Today, I’m delighted to feature another member of the nationwide network of British cut flower growers, Flowers from the Farm.
And it’s the turn of Amanda Fawzi of The Country Garden Company.
When did you start your business and where are you based?
I started The Country Garden Company in the spring of 2011, when I decided that growing cut flowers was a good business option.
It very much suited me and my other commitments to be able to work from home and, of course, to do a job that I love.
I spent the summer of 2011 ‘practising’ to see if it was possible to grow a substantial amount of flowers on our land.
All my friends were in constant receipt of my home-grown bouquets and I would question them on which they liked and disliked and vase life. I even sent some through the post to see how that would work!
Both courses were immensely valuable with an amazingly generous amount of information shared, and I was convinced to launch The Country Garden Company commercially.
I grow all the flowers near Cupar in Fife. I’m lucky enough to have an acre of garden, so currently have about 1/4 acre dedicated to cut annuals, several further perennial beds, a poly tunnel and am currently preparing a further 1/4 acre for shrubs, herbs and more perennials.
What types of flowers do you grow?
I grow most of the country garden favourites.
I try to concentrate on those not seen in supermarkets and compete by offering the customers a change from the year round standard fare. So, plenty of seasonal variation and plenty of fragrance are important to me.
I can offer flowers that would not tolerate the travelling of so many of our available flowers.
Flowers like cosmos, sweet peas, phlox and salvia have featured heavily in our summer bouquets with plenty of lemon balm, mint and dill for foliage.
We also grow fantastic autumnal rudbeckia and zingy zinnias, plus lots of gorgeous dahlias.
Where do you sell your flowers?
I sell most of my flowers at farmers’ markets and in buckets for DIY weddings.
We also sell on-line for delivery throughout the UK. And I’ve started selling edible flowers to wedding caterers and restaurants.
What is your favourite flower?
Obviously I like so many flowers but I always have a love of flowers that are multi-use. So, for me, nothing beats cornflowers.
They are generous and reliable. The blue is like no other and if the stems are twisty…eat them.
P.S. Many of you who filled out the recent Flowerona survey mentioned that you love blog posts about British flowers and cut flower growers…so there will be plenty more posts in 2013!
(Images : The Country Garden Company)