveyed said their gardens have been subject to theft in the last 12 months alone, with researchers suggesting that thieves have been casting their nets wider for items of value in tough economic times.

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Rare lilies, olive trees, hanging baskets, bay trees and roses were among the plants that are most frequently taken.

Seven out of ten people said their front garden had been targeted at some point.