MAY MUSINGS

Seasonal stories and notable happenings from the team behind Ochre Botanical Studios.

Thank you for joining us here!

Oh May! So many welcome things: more light, warmth, irises, roses and rhubarb to name a few. It’s no wonder it’s such a popular month to get married and it’s sure been a busy month for us at Ochre.

In amongst the bustle of the past few weeks I have found myself reflecting on the cruciality of downtime both personally and creatively: the importance of finding time without distractions, without looking at my phone, without time constraints and the restorative effects of switching off and the joy of being devoted to the moment.


Along with our cherished playdates and our own personal creative time, the garden and time outdoors offer calmness, a slower pace to recharge and such inspiration. I thought I’d share a few of my personal musings about the garden, and try and put into words some of the reasons why time spent there feels so special and integral to our practice.

Living in a city, it feels especially fortunate to have somewhere to grow flowers. The walled garden is an enchanting place – the walls seem to have the power to both embrace and protect. The area we garden is at the top of the gentle slope with views across the Firth of Forth over to Fife. It feels liberating and soothing to see the water and there are many warming associations with happy times spent in Fife. 

At this time of year there is always so much growth and change in between garden visits and there’s always something new and exciting to find and admire. Currently we are very much enjoying the smell of gorgeous Margaret Merril roses and the very first sweet peas, listening to the birdsong, having the robin follow us around the garden, the sound of the trees rustling in the breeze, watching the bees and butterflies and the feel of the soil as we plant things out. All of these soft stimuli (and the occasional niggle of a nettle sting) awaken the senses and enhance that feeling of being in that moment. With this, my worries and stressors always seem quieter and lighter. 

Nature and the garden undeniably provide such inspiration for our work. We often stop to admire how things grow with such beautiful shapes and gestures – details to try and echo in a future arrangement. Finding a rambling arching branch or tendril that will be the key element, or direct us to its placement or the shape of the design.

Seeing a lovely multi-toned leaf or a flower can bring such joy and provide the guide for a palette. The garden also presents previously perhaps unconsidered colour combinations when things grow together or are combined in the same visual plane from afar. 

As the days continue to get longer and the sun warmer, the changing season ahead will bring new colours, shapes and textures to admire and arrange with. We’ll continue to feel grateful for our quiet time spent pottering in a special garden.

Looking ahead to June...

CHARITY WORKSHOP

It’s British Flowers Week from 3rd-9th June and we are hosting a workshop on Sunday 9th June from 2-4pm at Granton Castle Walled Garden. During this drop-in session, we will be crafting lapel corsages (almost certainly featuring miniature wild strawberries). We would love to see you!

GRANTON CASTLE WALLED GARDEN

The Friends of Granton Castle Walled Garden (where we are lucky enough to grow flowers) run several visitor and volunteer sessions throughout the week if you would like to spend some time in the garden. And there’s a very friendly robin who may be around to give you a commentary.

PRESTON HALL OPEN GARDEN

As part of their Summer Series, Preston Hall’s beautiful grounds and walled garden is open from the 1st to 16th of June. It’s a majestic garden, one that we’ve been very lucky to spend some time in – a joy to amble around. The lupin display last week was sublime!

Speak again soon...

Ochre x

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