Cup of flowers

Zinnias, calendula and cosmos

Zinnias, calendula and cosmos, randomly selected, snipped short and stuck in a coffee mug… Who can resist? There’s more time in September days to…contemplate, begin going over what worked out and what didn’t during the year. Like, flowers. I dunno why I’ve put them second to veggies. Maybe it was my annoying experience with gladiolas in Year 1, three or four hundred, all flowering at once, with no time to cut ’em all and nowhere for them to go (the farmers’ market is full of flowers!). And then, digging up and separating and storing the corms… It seemed like a total distraction from the veggies. No further flower action until the tiny, largely ignored cut flower trial this year, when I finally tried more variety and the obvious was revealed to me: cut flowers are a bona fide part of any self-respecting market garden (at least, of this one!). Harvesting even a ragged fistful of flowers is another simple, profound pleasure I shouldn’t be missing. Here’s to next year…!

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3 thoughts on “Cup of flowers”

  1. I love your blog–I’m a flower farmer in Michigan, looking to expand into more vegetables next year, with an eye toward a CSA once my small children grow up. Anyhow, I highly recommend zinnias, cosmos, multi-branching sunflowers, dill and basil bouquets. I also throw in yarrow, snapdragons, black-eyed susans, and a few other things, as they come into bloom. But people really, really like them, and BG zinnias are so easy to grow.

  2. Hey Jill: Yeah, zinnias, cosmos and all the sunflowers, including the branching ones, worked out great in my under-tended flower plot. I’ll do ’em again. Gypsophilia seemed to do well on their own, also, calendula. I’ll look into your suggestions for next year—this time around I tried only what I could direct seed around the beginning of June.

    If you’re going into limited veggies to start out with, you might consider specializing in salad mix, like, true mesclun with lettuce and lots of other greens. You can get really creative making up blends, also, growing hot weather alternatives, like mixes of baby chard, beet greens, and so forth. Keeping it all balanced so there’s a steady supply sounds like the type of growing that might fit well with flowers!

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