There’s a big storm forecast for this evening so I’ve been out cutting blossom for tomorrow’s flower buckets in case it all blows away in the night!!
Its a seed sowing and pricking out day today. We sow seeds in succession every 10 days throughout the season. We sow lots of different seeds but not too many of any variety at a time – rarely more than 100. Some go in the propagator, some just under the greenhouse bench until they germinate. We then prick them out into modules making sure we have just the right number (plus a few extra) to fit into their space in the field.
In this way we can have loads of choice at any one time but not too many in case we lose the whole crop to starving slugs or greenfly.
For Mother’s Day last weekend, here in East Sussex, we picked tulips, scented narcissi, flowering currant, tonnes of anemones, rosemary, plum blossom, hornbeam and other foraged foliage. They all went into our mixed buckets for local delivery or were made into bouquets and jam jar posies for collection and local shops.
We pick flowers constantly from April to October so if you’d like some just contact us.
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