A Bucket of Possibilites
We are almost a month into the new year and the reviewing and planning continues. The garden is tucked in for the winter. Dahlias are divided and wrapped. The calla tubers are stored. Under lights, we have scented geraniums growing and curly willows sprouting. Next season's seeds, plugs and additional tubers are ordered. Most seed packets have already arrived. And in little over a month, the soil blocking and seed starting begins!
How things grew last year has been considered when planning all of this. We want to grow the best looking flowers and the botanicals that go with them. We continue to add more unusual florals since the industry itself offers new additions each year. Of course, we plan to keep our favorites that have done well for us but we have also discovered more. Our list of flowers and botanicals continues to grow in both numbers and kind.
This spring, we are planning to build a high tunnel also known as a hoop house. This unheated space uses passive solar to make a warmer microclimate so we can increase our flower production. In the works for the fall is a passive geo-thermal greenhouse. This heated space will not only extend our growing season but will provide a space for our seedlings to grow in the beginning of the season. Both will allow us to extend the growing season on either end.
Looking back on 2016, we are thankful for many things. First, our flowers grew despite what Mother Nature threw at us! Our drip irrigation was a blessing while we were in the midst of a drought. Then there was the realization that we could provide flowers for more than weekend events, there were so many. (The flower farmer learning curve continues.) This year, we are looking into places that our flowers can go at the beginning of the week. Do we offer a Wednesday CSA? Or do we sell bouquets to local markets? What about local florists? In the next few weeks, these possibilities will be explored.
Mostly, we are grateful for our family and friends. "It takes a village" is a phrase that really applies to season 2016. Although there are three of us that are the driving force behind the day to day operations, there have been other family members who have pitched in. Other times, for special events, we have called in the cavalry! Thank you Joan, Michelle, Teresa and Genevieve for providing support when we needed it. Gathering flowers, making arrangements, putting together bouquets and boutonnieres for an event requires many hands in a short period. We appreciated yours.
This new year, 2017, we look forward to more buckets of flowers, family and friendship and all the possibilities that they can provide.
"Where flowers bloom, so does hope." -Lady Bird Johnson