It’s nearly the end of the growing season for #britishflowers 2014. We’ve enjoyed a great early summer, a mild and humid mid summer and the most amazing extended Indian summer through Sep and Oct. I still had some sweet peas flowering on the plot at Hallowe’en!! A little bit uncharacteristic, but this is the thing with #flowerfarming, each year and season is different and it’s almost impossible to predict exactly when things will be in flower. It’s much better to guarantee brides and other customers specific colours rather than specific flower types.
Now, it’s time to clear the beds, sow the last of the autumn seeds and get ready for the madness of Christmas!! The work never ends #busyflorist #artisanflorist #flowerfarmer – love it!
Here’s some bright #seasonalflower photos to celebrate the last splash of Autumn colour from the #DitsyFloral #CuttingGarden.
This past weekend I have been concentrating on harvesting the hydrangea heads in my garden before the wet and windy weather ruins them all. I am delighted with the armfuls of blooms that I cut from one single shrub! These will now hang in the garage for drying. The trick to drying hydrangea is not how you actually dry them but the timing of when you cut them, so try to leave them as long as possible on the plant before cutting.
I plan to use the dried hydrangea through out the leaner winter months for floral arrangements and Christmas Wreaths, such as this gorgeous #natural #christmaswreath.
I’ve also been foraging around the garden for other ‘filler’ materials for drying – the furry seed heads of clematis, nigella and scabious seed heads, as well as apples that will be sliced into rings and dried slowly in a low oven for approx. 90 mins. I’m looking forward to experimenting with lots of dried ‘natural’ materials to my wreaths this Christmas.
I also collected the last of the sweet pea pods from my very brave sweet peas still showing a bloom or two in mid October, in Ireland…crazy!! #flowerfarmeryear
The most recent wedding by Ditsy Floral Design in early June was a little bit different. A quirky bride who had very clear styling ideas to complement her 50s style wedding dress and bright red accessories. I had fun working on this brief and created this mood board on Pinterest to inspire my creative thoughts. http://www.pinterest.com/elainegroves1/rockin-50s-style-wedding/
The final bridal design is a handtied posy with locally grown red charm peonies from Moorfield Flowers, white Avalanche roses, white freesia, tanacetum and home grown ammi majus from the Ditsy Floral cut flower patch.
I couldn’t let #Britishflowersweek pass by without a post. This is the second year of the celebration of British grown flowers, an idea devised by the New Covent Garden Flower Market, the main hub of flower trading in the UK. The idea is to raise awareness about the choice and availability of home-grown blooms and foliage in a market dominated by imports.
My own cut flower patch is starting to be quite productive. There’s love-in-a-mist, cornflowers, larkspur, cosmos, scabiosa, sweetpea, sweet william, candytuft and ammi. At home there aren’t many surfaces left which don’t have vases on them! Even so my scale of production, a polytunnel and a few raised beds, is tiny compared to the new breed of artisan flower farmers springing up across the water in GB. There seems to be a renewed interest in locally grown flowers, particularly with couples planning their wedding, so here’s my top reasons for choosing locally grown seasonal flowers for your wedding:
Why buy Locally Grown Seasonal Flowers for your wedding?
Flowers are grown, not flown! Nearly 90% of the flowers sold in the UK are imported and many travel over 3000 miles. The average flower miles of my bouquets are much less, as well as the plant material I supply from my own garden, I source from NI flower farmers and British growers as much as possible.
Flowers are hand picked the day before your wedding, ensuring they are at their freshest, most scented and will last longer in your vase.
Seasonal, locally grown flowers are very much ‘on trend’ at the moment with a move to supporting the local economy, local producers, as well as a shift back to more traditional native flowers such as Sweet Pea, Nigella and Cornflowers, flowers that would have been used by florists in years gone by, therefore a genuine nod to Vintage styling.
Seasonal flowers can be more cost effective for the budget conscious bride.
Local or home grown flowers help biodiversity, providing food and habitat to a variety of butterflies, bugs and bees.
Happy wedding planning and remember, you can also support local flower farmers and growers when you buy flowers from the supermarket or florist, always check for an origin sticker on supermarket flowers or ask your florist!