Jonathan picks best of British

A magnificent Palladian style bridge spanning the river Derwent is being specially built for the RHS Chatsworth Flower Show and the inside is being dressed by Jonathan Moseley, Derbyshire’s very own celebrity florist.

The design is being kept very much under wraps until the opening but Jonathan has told artsbeat that it is going to be very special.

“Art and nature will collide in this installation. Visitors will be taken on a spectacular floral journey, but it is not just about the flowers it is also about the smells and the textures,” explained Jonathan at his home in Coal Aston near Dronfield.

“The emphasis will be on British flowers such as stocks, sweet peas, pinks and sweet williams but there will also be some surprises from further afield which many people will have never seen before.”

The florist, whose bubbly personality and playful sense of humour, has made him a big hit at his demonstrations and workshops, says that the bridge will span 40 feet and his design moves along the colour spectrum from cool whites and blues to hot and tempestuous reds and oranges.

It will take a team of 40 florists, including experienced experts like himself and floristry students to pull it all together in three days before the show.

Jonathan has been working on the plans for two years and says the bridge will celebrate the plant collecting heritage of Chatsworth’s past, and embrace new ideas for the future. There’s a nod to Paxton’s bamboo walk, and the Devonshire family coat of arms is also featured.

“It is an atmospheric installation paying homage to Chatsworth and I hope that it brings a great deal of joy to everyone who walks through it.

“I want it to make them gasp, smile and laugh,” he said.

Jonathan is a terrific ambassador for the British floral industry and is a national demonstrator having been one of the youngest to perform at a UK National Floristry Show in 2001.

He fills theatres across the country each year with his amazing large-scale designs and gained celebrity status after appearing on the BBC’s Big Allotment Challenge.

Teaching is a passion for him, as he loves to share his knowledge and see people gain confidence when they work with the flowers on the many workshops and courses he holds at Ashover and Baslow, as well as at special events all over the country.

“I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love flowers. As a child my family always took me on walks where we could see the first of everything as they emerged in the woods and fields,  be it the bluebells or the foxgloves. My life will always revolve around flowers and plants,” he said.

“After university I decided to pursue a career with them and I have never looked back. I don’t know how my life as a floral designer will develop but I am enjoying every minute of my life right now and love the fantastic opportunities I am being given. What more could I want?”

Go to for more details about his courses and workshops and to see his beautiful gallery of floral arrangements.