The Cottage Smallholder

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Posies on the spring gate side stand


Photo: The first posy

Photo: The first posy

Last week I popped into Homebase to see if they had potted up flowering spring bulbs on sale. And they did! At 25%-30% of the usual price these are even cheaper than buying bulbs. They would enable us to start selling posies on the gate side stand and then plant the bulbs in the garden for next year.

When I got home I tackled the posies. It was fun looking around the garden for foliage and other flowers. Luckily the winter flowering honeysuckle is blooming so I added some of this to each of the posies – the smell of these tiny creamy white flowers is divine.

The posies didn’t sell on the first day. So we ate supper in a kitchen disguised as a florist’s shop. But all disappointment vanished when they started to sell on day two. I’m really looking forward to selling the flowers that we have grown ourselves. The daffodils will be out soon and then the bluebells and tulips. Every cottage windowsill is crammed with pots of seedlings so this summer the herbaceous borders will be full of flowers.

Sarah Raven’s book The Cutting Garden: Growing and Arranging Garden Flowers is really good and a great investment if you want to grow flowers for arrangements or to sell. It’s a superb reference book and I am learning loads. I am growing the flowers that you have suggested and really appreciate all your advice.

Today I’m going to make a temporary cold frame out of some old windows and French windows as our greenhouse and cold frame are full of seedlings.

  Leave a reply


  1. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Toffeeapple

    Still feeling my way a lot! All the flowers available are short stemmed so it has to be posies but they are selling which is good.

    Hello Domestic Executive

    I am determined to make a reasonable income from the gate side stand. It’s a lot of work ATM but if I get tired I can snooze for an hour. It’s thrilling to see the seeds germinating and the promise of future flowers.

    Delighted that you are going to grow cutting flowers next year!

    Hi Cookie Girl

    It took me ages to make this posy. After I’d got the hang of it, making a posy was fairly quick. It is interesting putting these teeny plants together and even more fun when they sell!

    Hello Danast

    Thank you for your positive feedback! I do hope that this project works over time.

    Hello Magic Cochin

    I’m enjoying this new enterprise so far. Making tempting posies is heartening!

    Hi Kate UK

    I‘m trying to make everything on the stand attractive with maximum hanger appeal. The lady in Duchess Drive has just opened her stand with ten daffs for a fiver – in jam jars. I stopped to peruse and she had sold 6 jars at 3.30pm. So I will be selling just plain flowers as well in the future.

  2. Looks lovely!
    So pleased it is going well- how could anyone resist?

  3. Magic Cochin

    That’s so pretty Fiona 🙂 You’ve obviously got a great eye for putting flowers and foliage together. It must be all that ‘flowers from the garden’ practice 😉

    Hope the posies are flying from the stall, bet you get some regular customers.


  4. The posy looks really sweet Fiona. I’m sure people will love them, I know I would.

  5. Cookie Girl

    What a lovely posey. I’m sure your customers were very pleased.

  6. Domestic Executive

    I really admire your determination to grow, to sell and delight others. I saw someone titivating their gate stall (it was a small table with plants actually) the other and I could see how much pride the seller was taking in their “work”! I’ve marked a spot just by our kichen garden I’m going to build some cut flower beds next year. Thanks for the book recommendation.

  7. Toffeeapple

    That posy looks delightful Fiona, very springlike. You sound very excited at the prospect of your cutting garden, good luck with it.

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