Debra Prinzing

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Archive for the ‘Playfulness’ Category

Episode 565: Petals and Alpacas at Gholson Gardens in Walla Walla, Washington (Encore Edition)

Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

Greetings, friends. Here at the Slow Flowers Society, we have experienced a whirlwind several weeks, including producing our fifth and largest Slow Flowers Summit conference ever, celebrating American Flowers Week, and publishing our debut Summer issue of our Slow Flowers Journal e-zine quarterly. Add to that 10 days of me traveling away from home and honestly, I’m just beginning to recover from all the festivities.

Petals and Pacas
Alpacas are the best flower crown models!

So today, in what is an entirely rare occurrence, you will hear an encore installment of the Slow Flowers Podcast. Petals and Alpacas at Gholson Gardens in Walla Walla, Washington, originally aired as Episode 395 in April 2019, and it is one of my very favorite shows.

Elaine and Mike Vandiver
Mike and Elaine Vandiver at Gholson Gardens

I mean, alpacas AND flowers — what could be a better pairing? The people behind this fiber and flowers enterprise are an equally great pair — Slow Flowers member Elaine Vandiver and her husband Mike Vandiver.

Gholson Gardens is a small, 10-acre farm located in southeastern Washington state, in the quintessential rural community of Walla Walla, in the southeast corner of the state.  Mike and Elaine are both U.S. Army veterans turned first generation farmers. As they share on their website, Mike and Elaine purchased their farm in late 2013 as a way to start anew after learning a traditional family wasn’t in the cards for them.

Walla Walla flower farmer and alpaca farmer Elaine Vandiver
Walla Walla flower farmer and alpaca farmer Elaine Vandiver

Ten acres seemed sufficient. It had a big old red barn that reminded Elaine of the ones she saw growing up in Indiana. Plus it had a handful of outbuildings. And of course the farmhouse. A two-story folk-victorian number, with a wraparound porch. The whole place had charm, potential and good bones — If you could look past the peeling paint & tatters of time. In other words, it was a lot like she and Mike.

The seller told the couple it was “an old homestead” and that “those two llama come with the place.” As city kids, Elaine and Mike were unfamiliar with both homesteads and llamas. But they were in a place in life where they weren’t going to question things. So a homestead with llamas it was.

Elaine and the Hometown Heroes program
Elaine and the Hometown Heroes program

The first spring arrived, and the once sad-looking pastures sprang to life. And their two raggedy llama (LeRoi & Loretta) could not keep up with their grazing tasks. As Elaine writes on their website: “With all our resources tied into farmhouse renovations, we couldn’t exactly get a tractor. So naturally, we got the next best thing: alpaca. You know . . . the cute, smaller, softer version of llamas. They were supposed to be nothing more than cute little lawnmowers. And they were. But it sorta took a whole gaggle of them to keep up with the grass. And then they needed to be shorn. And that pile of raw fleece had to go somewhere.”

alpacas and knitwear

Ultimately, they started having it professionally spun into yarn . . . and then launched Old Homestead Alpacas, with a line of knitwear made exclusively of the alpaca fiber, manufactured entirely in the USA.

Elaine and dye flowers
Elaine and dye flowers

Elaine had begun to grow dye flowers, so in the summer of 2017, she decided to start selling them as cut flowers? She began by planting 100-row-feet of zinnia, cosmos, sunflowers and celosia.

I recorded this episode in March 2019 when I was in Walla Walla to speak (along with Elaine) about the Slow Flowers Movement for the Washington State Farmers Market Association.

Hers is a very personal, inspiring story and I know it will inspire anyone who views growing cut flowers as a new way of life, perhaps as a catalyst for all sorts of change. To learn how this story unfolds, I’ll let you hear from Elaine.

Learn More; Find and follow Gholson Gardens
Instagram
Facebook
Subscribe to Gholson Gardens’ newsletter

For Elaine and Mike, growing flowers is the latest chapter of their agricultural lifestyle, one that began with a llama and too many adorable alpacas for me to accurately count, continued to a flower and herb garden to grow plants that produce natural dyes for the wool, skeins and garments made with the alpaca fiber, and expanded just over a year ago to become a full-fledge cut flower farm.


