Slow Flowers Journal’s book maven recommends
The fresh and local flower farm business is hard work; you must get your hands dirty and cope with all kinds of weather and other vagaries of nature. Gladly for flower lovers, the results are refreshing and inspirational. When the farmer puts her hand to the page and produces a book as lovely and passionate as From Seed to Bloom, you have a hard copy of the farmer’s methods and tools. Win-win!
Gone are the days of formulaic deliveries of regimented bouquets. Here they are refreshingly replaced with natural, loose, renaissance-style arrangements. The year is sensibly divided into eight seasons, making the process more in line with fresh flower harvests.
Five years a flower farmer in Sussex, England, before that, a city girl, Milli Proust graciously shares her process, breaks down her toolkits, and lists the plant materials for arrangements simple to grand. I’ve had a chance to check and double-check (and I ordered more) tulip varieties after reading about the “Dutch Master Inspired Urn.” Though I am not a flower farmer (just a wanna-be), I have a nice supply of tulip bulbs at hand and will plan on asking neighbors and friends for textural branches as I need them.
The “toolkit lists” that Milli includes are incredibly helpful if you are just starting out or honing your growing and arranging skills. Her planning table is a work of art with watercolors, plant layouts, seed packets, and catalog clippings. And the LISTS!!! There is a list for a “sustainable floristry toolkit,” one for favorite spring flowering branches for cutting, and a list of autumn branches for designing. Look for the “to-do lists” and recipes for seasonal bouquets, as well as notes on the vase life of the cuttings she used.
Milli is mindful of her farming practices in allowing well-behaved weeds as a habitat and incorporating wild plants into her designs. She avoids pesticides and notes how much easier it is on the planet when flowers are grown locally instead of being refrigerated and flown around the world to market.
A perfect reflection on autumn, a quote from the author:
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