During the long winter months, there’s nothing more inspiring or exhilarating than dreaming up the season to come. For gardeners, it’s like Christmas all over again. And while spring still feels like a thousand miles away, each day brings a few more minutes of light and an undeniable stirring.
If you’ve got the gardening bug as bad as I do then you can probably relate to having every bare surface of your dining room covered in sketches and plans, marked up catalogs, plant encyclopedias and wish lists that span far too many pages. This is the time of year when I get myself into the most trouble, biting off more than I can actually chew once the flower season hits.
It can be easy to get caught up in the dreaming process and lose sight of what’s realistic or possible to manage once the weather warms. A half-acre cutting garden only takes up a single piece of graph paper and the realities of the weeding, watering and harvesting go unnoticed.
After almost a decade of growing flowers, you’d think I’d have learned my lesson by now! But what fun would a flower season be without throwing at least a few variety trials into the mix? The part I always fail to tell Chris is that each trial includes between 40-100 varieties. Every spring as I stomp around the garden fretting about how we’re going to squeeze it all in, he gently reminds me that I’m the one who drew up the farm plan. Ha! Never something I like to hear.
Over the course of my flower journey, I’ve learned how to squeeze a ton of flowers into a teeny tiny space, maximizing every square inch. I’ve also been able to stretch our growing season, through the use of hoop houses and low tunnels, succession planting and variety selection, to span three quarters of the year.
During the next month, or what we’re excitedly referring to as the Floret February Blog Blizzard, I’m going to share tons of information about growing cut flowers. My hope is that it will help you avoid many of the frustrating mistakes we made early on and get you on the path to growing more cut flowers than you ever dreamed of in the coming year.
So join me back here bright and early Monday morning and we’ll get down to business.