Our peonies are only in their second year so we can only pick half of them. A shame for our customers but nice for us as we get to see them blooming in the field. these are almost the size of a football!
So happy to have played a small part in the Gold Medal that the first Flowers from the Farm exhibit at Chelsea produced. We were but one grower that contributed our flowers but still somehow makes the work all seem worthwhile. A million and nine thanks to whoever’s idea it was and everybody else involved in the design and logistics in getting it all together.
On May 19th a group of East Sussex & Kent flower farmers,- namely Orchard Farm Flowers (yes, that’s us), Blacker and Moore, Anna’s Country Flowers, Blue Hen Flowers, Chambers Farm Flowers, Garden of England Flowers, Bow Meadow Flowers and Country Blooms will join up to 100 flower growers from Inverness to the Isles of Scilly who will be up early cutting flowers and transporting them to London for Flowers from the Farm’s first appearance at the RHS Chelsea Flower show. This is a hugely exciting opportunity for all the growers round the country to show just how wonderful and diverse British flowers are.
Flowers from the Farm is a not for profit organisation run by volunteers to promote the use of seasonal, British grown flowers, which currently account for only about 15% of cut flowers bought by consumers in the UK, in a market worth around 2.2 billion pounds per year. This inspiring network of small scale flower growers has given their time to plan organise and supply flowers for their Chelsea display which will also be built and manned by members, all without any corporate sponsorship.
Flowers from the Farm was founded in 2011 by Gill Hodgson, and now has over 500 members throughout the UK. Most are sole traders, small or micro businesses, farmers, smallholders and gardeners who offer a scented and seasonal alternative to supermarket flowers.
Members generously share information and experience with each other, and new growers are given encouragement support and advice. It is this spirit of collaboration, cooperation and generosity that has made the FFTF display at Chelsea possible.
The Flowers from the Farm display can be found in the centre of the Great Pavilion.
Belatedly we discover that we featured in a nice article in the Rye News a couple of weeks ago. The link to the whole thing is here: http://www.ryenews.org.uk/news/locally-grown-not-flown
Anyone who used to follow me in the days of The London Daily Nature Photo ( http://www.nichamilton.com/ldnp/index.php?x=browse ) will, I’m sure, remember my love of dragonflies. thus it’s nice to see an old love with a new one as a Southern Hawker sits on a Sugar Diamond here.