Debra Prinzing

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Archive for the ‘Plants’ Category

Episode 655: A visit to Françoise Weeks’ studio and a peek into her new book, Wonder of the Woodlands

Wednesday, March 27th, 2024

Françoise Weeks brings home the charm of the wild woods with her creative botanical arrangements that are so much more than bouquets of blooms. Our conversation about Wonder of the Woodlands, Françoise’s new book, includes an exclusive visit to her Portland garden and design studio.

Wonder of the Woodlands book by Francoise Weeks
Wonder of the Woodlands book by Françoise Weeks

Françoise Weeks is a good friend to the Slow Flowers Movement and she is a longtime member of our society. Regular podcast listeners will have met Francoise on a few earlier occasions, including on her first appearance on Episode 217 in the fall of 2015, during Lisa Waud’s Flower House Detroit – Françoise collaborated with Susan McLeary to design a fantstical vintage kitchen filled with flowers and root vegetables, plants, and foliages – it was a delight.

Françoise has influenced the floral community as an educator and artist, and we now have the delightful gift of her first design book – Wonder of the Woodlands, The Art of Seeing and Creating with Nature.

The book will be published on April 2nd so you’re the first to hear all about it and if you check out the video interview on which today’s podcast is based, you’ll enjoy a peek into Françoise’s Portland, Oregon Studio, where we recorded our conversation.

Wonder of the Woodlands Title Page
Wonder of the Woodlands

Here’s a bit more about the new book:

Containers lined with bark to replace ordinary glass vases. A bed of moss to cushion a vibrant spring arrangement. Ever-changing wreaths to showcase acorns, branches, lichen, twining vines, and delicate ferns throughout the year. A cloche holding an arrangement of dried mushrooms that might have come out of a fairytale.
 
In this gorgeous celebration of the woodlands, renowned floral designer Françoise Weeks offers all the ways, from simple to complex, that you can bring the wildness and wonder of the forest to your indoor arrangements. Each chapter of Wonder of the Woodlands features the materials Françoise uses most—barks and logs; acorns and seeds; ferns, branches, moss, and lichen—and showcases how she builds her unique, beautiful arrangements, which last far longer than a vase of cut flowers.
 
Inside are also Françoise’s insights on seeking out the most unique natural materials for arrangements, and how to responsibly forage or source them in a shop. And you’ll find her tips on how to reuse materials so you can enjoy lots of different arrangements without increasing your environmental impact.
 
Bursting with images of nature and suggestions for weaving that magic into your interiors, Wonder of the Woodlands is a celebration of arrangements that are inspired by a walk through the trees. With stunning photography of wild and wonderful wreaths, table arrangements, wall décor, and more, you can re-create the peaceful majesty of spending time in the forest in your own home.

A Bark Trough
A Planted Bark Trough
How I see Mushrooms
How I see Mushrooms
A Moss Carpet
A Moss Carpet


In this gorgeous celebration of the woodlands, renowned floral designer Françoise Weeks offers all the ways, from simple to complex, that you can bring the wildness and wonder of the forest to your indoor arrangements. Each chapter of Wonder of the Woodlands features the materials Françoise uses most—barks and logs; acorns and seeds; ferns, branches, moss, and lichen—and showcases how she builds her unique, beautiful arrangements, which last far longer than a vase of cut flowers.
 
Inside are also Françoise’s insights on seeking out the most unique natural materials for arrangements, and how to responsibly forage or source them in a shop. And you’ll find her tips on how to reuse materials so you can enjoy lots of different arrangements without increasing your environmental impact.
 
Bursting with images of nature and suggestions for weaving that magic into your interiors, Wonder of the Woodlands is a celebration of arrangements that are inspired by a walk through the trees. With stunning photography of wild and wonderful wreaths, table arrangements, wall decor, and more, you can re-create the peaceful majesty of spending time in the forest in your own home.

An Acorn Wreath
An Acorn Wreath

Francoise Weeks
Françoise Weeks

Françoise was born in Belgium and started her business in 1996. She has infused her work with a quintessential European reverence for flowers and nature. Combined with creativity and mechanical ingenuity, she has crystalized her singular style of Textural Woodlands and Botanical Haute Couture pieces, garnering a global following.

Her innovation and love of teaching have brought her to many cities in the US in studios, at wholesalers, at garden clubs, Art in Bloom events and conferences, including at AIFD Symposium. She also taught in Mexico, Canada, England, Sweden, Iceland, France, China and Australia.

Her dynamic work has been published in national and international publications such as Fusion Flowers, Modern Wedding Flowers, Huffington Post, Flutter and Millieu.

Françoise’s studio is located in Portland, OR where she teaches and offers online courses, including Zoom workshops.

She created “The Herbal Recipe Keeper,” a blank journal featuring her artwork, published by Timber Press in 2018.

Debra Prinzing, Francoise Weeks, and Julie Beeler
Debra Prinzing, Françoise Weeks, and Julie Beeler

Before we start the interview, I want to mention that you’ll occasionally hear the voice of botanical artist Julie Beeler of Bloom & Dye, a Slow Flowers member who lives in Trout Lake, Washington, outside of Portland; Julie joined me on my visit to Françoise’s studio last week and then the three of us had lunch together. I had wanted these two women to meet and I’m so delighted that it worked out. Julie and Françoise share a mutual love of mushrooms and Julie has a forthcoming book – out this fall – called The Mushroom Color Atlas, A Guide to Dyes and Pigments Made from Fungi, so keep an ear out for her appearance on this podcast.

Click here to find Françoise’s upcoming book events, classes, and workshops and a link to order your own copy of Wonder of the Woodlands.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to The Gardener’s Workshop, which offers a full curriculum of online education for flower farmers and farmer-florists. Online education is more important than ever, and you’ll want to check out the course offerings at thegardenersworkshop.com.

