Second year of the farm has been a learning process that keeps my mind off of the everyday stresses of my full-time job. While I continue to invest way more than we earn, the benefits of being in the garden reap their own priceless rewards. There is no cost to being immersed in watching a bumble bee asleep in a flower. In fact, in late summer I’d come to being very careful moving down the rows to avoid waking one up from an accidental face to flower whacking. There is also no cost associated with the physical health benefits not just of my own exertions on the weekends or on random days during the week, but also the mental benefits. Gardens are confidence building, even when they are not. Like my cat, they don’t talk back but you know exactly what they need. Soil, water, tending. Gardens give me both meditaion and peace. And when they involve family, and family is happy puttering away, even better.
2022 began with Covid lockdowns, which didn’t impact the seedling process, but little flies did. The flies came from the dirt, or maybe the fly fairy brought them, laid their eggs, which in turn made little larvae that LOVE to eat the delicate baby roots. Slowly my carefully tended sproutlings died by the tray-fulls. I bought annoying sticky traps which would get in my hair every time I watered. I put out vinegar cups. I dusted diotomatious earth. I carefully sliced raw potato to attract the larva away from the roots, all to little effect. I had to buy more seeds and dirt midway through the growing season and wasn’t sure I’d have anything to put in the garden except dahlia tubers.
Once Spring came around, we had both torrents of rain and a late frosty spell that delayed planting. One wonderful surprise from year one was that the yarrow came back! This made my day and is the first perennial to return. Because of this I dedicated a row to perennials which hopefully will come back in 2023. As the garden was planted and grew, some notable finds were that mint is super invasive, the LED grass volunteers itself also, and while I had not planned on poppies this year I got a pretty small red Shirley poppy volunteer that was a nice addition to look at. And did I say mint? Eeek! Smells great but….if you need any hit me up. I also made Nettle tea from the wild nettles in the Spring. Its delicious and did you know it lowers blood pressure? Yep! I had a propper fainting spell on a hot day drinking too much Nettle tea and working on the garden. Whoops!
The dahlias were gorgeous and the snap dragons did better than I thought, branching out after each cutting for more and more stems. New varieties were Jewels of Opar which was a stunning airy addition to bouquets, and Columbine, which didn’t bloom, but we used as filler. I also loved using the mint and purple basil as filler which was so deliciously aromatic I felt I was in Italy.
We started a website, are putting together a sales portal and visited Triple Wren Farms up in Lynden, WA. for a much needed break and to dream how we could grow with some work and land. We also met some lovely new friends, and had a special guest flower designer over in the garden to practice making bouquets! This led us to a few parties under the wisteria arch that were so much fun. Throughout all of this we opened the flower stand, made bouquets, sold bouquets and buckets of flowers. I took a ton of photos and made a calendar for family members as a loving memory to our farm over the year. In November we dug up the tubers and lovingly packed them away for (fingers crossed) some Spring tuber sales of some fun and funky varieties.
This has been another full year and I hope if you are reading this you can stop by in the Summer or send us a line to connect! Here is hoping to your warm Winter and own personal success.