The speed plants grow in May is breathtaking - for months it seems the field looked like rows of mud, dead sticks & horticultural fleece. Now it's almost magical how this is being transformed by lush, fresh growth & buds. It looks like a Flower Farm again as the beds fill up up with new plants & the brilliantly coloured Tulips bloom.
And it's about time too - in a few weeks, our flowers are on their way to the Chelsea Flower Show! I was beginning to think my promise made back in January to send flowers might have been rather rash. There may be a few sleepless nights ahead yet, & much fleece deployed to keep them snug, but I think it's going to be on target. The flowers will be used on the 'Flowers From The Farm' display in the Pavilion. The display will feature flowers from members (such as ourselves) of this not-for-profit network of Flower Growers from across the UK. It's designed to raise awareness of the flowers grown in the UK & encourage Florists & the public to buy locally. Only about 10% of the £2 billion spent on cut flowers in the UK each year buys British grown flowers. The other 90% is imported, mainly via the auction in Holland, & much is grown in Africa & South America. We'll be sending Nectaroscodum (see picture - formerly called Allium Siculum) to the show.
Planting continues for this season's crops - space is getting tight in the Dahlia polytunnel (I went a bit mad this year & have many, many more than previous years). I just can't resist the variety of colours & shapes available! Ken thinks I should join 'Dahlias Anonymous'... They're frost tender so we'll wait until the end of the month before planting out into their Summer beds.
Some warmer weather would be welcome of course but it must be getting better as our summer visitors the Cuckoo, House Martins, Swifts & Swallows are back. Yesterday there was even a family of newly fledged Blackbird chicks hiding among the plants - they didn't seem to know about a late Spring. Excellent to have their parents on the slug & snail patrol...
We're cutting lots of beautiful Tulips now & I’ll be bringing these & a variety of flowers to Threave Garden on Sunday May 6th (Visitors Centre), to Kirkcudbright Farmers Market on Sunday 27th May & to Loch Arthur Farm shop again on Fridays. Flowers (such as Tulips) to arrange yourself can also be ordered to collect from the Flower Farm.
It's a beautiful time of year - I hope your flowers are beginning to bloom for you too.
Jobs for the Cutting Garden in May
Rosie Gray of Galloway Flowers. Artisan Florist & Cut Flower Farmer near Castle Douglas, in South West Scotland. Using 100% British Flowers all year round.