Quotable Sunday 11/17/2013
Meeting New Friends
The internet can be a wonderful tool, a pain in the butt, and a massive sinkhole of time. The wonderful aspect to being connected with the world is to find fellow flower nerds who have the same passion and desire to play in the dirt and grow beautiful flowers. We are connected around the world with such wonderful people, some very far away and down under; some on the east coast and west coast; and some you find are surprisingly in your back yard. We had the chance to meet a fellow flower grower this week and get a tour of her farm.
Elizabeth and her partner are the flower purveyors of Rosehill Flower Farm up in West Linn, Oregon just about 75 miles north of us. Elizabeth gave us a tour of their operation this last Wednesday. Elizabeth is in the beginning years of turning her father-in-law's family homestead into a seasonal flower growing operation. Her passion for locally grown, seasonal and a sustainable flower operation is so very evident and inspiring. As we walked the grounds, she show us the different areas where she plans to grow shade loving flowers such as hellebores, bleeding hearts, Japanese anemones, ferns and more.
Elizabeth's knowledge is backed by varied interests and took the time to be trained as an experienced farmer/gardener who is a Certified Organic Gardener
through OSU Extension and Oregon Tilth and holds a Permaculture Design
Certification. As we moved around the property, Farmer Tony and I became envious of her wonderful sandy loam and the talk turned to soil, minerals and cover-cropping.
Her soil is wonderfully friable, drains well and is very fertile. All an excellent combination for achieving success at Rosehill.
Her farm is situated in the woodland hills just minutes out side of Portland and when we asked about deer pressure she showed us the new deer fencing that they were putting in. Awesome!
As we moved around the property, the new greenhouse came in to view.
A beautiful 75 ft structure that is currently holding an array of colorful spring ranunculus. This is a new crop for Rosehill farm and they are very excited about having them this spring.
Just a few finishing touches and the plastic skin will be going on in the next week. Whoo hoo!
Perennial beds of foxgloves, geum, columbines and many more are planted and ready for spring.
Chickens and bees are also part of the operation.
One great advantage that Rosehill farm has is, her father-in-law is a retired machinist who can fabricate anything she might need for the farm. He is also restoring a farm truck as a hobby. Cool farm truck!
After a wonderful farm tour, a lovely lunch, we chatted about the growing popularity small growers and local flowers are becoming with designers, florists, and the general public. The consensus was that we growers, as a group, need to continue our efforts in promoting locally grown flowers to designers and florists in our community and help educate the end consumer about the value of locally and sustainably grown flowers.
We could have chatted all day long, which is the best part of meeting a fellow flowers friend. The things we find in common, the shared experiences, the trials and tribulations, and the shared knowledge is so very great and truly inspiring. At this time of year we have the time to visit other farms and learn and grow as farmers. So with a hug and a invitation to come see our operation; we were on our way home re-energized and made a promise to make time to come back to Rosehill Flower Farm in the Spring and see all the beautiful flowers. Check out Rosehill Flower Farm on facebook at Rosehill Flower farm.
"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: 'What! You too? I thought I was the only one."