Miranda White finds beauty – and blooms – in some unexpected places. 

Story Amanda Burdon  Photo Kim Selby

On any drive around the Macedon Ranges in central Victoria, Miranda White’s lively green eyes admire the changing palette of plants, delighting in the discovery of a lonely roadside plum tree, a tangled fruiting blackberry bush or a fluffy white crop of carrot grass. 

“I never know what I might find on my botanical adventures,” says Miranda, who with her husband Sam and young family lives in Sidonia on an organic beef property. She crafts bouquets and wedding installations under her Floral Forager brand. “I don’t think the word ‘weed’ is in our vocabulary. I’m always on the lookout for interesting textures, colours and form in the landscape.”

Occasionally that sees Sam dispatched in search of a sheath of burnished wheat, a gnarly gum tree bough or even a spiky Scotch thistle. “Sam will cast his hand across the paddocks and say, ‘Look out there; that’s my garden to look after,’ but he’s normally very obliging and we share an understanding of the soil and seasonal cycles,” she says.

While she didn’t sprout from floristry stock, Miranda traces her love of flowers back to the beautiful family gardens of her youth, growing up in Drouin South, in West Gippsland, Vic. “Flowers have always been a part of my life,” she says. “My mother is very creative and always did an arrangement for the table and often floral arrangements for the weddings of family and friends. My sister and I would regularly pick flowers from our garden and either crush up the petals to make perfume or give them to our elderly friends and neighbours as gifts. We’d sit in their kitchens and they’d tell us stories. Flowers are a wonderful way to connect with people. They can evoke strong memories.” 

This story excerpt is from Issue #122

Outback Magazine: December/January 2019