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In Conversation With Sreemoti Mukerjee Roy - Saying It With Flowers

Nirmala Garimella

Sreemoti  Mukerjee  Roy  looks to the natural setting – leaves  from the yard, a bowl she already has and maybe a  unusual accessory  along with fresh flowers from local farms to fashion floral arrangements that are graceful and attractive. “My main focus  is simple arrangements with aesthetic excellence”  she says,  while talking about her new venture ‘Flowers by Sreemoti”.

When I visited Sreemoti’s  home recently, I walked into a bountiful of colorful flower arrangements in her living and dining room. It is immediately obvious that she is passionate about what she is doing as she talks about her love for plants, her  willingness  to take care of friends' plants over vacation breaks, picking  up  discarded plants and nurturing  them back to health and transforming a garden that was once only filled with weeds at her home.

In her hands, flowers acquire a beauty on their own.  While growing up in Calcutta , she was always surrounded by gulmohars, Rajnigandha’s  and marigolds. When she came to the US, she took care of her friends potted greens in New York and transported most of her own collection to Cambridge when they settled here. Here, she taught herself how to grow a  shade garden and kept herself informed with
local newspapers - big source of anything major - weather, pestilence, etc., the Internet  for specific websites for different plants, Plant Society bulletins,UMass Extension for Agriculture and Landscaping, GardenWeb and talking to fellow gardeners.

“A garden is always a work in progress” says Sreemoti. For years Sreemoti dabbled in flowers and gardening and on the urging of a friend, took on her first professional assignment for TiECON east creating arrangements for the conference in late May.  She recently also helped Shobha Sastry at INEN women of the year event with the banquet  tables. At a recent wedding expo held at a top hotel in Boston, she received high praise over her flower designs. 

Elsie Bassin, a neighbor of  Sreemoti  and a painter  was inspired to sketch in her garden. She says she enjoys walking by her house and seeing all the improvements. “ They started out with a property overgrown with bushes and weeds. Now you have some gorgeous plants and flowers that inspire me to sketch”she says about the Roy family. Anando Roy, Sreemoti husband supports her venture by encouraging  her talent.

There is much to sketch and see at her garden. Red impatiens, rhododendrons, lilies, estebees, ladies mantle, Hydrangeas, Iris, peonies all finds a place in the garden.  A cherry tree in the corner of the house blossoms in season. From the garden to the table, Sreemoti’s approach   makes floral arranging -- at least for the home and special occasions -- seem easy and elegant. And  it is evident that  there is a lot of love and care that goes behind it.

To contact Sreemoti Mukherjee Roy :florasree@gmail.com

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A Painting by Elise from the garden.

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