Theo Goffe is a London-based florist who specialises in sustainable horticulture and arranging. Along with Timothy Everest, he works with brands like Mulberry, Dunhill and Drake’s, London hotels The Rosewood, The Connaught and Claridge’s, and private clubs such as Annabelle’s and Mark’s.
We asked his expert advice on how to improve our housebound environment now that the flower shops and garden centres are currently closed.
“As you well know from recent events it’s been hard to get out of the house and appreciate the beauty of the currently changing season. Being a florist in locked down London has its challenges for sure. Not only has the work dried up but we are missing one of the most transient times of the calendar year for fresh flowers. Flowers are budding and blossoming all over London and it’s a frustrating reminder of the product that I’m usually working with at this time of year.
This weekend past, I had the urge to get myself up off the couch, cheer myself up and appreciate what’s outside in the conformity of my living room. Picking flowers can be illegal so be please be careful and aware of what you’re doing. With this in mind, here are some guidelines I use when picking flowers:
– Never take more than you need, enough for a small vase like the one I have used in the photos is perfect.
– You can pick any wild growing plant as long as you do not uproot the plant. Cutting from the base of branching points is always preferable as the plant will regrow naturally from that point.
– You cannot pick flowers from cultivated areas, i.e flower beds in parks that are obviously edged or walled, council owned property or your neighbours gardens. Though of course if you ask your neighbours politely or if your neighbours plant is hanging into your garden then this is permissible.
– Always be respectful of where you are and the other plants around you. it is very easy to see something that looks attractive, but it may be a protected species and scarce in the U.K. Here is a link of the protected plants in the U.K that are illegal to pick.
For my arrangement, I used some cherry blossom, daffodils that had fallen in the wind, some tulips from the garden and tree foliage from local parks mixed in with some wild spirea and dried poppy seeds picked in the winter that I had in the house.
If you are mindful, considerate and ecologically minded, then you can let your creative impulse run free!”