Prickly Valentines Gift for my Man

Whilst on a family holiday to Lanzarote we visited the Cactus Gardens. It was a fabulous place and we all enjoyed it, my six year old took some really good pictures (below). To see all the cacti planted side by side was inspirational. I liked all the different geometric shapes of the cacti and succulents, and the textures of the plants, volcanic rock and building materials of the setting. It was a beautiful day and the sun was creating its own shapes, throwing long shadows on the ground. 



Photos by Laurence Wilkinson (aged 6)


Photos by me

My partner got really into it and even bought their book, he said it was for me but I know secretly he wanted it. I told him I’d make him one. That was months ago now! I have finally done it and just in time for Valentine’s Day. Which one should I give him?Image



The planting took a long time they were tricky things to handle. Pick them up with a long piece of folded paper which can be wrapped around the body of the cactus and used to lift them into position. I used charcoal pieces at the bottom of each container to help with drainage. Charcoal also helps prevent the soil from smelling by absorbing the volatiles from the soil. I used specialist cactus compost to ensure the correct mix of sand and soil. Using a sick to compact the soil around each plant is the best method and saves you getting pricked too many times. The fine spines are the worst, they are like little fishing hooks……..awwwww

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Happy Valentines Day xxx




Spring wedding flowers for a bleak winters day

Wild & Wondrous’s first wedding of 2014 landed on a horrid day. It was dark, cold and trying to snow. Simon and Rachel wanted spring flowers for their wedding and they really did brighten the day.  Image

Orange ranunculus, sol d’or, daffodil, bupleurum and a touch of green bell to give it that Wild & Wondrous touch. Warm, bright and ever so fragrant.

The bride wanted mostly white with a touch of orange and blue. I bought lovely Johan Straus daffodils for the touch of orange and used white ranunculus, Pueblo narcissus, paper whites, green bell and I snuck a few muscari in for something blue. She was delighted.



The reception at Shawhill Golf and Country Club in Chorley was just for close family and friends and the room was lifted by the placement of a few single stem vases and jam jars.  ImageImage