That’s Not My Age Podcast: Georgie Newbery from Common Farm Flowers
Hooray! The That’s Not My Age podcast is back (after a longer than intended, six-month hiatus) with a special Christmas episode. And a couple of others planned for the New Year.
For this episode, I’m delighted to introduce a woman who I’ve been following online for ages – mainly because she exudes positive energy and is excellent fun – flower farmer, florist and author Georgie Newbery of Common Farm Flowers.
Turns out Georgie is much more glamorous than I first realised….she spent her twenties working in Paris for American Vogue and John Galliano, returning to London in her thirties to continue working as a writer. It was only when she turned 40 that Georgie ‘woke up and reached for a garden fork’. After moving to Somerset, she began growing cut flowers for pleasure on a quarter-acre vegetable patch and selling bunches of sweet peas at the garden gate. Within several years, a business idea had blossomed and in 2010 Common Farm Flowers was born. Selling good quality, ‘grown, not flown’ organically produced British flowers.
Common Farm has exhibited at RHS Chelsea and RHS Chelsea in Bloom, and won several awards. In addition, Georgie runs successful workshops and courses sharing practical knowledge on sowing, growing and arranging; as well as offering mentoring sessions for small businesses. And somehow she’s managed to find the time to write two books: the ’Flower Farmer’s Year’ and ‘Grow Your Own Wedding Flowers’.
In this special festive episode, Georgie Newbery joins me to share her tips for growing cut flowers and explains how easy it is to create your own Christmas display. We talk about launching a business in midlife and the process of learning by trial and error during the early days of Common Farm Flowers. She speaks passionately about the environment, the importance of the natural order of things and the joy of being outdoors. And tells me how both her grandmother and mother were keen gardeners and how as a child she was paid to do the weeding!
On the subject of style, she’s living in a new wool jumper, bought at a motorway service station (seen more clearly in her second photo, below). I’m so fashion, I didn’t know you could buy clothes at service stations. No matter. ‘I’m always cheered up by colour,’ says Georgie on the subject of her recently purchased Eribe hand knit, ‘but I’m quite fussy, a good red must be more tomato than cherry. I love the pattern on the yoke of my new jumper, including: a darker purple, duskier pink and brighter orange. With colour it’s all about balance, it’s the same with flowers; lush colours soften the sharper colours, like in a painting.’
Georgie was the perfect podcast guest and I loved recording this episode and chatting to her. It’s a little bit echoey – but I hope you enjoy listening.
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Producer and audio engineer: Linda Ara-Tebaldi
Host: Alyson Walsh
Music: David Schweitzer
Artwork: Ayumi Takahashi
Coordinator: Helen Johnson
*Due to the pandemic the That’s Not My Age podcast is now recorded using a web-based application on my computer. It is odd not being in a room with someone, not seeing a person’s facial expression or knowing if they’re about to continue talking…But it also means we can go global!
Last-minute gifts for gardening fans:
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