As local poet John Keats put it in his verse To Autumn, the 'season of mists and mellow fruitfulness' is now upon us.

There may be falling conkers and grey skies over the Heath, but inside The Real Flower Company in Swain's Lane, you're greeted by the heady scent of roses and cut flowers.

It was the fragrance of her grandmother's garden, and notably classic English bloom the Margaret Merrill rose, that inspired Rosebie Morton to found her company in 1999.Ham & High: Rosebie Morton the founder of The Real Flower CompanyRosebie Morton the founder of The Real Flower Company (Image: Archant)

Frustrated that commercial flower growing had robbed florists and bouquets of their traditional smell, she started selling scented cut roses grown on her Hampshire farm.

Sustainability, provenance and carbon-neutral practices are at the heart of what they do, and although they have a thriving online business, their London shops are important because, as Rosbie says, "people need to be able to see, touch and above all smell what they are buying".

Ham & High: The Real Flower Company florist in Swain's Lane HighgateThe Real Flower Company florist in Swain's Lane Highgate (Image: The Real Flower Company)

The company's winter craft season has officially opened with festive wreathmaking sessions running at their Chelsea store in King's Road from November to mid-December, where refreshments and bubbles are served while you create your own decoration.

At the Highgate florist, which opened earlier this year, I met manager Sarah Franco who says the local community has taken them to their hearts.

From the reclaimed brick floor, to the wood panelled walls, and pots of fragrant blooms, it's a warm and welcoming space. A framed leaf gathered on Hampstead Heath was a gift from one of Sarah's younger regulars, and she says there's plenty of footfall from Heath walkers dropping in for a spontaneous bunch of flowers, scented candle or a gift for the gardener in their life.Ham & High: An autumnal flower arrangement in a pumpkinAn autumnal flower arrangement in a pumpkin (Image: Bridget Galton)

She guided a few of us in making an autumnal decoration in a hollowed out pumpkin stuffed with wire. We threaded through pungent geranium leaves, Chinese lantern plants that evoked the forthcoming Halloween, several huge headed dahlia, and of course scented roses with the Margaret Merill pride of place.

Rosebie advises to fill the pumpkin with water mixed with a spoonful of sugar and a few drops of bleach, and it should last as a gorgeous autumnal centrepiece to your table to cheer up the rainy days.Ham & High: The company offers winter wreath making workshops at their Chelsea storeThe company offers winter wreath making workshops at their Chelsea store (Image: The Real Flower Company)

Blooms at The Real Flower Company start at £21 for flower of the week with an autumn Fresh From the Farm box costing £40. Winter wreathmaking classes start on November 28 at The Real Flower Company, New King's Road, Chelsea, £125.00 per person.