I’m so excited that spring is coming up next and we will once again be welcoming people to learn and retreat for a bit. 2019 was my first year offering workshops here. After traveling to teach at many different venues, I decided what I know is best shared where I feel the most comfortable: at our home farm and studio.
I’m so thankful for last year’s guinea pigs who kindly purchased seats in our fledgling workshop line up. We had gardening enthusiasts, flower arranging novices looking for a fun afternoon, serious florists, established farmers come to learn about what we do here. This time around, I’ve refined our offerings a bit. I wanted to focus on the knowledge I really wish I had when I started out, so I began with seed starting. This is the foundation upon which a profitable flower farm rests. Learning to take inexpensive seed and transform it into a decorative and/or profitable and/or tasty plant is the cornerstone of success in this pursuit. There simply is not an abundance of unique cut flower plants available at nurseries. You must learn to begin with a seed. Thankfully, it really isn’t too difficult once you get some muscle memory and a small space set aside for indoor growing. I’ll help you with that. This class will be equally useful for home gardeners and small farmers looking to improve their success with the most important piece of the flower-growing puzzle, and learn about germinating and growing on some unique and coveted cut flower varieties. The stems the florists want to pay lots of money for, are typically the tricker to get going…figures!
Our next class is an approachable and instructive class on building low compote centerpieces for the table. This is a part of entertaining that has been placed on the back burner in recent years, but an interest in thoughtful table decoration has been making a comeback, and learning to create a centerpiece to display is an excellent way to welcome guests and warm up a space. Last year we welcomed many creatives to the studio for this class, to thoughtfully arrange a colorful piece, and I made some new friends as we went.
And finally, a class for those with an interest in, or actively engaged in, designing flowers for weddings. The two pieces of a wedding that still make me feel the pressure of my work are the bridal bouquet and ceremony installations. So, I want to show you my technique for crafting these pieces and give attendees the confidence to use more unusual local flowers and foliages in their designs, to help set them apart from the masses. And also, show you all of the foam free techniques I’ve picked up along the way, to help rid the world of this toxic, wasteful substance that sucks away all of the beauty and pleasure from flowers.
There is no such thing as ‘special sauce’ in farming and floristry. I can’t promise 2-week results from my classes, immediate epiphanies and the like that we tend to see plastered all over social media. I’m a flower farmer, not a Bowflex (TM?) commercial. What I can share with you are my years of education and experience and trials and errors to help you grow in your path with flowers, and make this industry and our communities greener, cleaner, and local-er.
Head to our classes page to snag your spot, I can’t wait to have everyone this spring.
Photographs by Julia Simmons Photography and Myself. Student work by Marissa at Magnolia Spring Farm, Elizabeth at Plant Joy Studio, and Jill at Kimball Flower Farm.
S H E E P D O G S