Margaret’s garden is both a personal passion and a resource. In her boutique business, Margaret Joan Florals, she specializes in wedding and event flowers, using what she grows to give her work a distinctively California look. Depending on what the bride wants, Margaret can supply up to 75 percent of the material for a bouquet from her garden. When she must buy flowers, she relies as much as possible on local and American growers, to support the “slow flower” movement. This four-year-old effort by the American floral industry encourages the use of locally grown flowers, which means relying heavily on what is seasonally available.
In spite of the very un-English climate of Montecito, California, Margaret has succeeded in creating a garden that evokes the cottage style. “If you go hiking in the local hills and see what’s growing naturally,” she says, “you can make that happen. We don’t live in a desert, there’s just not much water. But things grow.”