Welcome to Flower Power

Welcome to our two day online festival celebrating everything we love about flowers and gardens, and in turn how much good they do for our mental and physical health.  We have a fantastic line-up for both days – with a brilliant programme of garden and landscape designers, growers, florists and wellbeing specialists.  We look forward to seeing you there!

What a strange year this has been…. we had been planning a fabulous flower show here at the Charterhouse, and as we are still closed to the public for the time being, we have come up with an exciting new idea.

Over this period of lockdown and isolation, the gardens here at the Charterhouse have never been so important as a source of cheer and of solace.  The Brothers have been able to sit quietly in the garden, take walks for exercise, and several of them have been actively keeping it maintained and watered, and helping with planting while the gardening team was away. (You can see some of the Brothers reflecting on how the gardens have helped during lockdown in the video at the bottom of the page)

So this sparked the idea for FLOWER POWER – a celebration of the power of gardens and gardening to bring pleasure and wellbeing.  And we can see across the world of social media, this theme has resonance for so many of us.  Together with our lovely friends Leigh Chappell and Sarah Whiting we have curated a two day festival of talks, films and demonstrations – to highlight the happiness flowers and gardens bring us, and at the same time raise awareness of both our charity, which is sorely in need as we have no income from public tours, events or from venue hire, and the challenges faced by the British-grown flower business.

Please find the programme detailed below, with both live events and pre-recorded films.  We look forward very much to seeing you there and will be extremely grateful for your donations in way of payment for each event. (See the Master of the Charterhouse, Ann Kenrick’s note of thanks at the bottom of the page)

Friday 18th September

The Very Useful Cutting Garden

Marianne Mogendorff, Wolves Lane Flower Company

Growing flowers to cut and enjoy in your own home is an enormously rewarding process. And by experimenting with techniques such as drying, pressing or cooking, the cutting garden can become a powerhouse of productivity helping us to reconnect with nature and our creativity. Marianne Mogendorff, one half of north London flower farm Wolves Lane Flower Company, will talk about their favourite flowers to grow and how to get the most out of your harvest to enjoy your flowers throughout the seasons.

40 mins
Live talk + Q&A
Book your place here with a donation
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Plants and Nature for Wellbeing

Ellen Mary, Ellen Mary Gardening
Ellen Mary presents a live talk describing how both plants and nature at large help our physical and mental health wellbeing. Including interesting facts about nature and how we are connected together. It’s a fun, relaxed talk but with a serious message. Tree hugging is involved!

45 mins
Live talk with Q&A
Book your place with a donation here.
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Tour of the Charterhouse Gardens

Kate Robinson, The Charterhouse
Join the Charterhouse Head Gardener Kate Robinson as she guides you around the beautiful hidden gardens of the Charterhouse, where you will get to see and hear about the development of the series of beautifully planted courts, normally closed to the public, which create an oasis of calm within this seven-acre estate.

45 mins
Pre-filmed tour followed by live Q&A
Book your place with a donation here
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

British flower arrangement in a small footed bowl

Catherine Foxwell, Floral Evolution
London florist Catherine Foxwell will be showing how to arrange a mixture of British flowers in a small footed bowl, using foam free mechanics.  This session will show how versatile and interesting British flowers are, and how you don’t need lots of flowers to create a beautiful arrangement.

Catherine has been a florist since 2015 and specialises in wedding and event floristry.  Catherine loves to use structure and form in her arrangements and enjoys creating unusual thought provoking designs using seasonal flowers.

45 mins
Live demo with Q&A
Book your place with a donation here.
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Building a Sanctuary

Ashley Edwards, Horatio’s Garden
Ashley Edwards, formerly Head Gardener at Strawberry Hill House, has now taken that role at  Horatio’s Garden (London and South East), creating garden environments for people with spinal injuries.  In this film he interviews patients illustrating how the pleasure of gardens and gardening is for everyone, and how to make gardens truly accessible.

Horatio’s Garden is a national charity creating and nurturing beautiful gardens in NHS spinal injury centres to support everyone affected by spinal injury. They grow thriving communities to support patients, their families and friends facing long stays in NHS hospitals.

Leading landscape designers create these stunning sanctuaries, working in collaboration with prominent architects to design garden rooms ensuring the space can be used all year round. The gardens become an integral part of people’s lives throughout their time in hospital.

