This month, we're going to take a look at sedums. Sometimes referred to as ice plant or stonecrop, they're in abundance at New Covent Garden Flower Market during the autumn months.
One of the most popular varieties is Sedum spectabile, pictured below. Read on to discover more about this very attractive filler flower...
Opinion appears to be divided on the origins of the name sedum. Some people think it comes from the Latin sedere (to sit) due to the low habit and natural growth of the plants. Whilst others think the flower's name comes from sedare (to alleviate, to calm), due to the healing effect of the plant.
From the Crassulaceae family, sedums have fleshy leaves and dense clusters of tiny red, pink or purple star-shaped flowers, depending on the variety. They're very long-lasting and are available in bunches of five or ten stems.
You'll generally find them at the Market from July through until the end of September/beginning of October, with British grown sedums usually available from mid August to mid October. The further into the sedum season, the stronger their stems become and the better quality you get.
British grown sedums can be found both inside the Market in boxes and outside on Foliage Row, where you can buy them in bunches.
Sedum spectabile - pink flowers and grey-green leaves
Sedum 'Purple Emperor' - purplish-pink flowers and deep purple leaves
Sedum 'Mr Goodbud' - purple-pink flowers and blue-green leaves
Sedum 'Matrona' - dusky pink flowers and grey-green leaves
Sedum 'Magical Lizzy' - red flowers and dark green leaves
With such a wonderful texture, sedums work well in hand-tied bouquets, bridal bouquets, vase arrangements and tablecentres. And due to their fleshy stems, they last well out of water. So they're great to use in buttonholes. Here are some examples of beautiful floral designs featuring sedums...
(Source: Sophie Townsend)
(Source: Sophie Townsend)
We'd love to see photos of arrangements that you've made using sedums from New Covent Garden Flower Market. Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, stating your company name and website address. Or if you prefer, you could post your photo on Twitter and copy us in, by including @MarketFlowers in your tweet. We'll then upload your photos into this section.
I hope you've enjoyed reading this month's Product Profile Report. Please do ask away below if you have any questions or would like to make any general comments. As always, we'd love to hear from you...
P.S. Did you know that one of the largest living roofs of sedum plants in the UK is at the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars plant in Goodwood?!