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Cutting blooms for florists 'in my garden'

Create your own florists cutting garden

I very often get asked - “what flowers should I grow in my garden, that are suitable to cut for floral displays?”.

With everyone’s improving attitude towards carbon footprint, eco-friendly designs and love for nature, growing your own 'cutting garden' is proving to be increasingly popular.

You may want to design and produce your very own creations, be it to adorn your home, create a personalised gift for someone, or for the more adventurous, even provide flowers for a special event such as a wedding.

At Penny Johnson flowers we buy locally grown flowers whenever possible - we have English grown Tulips, Anemone and Daffodils in store this month - but as a commercial florist we still have to import blooms to enable us to provide all the designs we offer for general gifts, tributesweddings and exhibitions.

We are very conscious about the environment and I suspect as time goes by more fresh stock will become available locally as more farmers set up growing flowers commercially.

This also goes hand in hand with the products we use, since opening our shop we have wrapped flowers in tissue and brown paper and tied together with raffia and natural twine, more recently we decided to wrap our hand tied bouquets differently, swapping the traditional cellophane for a more eco-friendly paper wrap, that has proven to be quite popular, although some biodegradable cellophane is still used

Moving forward we will try to reduce the amount of single use plastic we use, this will take some time, but we are determined to make a start and substantially reduce this over the next few years. Offering natural willow base designs for funeral tributes is also something we have done since we began some 17 years ago, but now we are even more aware of the importance of sustainability and these designs I'm sure will become even more popular.

This little blog is about flowers and foliages you can grow in your gardens and in containers for your own use, I've added a list of suggested flowers and foliages for each season, there are so many this is just a taster. Our spring floral workshop will introduce natural frame work and spring seasonal flowers and foliages, I hope this helps get your creative juices flowing and inspires you to have a go at planting at least a couple of flowers/foliages that you could utilise in your very own designs.

 Spring Garden Flowers for Florists

The cut flower that springs to mind for March is the fabulous Narcissi. commonly known as the daffodil, they remind us that spring is on its way and warmer times and lighter nights are ahead, thus bringing a smile to those who love them, like I do. There are many varieties available and they come in shades from pale lemon, creams to vibrant yellow - some even have the most adorable scent. Some blooms are forced for early blooming but for the month of March this is definitely the flower.

April brings more gorgeous flowering bulbs into our lives such as Tulips, Muscari, Anemone, Ranunculus, Bluebells, and Crocus all work in floral designs along with Hellebores, lush green foliages and vines that will be due for cutting back in your garden at this time. Frames can be made with the cut vines and willow, adding further stems of pussy willow to create a natural frame for your spring floral arrangement, be it a circular wreath, heart shape or just framed over a container vines and willow are so versatile.

May brings warmth into our gardens and the flowers really start to bloom, adding texture, depth and colour to your flower displays for me May, begins the “wedding season” delicate blooms of Lily of the valley are ready for the picking and although they may need a little help from a fine florist wire for support, Convelaria majus is one of the most beautiful scented blooms, they are also very expensive to import for commercial florists, so to grow them at home is very cost effective. Weather permitting, peony will also begin to bloom the end of May into early June, when it is usually at its best

  • Hyacinths
  • Muscari
  • Narcissi
  • Bluebell
  • Crocus
  • Hellebores
  • Pelargonium attar of rose
  • Euphorbia
  • Pussy willow
  • Magnolia
  • Tulips
  • Anemone
  • Ranunculus
  • Lily of the Valley
  • Forget me knot
  • Cornflowers

Summer Garden Flowers for Florists

Pure lush in the garden at this time, bursts of colour and scents an Aladdin's cave for florists- June is the usual month for Peony, another wedding bloom favourite and has been on trend along with Eucalyptus for quite some time now, it is also the best time for cutting Roses. Early English garden flowers such as Delphinium, Larkspur, Antirrhinum fabulous flowering vines such as Jasmine and Clematis, Astrantia, Godetia, Campanula Nigella early flowering Hydrangea to name a few, also cut those blooms ready for your dried flower collection.

