28 May 2016

World’s Biggest Flower Market

Ardd Fotaneg · Botanic Garden

The BBC’s The World’s Biggest Flower Market aired last night on BBC 2. It gave a fascinating insight into the cut flower industry. Timely as I just happen to be delivering a grow your own cut flowers course Saturday 4th June.

Factory Flowers

Undercover and factory growing of flowers is a world apart from what we are trying to  promote. I often find flowers available to buy are somewhat artificial in appearance. The only cut flowers I can bring myself to buy are daffodils in spring. These are grown in fields in the UK. The rest of the time I can decorate the house with the splendour of the plants I grow in the garden.

Environmental impact

I was disappointed that the programme didn’t go into the environmental impact of growing cut flowers in places like Kenya. The use of peat from Russia also has environmental implications. At least it was being recycled. The programme also failed to mention the working conditions of the people working in the cut flower industry in developing countries.

Better way to get flowers

At the Garden we use sustainable methods to grow our plants including flowers for cutting. Bruce’s blog post dared you to let your grass grow. Last summer I picked lovely flowers from our verges at the garden where we let the grass grow. It included Filipendula ulmaria, Sanguisorba officinalis, Dipsacus sativus, and Daucus carota great in flower displays.

In other areas we grow flowers specific for cutting. Some perennials; Astrantia major, Echinaceae  purpurea, Verbena  bonariensis. Some annuals; Bupleurum rotundifolium, Centaurea cyanus, Cerinthe major,  Nigella Sp., Salvia horminum, Antirrhinum majus, Helianthus annus, Lathyrus odoratus,  Cosmos sp. and Calendula officinalis.

Roses for our visitors

If you can’t make it to the course, then make sure to visit the Garden this summer. You will be enthralled by our stunning floral displays. We don’t pick the roses for cutting. We leave them in the Garden for our visitors to enjoy.