Slow Flowers in the News

We’re always thrilled when members of the media ask to learn more about the Slow Flowers Movement — and I have a new story by journalist, writer and editor Karin Vandraiss to share with you. She recently profiled Slow Flowers for Avocado Magazine in a feature titled: “How to Support the Slow Flowers Movement.” The story is illustrated with so many of Missy Palacol’s gorgeous photographs and it’s a great piece you’ll want to read and share with your customers and clients. I love how Karin wrapped up the piece with 4 tips for making Mindful Floral Purchases.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 850 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 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 Details Flowers Software, a platform specifically designed to help florists and designers do more and earn more. With an elegant and easy-to-use system–Details improves profitability, productivity, and organization for floral businesses of all shapes and sizes. Grow your bottom line through professional proposals and confident pricing with Details’ all-in-one platform. All friends of the Slow Flowers Podcast will receive a 7-day free trial of Details Flowers Software. Learn more at detailsflowers.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 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 for listening to the Slow Flowers Podcast!

Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! We’ll be back on our regular schedule with new episodes starting next week! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 864,000 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 and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the right column.


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. 

Music credits:
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/

Acoustic Shuffle; In The Field
audionautix.com

Related posts

Episode 562: Susan McLeary shares her large-scale, foam-free, floral design installation techniques at the 2021 Slow Flowers Summit (encore presentation)

Wednesday, June 15th, 2022
Watch Susan McLearly’s design stage presentation from the 2021 Slow Flowers Summit at Filoli in Woodland Hills, California

We are closing in on the 2022 Slow Flowers Summit, taking place June 26-28th in Westchester County New York – at two venues, the Red Barn at Maple Grove Farm in Bedford and at Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture in Pocantico Hills. You’ve met almost all of our speakers here on the Slow Flowers Show or the Slow Flowers Podcast and tickets are nearly sold-out with sales closing on June 19th.

Susan McLeary
Susan McLeary demonstrates her “burrito” mechanice for large-scale, foam-free floral installations (c) Missy Palacol Photography

We invited Susan McLeary to teach on 2021 Slow Flowers Summit design stage and also to give our keynote presentation. We’ve shared Sue’s entire demonstration of a large-scale, foam-free botanical installation. You can learn Sue’s exact techniques and mechanics, as well as how she prepares her famous “burrito” as an alternative to foam, what types of ingredients she selects, and how she uses principles of design to achieve pleasing proportion and balance in her final work of art.

Susan McLeary's hanging installation at Filoli
A section of Susan’s hanging installation at Filoli during the 2021 Slow Flowers Summit (c) Missy Palacol Photography

Meet Susan McLeary at these social places:
Susan McLeary on Instagram and Facebook
Susan McLeary’s courses and workshops
Request Sue’s list of reliable flowers

I just looked up a quote from Sue from the first profile I published about her in 2017. This was for a story in Florists’ Review called “A Curious Creative.” Here’s a quote from Sue that I so appreciated, she said:

Susan McLeary teaching
Susan McLeary teaching large-scale foam-free floral installations at the 2021 Slow Flowers Summit (c) Missy Palacol Photography

“You have to be insanely curious and you have to keep your curiosity.” Rather than waiting for the muse to miraculously appear, Sue is ever-attentive and observant, seeking inspiration from many sources. She continues: “The life of a florist is very busy and there isn’t a lot of free time. But my advice is to make creative time a priority. Schedule a day, or part of a day, each month, and try out new ideas. Create just for yourself. Make the things that you want to make and be sure to have them photographed. Make it a priority.”

My favorite Sue McLeary quote from her 2021 Slow Flowers Summit presentation is this:

I think of large-scale design as a corsage for the room.

Susan Mcleary

Last Chance to Grab Your Slow Flowers Summit Ticket!

floral details at slow flowers summit
Floral details at the Slow Flowers Summit (c) Jenny M. Diaz

Of course, you’ve already heard me mention the countdown to the 2022 Slow Flowers Summit — it’s going to be an amazing event, a gathering of kindred spirits representing all facets of the domestic floral marketplace. This week is the FINAL opportunity to grab your ticket — and I have a special discount code to share with you! Use the Coupon Code: LETSDOTHIS for 10% off registration for any 2022 Slow Flowers Summit Ticket Type or for our once-in-a-lifetime Slow Flowers Dinner at Blue Hill Restaurant on Monday, June 27th. Offer expires June 19, 2022 (midnight PT) Find the registration link in today’s show notes — 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 850 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 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 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 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 to the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers. Formed in 1988, ASCFG was created to educate, unite, and support commercial cut flower growers. Its mission is to help growers produce high-quality floral material, and to foster and promote the local availability of that product. Learn more at ascfg.org.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 858,000 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 Slow Flowers Society.com and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button to the right ->.


