The unpredictability of farming
We’ll just say it—farming—any sort of farming—isn’t for the weak of heart. It’s physically demanding, mentally exhausting, and not for those who crave routine and predictability. It’s a fly-by-your-pants-most-days-and-hope-for-the-best kinda profession. Not that you can’t plan or that you shouldn’t. But despite spending countless hours planning and going through all the steps to ensure a good product that people love and that you’re proud of, well, there are many factors that can get in the way. Pests, soil conditions, disease, and weather all play big roles when you’re any kind of farmer.
This spring (we use that word loosely!) had been frustrating with the continuation of cold, gray weather for the past several weeks which has pushed back the start of our season. Unfortunately, Mother Nature’s decision to continue her slumber this spring didn’t align with our plans, and therefore, resulted in about a three-week delay of our spring flowers. Last spring, we had buckets of tulips for Mother’s Day, and sadly this year, we don’t even have enough flowers to meet all of our orders. While we’re incredibly disappointed that we are coming up short for the holiday, the good news is that the upcoming forecast means we should have a field of flowers very soon.
Last night, as we walked through the field feeling bummed that flowers weren’t progressing quicker, we took a moment to stop and take in the scene as a whole. “It looks so much different out here than it did last year, doesn’t it?” Cory said gazing at the thousands of little plants popping up. Despite the cold weather, things HAVE been growing. Last year at this time we may have had a few more blooms, but looking around, there’s so many more green little plants than ever before. This is the result of countless bulbs and over-wintered hardy annuals planted last fall and endless transplants that have been put in this spring.
In any business, or heck, even life for that matter, it’s easy to look past the good things happening and focus on the challenges or the things that aren’t going as planned. It’s easy to get down on yourself thinking if I only did this, or did that, things may be different. But at the end of the day, progress is being made (even if we could use a bit more patience with it all) and growth is happening. Life isn’t always predictable and it rarely occurs on our own timeline. And that’s okay.
So while we may have fewer flowers right now, we know that very soon the field will be bursting with color and we’ll be in the thick of it, harvesting and making bouquets. We can’t wait to get back at it and see everyone soon at the farmers market to share our love of flowers with all of you! Until then, we’ll keep on truckin’ and doing what we love which is making our corner of the Earth just a little more colorful.
Our tiny bulb patch in 2021 (pictured above) consisted of only around 100 daffodils, 250 tulips, a handful of flowering alliums, in addition to a modest number of irises and lilies. Our bulb patch has grown considerably this year, (pictured below) with around 3,500 tulips, 1,200 daffodils, 1,500 flowering alliums, hundreds of lilies. Right now, our field looks like a lot of little empty holes in landscape fabric, but almost all of them are filled with tiny transplants or bulbs that will pop up later this season.