In case you haven't noticed the smell of Indian summer, then you must go for a little wander this evening and experience the changes in the nature.
In Devon we are very lucky to have more hedges than any other place in the UK. They provide an amazing habitat,shelter or breeding ground for all sorts of creatures (nesting birds, dormice, insects, bats etc..) and act as bio corridors. They also capture pollution, act as a windbreak, help mitigate flooding, and absorb noise.
Flailing /cutting is not the only management method and I would like to encourage people to look into the old traditional technique of hedge laying.
If you're interested in managing your hedgerows for wildlife you might find the Life in the Hedge video by Moor Meadows helpful.
Take the time before all hedges get cut and go gathering. Go somewhere new. Sloes, Blackberries, Apples, Rosehip, Elderberries, Hawthorn berries, Hops. All available at our doorstep.
Hops are available for the next week or so - weather dependant - if you'd like some to decorate your home, please order ASAP. Grown by John Monk just outside of Chagford.
We've got new berry baskets. Hand made by Jenny Scott, using locally grown willow whips. They start at £40. Perfect for sloes!
Selection of autumnal wreaths made with local ingredients.
_Seeds and Garden
Now is good time to collect seeds from your garden plants or wildflowers.
Try to collect the seeds on a dry day and place them on a tray with paper.
Make sure you label each tray and keep them somewhere dry and airy for couple of weeks. To store the seeds until spring, move them into paper envelopes and place in airtight container and put in the fridge.
Don't forget to sow your winter salads - lamb's lettuce, mizuna or rocket.
If you have an area in your garden that you'd like to turn into a wildflower meadow and reduce the area of frequent summer mowing, collect or buy yellow rattle seeds and sow them this autumn into bare soil. Yellow rattle is parasitic on grass and helps reducing grass density allowing wildflowers to germinate and compete. Don't overdo it! Look at guidelines on how to start a wildflower meadow on https://moormeadows.org.uk/information/meadow-creation-and-management/
Perennial bed maintenance - if you can bare to look at it, don't cut it. Perennial plants and grass hollow stems provide a winter refuge to many species of invertebrates and the seedheads are often visited by birds. I recommend cutting everything back in early spring.
Yes - it's nearly the time to plant spring bulbs! Plan ahead to have a stunning spring display in your garden or in your pots.
I will have a nice selection of botanical /perennials tulips suitable for naturalizing as well as showy Tulip hybrids, Daffodils including paperwhites for Christmas blossom, Snake head fritillaries and all sorts of bulbs.
If there is any variety you'd really like, let me know as soon as possible and if it's available, we might be able to add it to the order!
Many of you were surprised about the travel miles of an average rose in my previous newsletter, so I thought I'd share more statistics about the cut flower industry. Sit down.
A mixed bouquet made with imported flowers would have produced 10x greater carbon emissions than a seasonally grown British bouquet.
Top exporters of cut flowers in 2020
The Netherlands (Tulips)
Ecuador (Mainly Roses)
Colombia (Roses, Carnations, Chrysanthemums, Alstromeria)
Kenya (over 16000 tonnes of cut flowers exported to EU per year, mainly Roses, Alstromeria, Carnations)
Ethiopia (mainly Roses, Gypsophilla, Carnations, Limonium, Hypericum)
While the farms provide employment, a lot of flowers are grown in big heated greenhouses releasing large amounts of CO2, and unless certified organic, some of the pesticides and herbicides used are often banned in european countries. Flowers are then transported in cooling /air conditioned chambers to the dutch flower market - the world's largest flower auction and then across the whole world to wholesalers and then to your local florists.
So thank you again for supporting local flower growers.
Small flower farm 4 miles from Chagford
My first harvest at LW walled garden
_What's on in September
New Stock - Autumnal wreaths, Everlasting dried flower crowns, Fresh Hop vines, Handmade berry Baskets, Spring bulbs, Garden tools
We will be hosting a wreath making workshop, dates will be released soon.
For daily flower photos follow me
on instagram https://www.instagram.com/florist_from_the_forest/
To see my portfolio check out my website https://www.floristfromtheforest.co.uk/