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RHS infuriates national association of cut flower growers

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A single tweet from InterfloraUK yesterday [6th February] started an online battle that went on late into the night and looks set to continue. The ‘Ultimate Love Bouquet' [available to order for Valentine's Day at £195] has been created through teamwork with the Royal Horticultural Society [RHS] and also bears the RHS logo.

Gill Hodgson of Flowers from The Farm, the national association of cut flower growers, who retweeted it and opened the floodgates. She said: "I was so angry that the RHS, who are the UK's leading gardening charity, would endorse a bouquet made up of predominantly imported material: it sends out completely the wrong message and destroys all of our hard work.

"Right now, British growers have superb tulips grown in Lincolnshire, stunning Anemones and gloriously scented Narcissi from Cornwall and the Scillies. We have all seen the appalling weather conditions in the South West and can only imagine the heartbreak of the farmers and growers who are seeing their crops destroyed. To see the RHS then championing scentless flowers mass-produced in South America is soul-destroying."

No response was forthcoming from the RHS during the day but Interflora did post some tweets claiming that 60% of the bouquet's content was British-grown and, in the late afternoon, stuck BRITISH GROWN labels on 5 of the 10 species in the bouquet. Sara Venn, a professional horticulturalist from Bristol, spoke to Interflora's Communications Manager on the phone and has threatened to involve Trading Standards if the BRITISH GROWN labels are not removed.

The growers' anger, though, is mainly directed against the RHS. "We are working so hard to bring new blood into the industry," said Gill, "There's a dearth of young growers and the RHS itself has a dedicated schools' division to encourage new entrants and yet, on Valentine's day - one of the peaks in the growers' year - they promote imported produce".

RHS infuriates national association of cut flower growers

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  • Posted: Fri. 7th February 2014 10:39

Re: RHS infuriates national association of cut flower growers

Reply from Nicola

Judging by the comments on Twitter and Facebook, any man tempted by the Interflora bouquet might like to think again and save their money.

"One Snowdrop would mean so much more to me", said Wendy Eagle.

Caroline Turner wanted slightly more, "I'd rather have an egg-cup full of Snowdrops any day".

But the best response has to go to Wendy Shillam, "I'd rather have a bunch of dandelions and a kiss."

Some other blogs here by Sara Venn The Physic Blogger and The Rivendell Garden

  • Posted: Fri. 7th February 2014 10:53