10th March 2023
Mr & Mrs Clarke x The Secret Garden
Our Beaconsfield Agent Victoria caught up with The Secret Garden Florist to get the lowdown on all things floral…
how long has the secret garden been in beaconsfield?
I opened The Secret Garden Florist 10 years ago. To start with I was a little torn as to what kind of shop I wanted but I knew it had to be decorative/interior related as I have always had a keen interest. I also loved gardening, so I decided to take a floristry course and my shop became a florist. Shortly before Covid hit, I had to renew my lease, and for various reasons I decided not to. It turned out to be a very wise decision. I set up my garden studio at home and am now busier than ever! My daughter Emma now works full time with me, we have a delivery driver and various freelancers we rely on when we need to.
What led you into the industry?
I was a lawyer many moons ago. I gave up work to stay at home with my children, but when my youngest child, Alex, went to boarding school, I knew I needed a new challenge. Flowers, gardens and Interiors have always interested me so it was quite a natural progression for me. I did a flower course in London, found some premises, practised like mad and opened my shop.
What do you love about flowers?
I love flowers because they are simply beautiful. There are endless options and colour combinations. To create something beautiful in a short space of time is very gratifying and it makes me happy. I think flowers are an important element in many aspects of life. They are important at a wedding but they are maybe the most important when you say goodbye to someone dear. To be able to create some beautiful flowers that evoke a close friend or relative is very satisfying. I also do think (and always have, even before I was a florist) that rooms and houses look sad and lifeless without plants and flowers.
Do you have a favourite flower and why?
I have many favourite flowers, and they change with the seasons. So at the moment one of my favourite flowers is Hellebores, but soon it will be Anemones and Ranunculus. It is often about impact and 50 white tulips look gorgeous, but equally sometimes it is about combinations as I am a firm believer that most flowers have got a place. Take for instance a dark red/burgundy Carnation. I would not have 10 Carnations in a vase but they can look amazing if put with the right greenery and other flowers. And as for scent, nothing beats the smell of freesias.
What’s the most extravagant or expensive request you have had?
The single most extravagant arrangement I made was a dome of 500 white roses in a huge urn!
What do you love about Beaconsfield?
I love living in Beaconsfield for various reasons, like proximity to London, Heathrow, close to the countryside, etc . But I love it most because this is where my children went to school. I have therefore made some very special friendships here and I think myself very lucky because of all my friends here.