Firstly apologies, I haven’t put pen to paper for an embarrassingly long time but that’s because here at Brown Earth HQ there has been a new project in the offing.
I have always been obsessed (among other things) by cut flowers; I love the uplifting effect they can have on any room or general mood. I’m sure you have noticed recently there has recently been an upsurge in locally grown cut flowers representing a return to a bygone cottage garden style and old fashioned flower varieties and leaving behind the perfectly presented rose available in any season from 4000 miles away.
I have been researching the possibility of growing cut flowers up here in Perthshire and my research project got underway early last year with the purchase of a small polytunnel to help grow my flowers. The mission gathered momentum and over the last year I have undertaken a major growing scheme to trial possible varieties suitable for cutting and also to grow plants to use as examples to inspire clients with different combinations, moods and colours.
It has been all absorbing and I am almost at the stage where I can sit back and relax until next spring when I will be able to truly evaluate the success of my handiwork. Apart from the fantastic experience of raising 80% of the plants from seed, I see the main benefit being that I can live with some of the plants that have graced so many client’s gardens and everyday learn more about their needs, characteristics and demands so that I am better informed when putting schemes together in the future and possibly growing them for cutting harvests.
And what a joy to be able to bring clients to see what I hope will be an explosion of colour in my very own show space. As the flower beds develop I will be uploading photos so that you can see it mature over time.
One of the things that I always try and impart to clients is that the planting of the flower beds is just the beginning. Every year as some plants expand and others for no apparent reason fail to show themselves, the tableaux changes subtly and constant tweaking is needed to make sure things remain in balance. This is the excitement (and sometimes frustration) of gardening to me; the unpredictability of plants, the seasons and the weather and the sometimes stunning results that an unexpected mix creates.
So we will see what next summer brings. Now while we are still a long way off, I can spend the winter dreaming of the riot of colour that will illuminate the flower beds and hope that the outcome is as dramatic as it is in my head: I will share the results!