Pinchbeck flower grower talks about... the weather

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Weather: state of the atmosphere, a subject that crops up daily in most people’s conversation in one shape or another, particularly anyone growing seeds and plants.

We seem in the UK to be experiencing major extremes. A few weeks ago it was extremely cold, then we got a blanket of snow: we look out the window late at night and everywhere glistens white for as far as the eye can see. Wake up six hours later and the white carpet has been replaced by water. Twenty-four hours later temperatures reach plus double figures.

What does all that mean for the bulbs and plants outside trying to grow and produce flowers for us? Outdoor daffodils are at least a month earlier than last year. I’m not a religious person, but it was certainly someone far cleverer than anyone I know that designed the structure of a living organism.

With it being cold and icy it has certainly played havoc with the flower orders. People don’t shop for flowers in bad weather. So we were looking into the wrong crystal ball when we did all the planning for the tulip programme months ago. Hence we are tweaking temperatures and programmes as much as possible but I’m afraid the push has come and we now hope for some strong orders to take us to Valentine’s Day to help recover the early lost sales. The product is there, let’s hope the orders are too!