45 mins
Film with live Q&A
Book your place with a donation here.
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Book all the events on 18th September with one donation
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Saturday 19th September

Growing to give – do something good with your garden

Nicola Bird, The Floral Project
A perfect talk for those new to flower growing. Nicola Bird is a wellbeing expert and the author of the bestselling book, A Little Peace of Mind. Earlier this year, she began to grow cut flowers to give to her local Age Concern beneficiaries – well aware of the power of nature to bring a feeling of peace and wellbeing. She quickly realised that doing something good with your garden was something we could all get involved with during the past few months, and so The Floral Project was born – with over 200 gardeners around the UK all growing to give to local hospices, charities and key workers.

In this live presentation, Nicola will share the simple steps she took to start her own cut flower patch, the 10 seeds to sow in September to get going and why getting involved in growing to give is great for our mental health and wellbeing, as well as those whose hands the flowers end up in. Total flower power 🙂

45 mins + Q&A
Live presentation
Book your place with a donation here

From seed to vase

Sarah Whiting, Nettlewood Flowers
Nettlewood Flowers is a small scale sustainable flower farm, which started in a London back garden and moved to a larger property in East Sussex last year.  Three years ago Sarah turned a passion for gardening and growing flowers for the home into a business, growing flowers to use in weddings and events and to sell to other florists. In this talk you’ll hear about the highs and lows of growing cut flowers during the pandemic, how people turned to flowers to bring joy and comfort during lockdown, and how the demand for British grown cut flowers has changed. You’ll be given some tips on the best flowers to grow for cutting in your back garden and how to condition them for arranging.

Pre-filmed + Q&A
Please book you place with a donation here

Urn photograph RED Photography

A large urn arranged with garden and foraged flowers.

Shane Connolly, Shane Connolly Flowers

In keeping with his environmental ethos, this will be done with a completely compostable, foam free technique. It will help give you confidence to attempt larger arrangements with simple structures and free up your style of arranging. After this recorded demonstration, Shane  is more than happy to answer any questions about sustainability in the Floral Industry and help you with techniques.

Shane Connolly is one of the UK’s best known floral designers and holds Royal Warrants of Appointment to both HM The Queen and HRH The Prince of Wales. He was responsible for designing the flowers for the Marriage and Blessing of TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall in 2005 and the wedding of TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in 2011. His style embraces the seasons and British grown flowers and plants And he is a leader of the Sustainable Floristry movement. (Photograph of Urn: RED Photography)

45 mins
Recorded film + live Q&A
Book your place with a donation here

The attraction of the ‘ancient impenetrability’ of Charterhouse Square

Talk by Todd Longstaffe-Gowan

In his talk, filmed in Charterhouse Square, Todd will discuss how his scheme for the recent refurbishment of Charterhouse Square is intended to enhance the inherent qualities of a place imbued with a remarkable atmosphere, redolent of great antiquity and pre-Reformation monasticism, and possessing an antiquarian interest unrivalled in other London squares.

Todd is a landscape architect in private practice in Smithfield in London. He brings to his garden design a sense of the complexities of our relation to the past that is informed by his training and experience as an architect, landscape architect, cultural geographer and historian. He has written several books on London landscape history including The London Square (Yale UP, 2012)

45 mins
Filmed lecture with live Q&A
Book your place with a donation here.

Book all the events on 19th September with one donation
NB Booking closes 13.00 Thursday 17th September

Non-timed events available to view from 10.00 am Friday 18th September

Why British Flowers?

Leigh Chappell (Leigh Chappell Flowers) and Janne Ford (Janne Ford Floral Photography)
Together Leigh and Janne, who often run bespoke workshops for creatives who want to learn more about floral design, styling and photgraphy, are presenting a film about their love of flowers and how they work with them. They will be looking around a cutting garden, and discussing the importance of sustainability, and highlighting the very big challenges for British flower growers and florists right now.

11 mins
Access your link to this talk with a donation here


Conscious Change

Hattie Fox, That Flower Shop
Hattie has been a florist for 17 years and owns and runs a flower shop and studio in Shoreditch.
During the summer of 2019 Hattie took over a small plot in Kent that housed the remains of a plant nursery that had gone unused for 10 years. It was taken on with the intention to work  more British flowers and reduce the amount of import her business was personally relying on. Due to Covid-19 Hattie has spent her time full time digging up 10 years of weeds, membrane and carpet and has successfully managed to run her business throughout the pandemic from March this year without using any imported product. Hattie’s short film explains why she wanted to work with and grow British flowers for her business and how she has ended up having a crash course in flower farming due to the pandemic.

30 mins
Access your link to this talk with a donation here

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