46 2014 . For a little English Light Reign…

Part 1 New Year’s Eve


There is no exception, not even the grounds of Royal Buckingham Palace; English and other British Isle landscape is only green and lush, through the persistent moisture channelling within ingenious guises of plants and trees to promote their being.

Whatever the terrain, whether Welsh valleys, Scottish Highlands, English vales, water finds its way towards the light. In plant and tree, all forms – root, in seed, leaf, stem, branch, petal,  grow from the same technology. They form, survive and reform, remarkable in their abilities to deal with January’s heaviest downpours, February’s freakishly cold, dry air cuts,  before finally reaching the calm comforts of a soft and balmy fennel scented midsummer evening in June.

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Guided by the light, there is no doubt, that trees are the guardians of our land.  With a focused mission to stretch towards the light source, it is with an inner sense of duty, not just determination, where there is an innate understanding that water really does have to find its way back up into the sky,  and it is the job of every tree to make sure that task really is completed.

However, the programming to reach blue space is not quite automatic. It is fraught with risk and so must be planned. For the next seasonal journey, water and light will prepare to partner in forming Spring diligence. The carriers, will be the new shoots, buds and leaves and unseen underground roots, carrying various life enhancing substances,  but they are all also the highly effective messengers of colour. Those multi-tasking skills, which we all admire so much, are much pronounced in the plants.


The strongest plant structures will evolve with height, breadth, strength and intelligence, and the most sophisticated are probably the trees. To complete, the offer of Spring, the season will finally become defined by  blossom and new colour. New colour, blissful petals, the final ornament, grace and form. Spring blossom. Against a blue sky, there is nothing better. The Spring water flower bowls,  are made to welcome life, christen hope and baptise happiness.

As the season progresses, after that triumph of the blossom has fallen, a Spring plant knows that if it is to survive, it must remain a very open channel in all weathers.  First of all, to further accommodate its progress of duty,  it will need to extend all its surface areas with high enthusiasm,  stems, branches, leaves and flowers.

Through Spring blossom making,  the process reaches hi-speed. The urgency to express new life is a strange recipe for any living being. As it seeks to continue on its journey, there will be conflict and contrast, excitement, but danger,  uncertainty and certainty, fragility and strength. All these seem odd fellows after the initial innocence, purity and hope promised in a new world discovery.

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But such new life and lovely colour, brings ceaseless and excitable chatter from the likes of the gentile anemones at Kensington Palace Garden.  Conversation pervades upwards through the Middle Lands to reach pink peonies in Stourbridge suburbia, and with the speed of the overnight stars, the whole of the United Kingdom will have received the goodwill messages of Spring within 24 hours.

Once the good news is given,  life is then tempted to get bigger and better, and the volume and brightness increases from field to flower box across the country. Once the last of the cherry blossom has floated down, it will become the turn of the bold Summer Petallics. After May time, their arrival comes with a psychedelic crescendo and sophisticated grandeur of fashionable European aristocracy.  A high summer splendour from the pines on the Cote d’Azur and the apres-ski Alpine florals,  brings more than a little excitement to the polite English Afternoon Tea Garden with poppies and roses.

Who in June will lead and attract the water and light,  and maintain this new generation? Who will source and preserve it? The Summer Petallics are briefed to tell all.


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© 2014 La Floralie




45 Liquid grace

When snowfall arrived on Boxing Night in England, an English Christmas scene may have appeared complete, but it is something to ponder how the shortest days of Winter, can illumine the land, make time stand still, and even bring an apparent immortality.

For when it falls, a Winter’s night preserve of snowlight is not only its white silhouette.    Whatever a snow flake touches in its moment of soft cover,  there is also crisp revelation.  Previously buried truths have silent, but sharp visibility. Whilst they rise to the surface,  even death freezes. A truth’s moment will be brief, but poignant.

As snow lays suspended on moss,  blue skies will herald the its melt for the journey of next year’s Christmas Table Water. Winter sun will converge with snowfall for a new, pure trail of liquid grace to begin again.



© 2014 La Floralie

44 To open 25th December

Choose your FLORAL PRESENCE . For immediate enjoyment  

A CHRISTMAS BOUQUET FOR THE WHOLE DAY                                            

Dawn Choral                                                                                                                 Morning’s Energy

Afternoon Sparkle                                                                                                     Come Nightfall


Life Enhancing . Earthed . Fresh . Green . Reliable                                                                                      Water flows in the vein, creates the fullness of the bud, the berry and defines the root.

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Vibrancy . Zest .  A black authority, gold and green majesty and life’s rich blood drops. Earth’s ancient and modern powers fulfil the morning’s work.

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Resting for strength . Bodies transform to a metallic state.  Winter sun illumines silver and gold bark.   Wet, transforms dry coppery leaves and stems into vintage pewters and modern bronzes.  Air breathes fresh oxygen into a still day for a shimmering sparkle.

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Reflection . Hedge and tree branches swathed with evening’s seed heads and frosted leaves,  grasp onto Winter’s Solstice until Titania breathes again at Midsummer. Fire will go deep in the earth. As the sun sets, water’s frozen crystals settling on ground leaves will preserve the memory of  another Christmas Day and another year, with a quiet, but timeless beauty.

