The Great British Flower Fragrant Stocks
Ahead of British Flowers Week next week, I thought we’d focus on one of our favourite British flowers; the sweetly fragrant British Stock.
Don’t judge them for their rather uninspiring name, we rather like Gillyflower as they were known in the Elizabethan era or Matthiola, their Latin name. However, name aside, the clusters of single or double flowers are really popular, coming in a wide palette of white, cream, pink, red, lilac and purple colours, with a lovely perfumed scent.
Happily, we’ve seen demand rising for these and other British cut flowers. Just as interest in locally-grown food has grown, so people are once again appreciating the value of locally-grown, freshly cut flowers – which is great news! Stocks are certainly one of our biggest sellers, being both cottage garden pretty and a stalwart for longevity.
They are a fashionable choice for event and wedding flowers too; ideal for garden style parties and bouquets with their strong, spicy, sweet clove fragrance, filling the room with the scent of summer. What’s not to like?!
And, you know how we like to get creative here at The Flower Lounge, Stocks are incredibly versatile for florists, adding line and mass to arrangements. Whether they’re mixed with other classic blooms such as roses and sweet William to add a vintage, freshly picked feel, or used to style a more classic bouquet with the thick ruffled flowers giving texture, structure and fullness to an arrangement – they are a dream to work with. Particularly apt for a wedding; Stocks represent lasting beauty and symbolise a happy life, so we love adding these to mixed bouquets.
But, even if there’s no special event or wedding on the horizon, Stocks are an inexpensive way to brighten the home and bring the scent of summer indoors (even if it’s raining outside…). Simply place a few stems in a vase and voila you have a striking display.
Few of our Top Tips:
- Remove all the foliage below the water level. Cut the stems on a slant with scissors and place them in a clean vase with fresh water and flower food. You’ll get to enjoy them for up to a month!
- Where possible, buy from a florist. What you’ll get from a specialist are Stocks that have a mass of flowers along the stem (usually 30-60cm), they’ll be top quality, fresher and last infinitely longer.
If you’re inspired by Stocks, pop into the store and take a look for yourself. We’re busying ourselves with all things British for next week’s British Flower Week so will have some fantastic blooms in store….watch this space!