This Week

mildly eccentric

mildly eccentric

One of the very many best bits of my job is talking to wedding couples about their wedding plans, their tastes and lives, their vision for their flowers.  Certain words pop up again and again: romantic, natural, wild, informal.  As I worked out and planned the flowers for this weekend's wedding, however, the magic word which I had ringing in my ears was "power".  Two all...

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the earth breathes in

the earth breathes in

For the last week we have been building up for a big party at the weekend, moving round bales of straw, planning where to position the decripit-landrover-as-bar, building up the bonfires.  We clung on to every precious minute of sharing merry times with old friends and new, and now the fun is over and we look round to see that autumn has unfurled its cloak and is taking us into its damp...

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flower crowns

flower crowns

All the flowers in shades of cream, white, soft pink, pale peach and deep maroon have been very heavily picked in the garden this summer, and the last week has been no exception.  For Jenny and Christian we mixed strong dahlias such as 'tartan' and the perennial favourite 'cafe au lait' with little dainty springs of Michaelmas daisy, annual scabious, mace, bupleurum and late-flowering lady...

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wild romantic flower tangle

wild romantic flower tangle

Last week's wedding brief was bijou: only a bridal bouquet, two bridesmaids' posies, two corsages and ten buttonholes.  Romantic, soft-coloured flowers, blush pink with a smattering of deep dark red and deep green leaves.  It was with a sense of luxury that I set about picking for the order, all alone in the garden that morning with the sunny showers and the faint birdsong.  ...

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pompons and ribbon brights

pompons and ribbon brights

Not sufficiently stretched by her energetic day job, growing vegetables and herbs for the Five Fields restaurant in London, last week's merry bride, Heather, had spent most of her evenings for the last year making fabulous jewel-bright decorations with which to enliven her wedding day.   She and Jimmy, a chef, celebrated their wedding feast under a canopy of brilliant ribbons, draped from...

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a highly romantic bouquet

a highly romantic bouquet

How can it still be August?  Tree fruits are ripe and plumply falling to the ground as the leaves yellow and soften, and the whole garden seems to be withdrawing into itself a little.  In my imagination, August is a month of big straw hats and lovely languid picnics...  Now all the harvest is gathered in and from the window I can see enormous bales of straw studding the rolling...

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two weddings and an open day

two weddings and an open day

It has been a busy week in the garden, with providing flowers for two weddings, opening the garden to the public for the National Gardens Scheme (NGS) for the first time, and keeping on top of all our usual orders.  The two weddings were held at the romantic venues of Garthmyl Hall and nearby Walcot Hall, and the flowers were equally romantic to suit: we used lots of soft peachy creamy...

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Shrewsbury Flower Show

Shrewsbury Flower Show

We felt a bit deflated at this year's Shrewsbury Flower Show when the judges awarded us only a silver medal, after our triumphant silver gilt last year.  The three men very kindly came and talked to us, at length, about what they are looking for in a Flower Show display - in particular, lots of drama, strong colours and shapes, and a clear 'story' - so we now have lots of tips to work with...

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intricate flowers

intricate flowers

Some flowers in our garden bloom for weeks or even months on end - roses, sweet peas (when we feed them) and dahlias in particular - while others appear only briefly, so that we have to be alert and use them when they are at their best.  I am regretting that all the foxtail lilies are long gone, and the delicate delightful snakeshead fritillaries of the spring.  This week has been the...

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tent parties

tent parties

These two weeks we are enjoying having a bit of a lull, with no weddings and no big weekly delivery of flowers to London; we are gathering our energies for the big weeks ahead.  We still deliver a large weekly order to Hereford, small local bouquets and posies, and we have been selling our flowers by the bucket to other local florists and flower-loving individuals.  However, this...

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