Thank you to Store It Cold, creators of the revolutionary CoolBot, a popular solution for flower farmers, studio florists and farmer-florists.  Save $1000s when you build your own walk-in cooler with the CoolBot and an air conditioner.  Don’t have time to build your own?  They also have turnkey units available. Learn more at storeitcold.com.   

Thank you to Red Twig Farms. Based in Johnstown, Ohio, Red Twig Farms is a family-owned farm specializing in peonies, daffodils, tulips and branches, a popular peony-bouquet-by-mail program. Learn more at redtwigfarms.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

I’m so glad you joined us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com

Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Drone Birch; Homegrown
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 654: Native Flora for farmers and florists with Holly Lukasiewicz of District 2 Floral Studio; Deborah Majerus of Iron Butterfly Farm and Lodging; and Kate Watters of Wild Heart Farm

Wednesday, March 20th, 2024

More Slow Flowers members are exploring native plants as potential floral design elements – both on their farms and in their studios. In fact, in our recent survey, 87 percent of members say they grow native plant species as part of their crop mix! Today, you’ll hear the inspiring Native Flora conversation recorded during our March Slow Flowers member meet-up, as three creatives share their insights and advice for adding more native plants to your floral business.

Floral design by District 2 Floral Studio
Floral design by District 2 Floral Studio (c) Mike Machian Photography

There’s an emerging a mindset that individual actions, while small, can be part of our cumulative efforts to address climate change. While the horticulture and landscape professions in North America have long been tuned into the importance of preserving native plant species, that awareness has not been present in flower farming and floral design circles until recently.

Native Flora from Slow Flowers Floral Insights 2024
Native Flora from Slow Flowers Floral Insights 2024

We’ve been tracking the embrace of native flora for some time here at the Slow Flowers Movement. In the 2023 Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast, we noted the work of flower farmer Alexandra Cacciari of Ann Arbor-based Seeley Farm to evaluate native perennials as cut flowers and later hosted Alex on Episode 598 to discuss her research exploring native plants as potential floral design elements.

Native Flora for a Nebraska Wedding
Native Flora for a Nebraska Wedding (c) Mike Machian Photography
Design: District 2 Floral Studio

In our 2024 Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast, we devoted the first insight to ‘Native Flora,’ with contributions from Holly and Deborah. There are long-term benefits of championing native plants, and that conversation continued during the March 8th virtual member meet-up, the recording of which you’ll hear today. I’m delighted to share this episode with you and many thanks to our three panelists, Native Flora for Farmers and Florists with Holly Lukasiewicz of District 2 Floral Studio; Deborah Majerus of Iron Butterfly Farm and Lodging; and Kate Watters of Wild Heart Farm.

Deb Majerus quote

Here’s a bit more about our guests:

Holly has a background in design, creative projects and community art and through her Omaha-based District 2 Floral Studio she serves Nebraska and Iowa with floral design rooted in sustainability and Slow Flowering practices, offering event work, installations, workshops, daily deliveries, New Moon monthly flower subscriptions, Celebration of Life pieces, custom flower preservation, along with home & corporate account design services.

Deborah is the owner of Iron Butterfly Farm and Lodging in Rochester, Minnesota, an urban flower farm that uses sustainable and regenerative practices, grows a permaculture mini food forest, peonies, woody ornamental shrubs, early spring bulbs, and annuals.

Kate Watters joined the panel to share her unique perspective from Rimrock, Arizona, where she owns Wild Heart Farm. Here creative mission is to share the detail and diversity that exists in moments from a place through the seasons – through writing, floristry, gardening, and art. She grows and designs with flowers, bringing 20 years’ experience from botany and conservation.

Thanks so much for joining me today! We are fully behind the goal of increasing the propagation and planting of native plants and increasing awareness among florists and consumers around supporting native habitat!

Native Flower and Foliage for floral design database

To that end, inspired by this conversation, Deb Majerus has created the start of a database for native cut flowers and plants – and you are invited to contribute your recommendations. This is an ongoing project that we hope to expand and share with the broader Slow Flowers Community – and I salute Deb for getting it started. Kate and Holly will add their suggestions by specific region, and I hope you will do the same. The Native Flowers and Foliage for cuts database is a place to compile our collective knowledge so members are not duplicating efforts – and can make the growing of native flora more accessible to farmers, growers, gardeners, florists, and the public.


Get Ready for the Slow Flowers Summit – Ticket Promotion this Week!

Slow Flowers Summit 2024 Spring ticket promo

If you’re listening during the first week of Spring – I’ve great news to share. We’re celebrating the Spring Equinox with a special ticket promotion for the Slow Flower Summit registration, March 19-25th. Use the coupon code SPRINGISHERE to receive $50 off any Slow Flowers Summit registration – and put that $50 in your pocket (or fund your seed or plant purchases) as our gift to you! The Summit is about 100 days away – and native plants are on the program this year! We’re excited to feature Latifa Pelletier-Ahmed of ALCLA Native Plants, based in Calgary, Alberta. She will help us understand what defines a plant or flower as “native,” and how to use natives to boost the diversity of your own growing areas. Hope to see you at the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity in Alberta, Canada!


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to Rooted Farmers. Rooted Farmers works exclusively with local growers to put the highest-quality specialty cut flowers in floral customers’ hands. When you partner with Rooted Farmers, you are investing in your community, and you can expect a commitment to excellence in return. Learn more at RootedFarmers.com.

Thank you to Johnny’s Selected Seeds, an employee-owned company that provides our industry the best flower, herb and vegetable seeds — supplied to farms large and small and even backyard cutting gardens like mine. Find the full catalog of flower seeds and bulbs at johnnyseeds.com.