August historically known for being a dry month (although recent years this has not been the case) Roses, Cosmos and Sweet Peas are ready for the picking along with Dahlias , these are a particular favourite of mine , so many varieties in all shapes, sizes and colours they add pops of colour and great texture to floral designs.

  • Roses
  • Garden pinks
  • Early Hydrangea
  • Poppies
  • Sunflowers
  • Tagqetes
  • Nicotiana
  • Zinnias
  • Dahlias
  • Nigella
  • Lavatera
  • Godetia
  • lavender
  • campanula
  • Astrantia
  • Mint
  • Trailing vines
  • Clematis
  • Jasmine
  • Peonies
  • Phlox
  • Sweet peas
  • Larkspur
  • Delphinium
  • Hydrangea
  • Scabious
  • Snapdragons
  • Cosmos
  • Foxgloves

Autumn Garden Flowers for Florists

Over the past few years September has been a sunnier month our summer blooms have continued to flourish in our cutting gardens until the first frosts in October. dahlias are also in abundance in September along with Achillea, Sea Holly (Eryngium) and Verbena. Delicate Zinnia will also grace us with their presence in September.

October / November - flower of the month of October Dahlia The variety “cafe au lait”   has proven to be particularly popular with weddings over the past few years, its neutral shades and large bloom are great for creating big wedding designs, such as arches and large hanging floral displays , autumn blooms , November is limited for florists choice cutting blooms

  • Roses
  • Dahlias
  • achillea
  • Verbena
  • Eryngium

Winter Garden Flowers for Florists

December / January is a quiet time in the flower cutting garden , herbs and gorgeous winter foliages such as Viburnum, skimmia, Laurel, Myrtle and Rosemary along with traditional Holly, winter berries, mistletoe some hardier blooms such as Cosmos, Hellebores and winter heather will adorn any festive table, add to the most glorious design lead winter door wreath. Cut branches from trees such as Ash, Beech, Oak and Maple will add structure to your designs and are perfect for creating frames Honesty and snowdrops add a delicate bloom to your arrangement.

February - longer days begin in February, Hellebores, Crocus and Rosemary are perfect for that rustic/ natural theme, in simple jars decorated with twine and hessian these are very popular for “rustic” wedding venues such as barns, tipis and marquees.

  • hardy annuals Cosmos
  • herbs and foliage
  • Pelargoniums
  • Viburnum tinus
  • winter flowering Honeysuckle
  • winter Heather
  • winterberry
  • Magnolia
  • Laurel
  • Myrtle
  • Viburnum
  • stems of Rosemary
  • dried dill
  • branches of Sage
  • dried flower buds from Oregano
  • branches of Oak, Ash, Beech, Lime and Maple
  • Honesty
  • Snowdrop
  • Crocus Joan of Arc
  • Cyclamen
  • rosemary officinalis
  • Hellebores
  • vine
Pantone colour of the year 2020

Classic Blue - Pantone colour of the year 2020The sky is the limit for 2020

This year we are all going to be feeling, smelling and seeing blue as the Pantone colour for 2020 is Classic Blue!

Here at Penny Johnson Flowers we will enjoy being surrounded by this beautiful colour in many different guises, and teaming this with complementary colours.

So which flowers are we talking about? Delphiniums, hydrangeas, veronica, Eryngium (thistle) are top of the list and really lend themselves to delicious theming with greys and blush coloured flowers and foliage, all on-trend for 2020 Weddings. Our pInterest page has some wonderful examples, but we'd encourage you to let your imagination run wild with the versatility of this colour scheme. Grey tone foliage such as eucalyptus will not only display the blues beautifully but will give add height, texture and aroma to bouquets and displays.

Book your wedding consultation today with Penny Johnson Flowers and enjoy discovering the variety of scents, sights and touch of the flowers that will be sure to play a starring role in your wedding.

Delphiniums, a classic cottage garden flower, come in a range of blues, including the new pantone Classic Blue, a shade which encapsulates the sky at dusk is the front runner of this new decade offering reassurance and confidence. Majestic and spiky, bold and beautiful and they blend easily and complement other British garden favourites and evoke an earthy floral musk.

