Blooming lovely: The true beauty of mail order flowers
PUBLISHED: 09:00 11 April 2018 | UPDATED: 11:30 11 April 2018
Some years ago, when I worked in an office in the centre of St Albans, a lady came into the office and asked whether we would like to receive a box of flowers.
This was an idea I’d never heard of before - I had sent boxes of narcissi from the Scilly Isles before - but they had generally been flowers which arrived in bud, and then bloomed after a couple of days in a vase. The idea of these was something quite new - flowers to arrive already in bloom, but delicately wrapped with the heads protected, so that they could be unfurled and put into a vase ready to enjoy.
The idea of these took off in a big way - and in no time at all they were being featured in all of the top style magazines - a huge part of the marketing was that you could sign up for a subscription to either treat someone else, or yourself - to receive flowers either every week, or monthly. To be able to remove the necessity for the recipient to be at home when the flowers arrive - it really was a game changer for the whole concept of sending flowers. My sister, for example, has had several occasions when she has received flowers sent by friends of family, and as she is at work all day, she has then had to go to the Royal Mail depot to collect them - as this is often not until the weekend when they are open during hours she can make - the flowers are dead by the time she can collect them. The concept of letterbox flowers totally removes this element from sending flowers, and has also bought down the cost of sending flowers significantly - removing the cost of delivery altogether, and instead incorporating just the price of postage.
Since the initial idea for these bouquets by post, there have been several other companies who have taken the idea and started their own versions. Of course it is easy to see the comparisons between the original company who had so much success with the idea, and the many similar companies. Most of these companies can owe much of their success to the internet and how easy it is now for people to look at the different options for bouquets and the ease of placing their orders.
One company which really caught my eye online is Pod & Pip. Based in the heart of Wiltshire, they wanted to offer a service which delivered fresh, seasonal flowers every Friday - in order that people could enjoy them for the weekend. This idea is different to some of the others, where you can order for delivery on other days of the week - and these are delivered by a courier if they are Nationwide - but with the instruction that they can be left in a safe place if the recipient is not home - again negating the worry of missing a delivery. The designs of their bouquets hugely appealed to me - they are simple, yet stunningly beautiful. The other thing which they do differently, is send out kits - for example the Easter wreath kit which was either available as a finished article - or as a kit in pieces with instructions so that you could make your own wreath - allowing people to enjoy the actual process of doing the arrangement themselves. To find out more about Pod & Pip you can follow them on instagram @popandpip or check out their website podandpip.co.uk.
Another company which have used the postal bouquet option is Royal Bloom UK. This company sent me a bouquet so that I could see what they do, and I wasn’t disappointed! The bouquets start from as little as £20, and they have a great range. Something which impressed me about their website particularly was the option to call them and speak to a florist for advice if you are struggling with which bouquet you would like to order. For further information you can find them on instagram @royalbloomuk or online royalbloom.co.uk.
As a real lover of flowers, there is nothing more pleasurable than going into an actual high street florist, or flower market and choosing the best blooms myself. I love being able to smell the flowers to make sure they have a good strong, and authentic scent, and that the petals and foliage aren’t damaged. It’s also lovely to be able to arrive at a friend’s house for dinner with a bouquet in hand - but sometimes of course this isn’t possible, and when wanting to send flowers to someone who lives far away, these internet and postage delivery companies are a fantastic option.
Things to do in the garden this month
You will have almost certainly already mowed your lawn for the first time this year, but if you haven’t - you will likely be doing so within the next couple of weeks.
If you have planted sweet pea seeds, the tops can be pinched out when they have grown a second set of leaves. This will make the plants less leggy and helps them to produce extra stems.
You can be planting vegetables like beetroot, carrots and parsnips (straight into the ground).
Any hedge cutting should now be left for the next couple of months until the birds have finished nesting - similarly if you have raked the moss out of your lawn - you may wish to leave it somewhere open so that the birds can use it for lining their nests.
By the end of the month (depending on whether we get some sunshine) we may be getting the first bluebells - so if you are hoping to get nice photographs you should keep an eye on the woodlands to make sure you don’t miss them!