And thank you to Mayesh Wholesale Florist. Family-owned since 1978, Mayesh is the premier wedding and event supplier in the U.S. and we’re thrilled to partner with Mayesh to promote local and domestic flowers, which they source from farms large and small around the U.S. Learn more at mayesh.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

I’m so glad you joined us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Turning on the Lights; A Burst of Light
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 652: Building a niche supplying flower seedlings for farmers and gardeners with Kate Skelton of Gratitude Flowers

Wednesday, March 6th, 2024

In the run-up to spring’s arrival in a few weeks, join me on a visit to Gratitude Flowers outside Tacoma, Washington, a boutique home-based floral business, where Kate Skelton specializes in growing and supplying lisianthus starts to flower farmers and offering a wide array of cutting garden plants to her community.

Kate Skelton of Gratitude Flowers
Kate Skelton of Gratitude Flowers

At the end of last month, I took a Friday afternoon outing to Edgewood, a community located about halfway between Seattle and Tacoma near me, to visit today’s guest, Kate Skelton, owner of Gratitude Flowers. It’s a boutique, home-based floral business that reflects Kate’s passion for growing flowers from seed.

The day was chilly, but beautiful, and the drive there gave me a front-row view of Mount Rainier in all its snow-capped glory. I was in a great mood, and Kate and her story lifted my spirits higher.

Kate Skelton with tulips and a lisianthus bouquet
Kate Skelton with tulips and a lisianthus bouquet

I first me Kate last fall when Jodi Logue of Moss & Madder Farm hosted a flower farmers’ pie-and-coffee (you can watch or listen to that interview in Episode 633 from October 25, 2023). A lovely group of local growers, including several Slow Flowers members, came together on a Sunday afternoon to chat and network over delicious homemade pie and warm beverages at Jodi’s home in Olalla, Washington, on the Kitsap Peninsula. My conversation with Kate was fascinating, as I learned that she is a community college math professor who launched her flower nursery and seedling venture during the pandemic.

Gratitude Flowers plant sale
Gratitude Flowers plant sale

I also learned about her seedling offerings – especially lisianthus – which she grows for other flower farmers. Being a greenhouse owner and aspiring seed-starting gardener, I was intrigued. And after Gratitude Flowers joined Slow Flowers as a member, I knew that I wanted to feature Kate on the Slow Flowers Show.

Healthy seedlings
Healthy flower seedlings from Gratitude flowers

Gratitude Flowers offers timeless farm-grown, organic, specialty plants for cutting gardens and seasonal floral blooms for floral enthusiasts. Kate plans to open for the season on Saturday, March 30th.

Follow Gratitude Flowers on Instagram and Facebook for more details.

Sign up for Gratitude Flowers’ newsletter.

Download Kate’s Lisianthus Growing Guide.


Slow Flowers Member (Virtual) Meet-Up for March

Photo courtesy of District 2 Floral Studio: (c) Mike Machian Photography
Photo courtesy of District 2 Floral Studio: (c) Mike Machian Photography

Don’t forget to pre-register for the March 8th Slow Flowers Member (Virtual) Meet-Up – 9 am PT/Noon ET. The topic: Native Flowers for Farmers & Florists. We are so excited to welcome a panel of four members who will help us think about the possibilities of integrating native perennials and other native plants into farming and design efforts. They include:

Holly Lukasiewicz of District 2 Floral Studio, Omaha, Nebraska
Deborah Majerus of Iron Butterfly Farm and Lodging, Rochester, Minnesota
Kate Watters of Wild Heart Farm, Rimrock, Arizona


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to Mayesh Wholesale Florist. Family-owned since 1978, Mayesh is the premier wedding and event supplier in the U.S. and we’re thrilled to partner with Mayesh to promote local and domestic flowers, which they source from farms large and small around the U.S. Learn more at mayesh.com.

Thank you to The Gardener’s Workshop, which offers a full curriculum of online education for flower farmers and farmer-florists. Online education is more important than ever, and you’ll want to check out the course offerings at thegardenersworkshop.com.

And thank you to returning 2024 Podcast sponsor, Store It Cold, creators of the revolutionary CoolBot, a popular solution for flower farmers, studio florists and farmer-florists.  Save $1000s when you build your own walk-in cooler with the CoolBot and an air conditioner.  Don’t have time to build your own?  They also have turnkey units available. Learn more at storeitcold.com   


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Heartland Flyer
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 651: Growing and Designing With Fragrant Flowers with Stefani Bittner of Homestead Design Collective

Wednesday, February 28th, 2024

Today, you’re invited to inhale and enjoy the fragrance of flowers, herbs, and foliage. Stefani Bittner of Homestead Design Collective uses sensory plants as a way to immerse her clients in nature. She is the co-author of forthcoming book, “The Fragrant Flower Garden: Growing, Arranging, and Preserving Natural Scents,” and we’re delighted to learn from her.

Alethea Harampolis (L), Stefani Bittner (R) - photo by David Fenton
Alethea Harampolis (L), Stefani Bittner (R) – photo by David Fenton
The Fragrant Flower Garden
The Fragrant Flower Garden

Welcome to Stefani Bitter, returning for her second appearance on the Slow Flowers Podcast. A garden designer and Slow Flowers member, Stefani is the owner of Homestead Design Collective, based in Lafayette, California. Follow the link below to listen to my 2017 interview with Stephanie on the publication of Harvest – Unexpected projects using 47 extraordinary garden plants.

Modern potpourri
Modern potpourri

She appeared on the episode with co-author Alethea Harampolis, and they have collaborated on the new book, “The Fragrant Flower Garden: Growing, Arranging, and Preserving Natural Scents” (Ten Speed Press, 2024). The Fragrant Flower Garden invites gardeners and growers to design with fragrance in mind and encourages readers to choose plants that can be smelled, awakening the senses.