Hydrangeas are outrageously beautiful in all colours, but especially the beautiful blue that is a firm favourite with all. Native to Asia and the Americas, mop head hydrangeas are the most recognisable and popular hydrangea due to their large puffy flower heads which distinguish them from other flowers.

Veronica, also called Speedwell, has long spikes of small petals in purple, blue, pink, or white and blooms from spring to autumn.

Eryngium (Thistle), common name Sea Holly, makes a striking addition to a bouquet or flower arrangement as these thistle-like flowers are made up of tiny flowers packed together in a tight cluster, surrounded by a ruff of spiny bracts. The flowerheads last well when cut and can also be dried.

If these flowers are not your favourites by now, we are happy to discuss your likes and dislikes and take into account the season. It’s worth knowing that the pantone blues can also be achieved by using a floral dye by applying it to roses for example - so the sky really is the limit.

Valentines 2020

Valentines Flowers Coleshill, Birmingham, UK

Who will you favour as your Valentine this year?

Who doesn’t enjoy being remembered by a loved one on Valentine's Day? Here at Penny Johnson Flowers we have a range of Valentine’s gifts for everyone, from stunning romantic bouquets of all different colours including rainbow roses, to gin, wine and chocolates, balloons, prosecco and even gift packs of locally brewed beer. Whether you order online, on the phone or in person we can deliver the perfect gift to your chosen one.

Before choosing your perfect valentines bouquet, check out the meanings of roses and tulips:

A red rose was traditionally used to openly express feelings of love, while an orange rose symbolised passion. In ancient Greece, the rose was closely associated with the beautiful Olympian Goddess of love, Aphrodite, who was known to represent love and beauty, but did you know that she was also linked to pleasure, passion and procreation? Signature romantic dozen rose bouquet couldn’t represent your deep and abiding love for someone more clearly. If red isn’t your colour, throw caution to the winds and choose our lilac, pink or white signature romantic kisses or even our delicious rainbow roses, sure to make an impact and lasting impression.

Bouquets are presented in our Signature Penny Johnson Flowers Gift Wrap And Gift Box. If you want to show someone that you are thinking of them, maybe you have admired them from afar, we have the perfect gift combination. A single red rose sends a powerful message and who wouldn’t love our Be Mine Giftset consisting of a 12 Red Rose Bouquet, "Happy Valentine's Day" Balloon, Plush Teddy Bear and a Box of Belgian Chocolates?

Our six romantic kisses rainbow bouquet is the perfect gift for the #lgbt community - inspired by the rainbow flag, these beautiful multicoloured roses are dyed with the different colours of the rainbow to celebrate all types of love and diversity.

For pet lovers (these stems are safe for our furry friends) why not take a peek at our Scarlet Kisses Giftbox in kind-to-the-planet packaging which includes a card with your personal message and features 5 red large headed roses in a burgundy sketch gift box - 7 days of gorgeousness guaranteed.

Let’s not forget tulips which are the the world’s third most popular flower and symbolise undying, passionate love and perfect, enduring love between partners or family members. The national flower for Iran and Turkey, and the unofficial emblem for Holland, many people favour these boldly coloured flowers for their beautiful cup shape and they also come in varieties that have pretty fringed or feathered edges. Associated with the 11th wedding anniversary, red tulips will tell your loved one that you long to be with them.

Gin and flowers in Coleshill

Shakespeare Gins

Here at PJF head quaters we have been licensed for many years, and very often send out a bottle wine/ prosecco, champagne with a beautiful floral gift.

This year we  are pleased to announce we will be stocking the fabulous Shakespeare Distillery Gins 

Pop-up Gin Bar - 28th November

We will be launching our "Gin and flowers" designs at this weeks Love Coleshill late night shopping and Christmas light switch on event , which takes place Thursday 28th November. For one night only we will be opening our beautiful little shop as a bit of a Gin bar:-)

About Shakespeare Distillery

Shakespeare Distillery is an artisan spirit producer, established in 2015. Everything we produce is in small handcrafted batches, ensuring we can devote our time and attention to creating the best tasting spirits around.

