In my years as a gardener and as a flower farmer and a little bit of a florist, I've learned what works. Actually, I have listened and read and talked to a lot of very very good floral designers. I have my favourites and my workhorses and my cut and come again stalwarts. There are flowers that just go together, and if they look good in the garden next door to one another, cut a few stems of each, put them together in your hand and chances are they'll look pretty marvelous in a jug by a bedside too.
The secret to great flower arrangements is variety. You need some round flowers, some spiky flowers, some foliage and some contrasting texture and tone. Each of the cutting garden collections includes each of these; a foliage, a focal flower, a filler and a something to bring it all together.
Did I say the key was variety? Too much variety and you have a children's paintbox, not in a good way. (Beauty is of course in the eye of the beholder. If you love this, you crack on. Just buy one packet of everything I stock and put it all together.) The key is cohesion. There are colours that sing together, that are more than the sum of their parts. Palettes of tones that just go. I've taken all the hard work out of this. There are fresh whites with zingy greens for people who like early mornings. For those who love it a bit punchy and just can't bear this whole blush trend thing, there are the bolds. Just pick which one fits you as a person (or the person you are getting them for) and you are half way there to having your own tailor made cutting garden.
Seeds for special occasions
Sometimes you need more than a card. Something less inconvenient than flowers. Something that fits through a letter box and brings joy and happiness. To say that you’re sorry and thinking of them, to say I love you, congratulations, happy birthday. Sometimes just because. You can have them sent to you to deliver in person, or just let me know who you want to make happy or feel better, and I’ll do it for you.
Each box contains five packets of seeds tied in charcoal silk. (You can’t get them out of the box otherwise.) The box is wrapped with a printed, cotton rag paper band and a wrap of fine linen twine.
Thinking of you.
When someone is having a hard time, it’s tricky to know how to show sensitive care. Too much? Not enough? Trying not to be overwhelming, but giving someone space just seems too… little.
These are more than a card, more than a kind text, but less than popping round with a casserole. And we know that flowers and growing plants have a beneficial effect on physical and mental health, so your giving more than just kind thoughts.
The moments that make life worth living. It is a vale of tears you know, and if anyone tells you otherwise, they’re just pretending. Which means when the triumphs and the successes come along, they deserve marking. Properly. Make the most of your own high points, revel in and celebrate the achievements of others. Because there’ll be plenty of days when it’s all car tax and gas bills.
I’m firmly in the anti-landfill camp. I dread being presented with tat. What I really want for my birthday is plants. Maybe a really nice pair of snips. But giving seeds is even better, because you get a bounty of plants at once, out of a beautiful box. Wrapped with ribbon, falling open like the delightful parcel of happiness it is.
One to be savoured over breakfast in bed, or laid on a plate at a posh restaurant and cooed over whilst the champagne is poured.
Agrostemma Githago Bianca
Pure white flowers with distinctive black speckled markings
An unusual, large white flower with elegant branching stems. As long as there has been joy and as long as there has been loss, there have been flowers to mark the moments and the memories. This is a beautifully pure version of one of our native wildflowers and it will gently self-sow and come back again and again so you are never without it.