Gardenia’s founder, Jamie Grant, left school earlier than he should have done to help his dad on their flower stall. He spent his teens getting up at 3am to go to Covent Garden flower market and teaching himself how to hand-tie bouquets, foregoing football in the park with his mates for freezing cold mornings on the Fulham Road.
25 years later, Gardenia has grown into a small network of shops across South West London and is well-known locally for its luscious, rainbow-coloured pavement displays and the friendliest of welcomes. Jamie knows first-hand the effect that flowers can have on the human spirit: “Flowers are an instant pick-me-up, a little slice of luxury that everyone can afford. They never fail to brighten someone’s day, and we love that it’s our job to make that happen.”
Jamie’s most recent mission has been to make Gardenia greener. “Traditionally, florists have used a horrific amount of single-use plastic – protective sleeves, tape, cellophane, florist’s foam, carrier bags and more. Unsurprisingly, our customers and staff have been really concerned about this, so in 2018 we made some big changes. We now use only FSC-certified, recyclable paper sleeves, tape and flower bags; biodegradable florist’s foam; and compostable carrier bags. We’re doing everything we can to make floristry more friendly, so that our customers can carry on enjoying the flowers they love with good conscience.