A passionate and informed look behind the scenes of the floral industry to discover the amazing and often draining journey flowers now make from seeds and bulbs to our shops, tables and vases.
A green-fingered gardener, Amy Stewart has always delighted in the sight of freshly cut flowers, but she grew increasingly curious and uneasy about the journey those flowers take to reach her bouquet. In Gilding the Lily Stewart introduces us to the people, places and plants that make up this multi-million pound industry, from a lily grower in the American Northwest, to the rose fields of Ecuador and the tulip greenhouses in Holland. Gilding the Lily is a page-turning enquiry into the controversial practices that lie behind each bloom, including the treatment of the workers in the fields and greenhouses, the issue of patenting and the use of pesticides, and the financial forces that drive the quest for the 'perfect' flower. It is also a wonderful story about the romance and the reality of growing and cultivating flowers.
Amy Stewart is a garden columnist who lives in California, where she writes for Organic Gardening, the San Francisco Chronicle, and others.
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