By Carmel Hayes
THE Flower Witch flew in to Stradbally on a sunny autumn morning for a wonderful wreath-making workshop.
There was no broomstick or cauldron but high spirits were certainly bubbling at the Tree World Garden Centre, as a lively gathering enjoyed the event hosted by Laois PPN (Public Participation Network).
Led by Emily Lalor from Laois, aka ‘The Flower Witch’, the environmentally-themed workshop was a fantastic floral exploration demonstrating sustainable ways to create gorgeous wreaths and centrepieces.
Emily has been surrounded by flowers all her life and is passionate about the environment and sustainability. She grows and dries her own flowers and grasses, using no sprays or chemicals and her arrangements take centre stage in many local businesses.
At the workshop on Saturday 10 September, members were shown how to use a selection of beautiful, locally grown fresh and dried grasses, seed heads and flowers to create their own bespoke wreaths to take home.
Emily said: “The autumn wreath workshops are a real celebration of harvest and the hard work it takes to grow, nurture and dry these flowers. It’s a long process, from planting tiny seeds back in the spring to harvesting and drying in the autumn.
“It’s totally worthwhile when I see each attendee receiving the same materials and each wreath turns out so beautifully unique.”
According to Emily, the wreaths can last for months and maybe even years, making them environmentally friendly and sustainable. She also provided teas, coffees and sweet treats from her own café at the memorable event.
Delighted with the success of the day, Laois PPN resource worker Dan Bergin said: “The workshop showcased Emily’s passion for the environment, sustainability and creativity. Attendees were inspired by Emily’s ethos on how small individual choices can have a big benefit to our environment and the principles of sustainability, while leaving with a wonderful individual creation.”
Laois PPN consists of more than 650 member groups from community, social inclusion and environmental pillars. All groups registered with Laois PPN are given the opportunity to attend a variety of events. Any group wishing to join can complete an application at www.laoisppn.ie.
See more photos from the event in the next edition of the Laois Nationalist, in shops and online on Tuesday 27 September.