Garden by Homestead Design Collective
A garden for all the senses, including fragrance, designed by Homestead Design Collective

By connecting people with fragrance in the garden and vase – or by preserving fragrance for longer enjoyment — we have a richer, more visceral relationshp with nature, they authors say. This means making floral teas, natural perfumes, flower tinctures, modern potpourris, and more applications for scented plants. The idea of creating beauty products from the garden appeals to anyone who desires a non-synthetic alternative to the plethora of chemicals used in beauty and bath products. “Keep in mind that scent is subjective, emotive, and personal,” Stefani points out.

The Garden Eclectic
The Fragrant Flower Garden

I’m a huge fan of this book and its mission – to engage with plants through the senses – especially scent. When Robin Avni and I were collecting our top themes for the 2024 Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast, we wanted to include fragrant flowers and gardens. Stefani generously shared a preview of the new book, along with photography by David Fenton, which we highlighted in Insight #7 – the Garden Eclectic. In our insight, we encouraged flower farmers, gardeners, and florists – to lead with fragrance as a way to engage customers’ emotional memories with the scent of flowers.

the Fragrant Flower Garden
Soaking in the citrus orchard

“You can preserve the scent, perhaps making a flower tincture. You can make perfume, a hydrosol, or an updated potpourri,” Stefani suggests and several projects are included in the book to introduce the idea of “preserving fragrance.”

As Stefani and Alethea write, floral customers are not farmers, but they are inspired by the farm, and they want to translate what they see into their lifestyle. “Just like food, they want to enjoy garden scents, and that’s what really speaks to them about those sensory bouquets.”

Find and follow Homestead Design Collective on Instagram

Take a virtual tour of Trulli Trazzonara, Stefani’s vacation rental in Puglia, Italy. Talk about agrotourism! I am so enchanted by this destination and how she plans to integrate her design and teaching into an Italian lifestyle!


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to Longfield Gardens, which provides home gardeners with high quality flower bulbs and perennials. Their online store offers plants for every region and every season, from tulips and daffodils to dahlias, caladiums and amaryllis. Check out the full catalog at Longfield Gardens at longfield-gardens.com.

Thank you to Rooted Farmers. Rooted Farmers works exclusively with local growers to put the highest-quality specialty cut flowers in floral customers’ hands. When you partner with Rooted Farmers, you are investing in your community, and you can expect a commitment to excellence in return. Learn more at RootedFarmers.com.

Thank you to Johnny’s Selected Seeds, an employee-owned company that provides our industry the best flower, herb and vegetable seeds — supplied to farms large and small and even backyard cutting gardens like mine. Find the full catalog of flower seeds and bulbs at johnnyseeds.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Rue Severine
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 649: Flowers as Art: Botanical Couture and Floral Installations with Jennifer Reed of Jennifer Designs

Wednesday, February 14th, 2024

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone – if you’re listening on February 14th, it’s the day we released Episode 649. I hope you’ve had a great one.

Jennifer Reed of Jennifer Designs
Jennifer Reed of Jennifer Designs

Today’s guest, Jennifer Reed of Jennifer Designs based in Mullica Hill, New Jersey, regularly conjures up amazing botanical displays at the Philadelphia Flower Show, the largest indoor garden show in the country. Today, she’s joining me to preview America in Bloom, her most ambitious exhibit ever.

America In Bloom

The Philly Show draws gardeners and flower lovers eager for an early dose of springtime. She’s calling the large floral display a botanical road trip of a lifetime, as it celebrates flowers blooming across the U.S. – and in the exhibit’s description, Jennifer writes: “There’s nothing better than hitting the open road and experiencing the beauty of our nation’s public gardens, arboreta, and natural landscapes along the way!”

Tammy Tulip by Jennifer Reed for American Flowers Week 2021
Tammy Tulip by Jennifer Reed for American Flowers Week 2021
The Romance of Peonies by Jennifer Reed for American Flowers Week 2023
The Romance of Peonies by Jennifer Reed for American Flowers Week 2023

Another reason I invited Jennifer to chat with me for this episode is to share her advice to aspiring botanical couture designers thinking about submitting a floral fashion to be part of Slow Flowers’ American Flowers Week campaign later this year. We will review the two floral fashions Jennifer designed for the 2021 and 2023 campaigns – including seeing photos of her work and hearing her secret tips for success.

Thanks so much for joining me today! Here are links to the feature stories we included in past issues of Slow Flowers Journal about Jennifer’s two Botanical Couture looks – including Summer 2021 with Tulip Time, and last summer’s cover look – Jennifer’s dreamy and romantic peony gown.


Happy Valentine’s Day

Slow Flowers on The Weather Channel – click to watch

Slow Flowers has enjoyed some fun news coverage, including with INC. Magazine and The Weather Channel. We’re thrilled that the press is paying attention to the importance of local and seasonal flowers for gifting bouquets and arrangements.


Northwest Flower & Garden Festival

It’s also the beginning of flower & garden show season, with today’s opening of the 2024 Northwest Flower & Garden Festival in Seattle. If you attend, please come and say hello at the Main Stage, where Slow Flowers is hosting Blooms & Bubbles, the daily DIY flower and plant workshops! We’re excited to meet and great our members, seven of whom are teaching and speaking at the show.


February 23, 2024 Slow Flowers Member Meet-Up with Lennie Larkin

One more item of note – if you’re a newsletter subscriber, you’ve already seen the announcement that the February Slow Flowers member virtual meet-up will take place on February 23rd, postponed due to Valentine’s Day. Save the date for next Friday’s session with Lennie Larkin of b-side farm and author of Flower Farming for Profit – we’ll hear her insights on pricing and profitability for flower growers – Preregistration is required – bring your questions and I hope to see you there!


