While working on our small family farm, I couldn’t help but feel a creative spark to make a small corner of it my own and create something beautiful.
I have dived wholeheartedly into flower farming, and I’m excited to take you on this journey with me! I’m sharing my progress lessons learned and my favorite flower gardening resources along the way.
I’ve spent hours researching flowers, seeds, growing systems.
Dreaming and anticipating the upcoming season’s possibilities has made late this cold late winter weather bearable. I’ve already shared the seed varieties I am growing in 2022, but today I thought I would talk about the five things I have chosen to focus on during my first year of flower farming.
There is no doubt that farming requires hard work and long hours. There is just no way around that. But because I am just not sure about my abilities and limitations when it comes to flower farming starting small makes sense.
Even though we have the space, I knew it would require a lot of time and energy if I decided to plant hundreds of each variety I was interested in.
With more to manage, more challenges popping up are almost a given. To prevent me from becoming overwhelmed or burnt out and potentially biting off more than I can chew, my flower farm may look more like a home garden to some. And I am ok with that.
Starting small will help me figure out my strengths and weaknesses when growing and selling flowers and also help me get a taste of full-scale flower farming. As a bonus, I also don’t have a lot financially invested in my flowers.
Learning As Much As I Can
I am a hands-on learner, a trial and error type gal. Keeping my expectations in check and staying focused on learning everything about growing and selling flowers during this first year is my way of dipping my toe in the water.
There is a lot to figure out, from picking the right flowers for our farm, to starting the seeds, transplanting, harvesting, and pricing. I feel like giving myself the grace to just begin without the pressure of meeting sales goals allows me the space to try something new without feeling the need to achieve something I may or may not be able to.
Find My Niche
Because we already have an established on-farm produce stand, that makes the most sense for me to market any bouquets I harvest this summer.
But, with so many local flower growers who sell at roadside stands in my area, I need to stand out from the competition. What are they doing? What holes can I fill, and what will set me apart. Are there ways I can complement the other local growers instead of competing?
Establish My Brand
I plan to piggyback my flower business branding off my online presence at Home in the Finger Lakes. But branding isn’t just an Instagram aesthetic, it is the complete experience and feeling invoked when someone interacts with you and your business.
When I began on this journey of growing cut flowers, I envisioned a space that would bring me joy, full of lush, old-fashioned flowers that invoke a sense of grandmother’s gardens. I want my messaging and customer experience to reflect a feeling of charming vintage hominess and comfort, which is the direction I am moving in.
Evaluate and Refine
Part of the beauty of documenting and sharing this journey with you is that I will have a well-documented record of how my first year growing flowers went. I have taken a ridiculous amount of notes and tracked the progress of my seedlings. When my plants mature, I will note their productivity and popularity on the farm stand in my journal.
I will use all my notes, blog posts, photos, and videos to help me evaluate and refine my plan in the future.