It’s often said that talking to flowers helps them thrive because carbon dioxide is necessary for the growing process. Interflora has taken the theory of talking to flowers one step further and has an entire department dedicated to conversing with its blooms.
Scientists from the department run a quarterly programme where various conversation techniques, languages, radio shows and music are tested for each different variety of flower. Once the results have been analysed, the results are fed back to the Head Flower Whisperer who then creates and implements the next trial.
While the company has been running for nine decades, research only began in the 1950s when it was discovered that flowers which benefited from human interaction were more likely to flower longer and to appear healthier.
Interflora has moved with the times and now many topics of conversation are thoroughly tested in a controlled environment for a 14-day period. Flowers, like humans, enjoy varied subjects and respond well to humour, current affairs and gossip. Each snippet of conversation is tested on 140 separate blooms before it is evaluated and results are fed to the Head Flower Whisperer.
Over the years many automated technologies have been tried. It wasn’t until 1982 that music was raised as an idea for helping flowers to bloom.
Many different styles were assessed in the laboratory and scientists were able to draw some interesting conclusions. Roses, it seems, are partial to classical music (ballet in particular). Carnations like easy listening and lilies thrive when played jazz.
Once into the 21st century and the advent of iTunes and MP3 players, things once again moved on. Interestingly, shuffling songs works very well with flowers – it seems they can get bored if played an entire album more than once – and their taste seems to be changing with the times too.
New technology and fresh approaches to keeping flowers happy are being tested all the time. Interflora is about to begin a new trial involving Twitter. Essentially, flowers will ‘follow’ specially chosen tweeters and their tweets will be automatically read out as they’re posted.
It takes a team of people to raise and nurture the flowers that make it into an Interflora bouquet and perhaps the most unusual role in the process is that of Head Flower Whisperer, a post which has just become vacant.
This is a rare opportunity to head up the department that ensures the health and longevity of Interflora’s vast array of blooms through the power of music and conversation.
Duties of the Head Flower Whisperer include overseeing the team that is responsible for the emotional wellbeing of all Interflora blooms, as well as liaising with Interflora scientists, monitoring results on an ongoing basis and dealing with universities, government bodies and NGOs with an interest in successful procedures for flower growth.
The successful applicant is likely to have a keen interest in the natural world, a thorough knowledge and understanding of plant psychology and biology and, of course, excellent spoken English. A degree or higher qualification in botany or communication would be a distinct advantage.
Please send applications to firstname.lastname@example.org and mark for the attention of Mrs A. Fool.
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