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© 2014 La Floralie


Sculptures . Paintings . Public Art . Water Colours



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© 2014 La Floralie

42 Think pretty little flowers and trees don’t kick ass at Christmas?

Think again….


“During the Christmas Party season  ..everybody thinks we might be a bit wooden,  but at this time of year, we’re feeling exceptionally floral.” 

That’s…..very, very floral.

Sweeter than a hyacinth’s pheromones, naughtier than a vain little narcissus at the Christmas party.

The strong, er.. hormonal,  festive message from the street: Don’t mess with a tree trunk at Christmas  

“…Just because the state of our skin looks like we might have a bark sometimes…we will be twigging to everything…and that means everything… If you get our gist, what we love to do at this time of year, is simply to branch out….and party..”

And in the City of London,  this very Thursday night, the in-character “spooky trees”  by Tate Britain, subtly gave it their artistic all. This was the Pimlico Christmas Tree street party. The one and only.



Pimlico streets were full of lamplight. This year even the neighbourhood “wallflowers” joined in with a little bit of seductive ‘shadow jiving’. Very off the wall.

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“Once a year we can let our leaves down, but NEVER, EVER  insult our intelligence by asking us to dress like a Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square.”

“We HATE that stuff. Any tree that puts itself forward to gets its roots cut is asking to be firewood. It’s pathetic. We can also see through that light cover, nothing more than an electric negligée…. so embarrassing,…as for the hairy branches…That’s not attractive.”


“That fir tree in Trafalgar Square, what’s it got to look forward to in life from January? It gave up its Norwegian Wood for fame and glamour and out of tune carol singers. Sad, very,very sad.”

“Think we’re grumpy? It’s the London tree boys talking… we’re just very stumpy… but we know our area,....If you want to be a tree at Christmas, you have to play your part in your community. Pimlico is flower baskets and ‘spooky tree’,  lined streets overlooking the Thames.”

Well noted. Till next year then.


The Stumpies of Stourbridge, a market town tree group,   agreed with the City of London trees sentiments. But last week, they went for the full trunk-to-stump Advent shave in protest due to the isolation and hurt caused,  as an imported fir was placed in the centre of the town, obscuring all view of the native market town kerbside trees, who stand all year. Oh dear.

All they could say was  ” That fir wont be putting any roots down around here.”        

Very true, very, very true….Their selfie at dusk was touching….and what could only be described as….unique.


Nearby, rural spruces on the Stourbridge/Staffordshire Ridge were happier and kindly posed for a portrait in a festive sunset.

” This is all the Christmas light we will ever need.” 

How very sweet.


“We wouldn’t dream of uprooting. When a Country Wood thinks its a Johnny Town Tree, it makes us go all funny..”

Located near a country pub and the water table, after a long drink,  high oaks and chestnuts can be seen swaying together to unseen birdsong. The thought of any Stourbridge spruce being cut was too much.

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“Our trunks are packed to be here  –  and we’re here to stay. All year.  

Watch out for us at the Spring Party

Can’t Wait.


© 2014 La Floralie









40 When Midwinter forced fair Flora’s hand

No turning back

A week of 5 weathers. Would they bring us wisdom?

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Even just one day’s events can bring very different characters to Nature’s table, but here in the UK over the past week, we had the pleasure of  5 different visitors, Wind, Wet, Dry, Frost and Mild.

They all laboured competitively, for and against its landscapes.  One day would be the Soother offering the tenderness of clear skies and sunlight to make Winter bearable.  On the next,  the Opportunist, the thrusting cut of the wind and intense dry cold, would stick and twist the knife with cruelty, but bring surgical cleanse and space for new growth. There were occasional periods of stillness between the extremes, but quiet can reign an uncertainty as well as be the gift of seasonal peace.

Midwinter arrived a week ago, as wind mixed with spiked, cold rain. We were not prepared for sudden change, but here it was, the sharp reminder of the season we are in – the bleak mid-winter.  Only unpredictability is certain. A short era of eternity is always poised to reposition the world with needle-like intensity. It is cruelty with kindness.


On Midwinter’s arrival, the sky darkened.  The colourless, elegant crispness of cold morning air, the still at dawn’s wake up call, moves only lightly through the passing of  first birds, but it would become morphed into the muscular might of a wild alter ego, bringing irreversible consequence to the landscape.

With an uncontrollable lashing,  flora’s tree landscapes would be razored to ‘leavelessness’. It took just minutes for them to be left swaying in cold disbelief and numbing pain. But not yet finished, the Midwinter wind would even have the say over Dusk. Proceedings for daylight’s closure could not be concluded, until the Wind presided its presence with absolute power, pushing the clouds onwards to force all our attentions towards its magnitude and energy over what was left of the setting sunlight.

With the frenzy only found in a Van Gogh canvas, the wind painted a new landscape with a continued violent edge.  For just a few borrowed moments, the spoils won from the devastation of flora’s undress and ruin, would outline a sorrowful scene. That of a desolate,  ravaged beauty sat bereft on the backlit sky, but now on the short passage of borrowed time against the disappearing act of the sun.

To an undisputed loss and sadness, such energetic attention seeking worked.  But no respect could be expected. This was an uncompromising reminder of Winter’s dictat and outright dominion, never a comfortable realisation. But this was also just one 24 hours. Even if memories linger for a lifetime, tomorrow would be another day.



© 2014 La Floralie