Tag Archives: British flowers and foliage

springing into march

Hooray for the magical, fragrant narcissi from the Isles of Scilly!  Produced  by family growers in the open air, there are a huge number of varieties, all with surprisingly different perfumes.  They’re normally available from late winter to the end of spring.  There were loads at the market this morning – despite the cold and drizzle outside, they made me feel that, finally, spring is on its way.

perfect and pink (and white too)


I don’t think I have to say anything, really.  How absolutely perfect are these nerines?  They’re in season now and are completely magical!  The bright pink ones above were used for all the bridesmaids (and buttonholes too) and the fantastic combination of white cymbidium orchids and nerines below was for Emma’s gorgeous bridal bouquet. 

spring has (nearly) sprung

In fact, it was bucketing down with rain for alot of Easter Saturday but Stem Flowers brought the gorgeous fragrance and uplifting colour of Spring inside with (English) sun-yellow narcissi, purpley-blue hyacinths, and old-lady’s-p0wder-puff-pink lisianthus.

Vases filled with Tete-a-Tete narcissi and yellow pansies not only made a simple but beautiful mantelpiece display but also provided plantable gifts for the guests to take home. 

The White Room at Beauberry House was filled with prettiness and had the whimsical feel of Miss Marple’s local tea-room! 





properly in print

So stemgirl finds herself quoted in the latest edition of Wedding Flowers Magazine which I’m really pleased about.  Especially as it’s in a feature about ‘green’ weddings.  Check out pages 50-51 of the February/March issue.  One of my quotes is in pink at the centre of the page! 

Featuring in a respected publication like this (or other wedding and events magazines) is absolutely fantastic for a business like Stem Flowers.  It generates lots of interest from people who happen to read about us and think we sound cool.  And then make contact with us.  And then ask us to work for them.  It is sometimes far more effective than placing adverts which I often find inordinately expensive when one takes into account that they will often generate no interest at all.
How gutting it is, then, to have a lovely quote or two from me in a lovely magazine which lovely people read and NO MENTION of the name of my business or any contact details….AAAARGGHHH!

autumnal abundance

English hydrangeas

How better to ease oneself into Autumn, but with enormous bunches of English hydrangeas?  Each gorgeous bundle combines all the colours of the season – russety reds, jewelly pinks, antique greens and even touches of blue that  echo the sky on those crisp, clear sunny days that make this time of year quite fabulous.  The market is full of them, they’re great value for money and they not only last well in the vase but dry beautifully too.  I like to mix them up and used them here with black-red ‘Black Baccara’ roses and zingy-red ‘Tornado’ alstromeria.  To complement the wonderful hydrangeas, I’m also making good use of the magical colours, textures and berries of locally grown foliage which work naturally and fantasically in larger displays.  How stemgirl loves this time of year! 

English hydrangea, Black Baccara rose and  Tornado alstromeria table centre

it’s amazing what one can do

So, nineteen hours before a very grand wedding at Dulwich College, and on my way to the shed to get some vases, stemgirl trod on a hoe! A three-pronged cultivator to be precise. Through the flip-flop and into the foot. Not good.  And all I could think was ‘HELP – I’VE GOT A WEDDING TO DO’!  But King’s College Hospital A&E were fantastic and got the message, applied bandages, supplied crutches, gave tetanus. The next day, I was hobbling but back on my feet.  Fabulous blue, pink and purple hydrangeas and delphiniums came together to steal the show, especially teamed with antiquey and romantic ‘Pacific Blue’ roses. I don’t think I moaned or looked for sympathy too much but you might have to ask Serge his opinion about that!

Hydrangea, rose and eryngium top table

fun at the flower market

I spent a busy and really exciting morning at New Covent Garden Market last week for a Summer Wedding Flower extravaganza.  There was a smorgasbord of floral designers, demonstrations, music, discussion, networking and excellent bacon sandwiches!
Flowers from Country Roses at Josselyns FardMost exciting of all was the wonderful news that I can now buy fabulously romantic David Austin roses (based near Wolverhampton) and a wonderful array of roses and hedgerow flowers and foliage from Country Roses (near Colchester).  Hooray for British flowers! They might be a bit more expensiveRoses from David Austin per stem but they are so completely gorgeous that I hope my clients will see that they are worth it. I was also really pleased to see that my fantastic wholesalers, GB Foliage, continue to have a really magnificent array of seasonal English foliage for me to choose from.  Their stand is like a lush forest of green at the moment.

There were some other fantastic displays to gawp at.  MostHanging balls of flowers at Moyses Stevens striking were the hanging balls of flowers by Moyses Stevens.  I think that there should be more space in the world for floral spheres.  Rebel Rebel were as cool as ever with (rather handsome) DJs and strawberries hanging delicately from wires and Zita Elze focussed on extremely detailed, intricate garlands for chairs and tables.  Strong deep jewel colours continue to be a strong theme (thank goodness) as do block colours and lots of foliage.  Bring on those leaves!

Visiting the market is a really vibrant experience, which is why I love taking brides and grooms (in particular) there when they’re choosing their flowers .  These seasonal events are a delightful way to spend a morning – and you don’t have to be trade to go.  Keep an eye on www.newcoventgardenmarket  for the next one…..