Stunning flowers from a stunning location
Where are we?
Churchtown Farm is a small farm run by the Julian family. We are based on the stunning Isles of Scilly, 28 miles west of Land’s End off the Cornish coast. From our farm we run a home delivery service that sends gift boxes of gorgeous, scented island flowers direct from Scilly to any doorstep in the UK.
The farm is based on St Martin's, one of the smaller islands that make up the Isles of Scilly. St Martin's is just 2 miles long and 1/4 of a mile wide and has a population of about 120 people. The warm Gulf Stream flowing around the island creates a climate that makes it possible to grow scented outdoor flowers throughout the year – a mainstay of the Scillonian economy for centuries.
The Isles of Scilly is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). We're very privileged to live and work in such beautiful surroundings and we try to farm in a way that reduces our impact on the environment, both locally and globally. We don't think there are many gifts that have a lighter environmental footprint than flowers, grown outdoors in the UK with no additional heat and lights and sent wrapped only in paper and cardboard.
We are part of an environmental stewardship scheme that rewards good farming practices. As part of the scheme we have a small beef herd that carries our conservation for the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust as well as improving soil health in our fields. About 50% of the farm electricity is generated by solar panels and of course because the flowers are sent direct from where they are grown our flowers clock up very few flower miles.
A little bit of history
Andrew and Hilary Julian moved to Scilly in 1987. They spent a year working alongside an island farmer and then invested their savings in the 27 acre Churchtown Farm. After a number of harsh winters and falling wholesale flower prices, they hit on the idea of sending gift boxes of flowers in the 1st class post.
In 2002 their son Ben and his wife Zoe took over the running of the farm. After literally starting on the kitchen table the business has continued to thrive and now sends out over 100,000 beautiful boxes of flowers to doorsteps throughout the UK every year. After over 30 years of sending flowers by post from Churchtown Farm we have longevity, experience and provenance that very few others come close to matching.
Britsh grown flowers in winter
We specialise in growing scented flowers and in the winter we grow scented narcissi. the traditional flower crop of the Isles of Scilly. The narcissi we grow are multi head tazetta narcissi some of the varieties we grow are unique to the Islands. We send the first of our narcissi crop in October and carry on until April.
We work hard to keep the islands’ flower growing tradition alive, growing our narcissi outdoors in tiny fields sheltered from the Atlantic by tall hedges that are an integral part of the Scillonian landscape. We don't just grow flowers, we also have a small beef herd and two holiday cottages. To make all this happen there is a team of about 18 working at Churchtown Farm.
Scented summer flowers
From May to October we pick scented pinks, an old English summer flower with a subtle perfume, beautiful colours and long vase life. Our pinks are grown in coir filled tubs and irrigated and fed by a computerised system that saves water. Some of our pinks are grown in low temporary polly tunnels this helps us lengthens the season without using additional heat.
On our small farm we can’t grow all the flowers we need so we work closely with other Scillionan flower farmers ensuring that they get a good guaranteed price for the best flowers that they produce. This helps to keep the islands' traditional flower industry buoyant and preserve the landscape of Scilly.