My second day in Australia started at 3:00 a.m. Michelle had arranged a hotel stay in Sydney for me and Francoise so that we could get an early morning tour of the flower market. This day was super enlightening and really fun. We got showered and hit the door by 4:00 a.m. and were at the Sydney Flower Market by 4:30 a.m. Designers must be at the gate at 4:30 a.m. to get through the door. If you are not early to market you miss your chance for a parking space and you are last through the door when it opens bright and early at 5:00 a.m. The whole process was a bit maddening for me because I felt a certain anxiousness as we waited at the gate. When the gate is opened there is a mad dash or stampede of floral designers. In addition to the many floral designers the Sydney Flower Market allows the general public to purchase blooms at wholesale price. This causes extra urgency in the purchasing and sourcing. The topic of allowing the public into source flowers caused lots of interesting conversations, those conversations will stay with me for many years.
Francoise and I were totally in heaven, the unique flowers and textures we found were incredible.
I even had the pleasure of running into a designer who follows me on social media. Being recognized at the Sydney Flower Market was very surprising. I hope this young lady sees this post and sends me an email. We were all in such a rush that we did not share contact info.
We had a blast sourcing flowers and meeting people at market.
It was totally fun to see Craig Scott at market after just seeing him the day before at his farm. Craig and his family own East Coast Wild Flowers.
Many of the native flowers we used for our photo shoot and workshop came from Craig’s farm.
Our next stop was to visit David of Linton Fresh Flowers. David sourced many of the blooms we had special ordered before we arrived in Australia. Both David and Craig had a jovial spirit and it was contagious. I am thankful I got to meet both of these men.
David shared with me a bit about the market and the cost of doing business. Each grower or floral distributor buys a space at market. There are typically 3 main days at market and I believe those days are Monday, Weds, and Friday. Some wholesalers keep their space open all week but the amount of days they are open will effect their monthly fees and or rent. The market is an extremely large warehouse and each vendor sets up their space each day before the designers get to market. The spaces are typically 9 feet wide and 24 feet long. The cost of that space is $250,000 to buy and then there are the monthly fees associated with being a member of the market. A space against the wall costs $350,000 to buy. A space against the wall would mean you could build a stationery cooler and leave some of your product at market. The above picture shows the size of one of David’s booths. If you look to the back of this picture you can see David and Michelle marking the back two corners of the stall or booth. Each day the flowers, carts, and tables, are removed and taken back to The Linton Fresh office spaces or warehouses. The amount of work that goes into this whole process is extremely overwhelming. I would guess that there were at least 125 vendors at the market.
The flower warehouses are surrounded with meat and veggie wholesalers as well. There are also restaurants and hardgoods suppliers at the market. After our purchasing we headed to Scala Cafe. All during our flower sourcing people kept saying, I will see you at Scala’s, it appears a trip to Scala’s is a must if you visit the Sydney Flower Market.
The visit to market was amazing and truly enlightening. Many of the growers showered myself and Francoise with presents. I would like to thank everyone for making my first Sydney Australia flower buying experience an incredible one. Thanks also to Laurence who shared some of his amazing product with us.