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

And thank you to Rooted Farmers. Rooted Farmers works exclusively with local growers to put the highest-quality specialty cut flowers in floral customers’ hands. When you partner with Rooted Farmers, you are investing in your community, and you can expect a commitment to excellence in return. Learn more at RootedFarmers.com.

Thank you to Johnny’s Selected Seeds, an employee-owned company that provides our industry the best flower, herb and vegetable seeds — supplied to farms large and small and even backyard cutting gardens like mine. Find the full catalog of flower seeds and bulbs at johnnyseeds.com.

Thank you to Mayesh Wholesale Florist. Family-owned since 1978, Mayesh is the premier wedding and event supplier in the U.S. and we’re thrilled to partner with Mayesh to promote local and domestic flowers, which they source from farms large and small around the U.S. Learn more at mayesh.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Less Jaunty; Great Great Lengths
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 645: The Mum Project Update with Jessica Hall of Harmony Harvest Farm

Wednesday, January 17th, 2024
Jessica Hall of Harmony Harvest Farm and The Mum Project
Jessica Hall of Harmony Harvest Farm and The Mum Project

PROMO CODE: Harmony Harvest has provided a promo code for our listeners and viewers. You can apply this to any retail or wholesale order SLOWMUMS

I’m welcoming Jessica Hall of Harmony Harvest Farm back to the Slow Flowers Podcast today with an update on her Weyers Cave, Virginia-based farm’s expanding collection of specialty, old-fashioned, heirloom, and hard-to-find chrysanthemums for growers and gardeners. The Mum Project, as it is called by Jessica and her partners, mom Chris Auville, and sister Stephanie Duncan, reflects the ambitious journey on which these women have embarked to educate themselves and the entire floral community about the exquisite qualities of chrysanthemums.

Harvesting mums at Harmony Harvest Farm
Harvesting mums at Harmony Harvest Farm

They have networked extensively with other chrysanthemum aficionados, from members of the national chrysanthemum society to growers of public garden collections. Their goal is to expand the Harmony Harvest list of “mother” plants from which they can take cuttings, propagate more plants, and offer high quality plug to growers. In the process, they also are advocating for other flower farmers to get in on the mum game, offering educational resources and events to elevate understanding about growing mums.

apricot chrysanthemum petals
Beautiful apricot chrysanthemum petals

To peruse the collection of mums – ranging from ‘Apricot Alexis’, with a blushy-salmon color and a cascade of curving petals, to ‘Vesuvio’, an ultra-weird creamy-ivory chrysanthemum that begs the question – “are you sure that’s a mum?”, there are more than 50 selections in the current inventory of plugs, or plant starts, offered at both retail and wholesale programs.

Inside the high tunnel at Harmony Harvest Farm
Inside the high tunnel at Harmony Harvest Farm

Let’s jump right in and join my conversation with Jessica. Because of the time of year, there isn’t much to see in terms of rows of colorful chrysanthemum plants, but Jessica did send us a small video she filmed inside one of the three chrysanthemum growing houses at Harmony Harvest. We’ll see that first and then move right into our conversation, recently recorded on January 11th.

More amazing mums
The Mum Project has a scope of more than 50 specialty chrysanthemum varieties

Thanks so much for joining me today! As you heard us discuss, in collaboration with the USDA and other agriculture authorities in states across the US, Harmony Harvest Farm is compliant with all required regulations, training, and inspections. I don’t know about you, but I’m inspired and because I don’t have a lot of cutting garden space, I’m looking at my front garden border with a new point of view, thinking about where I can perennialize some of the juicy chrysanthemums among my grasses, shrubs, roses and other permanent plantings!

PROMO CODE: Harmony Harvest has provided a promo code for our listeners and viewers. You can apply this to any retail or wholesale order SLOWMUMS


News of the Week

The New Year is off to a great start, and I love hearing from our listeners and viewers about how inspired they feel after learning from our guests. If I haven’t said it often enough, our programming is the “voice” of the Slow Flowers Movement and we love showcasing our members and their stories. As we think about the shifts, opportunities and changes in the floral landscape for 2024, I hope you took a moment to read the just-released Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast, our 10th annual report. I’ll share the link in our show notes for you to check it out. And, we’re honored that the UK-based lifestyle publication House & Garden has picked up on the forecast, reporting on three of our seven insights and those influences on the gardening world for 2024.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to The Gardener’s Workshop, which offers a full curriculum of online education for flower farmers and farmer-florists. Online education is more important than ever, and you’ll want to check out the course offerings at thegardenersworkshop.com.

Thank you to Red Twig Farms. Based in Johnstown, Ohio, Red Twig Farms is a family-owned farm specializing in peonies, daffodils, tulips and branches, and a popular peony-bouquet-by-mail program. Learn more at redtwigfarms.com.

Thank you to the Seattle Wholesale Growers Market, a farmer-owned cooperative committed to providing the very best the Pacific Northwest has to offer in cut flowers, foliage and plants. The Growers Market’s mission is to foster a vibrant marketplace that sustains local flower farms and provides top-quality products and service to the local floral industry. Visit them at seattlewholesalegrowersmarket.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com.


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!

Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Gaena; Bridgewalker; Turning on the Lights
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 644: Roadside Blooms’ Toni Reale – on taking risk to buy land and build a new flower shop in North Charleston, South Carolina

Wednesday, January 10th, 2024

Today’s guest is longtime Slow Flowers member Toni Reale, owner and creator of Roadside Blooms in North Charleston, South Carolina. Let’s learn about how she takes risks to grow her diversified floral and plant enterprise – I’m certain that you’ll gain some tips for your business!The shop specializes in weddings, events and everyday deliveries using near 100 percent American- and locally-grown blooms.

