Rose for valentines? use your imagination....
I have a very first world problem. My birthday is only 17 days after Valentines day, so my quota of flower gifts from the under gardener are concentrated in a very short time window. (Yes, we have a hierarchy. The under Gardener does report to the Assistant Gardener - i.e. the cat, Minnie). That's probably why I love growing flowers so much. In fact I'm on an allotment list, not for veg (I may invest in an asparagus bed), but to grow cut flowers. Buckets, and buckets of them. Every colour under the sun - that will clash and make anyone with a heart smile and feel better. Bees, butterflies, moths and insects will flock. Of course, the pigeons will not. I love peonies. However, their show may be spectacular, but its incredibly short. My urban garden hasn't got the luxury of space to grow many of the varieties I love. At my allotment - there's going to be a peony patch of preposterous proportions.
Anyway, I digress. What to give your loved one this year. Or a friend that could really do with a floral pep up. Lets face it, everyone at the moment would benefit from this. February can be a rubbish month. (Unless like me, its the month your convert half you kitchen into a greenhouse and start off so many seeds that summer feels like a few weeks away...).
Why not roses? You could. However, they are expensive, and probably won't smell. Who wants a rose that doesn't smell. There is also the air mile and sustainability issues.
Truthfully if you are a fairly new couple, I'd stick with roses. I can just about remember that far back, and one year didn't get roses. Queue very grumpy girlfriend. As I said, first world problems.
So, what to give? Here's what I'd love to see in my home this February.
Ranunculus. British grown and beautiful. You should also look out in your local independent florists for seasonal UK flowers too - Muscari, Hellebores, Narcissus, Anemones and scented Hyacinths.
If you are looking for online orders. I like Bloom and Wild, below. They do letterbox flowers, and are very reasonable. So if your intended is out, they can still be delivered safely. Also they come with a mix in bud and in bloom, so that they last longer. Also, if your bouquet has bulbs in them, they come attached, so you can plant them afterwards for next year. My favourite 3 from Bloom and Wild.
If you are a traditionalist, and you really must do roses, look at companies like The Real flower company. Not cheap, but beautifully exquisite scented bouquets, that are grown sustainably on their farms in Hampshire and Kenya. The red bouquet is UK grown, scented and adorned with mint and rosemary. Personally, I'd go for the Caffe Latte pink...….but disappointingly, the under gardener doesn't read this...….