Why buy from a florist?

Brian Wills-Pope, Chairman of the British Florist Association, tells us why we should support our local florists.

You should cherish your high street florist, just as much as you do your local butcher, baker and greengrocer. So says Brian Wills- Pope. The Association has more than 800 members, called Retail Florists – highly trained and full of advice you won’t find elsewhere.
But so many florist shops have been disappearing as we chose the easy option of buying flowers and plants from supermarkets. There is, however, still time to save this precious resource, and here Brian explains why …

I know that generally as consumers we are impulsive and tend to buy where we are shopping – if we are in a supermarket and fancy a bunch
of tulips and they are sitting there in front of us, we will buy them. We’re highly unlikely to drive our car to the High Street and find our favourite flower shop just for an impulse buy. But if we are strolling around
the shops we are very likely to make an impulse purchase from
a retail flower shop – that is, if we can find one!
It’s worth the effort. Today’s retail florist is normally highly trained and can offer a bespoke service far and above that of an online shop (unless it is theirs) or a supermarket carousel. Where will we go when we want that
special bouquet – “You know the one you always do for my Mum/ Daughter/Wife that she loves so much every year.” Who will provide the specialist wedding and funeral work that can only be done by a highly trained florist who understands the techniques that can bring your thoughts to life?

Floristry is one of the last bespoke services on the High Street and if we do not support them they will go, as many have already, with some florists now working from a studio or their garden shed, some even from their kitchens, still providing the same services but not so accessible as your local florist. Where will you get your ideas from in the future with regard to trends and who will educate you on how long flowers will last and how to look after that special plant that you have grown to love – certainly not the supermarket because they do not provide that type of service.
How many times have you seen wilting flowers in buckets with no water or poinsettias sitting in the cold with their leaves dropping off – not in a good
retail florist shop!

Look for the British Florist Association membership logo and you will know the florist abides by the Service of Excellence standard and your
order will be delivered personally on the right day. And it won’t necessarily be too expensive – they cater for small orders too.
So please, let’s use – and not lose – this wonderful service.