Toni Reale, Roadside Blooms
Toni Reale, Roadside Blooms

Toni founded Roadside Blooms with a story to tell and a mission to share, believing that beauty and sustainability don’t just co-exist, they work in concert. With over 10 years of experience in the event-planning and floral-design industries, Toni’s many adventures led her to successful entrepreneurship of a values-based enterprise. She has a Master’s degree in geology and taught geology at the College of Charleston; she converted a 1971 British ice cream truck into a mobile flower shop (the original Roadside Blooms) and is a leader of Charleston’s “green and local” movement, Toni has served on various nonprofit boards, including the Charleston Green Fair, and she was recognized as one of Charlie magazine’s “50 Most Progressive” in Charleston in 2014.

Toni Reale (right) and Laura Mewborn (left)
Production day at the Seashore Farmers’ Lodge No. 767; Toni Reale (right) attaches a vibrant palette of Lowcountry S.C.-grown blooms, including those from Laura Mewborn of Feast & Flora Farm (left).

Toni partnered with Laura Mewborn of Feast & Flora to create a beautiful botanical couture design for American Flowers Week 2019, collaborating with her friend Giovanni Richardson, a Sea Island Gullah Chieftess, who modeled the historically significant floral garment. I’ll share a link to their story in today’s show notes.  

The Roadside Blooms team (Toni Reale is second from right)
The Roadside Blooms team (Toni Reale is second from right)

Let me tell you why I asked Toni to be my guest today. We have been tracking the innovation in the floral retail space over the past years, and when I learned that Toni expanded Roadside Blooms to a larger store this past summer, I wanted to learn more. As you may have heard in our 2024 Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast, which I shared in last week’s episode, one of our key insights is called “Floral Literacy.” I shared about the exciting retail news that Slow Flowers members represent a countertrend in brick-and-mortar retail, including Roadside Blooms’ new retail floral spaces, and others’ new ventures, which are closely associated with values, community, and an unique approach to locally-sourced flowers.

So let’s jump in and meet Toni Reale of Roadside Blooms. Toni filmed a few short video clips to share the interior and exterior of her new shop and I’ve edited those into my recent interview with her. Thanks so much for joining us today – I am so inspired by the story that Toni Shared and she gave me a jolt of encouragement that I hope you felt, too. Her approach to a collaborative entrepreneurship is her “secret sauce” for success. We wish her continued success in the coming year!

Find and follow Roadside Blooms design studio on Instagram
Follow Roadside Blooms retail shop on Instagram
Follow Roadside Blooms retail shop on Facebook
Follow Roadside Blooms on TikTok


News of the Week!

Slow Flowers Summit 2024
Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity
Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity

The Slow Flowers Summit Early Bird Registration campaign has come to a close and we congratulate the folks who took advantage of the money-savings opportunity to grab early registration! Ticket sales continue through June – and if you’re already a Slow Flowers member, you’ll receive $100 off your registration, which is the equivalent of the Standard annual membership, so it basically pays for itself! In the coming weeks, we’ll be highlighting more of our speakers and more about some of the special experiences associated with joining our community in Banff, Alberta, Canada – June 23-25th!


Thank you to our Sponsors!

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Thank you to Longfield Gardens, which provides home gardeners with high quality flower bulbs and perennials. Their online store offers plants for every region and every season, from tulips and daffodils to dahlias, caladiums and amaryllis. Check out the full catalog at Longfield Gardens at longfield-gardens.com.

Thank you to Johnny’s Selected Seeds, an employee-owned company that provides our industry the best flower, herb and vegetable seeds — supplied to farms large and small and even backyard cutting gardens like mine. Find the full catalog of flower seeds and bulbs at johnnyseeds.com.

Thank you to Mayesh Wholesale Florist. Family-owned since 1978, Mayesh is the premier wedding and event supplier in the U.S. and we’re thrilled to partner with Mayesh to promote local and domestic flowers, which they source from farms large and small around the U.S. Learn more at mayesh.com. It was nice to hear that Toni works with her local Charleston branch of Mayesh to source American grown flowers – that’s good news!


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!

Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Waterbourne; Turning on the Lights; Gaena
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 643: Slow Flowers Floral Insights and Industry Forecast for 2024

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2024

It’s 2024~ Welcome to a New Year! This is the 10th year we’ve produced the Slow Flowers’ Floral Insights and Industry Forecast, which originated in 2015 as a series of media presentations that we also shared with members and listeners.

This episode is accompanied by two important, free resources. First, a video report that I recently recorded with Robin Avni, creative director of BLOOM Imprint, our Slow Flowers publishing venture. This is the video companion to today’s podcast. Click above to watch.

Cover Slow Flowers Floral Insights & Industry Forecast for 2024

We have also produced a 38-page digital magazine-style report, filled with deeper analysis of each of our 2024 insights.

Here’s a bit more about Robin Avni. She is a creative veteran in the media and high-tech industries whose experience includes 15-plus years in the publishing industry and eight years at Microsoft in design and creative management. Robin has successfully managed innovative, award-winning design teams and high-profile projects and she has received numerous national design and photography editing awards for her own work.

Robin has produced more than 15 books, including seven titles created for the BLOOM Imprint catalog. In 2004, following Microsoft, she founded bricolage*, a consultancy specializing in creative strategy, content development, and trend analysis focused on the home and garden. She has worked with Fortune 500 companies, national advertising agencies and award-winning media properties, applying timely actionable insights to their businesses.

The Year of Simplicity

Let’s jump right in and embrace 2024 – we’re calling it The Year of Simplicity! I can’t wait for you to learn about each of the insights and the people who have influenced and inspired us to identify them.


News of the Week

Slow Flowers Summit 2024

The Slow Flowers Summit Early Bird Registration campaign has come to a close and we congratulate the folks who took advantage of the money-savings opportunity to grab early registration! Ticket sales continue through June – and if you’re already a Slow Flowers member, you’ll still receive $100 off your registration, which is the equivalent of the Standard annual membership, so it basically pays for itself! In the coming weeks, we’ll be highlighting more of our speakers and more about some of the special experiences associated with joining our community in Banff, Alberta, Canada – June 23-25th!


