ON FLOWERS – AMY MERRICK

‘there is no surer way to fall in love with the country than to wander through a gently overgrown garden barefoot at dawn, blades of grass collecting between your toes…’

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I’ve always been a nature lover even when I was young. I grew up in rural Dorset where days were spent walking the dogs, riding horses and making dens in hedges. I’d spend time at my grandparents’ in their garden, admiring sweet peas and eating runner beans straight off the stems. Now into my twenties this love still remains and I’m spending more and more time outside tending my own little garden, dreaming up new ideas for planting and sourcing inspiration for different flowers to grow.

More recently I’ve had a thing for growing my own cut flowers and part of this new dream is down to reading ‘On Flowers’, the new book by accidental florist Amy Merrick.

This is more than just a book about flowers – although on them there is plenty. The book introduces a different way to look at life, noticing beauty in the little things like wildflowers growing through cracks in New York City pavements and taking time to slow down and be more present in nature. I devoured every chapter and have re-read each one several times already.

My favourite chapter is ‘In the Country’, a section dedicated to handpicked wildflowers, summer houses and time spent on a flower farm off the coast of Washington State.
Amy writes on her time there;

‘I decided to pause the floral career I had strived so hard to establish to work alongside them on the farm, refilling my own vase with fresh water in the process. I returned to the country to fall back in love with flowers, but I found that the country made me fall in love with my own life again’.

These words sparked something in me, asking how nature and spending time growing flowers makes me feel – relaxed, content, calm, happy – and bringing up ideas of how I can pour more of myself into nature and therefore bring more of it into me, creating a life that I too could be in love with. I love how Amy describes this time as ‘refilling {her} vase with fresh water’, replenishing her mind and being with a new outlook and vigour.

After each section Amy lists ‘things to do’, whether they’re humble or fancy or in the city, country or a faraway place. These include; ‘make a daisy crown’, ‘write love letters’, ‘look both ways before crossing the street to look at flowers’, ‘dry your sheets in the sun’ and ‘put flowers in your hotel room’. I love these little lists, reminding us all to slow right down and be more intentional with our time – and to always look to nature – and for flowers – wherever we may be.

 

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