Does anyone else feel like Spring has absolutely flown by? My guess is that it feels this way because here in Western North Carolina we've been experiencing warmer than usual spring weather... I'm talking multiple days with highs in the 80s throughout April. I suppose the bright side is that the flowers are blooming earlier than anticipated or hoped.
We've been able to sell basically every viable stem since the anemones started popping in January - what a vast difference 1 year of hard work makes! I remember last May when all of the snapdragons bloomed at one time (so much for succession planting) and I was scrambling to find buyers. Let's just say that our neighbors and friends loved us since we put buckets of leftovers on the curb in front of our house throughout the season with a note to "make yourself a bouquet, but please leave the buckets." As much as we love doing this, its really nice to be selling as many flowers as we can grow.
A few game changers for this season:
1. The Hustle: I (Niki) worked NONSTOP to build relationships with local designers, grocery store partners and wedding clients to spread the word about this business. I truly learned the what the word hustle means, and its paying off. The hustle continues just as much now (if not more) and ever as we continue to grow and promote Flourish.
2. Cool Flowers: We're harvesting the benefits from a huge (for a small scale farm) planting of cool season hardy annuals. See my post from last fall What Flower Farmers do in the Fall for more insight into our process for prepping and planting. Thankfully most everything made it safely through the winter and the cool temps made for robust spring flowers. Having flowers throughout the early spring has been awesome... we're all ready for some colorful blooms after winter.
3. Having confidence: I'm learning to have confidence in myself as a small business owner, as a flower farmer, as a boss, as a PR representative and marketer and as a designer. While I definitely drop the ball on lots of small things (my poor dogs rarely get to go on trail runs anymore), those mistakes don't define me. I realize that I the have ability and determination to learn from my mistakes and keep refining our systems.
4. Planning: Putting in the hours to build spreadsheets and make a solid crop plan for this season is well worth the precious time away from farm chores in the early fall. Knowing that the seeds are ready to be sown on schedule, plugs ordered and fields laid out takes away so much of the stress of what to plant and when. We just follow the schedule
5: Hannah: Our amazing farm hand from last year returned to work with us again this season. We are so incredibly lucky to have Hannah working on the farm part time. Not only is she a joy to be around, she's an incredibly thoughtful, efficient and hard worker. More on Hannah later when we provide a proper introduction :)
A few exciting things that have been very encouraging this spring...
This blog has been named one of the Top 100 Flower Blogs on the web by Feedspot. We came in #50!!! Along with all sorts of other amazing flower blogs, we are so honored to be included as a part of this list.
Our very first "Evening on the Flower Farm" workshop sold out! We have an incredible lineup of local artisans contributing to this evening. From catering, to confections and calligraphy, photography, textiles and more, this is going to be a night to remember. Not to mention flowers from our farm and garden roses donated from Grace Rose Farm in California. Because we received such an overwhelming response, we are excited to announce that we're offering another workshop this fall. "An Autumn Evening on the Flower Farm" will be held on October 7 and registration is now open. We hope that you'll join us!
There are a few other really exciting things coming up very soon, but I can't announce them just yet :) Let's just say that Flourish Flower Farm is about to reach a nationwide audience through a handful of different print, radio, social media and online publications. I will be sure to post about them on social media and share on the blog.
And finally, I'm heading out to Washington State's Skagit Valley next week to attend Floret Flower Farm's workshop. To say that I'm excited is an understatement! Erin has been a huge role model from afar, and I'm thrilled for the chance to learn from her and Team Floret. I have no doubt that I'll bring back many, many farming and design tips to incorporate into this little farm.
PS - Check out our Image Gallery as we've been updating the page with all sorts of loveliness from weddings and designs this spring!