Sunday, 3 April 2011
lovely weather for Suffolk wedding - and Mothering Sunday
I had been in a state of usually quiet but sometimes frantic panic the week before as I didn't know quite what would be flowering but bless my flowers they came up trumps. I used masses of white and green hellebores and lovely pink ones, plus my favourite double white tulips that were kind enough to open in the tunnel with spot-on timing along with lily of the valley, hyacinths, hellebores, white ranunculus, anemones, rosemary, tons of blossoms, pittosporum, euonymus....... on Thursday we headed for Suffolk, me with my van plus Imogen with a huge hired van both packed so tight nothing more could fit in, and I think everything looked lovely when it was finished despite the distance. Lucy's simple but I think stunningly suitable bouquet was white double mount tacoma tulips with white hellebores and lily of the valley plus a sprig or two of myrtle and euonymus, she had lily of the valley and white hyacinth pips in her hair, little bridesmaids and adorable Theo the pageboy all had simple circlets of white hyacinth pips in their hair with head bridesmaid 5 year old Molly also carrying a posy of lily of the valley tied with red ribbon to match their red and white liberty outfits and red baseball boots. I made buttonholes from the lovely double tulips or white hellebores mixed with lily of the valley and a sprig of foliage. I'm not sure what my favourite bit was, I loved the font which was just a mass of hellebores with trailing ivy and the windowsills which were the simplest tied sheaves of blossoms and catkins and rosemary that we then took back to the tents as the vicar didn't want things left in the church because it is mid Lent.
Candelabras were a mix of foliages and anemones and ranunculus with pink hellebores and ivy looking down on the guests. I always forget how long full candelabras take to do but every single second is worth it for the ultimate effect. And the tent pole garlands were fun, just rosemary and anemones but they did the trick.
Thanks to all my helpers who made sure that it all happened. There were seven of us here on the Thursday getting it all together including my lovely daughter Rowan who happily was having a few days off from her usual work in London as an environmental lawyer and oldest friend Annette from Gloucestershire who thought she was having a fun day out.......! Her daughter Imogen (now a gardener and flower grower herself) was a total star and calmly plodded through everything with me when we got to the wedding destination after a five hour drive, and we both really enjoyed it. On the way home this afternoon I realised that we had spent about 120 woman hours on the wedding flowers including 20 hours of driving but excluding picking, but actually, it was worth every single moment as I think we did a good job. Phew!
Meanwhile, Rowan and Annette sorted out finishing and sending out all the Mothering Sunday flowers and did a brilliant job. I had spent a day earlier in the week bunching up beautiful birch and eucalyptus bundles and they added all the tulips and the anemone posies on Friday. They were a bit surprised at how long it all took and I think Rowan is glad she is a lawyer and Annette is wondering why she has just started growing cut flowers at my suggestion!
But it has been a brilliant week, and the reason why I haven't written anything on the blog for ages as it has been a tad busy here.
Oh and the wonderful news is that I have an AMAZING gardener now supervising all the growing. Diane is astonishingly wonderful and my tunnel now looks as it should, very professional and productive as she has years of brilliant experience and seems to enjoy being here and will be sorting out the field very soon. Please keep your fingers crossed she will continue to enjoy it here for a very very long time as we just have so many plans........
And the slightly more marginal news is that the husband, who is not a huge fan of the flower growing (I was rather more financially fluid and relaxed when I was working as a writer!) has decided his future lies more on the marine environment than in the dirt and is planning on disappearing on his boat for a long time, maybe for ever. Heigh ho, just as well I love what I do and I find it so brilliant and exciting!