David Bowie Floral Installation Part of Chelsea in Bloom

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By Jill Brooke

Any David Bowie fans here? 

At Chelsea in Bloom, an outdoor flower festival where stores collectively agree to design floral arrangements based on an annual theme, Peloton honored David Bowie as its selection of an English icon. 

Florist Jess Runciman looked for red and blue color patterns from Bowie’s iconic thunderbolt and Ziggy Stardust gender-bending look. Because Bowie was a ‘rule breaker,” she decided to also mix conventional – like delphiniums and corn flowers – with the more unique graffiti anthuriums, passion flowers and acheum.

Other blue choices were thistle and hydrangeas.  She also used spidery alliums because, as she says, ‘they are wild looking like Bowie.”

Inside the store, she used draping amaranthus for an outer-worldly psychedelic look.

“Music is important to Peleton users and there are even classes devoted to Bowie,” says florist Jess Runciman. In fact, “Space Oddity,” “Changes” and “Under Pressure” still are popular on playlists. 


That says a lot about his music. After all, the singer died in 2016 at the age of 69. Turns out he obviously liked red flowers. When asked his favorite vinyl records, “The Red Flower of Thai Blossoms” was one of his choices. 

In fact, what helped seal the deal so that his future wife, Iman, took him seriously was when he arrived at the airport with a big bunch of flowers to give her. “He was standing there, flowers in hand,” recalls the supermodel. “That was when I knew he was a keeper.” 

Jess Runciman is just hoping that these flowers will stay fresh for another week until local judging takes place on who the best floral displays may be, and yes, there is a bit of being under pressure with that looming. However, by the delighted faces of residents and tourists clicking away and capturing this installation, it already is a hit. 

Jill Brooke is a former CNN correspondent, Post columnist and editor-in-chief of Avenue and Travel Savvy magazine. She is an author and the editorial director of FPD,  floral editor for Aspire Design and Home magazine and contributor to Florists Review magazine.