Roses will always be popular but there is also a movement to buy flowers that are in season
WithValentine’s Day just around the corner, partners will soon be faced with finding a bunch of flowers that their other half will like. As Tesco supermarkets sell shy of one million flowers each year to loved-up customers, we went to their head florist for advice. Michelle Buck, who grew up in Iver but now lives in George Green, gave Katy Clifton some top tips ahead of this year’s special day.
Michelle, could you tell us what inspired you to get into floristry?
After deciding on a career change, I enrolled on an evening course at my local college and after two weeks I was completely hooked. I’ve always had a passion for flowers and design but never really thought of it as a career choice. It wasn’t until after I had my children that I knew I wanted to do something I enjoyed for a job. I joined Tesco in 2015.
When do you start preparing the designs and ideas for Valentine’s flowers?
I start to work on ideas a year in advance, so no sooner than Valentine’s is over for one year, all the planning and designing begins again. We start with a review of the event and build on what we learned. I keep up to date with what is going on in the market, focus on up-and-coming trends, visit growers to see what new and exciting products we can offer our customers.
Why do you think Valentine’s Day is such a special day?
Whilst you should not limit yourself to expressing your love for your partner to just one day, Valentine’s is that special day when you can go that extra mile to make that special someone feel important and loved. So whether it is a simple single rose or a stunning 100-rose bouquet, make sure you send that extra special something.
What is your favourite flower?
I have loads of favourites but David Austin Roses’ Beatrice, teamed with beautiful foliage, are very special to me because they were my wedding flowers.
For those who like flowers which are quirky or unique, what recommendation would you make?
If someone didn’t want to buy roses, another romantic gesture would be to maybe use flowers from their wedding bouquet. Valentine’s for me is not all about red, I like to use hot pinks teamed with rich purple and scented flowers are simply a must.
Are people moving away from the more traditional flowers, such as roses and carnations?
I don’t think people will every really fall out of love with roses and carnations. They will always have their place. There is a trend to celebrate seasonal with customers buying into seasonal blooms when they are available. We are still continuing to see the vintage and just-picked trend in wedding flowers.
What do you think is so nice about receiving flowers from your partner?
It’s the thought behind it that makes it special, the fact that they have taken the time to go and choose them with you in mind.
Finally, for those lastminute partners, when is the last point you should buy flowers?
It is always best to try and be organised to ensure you can acquire the perfect bouquet, however, if you have left it until the last minute, you can order online at Tesco direct up until 5pm on the 13th to get next-day delivery.
Eye for detail: Tesco head florist Michelle Buck at work.
Classic: Carnations are a perennial Valentine’s Day choice.
Stylish: Ms Buck flavours hot pink flowers.