Today I have started cutting more of my Tulips and I have been thinking about colour and shape and texture. The early singles with their slim upright habits, parrot tulips with their distorted petals, fringed tulips and wonderful opulent doubles, the varieties are endless.
Planted in December they are a miracle of Spring after a long hard winter. A touch of the exotic. The Tulips which I am cutting now are Air, Atilla, Atilla Graffiti, Princess Irene, Irene Parrot, Apricot Beauty and Purissima. There are many more to come.
I love their gently bending shapes and the way they open in the sun. They even look beautiful as they are about to die.
Garden grown tulips are so different from those grown in glasshouses with fuller larger heads. The stems are robust having been out in all weathers and some of them are scented. The cutting garden would not be the same without them.
Yesterday I ran a workshop at The Flower Orchard at Layer Marney in Essex. A fabulous group of young enthusiastic florists joined us to learn about making natural wedding flowers using British grown flowers. The flowers were grown by Karen at The Flower Orchard Essex, Julie at Hillcrest Cut Flower Garden Norfolk, me and a variety of other British growers. Julie's Ranunculus were spectacular and I have just started cutting my Tulips. Karen's Cutting Garden is filling with blossom and was a magical setting to work.in.
We were both so thrilled that they were so interested in natural floristry and British flowers.
They made natural bride bouquets and table arrangements. Although they look informal they are surprisingly difficult to make and they all did a wonderful job. Karen and I hope to run some more workshops through the season.
This picture is of me cutting Ranunculus in Julie's polytunnel at Lingwood yesterday. She runs a fabulous cut flower nursery. The Ranunculus are for this weekends wedding and I will be collecting more for Monday's workshop. I was blown away by the quality and colours! I am hoping to have more as the season progresses. I have combined these with Anemones from Karen at The Flower Orchard in Essex and Sarah who also grows English Peonies on the Norfolk Coast. Wonderful friends and fellow flower growers. I am also starting to cut my Tulips and have Bluebells, Hyacinths and Narcissus so at last a full range of spring flowers.
As some of you will know this week I have been in Cornwall on a creative collaboration with some wonderful inspiring people from the world of wedding floristry and styling and I have put a little piece about this on my wedding blog page ( this is attached to the wedding page on the website). I decided to write a separate wedding blog page as it is a place I can show pictures of my wedding work and write about other wedding related items whilst keeping this page free to write about the cutting garden and development of the new walled garden.
Once we hit April it is all hands to the pump as they say! Particularly for us as we have taken on our new walled garden. What have we been doing this week?
There was a time when daffodils just seemed to be of a rather jolly yellow colour .... of Wordsworth fame, but now they come in beautiful soft ivory, peach and pale yellows with ruffled centres and incredible sweet perfume. I wouldn't hesitate to use these for weddings whenever after the bride would associate that scent with her wedding bouquet.
My story in flowers started as a child growing a tiny patch of London Pride Saxifraga...also known as Whimsey or Look Up and Kiss Me! Fast forward to 8 years ago when I started a City and Guilds training in floristry. I qualified as a florist and then to deepen my growing knowledge and skills I trained in horticulture as well. I trained under a WRAGS scheme at Darsham Nurseries and at Somerleyton Hall. Developing a passion for both growing and designing/arranging British garden flowers, I planted a cutting garden. Having become increasingly concerned about where and how flowers are grown, coupled with a love of British grown flowers. and natural styling, I now specialise in growing and using beautiful British grown flowers to make romantic natural designs. for weddings, events, gifts and much more.