The Duchess of Cornwall visited the London Garden Museum yesterday to mark the opening of the annual British Flowers Week festival, the 100th birthday of the Duke of Edinburgh.
During the visit, Camilla spoke to the museum staff and looked at the brightly colored flowers that were on display. The Duchess toured five flower installations designed on the theme of “healing” and heard the displays showcase the seasonal quality of British flowers and plants.
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Camilla told the florists at the show how much she enjoys picking and arranging flowers and that she loves this time of year when “it all comes out at once”.
In a speech, the Duchess of Cornwall commented: “I really want to thank you all who grow, plant and decorate flowers. It makes such a difference in people’s lives. I think life without flowers would be unbearable.
“As a passionate gardener and someone who loves arranging flowers, when I have the time I try as much as I can to make all the flowers for our homes … It takes forever, but I love it more than anything in the world . “
The Royal shared their own arranged bouquet for British Flowers Week in 2020 with flowers from the Birkhall estate.
Camilla was touched when she was given a bouquet of rosemary flowers. Rosemary means memory (and is also the Duchess’ middle name).
When she was presented with the bouquet, she spoke of Prince Philip as well as her own late father, Major Bruce Shand, who died on June 11, 2006 at the age of 89.
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Camilla said, “I’m thrilled to be here today. It would have been the Duke of Edinburgh’s birthday and tomorrow would have been the anniversary of my father’s death and I am very honored to be here today doing something I know you would have liked. “
Camilla’s father, Major Bruce Shand, was a wine merchant who served with the 12th Lancers during World War II. He received the Military Cross in 1940 and again in 1942 for his service in France, but was later wounded and captured in fighting in North Africa. The Duchess continues her military affiliation in support of the desert rats.
“I’m very honored to be here, to do something I know you would both have appreciated.”
– The Duchess at The Duke of Edinburgh and her father, Major Bruce Shand, who died tomorrow 15 years ago. pic.twitter.com/VikmelQyrb
– The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall (@ClarenceHouse) June 10, 2021
The Duchess of Cornwall also attended the museum’s new exhibition “Constance Spry and Fashion for Flowers” curated by the Royal Florist Shane Connolly. Connolly holds the royal arrest warrant for Prince Charles and the Queen and designed the wedding flowers for the 2011 wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
He said the world was “on the brink of environmental disaster” but flowers had the ability to “bring the message of nature’s fragility to the table”.
He noted that Philip was one of the early advocates of the environment and has done so much in moving the cause forward.
This wasn’t the only tribute to Philip that week; Members of the royal family honored the late Duke of Edinburgh on his 100th birthday. The Queen received a new breed of roses at Windsor Castle last week, named in honor of her late husband.
The flower has a ‘multitude of deep pink colors mottled with white lines’. The monarch said the flower was “beautiful”.