Welcome to the short, and hopefully Sweet; March edition of The British Flower Collective newsletter. A few days late due to a busy Mothering Sunday but now the clocks have gone forward and my first Tulips are out; at last I can say it is Spring.
First let us see if Spring has indeed sprung over in Shropshire with our regular feature from Victoria at The Flower Garden at Stokesay Court....
March at The Flower Garden at Stokesay Court
March has whipped by while my back was turned, and so many of those jobs that I'd hoped to have finished by now are still uncompleted. The big stack of old Victorian edging tiles is still piled up by the entrance to the garden, awaiting a few weeks of back-breaking work inserting them between beds and paths in the annual flower patch - this is the idea, anyhow; we hoped that it might be one way to stop all the wood chippings we use to mulch the paths from being washed away down the gentle slope and mysteriously vanishing......A pretty emerald carpet of grass is spreading itself in one of the borders, smothering emerging tulips, and a tangle of mint does the same for a patch of white dicentra. Wonderfully a kind local lady came to the garden last week to do two hours of volunteering, which doesn't sound much, but it is really very heartening to have an extra person to work with, and interesting to see the way other people garden. We treated her very gently, hoping that she will come back! A trailer load of gravel is on order to smarten up the main paths. The garden has properly dried out now, but the soil is still moist and perfect for planting. Today I planted out some beds of crown daises, columbines and pot marigolds, which had been begging me quietly from the cold frame. Next will be blue and white larkspur, and then time to plant out nerines in a snug spot at the bottom of the long south-facing wall. All the roses suddenly look very lush and abundant; I've pruned them a bit and done my best to squeeze off any aphids I find hiding gin the leaf crevices. on the subject of squeeze, every time I move a pot it seems to reveal a slug. We don't like to use any poisons in the garden, and the unpleasant way I deal with the slugs is to squash them in half with a stone or a stick. Apart from the pots, the little brutes are appearing in the base of plants as I weed: I am nervous that we're going to have a pestilence of slugs when the spring really gets going. I walk round the garden, checking on everything, and try to reassure myself that all is tingling of spring everywhere really is going to result in flowers. the tulips look too short, the perennials are still midget, and it seems impossible to think that this brown-and-green acre will soon be tall and full with floral abundance. But the amelanchier buds are about to break, and then everything will rocket. Better get on with laying those edging tiles.
'Party Pots' from The Flower Garden at Stokesay Court.
This months new members are:
Other News from our Members in March......
The Garden Gate Flower Company and Common Farm Flowers were both featured in the April edition of The Simple Things Magazine, along with a lovely article from Louise Curley (some of you will know her better as @wellywomanblog) featuring her new book, 'The Cut Flower Patch'.
Jay Archer wrote a guest post with input from The British Flower Collective,BareBlooms and Flowers by Clowance on the so you're getting married Blog about British Flowers, which you can read here.
Amanda Taffinder launched her new website.
Bluebell inspiration on the Juno and Joy Blog with bouquets from BareBlooms
Gorgeous bouquets and floral hair garland from Susanne at The Blue Carrot on the love my dress blog
Up and Coming workshops from our Members:
Social Media for beginners with Common Farm Flowers - 20th May. Details here
Grow your own Cutting Patch with Field Gate Flowers - 13th April. Details here
Learn how to make a seasonal hand tied bouquet with The Garden Gate Flower Company ladies - 7th May. Details here
Cutting and arranging garden flowers workshop with Mayfield Flowers - 19th May. Details here
Friday flower crowns with the Pyrus ladies at Lovecrumbs in Edinburgh. 7-9pm, 11th April. More details from lovecrumbs
Gardening talk and demo - 'wild flowers' by Thomas Broom at Petersham Nurseries. 8th April. Details here
Hand tied bouquet workshop from The Flower Hive - 25th May. Details here
Myself and a few fellow 'The British Flower Collective Members' are off to London at the end of the month to participate in the 'spring riot and revelry' workshop by Sarah and Nicolette of the 'Little Flower School' fame. I can't wait to report back in next months newsletter!