FLOWERS: Why you should choose seasonal and English flowers for your wedding

30th March 2015


Seasonal flowers and foliage for a January winter wedding? A February bouquet with no red roses? What is the world coming to? Sense, Rachel Petheram of Catkin Flowers tells me, and I heartily support her!

Whatever the time of year, wedding floristry using English flowers, herbs and delicate foliage can look beautiful if you have an empathy for the seasons and a romantic mind.

A seasonal wedding bouquet of cutting garden flowers by Catkin Flowers

Rachel tells us more …

“I recently did the flowers for a January wedding: imagine lots of silver colours with anemones, paper white narcissi and beautiful winter foliage. The phrase ‘winter wonderland’ is a bit of a cliche, but the venue was exactly that.  

A January wedding bouquet of English flowers from Catkin Flowers

However, as much as I love the colours and cool beauty of winter flowers, most weddings are in the summer and this is when my cutting garden based at Doddington Hall comes into its own. I am gardening all year round to create stunning, home-grown flowers which include sweet peas, English roses, peonies, dahlias plus a huge variety of bulbs, herbs and annuals.

In times when the cutting garden is quieter, I buy in flowers from other Lincolnshire and English growers.  I worry about the environmental impact of importing, plus growing my own flowers provides a fantastic environment for our pollinators, and we all know how much we need our pollinators!

A beautiful wedding bouquet of seasonal flowers in June from Catkin Flowers

It is also lovely to use herbs, which you may not expect to see in your wedding bouquet. An arrangement with mint, rosemary, lavender and sage is not only really pretty but the smell is amazing. I love to think of my clients instantly transported to their wedding day when they smell the herb which was in their bouquet. Sensory memories at their best...

Another of my favourites are dahlias - striking, bold and with gorgeous colours. This is also why I love spring bulbs like tulips and anemones - the range of colours and shapes are fabulous.  With the changing seasons come changing flowers and I find the turnover and cycle hugely inspirational.

For 2015 I have launched a new service - alongside my bespoke service – my new ‘Cutting Garden Wedding Flowers’; a sort of off-the-peg concept where, by having a free reign to use whatever looks its very best from the cutting garden on the day of the wedding means I can give my clients a fixed, no nonsense cost for their wedding flowers.  As one bride said to me recently ‘I don’t care what colours and flowers you use, I know it will be very ‘you’ and very gorgeous!

Catkin Flowers cutting garden at Doddington Hall

My favourite look is always the one of effortless gathering; of simplistic whim and innocent style. I picture Jane Austen’s Marianne walking to church in Sense and Sensibility to marry Colonel Brandon - laughing and creating her bouquet on the way from cottage gardens and hedgerows and tying it with a simple ribbon. It’s this sense of easy perfection that I seek."

A September wedding bouquet of cutting garden flowers by Catkin Flowers

Thank you so much Rachel, of course here at GU HQ we embrace seasonal and British flowers and I just love your new concept of 'off-the-peg' wedding flowers! 

If you’d like to find out more about Rachel and her beautiful British and home grown flowers go to or email Rachel at

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