These are pictures of my Pop Up stall at WoW in Southwold. This week has been incredibly busy with promotions for British Flowers Week. The focus has been on British grown flowers which make up only 12% of the market for cut flowers in Britain. Most people buy flowers at supermarkets but my flowers are so different from this. Obviously I can't compete on price with these huge giants who buy in great volume but my flowers are a totally different product...lots are grown by me, others are sourced from British growers many of whom I know personally. The varieties are different and where they really win is with scent...which changes the whole experience of buying flowers. I put together mixed bunches which are completely different from the supermarket equivalents. The funniest comment this weekend was "are they real?"....but mostly these days I do flowers for weddings and parties.
There has been some coverage on Countryfile this week with The Real Flower Company featured. This is where I buy my gorgeous scented wedding Roses. They are more expensive than the imported Roses but I have to say they are a completely different product.
I buy in Ranunculus, Stocks, Roses and Peonies inparticular from fabulous British growers and this week I had gorgeous Delphiniums from Cornwall. I grow some Roses and Peonies but not enough for all my weddings....I do grow great Tulips, Lupins and Dahlias ...going forward I am intending to specialise in growing more of the things which make my bouquets special....Peachy Daffodils, Aquilegia, Geums, grasses, herbs, flowering shrubs etc. I grow lots of Sweet Peas which are very delayed this year due to the cold spring nights. Talking to one of the other growers today..we think 2 weeks behind last year and three weeks behind the year before. I am not sure what this means, usually it doesn't just move back the flowering season for any particular plant it often shortens the flowering period which is very annoying. However this working with the weather makes every year and every bouquet different.
Other challenges this year due to the mild winter and subsequent wet weather have been slugs and snails...I do use organic slug pellets otherwise this year there would be nothing left of my Dahlias.
Each year I try to grow something different this year I have grown, different grasses, I am also growing a new Penstemon ( white for weddings), more Lupins, some different Mints, and some Asters. not everything works! I am gradually increasing more stock of shrubs, Peonies and Roses.
The increased interest in British grown flowers will hopefully translate into support for local growers. Not only is this good for the local economy and the environment ( fewer air miles but also supporting bees with much needed nectar) in addition it also ensures better working conditions which can be less than ideal elsewhere in the world. From my point of view it also produces a more beautiful product with different, scented blooms often delicate and ethereal adding much needed diversity and difference to an industry which had become too standardised and divorced from nature.
Thank You so much for your ongoing support.
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.