Being based in Stratford upon Avon, we wanted to create something authentic to our area and what is more authentic to us than Shakespeare? Of course we couldn’t distil the bard himself into a bottle but we could look at the Tudor period in which he lived and bring the essence of this into our spirits, the first of which is Stratford Gin.

The Tudor period was a significant time for spirit production, it was a time of change, the monasteries had a stranglehold on distillation (the process used to create an alcoholic spirit) and its primary purpose in their hands was medicinal. Thanks to Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries the Tudor period became a time of great discovery, experimentation and innovation within the world of spirit production as people soon discovered it could be a very nice recreational drink too. Thanks Henry!

At Shakespeare Distillery we aim to recapture this period of innovation by fusing traditional and in some cases forgotten ingredients with modern techniques to create exciting new spirits.

We will be stocking the following Gins in bottles, and gift sets :

Shakespeare Gin

Stratford Gin - is our Signature and award winning (IWSC Silver Outstanding) product. It’s a London dry style with a strong juniper base, combined with the flavours you would find in the Tudor herb garden such as Old English Lovage, Rosemary, Rose, Sage and Lemon Balm as well as the more classic gin botanicals of Coriander, Angelica and Citrus, creating a distinctive and truly delicious gin. (45% ABV)

Rhubarb Gin- Rhubarb was commonly used to cure ailments in Tudor times and has since become a British favourite. We blend Rhubarb juice with our award-winning Stratford Dry Gin to produce a deliciously tangy full-strength gin. Nothing artificial goes into our gin, each bottle contains over 40% real Rhubarb juice, we don’t over sweeten it, so you taste real gin with a mild tang of Rhubarb, a delightful combination. (40% ABV)

Elderflower and Quince - The newest edition to the range.  We blend our award-winning Stratford Dry Gin with the quintessential British flavours of Elderflower and the noble Quince; no fruit was more highly prized in the Tudor period. Subtle apple notes from the Quince fuse with the mild sweetness of Elderflower to create a deliciously fruity, full-strength gin. Nothing artificial goes into our gin, we don’t over sweeten it, so you taste real gin in every mouthful. 

New Place Edition, Mulberry Gin - Shakespeare famously planted a mulberry tree in the gardens of his home ‘New Place’ in Stratford upon Avon, where one still stands to this day. This special edition of our Mulberry Gin Liqueur uses the Black Mulberries that we are privileged to be able to harvest from this tree which we steep in our award-winning Stratford Dry Gin for several months to create a deliciously deep, rich and fruity style of gin.

Neutral wedding flowers by Penny Johnson

natasha and mathewNatasha and Matthew's big day back in September, the couple chose beautiful neutral shades.

Natasha picked a gorgeous natural,relaxed design, housing a selection of ivory blooms including  Eucalyptus,Astilbe, Hydrangea florets and beautiful single and spray Rose blooms. Matthew's buttonhole was made up using mini blooms that were taken from Natasha's bouquet (a nice touch)

The bridesmaids bouquets were simple designs of made with delicate sprays of Gypsophila, as were the groomsmens buttonholes.

They chose the fabulous @shustokefarmbarns  as their venue and continued the natural relaxed feeling throughout  clear vase displays on each table with fresh blooms to compliment theme, and huge rustic wreath suspended from the central pulley, creating a fabulous focal point

Thank you to Kayleigh Pope for sharing the photos they look beautiful.

 

Penny Johnson Christmas Workshops 2019

Join us at Coleshill Town Hall for a fabulous event packed full of festive creativity. You will learn how to create a large  botanical style luxury  door wreath.  in our relaxed and friendly workshops we give clear step by step instuctions throughout this three hour event , inspiring you to add your own personal touches to your design. Penny will also be demonstrating some beautiful table displays , and garlands, that you will be able to recreate at home. 

Everything you need is included, light snacks and beverages, mulled wine and mince pies too - £45.00 per person (£20.00 non refundable deposit to book, balance on the day)

These events were very popular last year so don't miss out and reserve your place today.

