Summer in England during Covid 19 Pandemic

Red roses and marriage prooposal

The highlight of the week was the preparation of red rose displays for a marriage proposal at a bar in Soho. Red roses everywhere, and rose petals strewn over the tables, I would have loved to have seen her face!


Tower Bridge with Pink Clouds

I wonder how many people were lucky enough to experience this beautiful sky over Tower Bridge last week. Our floral designs are inspired by nature, using the colours and textures we see.


This beautiful sanseveria plant arrived from Holland this week. A plant like this can transform a space.


If you prefer a softer look, this close relative fits the bill. Both require little water and can cope with low light.

Flowers in Shakespeare’s Works

It was the anniversary of an event we were a part of at The Sloane Club in Chelsea this week. Hosted by Country Life, there was a talk by Gerit Quealy, author of Botanical Shakespeare. We foraged many of the flowers mentioned in Shakespeare’s plays, and had great fun arranging them. These little mushrooms were my favourites, along with the burdock.

The streets are slowly getting busier, restaurants are opening, and the Government is encouraging companies to bring their staff back to the office, in a cautious manner.

If we can help you with any floral or plant requirements, give us a call.


A Reflective Mood at Stems of Holborn in Sicilian Avenue

Stems of Holborn

We closed the shop on 24 March – one day before its 35th. birthday. We had cancelled the drinks party a couple of weeks earlier, knowing that a lockdown was on the cards.

It felt like a sign. Maybe time to call it a day – not that we would want to, but sometimes things are meant to be…

harvesting lavender

I have been at home since then, gardening, foraging, making flower videos and having more rest than I have in 35 years. I love my job, but the lead up to lockdown was a grim time – a downhill grind since Valentine’s Day. Cancelled weddings, office closures, liquidations.

Ficus bonsai tree

We have a lot of green plants in the shop. The ficus bonsai is a best-seller. I recommend this larger leafed variety. Keep it in a light position and don’t allow it to dry out.


kumquat tree

Citrus trees have become popular lately. This is a kumquat. They are very attractive in shape and regularity, and the fruits are edible. We also stock lemon trees, but the leaves are larger and the plant tends to be less uniform in shape. Keep outdoors in summer and move to a light indoor position before the frost arrives.

Happy flower recipients

hand tied bouquet in water

This happy recipient was surprised with a bouquet on Saturday. They both work in Events and Hospitality, a sector hard hit by the pandemic. One has been busy, the other made redundant this week. Tough times in this industry. And nobody really knows when things will pick up. Going travelling is usually an option if you’re young and things have gone wrong, but again, the pandemic has removed that as an attractive proposition.

for the bride

This boy was on his way to a wedding, with flowers for the bride. But with a maximum of 30 guests allowed, many have postponed their wedding till 2021.

The lockdown has given us time to reflect. At Stems, we are sure we want to fight to keep the business going. The Government’s grant was a huge incentive to do our very best to survive.

Fill your home office with oxygen!

Indoor and outdoor green and flowering plants

You can fill your home workspace with oxygen and life by getting some beautiful plants.

During lockdown and beyond, many people are working from home. Who knows how many companies will dispose of their large offices after the pandemic, and only keep enough space for a third of its workers. There has been talk of staggering the working day so there are fewer people in the office at one time. And perhaps bosses will conclude that staff work just as efficiently from home.

Cactus, peace lily, weeping fig, dracaena

Plants that clean the air efficiently

The most popular and versatile plant is, in my opinion, the peace lily, or spathphyllum. It has beautiful, green shiny leaves and white flowers. You can mistreat it, forget to water it, leave it in the dark, and it will bounce back after a good soak in water.

Sanseveria, or mother-in-law’s tongue is a more sculptural, succulent that also bears bad treatment. It requires very little water, and provides oxygen whilst cleaning the air.



We have realised that with the absence of our regular office clients in Holborn, we need to target the people working from home, who would normally find us closed by the time they returned from the office in the evening. We also have lots of new neighbours who are moving into the new apartment blocks that are popping up everywhere in Holborn.

We offer a weekly flower service

Once you have moved into a new home, plants are an essential part of the interior design. We also think a base of flowers weekly is a must. Extra flowers for dinner parties and entertaining can be arranged.

Foraging for wild flowers during lockdown

Flowers are my passion. I opened Stems of Holborn 35 years ago, and have missed the flowers so much. I am lucky enough to be surrounded by a garden and countryside though, which as enabled me to carry on arranging flowers. I forage, I grow flowers, herbs and vegetables, I dry flowers and we make short videos about trees, plants and flowers for social media.

Cow parsley

You can contact me anytime on 07932 052411 or email

Stay serene, healthy and happy!