Buy British > > Flowers
The first in Top Banana’s Save Britain Campaign explains how we can all add a little cheer to our lives and welcome Spring by supporting British Farmers and choosing to buy British Flowers.
As well as buying British you can even support charities and get added value from the gift of giving flowers – for example Charity Flowers you will also be helping up to 170 UK charities.
Charity Flowers is the UK’s only flowers by post service to be wholly-owned by a major national charity. Age Concern.
By Elena Price
Buying British flowers is a great way to support the troubled British economy and is also a more eco-friendly choice than buying flowers grown overseas.
Many of the cut flowers that we find in florists and supermarkets are grown abroad, in countries such as Holland and even as far away as Kenya. However, by buying British flowers rather than imported flowers, we can help to support our own commercial flower-growers, something that it is particularly important in the current financial climate.
Helping the environment
Buying British flowers is also better for the environment than buying imported flowers, as the flowers don’t need to be transported as far. Flowers grown abroad are flown into the UK. As air travel is believed to make a significant contribution to carbon emissions, which experts believe to be one of the factors that cause climate change, it makes sense to try and buy our cut flowers from closer to home if we can.
The other advantage of buying British flowers is that they don’t take as long to transport as imported foreign flowers and are likely to be fresher and to last longer, making them better value for money.
Britain has an excellent flower-farming industry and some parts of the UK have gained great reputations for producing beautiful, sweet-smelling blooms. One of the primary regions for flower-growing in the UK is the Isles of Scilly.
The proximity of the Gulf Stream means that the Isles of Scilly benefit from warmer winters than the rest of the UK and rarely experience frost or snow, whilst also having slightly cooler summers than the rest of the country, making them the perfect location for flower farms.
Flower Farming in Britain
Flower farming first began on the Isles of Scilly during the late nineteenth century and flowers quickly became one of the islands’ main exports. During World War II, the industry began to suffer, as it became much more difficult to transport the flowers to the mainland, but Winston Churchill is said to have intervened in order to ensure that the flower farmers had access to fuel and transport after having been sent a bouquet of flowers from a flower farmer in the Isles of Scilly whilst he was in hospital. Since then, the Isles of Scilly flower industry has grown and is vital to the local economy. Flower farms on the islands are still very much family businesses, with many of them having been handed down through the generations.
The flower farms on the Isles of Scilly are best-known for growing narcissi. More than 25 varieties of narcissi (a genus of flower that includes daffodils and jonquils) are grown on the islands. Narcissi are usually white, yellow, peach or pink and many varieties are scented.
Top Banana tips
- Flowers will benefit from fresh water every day.
- A small amount of sugar disolved inthe water will help the blooms open for longer.