Sun 1st December 2pm - 5pm

Weds 4th December 6pm - 9pm

Thurs 5th December 6pm - 9pm

 

Pantone colour of the year 2019

This years Pantone colour is "Living Coral" - the renowned colour matching system describes the colour as "boyant, vibrant and effervesent" and it is predicted that  "Living Coral" will dominate the design industry for the next year.

Popular with weddings, this vibrant yes mellow shade looks fabulous with ivory and lime blooms, and also comes to life even more with an injection of hot pink .

"Miss Piggy" rose blooms and the gorgeous "coral charm" Peony are a perfect duo in May and June, add some grey tone foliages and  hint of ivory and the finished product looks absolutely delicious 

Visit our pinterest boards of coral and peach flowers, and bouquets for inspiration.

If you are getting married this year then why not book your free wedding consultation with penny Johnson Flowers today.

Pantone colour of the year 2019

Flower School 2019

We are pleased to announce the  re-opening our Flower School for 2019.

Penny set up the flower school back in 2003 offering full days tuition. This was soon followed by the fabulous "love flowers" flower club who met up monthly to create lovely displays, even providing arrangements for the VIP area at Shustoke and Whitacre show one year, which was amazing for our students.

With weddings and event work taking over, the school went on the back burner for a while, although Christmas and spring work shops have continued, along with floral demonstrations. We are so pleased that now we have an extended team on board we will once again be offering monthly classes.

Buying and recieving flowers is super nice, but sometimes we just don't know how to arrange them. 

Here at Penny Johnson Flower School,  we will be on hand to guide you with truly inspirational tuition, you will soon enjoy not only being creative and more confident with flowers but you will also produce fabulous designs that are all yours for the keeping.

At our full day class you will recieve a full step by step demonstration and instruction for each of the three design that you will then go on to produce. Tea, coffee and soft drinks are provided throughout the day and a light lunch is served around 1pm the class is due to finish around 3.30/4pm, we guarentee you will be blown away by what you have created.

Our evening classes will start at 6pm, again there will be full step by step instruction and demonstrations, everything will be provided for you including beverages and snacks 

Our aim is to Inspire, Create and Enjoy - applying these ethosto everything we do, you are guarented to have a great time.

Everything you need is included, we supply all theflowers and foliages, all your vases, containers and sundries - all you need to bring is is your wonderful, ready to be inspired, self !

Spaces are limited, so we encourage you to book your places online today...

Penny Johnson Flower School

 

 

Penny Johnson Flowers introduces eco-friendly wrapping

Here at Penny Johnson HQ we alway take our environmental responsibilities very seriously and have recently taken steps to further reduce our impact on the environment...

We have exchanged branded cellophane and opted for a new natural product which is :

  • Renewable
  • Recyclable
  • Biodegradable
  • Compostable at home
  • Natural raw materials
  • FSC certified
  • ISO14001 & ISO9001 approved
  • Super high wet strength

We have used kraft paper and raffia for general flower wrapping since we opened our store over 15 years ago, and for a while now we have also wrapped most of our “ready to go“ hand tied bouquets the same - now we have our new branded echo wrap we will continue minimise our impact on our very precious environment.

While we do still need to use a small amount of cellophane for the water bubble at the bottom of our hand tied bouquets, the majority of the packaging will now be fully biodegradable!

We also stock biodegradable floral foam in store.

Eco Wrap at Penny Johnson Flowers

Christmas Workshop 2018 with Penny Johnson

Join us at Coleshill Town Hall for a fabulous event packed full of festive creativity. Enjoy learning new skills, in our relaxed and friendly workshops where you will be shown step by step how to create a fabulous door wreath, being inspired to add your own personal touch to your design. Learn how to create beautiful displays for the home.

Everything you need is included, light snacks and beverages, mulled wine and mince pies too - £45.00 per person (£20.00 non refundable deposit to book, balance on the day)

These events were very popular last year so don't miss out and reserve your place today.

Saturday 1st December 2pm - 5pm

Tuesday 4th December 6pm - 9pm

Wednesday 5th December 6pm - 9pm