I adore flowers and love nothing more than being gifted an arrangement whether it’s a hand picked posy from a friend’s garden to an elaborate bouquet. I have a variety of receptacles from cut glass vases to jam jars and love displaying flowers all over the house.
My husband works at a supermarket so I tend to get presented with the slightly wilting specimens rejected by everyone else which are destined for the bin at the end of the day. Thanks to a flower arranging course I am happy to get out scrips and shears to prepare and display all but the very deadest of blooms and foliage to give these last chancers at least a few days of glory.
It doesn’t matter to me that they are not at their best - the fact my husband thought about me, remembered how much I love flowers, and brought them home means the world to me.
Flowers are synonymous with special occasions, sad and happy for most people. I still recall specific floral gifts from memorable moments in my life like the basket arrangement my mum and gran bought which adorned my bedside table in hospital after my firstborn arrived after a long and stressful labour followed by an emergency Caesarian.
I recall an unexpected delivery from one of my oldest and dearest friends on my 50th birthday and the many posies of garden-grown sweet peas handed over the hedge by my elderly neighbour. She passed away years ago but every time I see sweet peas I remember her.
I also remember the time I sent flowers to my friend who was being treated for Leukaemia in hospital. I found money blowing along the road, couldn’t see anyone nearby who might have dropped it so spent it sending her flowers. She died a few days later but her family told me she had been so pleased to receive them, even if she could only see them through glass from her isolation room.
Flowers are a bit like food. If possible try and buy locally grown, in season flowers, preferably with a Fairtrade accreditation to show that everyone involved in growing and picking is treated and paid fairly.
Buying from a florist, online or in real life can seem intimidating to some but you are likely to get a better quality product and professional help in choosing the elements for your arrangement and inspiration on how to present them.
From births to funerals flowers can say everything you want to say even when you can’t find the right words or can’t be there in person.
Your florist may even know specific meanings certain plants and flowers have and be able to guide you if you want to send a subtle message to someone.
One top tip if you want to send flowers any distance or overseas is to use a florist local to the recipient. There are of course long distance and even overseas floristry services but you don’t always know which florist they will use and may be limited in your ability to create a custom or more personal gift.
For instance if you are in the UK but have friends or family in Sydney, Australia, try searching flower delivery Sydney and then choose by flower, occasion, price or colour.
Some florists even offer arrangements in reusable vases or other containers - ideal if you want to send to someone a house warming gift! And don’t limit yourself by only thinking of sending flowers for the traditional reasons. Someone who has lost a fur baby or is celebrating a divorce might well appreciate a floral surprise to show you are thinking of them.
Want more inspiration? Thank your colleague for supporting you, your neighbour for not being a nightmare neighbour or your postie for working through rain and shine. Send “I’m sorry” bouquets or use flowers and plants as a marketing tool for your business. I know that the bouquets I’ve been sent or given by clients have been very welcome.
One note of caution -if you want to send flowers to someone in hospital, check the organisation’s policy first as some wards don’t allow flowers or plants.
Flowers can be the perfect gift for all occasions and all ages. And don’t forget to treat yourself sometimes - flowers are the perfect feel-good pick me up and they don’t cost any calories!