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October from the Artisan Grower

Winter is now in our sights as we head towards the moment when the clocks go back, but that doesn’t mean that British growers have hung up their spades and forks just yet. While the weather stays relatively dry, harvesting of autumn flowers continues, especially in Cornwall, a county which benefits from a milder climate than the rest of the UK.


Chrysanthemum

Traditionally an autumn flower, English chrysanthemums in shades of tawny brown, bright yellow and burgundy are the perfect seasonal pick-me-up. As well as spray chrysanthemums, growers are also producing single, mop-headed blooms which have a retro appeal all of their own.

  • When available from UK growers: September – October.

  • Colours: A wide range, although UK grown are generally single coloured rather than bi-coloured or striped.

  • Vase Life: 7 -14 days.

Sunflower Helianthus

Who doesn’t love a bright yellow sunflower, groups of which can still be seen towering over cutting gardens? And it’s not just the giants which are filling us with cheer, many growers produce smaller-headed varieties in warming shades of tawny brown and russet red.

  • When available from UK growers: June – October.

  • Colours: Yellow, orange, red.

  • Vase Life: 7 days.

Nerine

Also known as the Guernsey lily, as legend says that the Nerine first came to that Channel Island as a result of a shipwreck in the 1600s. This slim stemmed bulb sports a floral firework of vivid flowers and is justly popular in autumn designs, used as a contrast against the gold and red tones of the season.

  • When available from UK growers: September – October.

  • Colours: Lipstick pink, white.

  • Vase Life: 7 days.

Sedum Hylotelephium

Such a versatile flower, you can see why this succulent is called ‘Autumn Joy.’ A tightly packed, bright green head in late summer on a sturdy, fleshy stem matures over the season to a textural ruby red.

  • When available from UK growers: July – October.

  • Colours: Red, pink.

  • Vase Life: 7-10 days.

Golden Rod Solidago

Use solidago for a bright pop of yellow in autumn hand-tieds, or make the most of its tall, bushy upright growth for filling out and lengthening large seasonal displays. Long-lasting and relatively inexpensive, it’s great value for money.

  • When available from UK growers: July –September.

  • Colours: Bright yellow.

  • Vase Life: 7-10 days.

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