Slow Flowers Newsletter for January 2024

One more item of note! If you missed the January Slow Flowers Newsletter that dropped a few days ago, click the link below to read it. This edition is filled with lots of floral goodness, free resources, news, and more.


Jessica Stewart of Bramble & Blossom
Our Sustainable Wedding Expert: Jessica Stewart of Bramble & Blossom

Join us on Friday, January 12, 2024 — when we welcome Slow Flowers member Jessica Stewart of Pittsburgh-based Bramble & Blossom — We’re calling this session our “secrets of a sustainable wedding florist.” Jessica will share her philosophy around communication during the sales process, including describing how you design for seasonality by sourcing from local flower farms; how to make this clear in contracts + proposals; and how she sources and plans for weddings and installations. Her expertise is priceless and you’ll want to join us and bring your sustainable wedding questions! We hope to see you in the Zoom room!


Thank you to our Sponsors

Thank you to Store It Cold, creators of the revolutionary CoolBot, a popular solution for flower farmers, studio florists and farmer-florists.  Save $1000s when you build your own walk-in cooler with the CoolBot and an air conditioner.  Don’t have time to build your own?  They also have turnkey units available. Learn more at storeitcold.com.

Thank you to Red Twig Farms. Based in Johnstown, Ohio, Red Twig Farms is a family-owned farm specializing in peonies, daffodils, tulips and branches. Learn more at redtwigfarms.com.

Thank you to Seattle Wholesale Growers Market, a farmer-owned cooperative committed to providing the very best the Pacific Northwest has to offer in cut flowers, foliage and plants. The Growers Market’s mission is to foster a vibrant marketplace that sustains local flower farms and provides top-quality products and service to the local floral industry. Visit them at seattlewholesalegrowersmarket.com.


Best Wishes for a Prosperous and Peaceful New Year!

Let’s bring our best to 2024. It has the potential to be a challenging year in so many ways, and I believe staying mindful of your values, and focused on your personal mission are important ways to manage the uncertainty. Remember – we’re committed to simplicity and not chaos! I hope today’s forecast will inspire your intentions!

Thank you for joining me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!

Music Credits:

Drone Pine; Horizon Liner; Turning on the Lights; Gaena
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 640: New Flower Introductions for 2024 with Hillary Alger and Joy Longfellow of Johnny’s Selected Seeds

Wednesday, December 13th, 2023

Today’s episode is like a floral runway show for growers and designers alike and you’ll be wowed by the new flower seed introductions for 2024, revealed by Hillary Alger and Joy Longfellow of Johnny’s Selected Seeds.

Joy Longfellow and Hilary Alger of Johnny's Seeds
Flower experts Joy Longfellow and Hilary Alger of Johnny’s Seeds

We are so happy to have had such a long relationship with Johnny’s Seeds as a content partner and sponsor of the Slow Flowers movement. And at this time of year, gardeners and flower farmers alike anticipate the arrival of Johnny’s new catalog of seeds – seeds for backyard cutting gardens like mine and for larger acreage of our flower farmers who grow in rows, high tunnels, and greenhouses.

We invited Joy and Hillary, Johnny’s Seeds’ floral experts, to introduce new flower seed varieties for 2024! Hillary and Joy recently shared new blooms for farms and gardens in a Johnny’s webinar. During last week’s Slow Flowers Meet-Up for members, they took us behind the scenes to hear more about the dazzling, colorful selection of floral varieties and mixes available for 2024.

We recorded the session to share with you on video and audio, so you’ll want to get out your pens and paper to take notes. Learn why their favorite standouts are worth considering as we discuss growing cut flowers from seeds.

Hillary Alger has over 12 years of experience on Johnny’s Seeds’ research team. She is currently the Product Manager for flowers and herbs. Joy Longfellow is the Flower Team Technician at Johnny’s, managing every aspect of Johnny’s flower trialing program.

Links and more resources:
Johnny’s November New Flower Seeds webinar/A PDF of the slide presentation are here.

Tech Sheet for Snapdragon Production
https://www.johnnyseeds.com/growers-library/flowers/snapdragon/snapdragon-production.html

Instagram
https://www.instagram.com/johnnys_seeds/

Hillary Alger
https://www.instagram.com/hillaryalger/

Joy Longfellow
https://www.instagram.com/joyatjohnnys/


Meet You in Banff!

Slow Flowers Summit 2024
Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity
Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity

Are you coming to Banff for the 2024 Slow Flowers Summit?! There’s not much time left to reserve your discounted ticket and take advantage of Early Bird Registration rate! You’ll save $100 off your Slow Flowers Summit registration, now through December 31st.  I can’t wait to see you in Banff, Alberta, Canada – June 23-25, 2024.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Farmgirl Flowers 2022

Thank you to our lead sponsor, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $10 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

Thank you to CalFlowers, the leading floral trade association in California, providing valuable transportation and other benefits to flower growers and the entire floral supply chain in California and 48 other states. The Association is a leader in bringing fresh cut flowers to the U.S. market and in promoting the benefits of flowers to new generations of American consumers. Learn more at cafgs.org.

Thank you goes to Store It Cold, creators of the revolutionary CoolBot, a popular solution for flower farmers, studio florists and farmer-florists.  Save $1000s when you build your own walk-in cooler with the CoolBot and an air conditioner. Don’t have time to build your own?  They also have turnkey units available. Learn more at storeitcold.com.   

Thank you goes to Red Twig Farms. Based in Johnstown, Ohio, Red Twig Farms is a family-owned farm specializing in peonies, daffodils, tulips and branches, a popular peony-bouquet-by-mail program and their Spread the Hope Campaign where customers purchase 10 tulip stems for essential workers and others in their community. Learn more at redtwigfarms.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

I love all this floral goodness and I am so happy you joined me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!


