Dinosaur Adventure

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Hey mister!  Keep your jaws off my sweet peas!

So spring in Leicestershire, there was snow.  Admittedly is was a very light sprinkling that had disappeared by mid morning.  The best thing about early starts at this time of the year is that it’s light and doesn’t feel like the middle of the night.  I also had the pleasure of driving a transit van, where I can’t reach the hand brake.

What will I remember about this wedding?  Apart from the dinosaurs?  The scent.  Oh my, it was INCREDIBLE.  Seven different varieties of scented narcissi mixed with sweet peas, hyacinths and herbs.  Glorious.  I think we’ve lost the art of scented flowers.  But it’s coming back with some of the garden rose varieties that are popping up. I almost forgot the wildflower confetti, so pretty.

And a little jaunt to meet Carol, a fabulous lady who grows the most wonderful flowers in Cheshire.  The sort of place you can lose time and realise your knowledge isn’t up to scratch.  As a city girl, I did have space envy.  Space to grow whole beds of tulips and sweet William. Space for polytunnels and space for crazy dogs and chickens.  Beautiful.

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Do you want to know a secret?  The blousy huge garden roses in this, with the gorgeous creamy yellowy centres to die for?  Yeah, they’re Avalanche.  Blown Avalanche eight days old. Maybe this is a comment for the florists amongst you.  But you know what I mean, I always think of Avalanche as being a good standard shop rose.  Which to be honest is doing it a dis-service. Re-evaluating and challenging my own perceptions. Needs to be done, if we didn’t, nothing would ever change.

What I am loving about this time of the year is that apart from the roses in this design, I grew everything else.  Its not much, but that’s not the point.  The point is there’s stuff to be had at the plot and the garden.

Today is my day off.  It’s been a very hectic week, there was a lovely wedding at a National Trust place, followed by the BMX World Championships. Diverse huh!  So in a single day I can go from a 1800s chapel set in acres of countryside, to the Manchester Velodrome. That’s why I love this job.  Different every day.

Next week it’s all about van hire, logistics, and an absolute mountain of stocks, narcissi, freesia… bring it on.


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In like a Lion

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Out like a lamb. Spring arrived yesterday, it wasn’t official.  It wasn’t on anybody’s calendar it just decided to call it a day with the white stuff and allowed the sunshine in. Last week I trudged through the snow with two furfaces.  I’d like to say they enjoyed it, that’s the thing with dogs, you never quite know.

There was time out to take in an exhibition.  This.  Quite some departure from the flowery scene. For some reason it made me think of Sigourney Weaver in Alien. It was somewhat disconcerting, the melancholy of two robots (empty wheelchairs) trying to connect and send love letters to each other only for them to fall to the ground like litter.  As I say disconcerting.  I also got confused and thought there was a Schiaparelli exhibition on.  There was, just not at that gallery.  Hey ho.

On the growing font, the sweet peas have made an appearance.  When I say made an appearance I actually mean there are tiny green seedlings popping up.  And I have a brief window of opportunity to get my arse into gear and get growing.  The amaranthus, scabious and cornflowers are all seedlings.  The quince I bought last month is happy in it’s new home and has produced a couple of the most delicate apricot coloured blooms.  And I thought I would try out a little globe artichoke foliage in this wedding.  It worked surprisingly well, so that will have further outings once the wedding season kicks in for real.  There are high hopes for the new tulips too.  If you hear no more on that topic, you know they were eaten.

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Valentine’s Wedding

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Things I have learnt this week.  Love Lies Bleeding is Amaranthus!  I know, shock horror, who knew?  Probably every gardener/florist on the planet but me.  Why has this taken so long?!  How did I not know this?  I found out because my lovely OH bought me a gift of flower seeds.  Yes, I know it’s valentine’s and some people get flowers.  But some people (me) really like seeds, she’s onto a winner.

And I’ve been working flat out to bring this beautiful wedding to you.  I’ve been nurturing those Amaryllis for over a week now, and they really weren’t for opening for me.  A little coaxing, gentle poking (technical term) and a warm room got them there in the end.  I tell you, I suffer for this art. The ruffled peach rose is called Campanella it’s a bit of a stunner and currently tops the ‘fabulous roses to work with’ list. The list is moveable, if this was 2010 it would include Amnesia.  Fickle, my middle name.

In other news, there will be flowers for the winners at the Cake Race.  It’s a new 10k run in Manchester, with cake.  What’s not to love.


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Happy Days

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I’ve been waiting to share these images for sooooo long.  But I’ve been waiting for them to appear on Boho Weddings Blog in all their glory. See Sarah and Chris having the most fun time.  One of my personal favourite shots is the sparkler number at the end.  Gorgeous.

In other news there’s so much going on.  I was thrilled to be asked to be a supplier for Dorfold Hall, which is the most exciting new wedding venue in Cheshire.  When I say new, it was built in 1616.  But it’s the first time they’ve allowed weddings to take place at the venue.  There’s a walled garden for the marquee, and acres of glorious countryside.  Not of course forgetting room for the helicopter to land.

On the growing front, well not much to report.  The plot is still a bit of a soggy mess, but the new Belle Epoque tulips have made an appearance so fingers crossed for those.  I have lots of new seed from Higgeldy Garden.  Check out their blog, it’s an fabulous resource full of top growing tips.   So just a few more weeks to go before the planting starts in earnest.  Oh and I’ve just ordered the most stunning ‘Geisha Girl’ quince tree so 2017 weddings will be the first to sample that beauty.


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Christmas Wedding

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The final wedding of the year.  And what a beauty.  A hall with a history dating back to 1180. The Great Hall was built in 1325, and talk of witches.  But lets talk flowers.  Amaryllis Royal Velvet and Mont Blanc, a little home grown Iceberg rose added to the recipe.   I never thought for one minute I’d be using home grown roses in December.  But there you go.  A little foraged larch, lichen and moss mixed with rosehips, cotton and leucodendron cones.

And then a pootle in the van through gorgeous countryside, through little villages and hamlets to a lovely rural pub to meet the bride.  For some reason these jaunts at Christmas remind me of the movie The Holiday, I’m Cameron Diaz (obvs).  And what’s that I see, ah yes, the flashing light of a speed camera.  Points for New Year joy.

After making around 40 metres of garlands, I’m now at home about to….you guessed it, make garlands for home.  Green up the fireplaces and iron a T-shirt for Christmas day.   Hope you all have a fabulous festive holiday.  Merry Christmas everyone.



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Vanilla Storm

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December has arrived.  How in god’s name did that happen?  One minute it’s all Summer weddings, tents, fields, light and wiltage worries.  On the plus side, it means I get to down tools, and take off to some far flung place, points for those who can guess where this is.

It was kind of magical, the moment you notice the snow falling.  And obviously as a city bird, I did keep thinking ‘if only I had a bow saw, that tree would look wonderful dressed’.  Although I can guarantee there was no tree rustling.  No I will be going to my local nursery for that.

Should you consider for one moment that this trip was all hygge, it wasn’t.  The moment I reversed onto the grass verge to get the car stuck went down well.  The smell of burning rubber will stay with me for quite some time.  Followed by the dawning realisation that there’s no phone signal so how on earth can I call the recovery people.  Yes, lets walk in the rain for three miles, half of which was up a very very steep hill.  Good for the heart all that cardiovascular stuff you know.    Yes, one of those holiday moments where you think you’ll look back and laugh.  I’m just not there yet.

And one final pearl of wisdom imparted by me ‘you won’t need your winter coat’.  Oops.

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