Music credits:

Vienna Beat; Drone Pine; Turning on the Lights; Gaena
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com

Episode 638: A visit to Washington flower farm Field to Heart, with Dee Swan and Valiant Poole

Wednesday, November 29th, 2023

The Slow Flowers Podcast is grateful to the Seattle Wholesale Growers Market for its longtime support — and today’s episode underscores our relationship. From its beginnings in 2010, when a group of local flower farmers hatched up the idea of starting a wholesale hub for local flowers here in Seattle, my storytelling has been intertwined with their stories. My guests today are part of that narrative. Please join me on a visit to Field to Heart owned by Danielle (Dee) Swan and Valiant Poole.

Valiant Poole (left) and Dee Swan (right) of Field to Heart
Valiant Poole (left) and Dee Swan (right) of Field to Heart
Danielle (Dee) Swan at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market's Field to Heart display
Danielle (Dee) Swan at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market’s Field to Heart product display

When I first me this couple, they were based in Snohomish, an agricultural county located about 30 minutes north of Seattle. Both have an extensive background in the arts, horticulture, fine gardening, and organic landscape maintenance. They apply this experience and passion to providing sustainably grown, chemical free, high-quality flowers to florists in the Pacific Northwest.

Field to Heart

In 2018, Dee and Valiant relocated Field to Heart to Curtis, Washington, to a new home and acreage located west of Centralia. The area is known as the center point, about 90 miles in either direction between Seattle and Portland, which has allowed Field to Heart to also supply Portland area florists who shop at the Oregon Flower Growers Association, also a Slow Flowers member, located at the Portland Flower Market.

The view from Field to Heart
The view from Field to Heart

Earlier this month, I had a trip to the Washington coast planned with a friend, and in looking at the map for my return to Seattle, I realized that we were due west of Field to Heart. I have always loved the botanicals that Dee and Valiant grow and I basically invited myself to visit them on my drive home. When she emailed me back, Dee wrote: “We’d love to show you around Field to Heart! We should be here all day on Saturday making wreaths…being farmers it’s hard to get away even in the off season.” 

Low Tunnels with Craspedia globosa
Low Tunnels with Craspedia globosa

I brought my camera and started filming the minute I arrived. You’ll see inside the high tunnels, the low tunnels, and spent time as I chat with Dee and Valiant on their porch. In preparation for their winter wreath and garland production, the porch is converted into an outside studio filled with greenery and other design elements. It’s also the location of the wreathing workshops they host during December.

Pottery by Dee Swan of Field to Heart
Pottery by Dee Swan of Field to Heart

I also wanted to mention that you can find Dee’s handmade pottery mugs and vases on the Field to Heart website and at the Seattle Wholesale Growers Market. I love her sentiments: “We often wonder if we are farmers with the eyes of an artist or artists with a farmers’ touch. We are educated in both and strive to create our lives around both disciplines, whether it be plant identification to painting, music to ‘garden-nerding’ or ceramics to soil health.  It’s all intertwined.”

Follow Field to Heart on Instagram and Facebook


This Week’s News

2024 Slow Flowers Summit graphic

Here in the U.S., we’ve just finished a nice, long, four-day Thanksgiving weekend, followed on Monday, November 27th by Cyber Monday. While Slow Flowers isn’t jumping on that bandwagon this year, we do want to remind you that there’s still time to grab your ticket to the 2024 Slow Flowers Summit and  take advantage of Early Bird Registration rate! You’ll save $100 off your Slow Flowers Summit registration, now through December 31st.  I can’t wait to see you in Banff, Alberta, Canada – June 23-25, 2024.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 750 florists, shops, and studios who design with local, seasonal and sustainable flowers and to the farms that grow those blooms. It’s the conscious choice for buying and sending flowers.

Farmgirl Flowers 2022

Thank you to our lead sponsor, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $10 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

Thank you to Seattle Wholesale Growers Market, a farmer-owned cooperative committed to providing the very best the Pacific Northwest has to offer in cut flowers, foliage and plants. The Growers Market’s mission is to foster a vibrant marketplace that sustains local flower farms and provides top-quality products and service to the local floral industry. Visit them at seattlewholesalegrowersmarket.com.

Thank you to Longfield Gardens, which provides home gardeners with high quality flower bulbs and perennials. Their online store offers plants for every region and every season, from tulips and daffodils to dahlias, caladiums and amaryllis. Check out the full catalog at Longfield Gardens at longfield-gardens.com.

Thank you to Rooted Farmers. Rooted Farmers works exclusively with local growers to put the highest-quality specialty cut flowers in floral customers’ hands. When you partner with Rooted Farmers, you are investing in your community, and you can expect a commitment to excellence in return. Learn more at RootedFarmers.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

I love all this floral goodness and I am so happy you joined me today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than one million times by listeners like you. Thank you for listening, commenting and sharing – it means so much. As our movement gains more supporters and more passionate participants who believe in the importance of our domestic cut flower industry, the momentum is contagious. I know you feel it, too. If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at SlowFlowersSociety.com


Debra in the Slow Flowers Cutting Garden
Thank you for listening! Sending love, from my cutting garden to you! (c) Missy Palacol Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show & Podcast. The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. The content and opinions expressed here are either mine alone or those of my guests alone, independent of any podcast sponsor or other person, company or organization. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. Thanks so much for joining us today and I’ll see you next week!

Music credits:

Dippler; Drone Pine; Turning on the Lights; Gaena
by Blue Dot Sessions
http://www.sessions.blue

Lovely
by Tryad 
http://tryad.bandcamp.com/album/instrumentals
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

In The Field
audionautix.com