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. 

Music credits:
Game Hens; For We Shall Know Speed; 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

Related posts

Episode 554: A garden and studio tour with Lorene Edwards Forkner, sharing her new book “Color In and Out of the Garden”

Wednesday, April 20th, 2022

The tagline for today’s episode should be “how to see nature’s palette in deeper, more meaningful ways,” because that’s the lesson Lorene Edwards Forkner wants to share with everyone.

Lorene Edwards Forkner
Lorene Edwards Forkner (c) Mary Grace Long

As many of you know, Lorene is a dear friend and inspiration to me in all things horticulture. She is an author, artist, and speaker; you can read her GROW stories every week in the Sunday Seattle Times, and catch her daily on Instagram, at @gardenercook, her popular feed.

Color in and out of the Garden

Lorene is a past guest of the Slow Flowers Podcast and she was a featured presenter at the 2021 Slow Flowers Summit.

We recently recorded a tour through Lorene’s Seattle garden, which led to her studio indoors, where Lorene demonstrated the daily practice of seeing through a watercolor study of a winter pansy. This practice is also the topic of her forthcoming book, Color In and Out of the Garden: Watercolor Practices for painters, gardeners, and nature lovers.

I know you’ll enjoy our episode today. Thanks to Abrams for providing two copies of Lorene’s beautiful book for our Slow Flowers Podcast giveaway. Listen for details for how you can be entered into a random drawing to win — I’ll share them after the interview. So, let’s jump right in to meet Lorene.

red spreadColor in and Out of the Garden
Gold from Color in and out of the Garden
pink from Color in and Out of the Garden

Thank you so much for joining us today. To enter the book giveaway, please post a comment in our show notes below and share an observation about color in your garden — or look for this episode post on our @slowflowerssociety at Instagram. You can comment between today, April 20th and midnight PT on Sunday, April 24th. We will announce the winners the following week.


Speaking of artists and their books, check out @slowflowerssummit on IG this Friday, April 22nd, Earth Day, for a special ticket promotion for this year’s Slow Flowers Summit. It involves a special book giveaway for anyone who grabs their ticket registration during Earth Day. I hope you take advantage of this special package!

Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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, returning for 2022, 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:

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

Details Flowers Software, a platform specifically designed to help florists and designers do more and earn more. With an elegant and easy-to-use system–Details is here to improve profitability, productivity, and organization for floral businesses of all shapes and sizes. Grow your bottom line through professional proposals and confident pricing with Details’ all-in-one platform. All friends of the Slow Flowers Podcast will receive a 7-day free trial of Details Flowers Software. Learn more at detailsflowers.com.

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.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 839,000 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 and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button at slowflowerspodcast.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. 

Music credits:
Glass Beads; 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

Related posts

Episode 553: Hitomi Gilliam and Gregor Lersch present the FREESIA Challenge, a new focus on Sustainable Floral Design Education

Wednesday, April 13th, 2022
FREESIA Challenge

I’m very excited about today’s conversation. My guests are Hitomi Gilliam and Gregor Lersch, renowned international floral design educators who have just launched a new endeavor called the FREESIA Challenge.

You’ll have to listen closely to learn what the FREESIA acronym represents! It’s an initiative to engage florists, and especially floral educators, to motivate the new generation of florists and students to begin challenging themselves to seek creative solutions to sustainable floristry. Like so many of us, Hitomi and Gregor believe that by sharing ideas and innovation through the creative process, it’s possible to move the profession to much-needed sustainable and eco-friendly practices.

The FREESIA Challenge includes a 4-category design competition, free for anyone to participate. The first Challenge is a 100% organic hand-tied bouquet, and the entry deadline is coming right up on April 12th, so you’ll want to check out all the details at freesiachallenge.com

Gregor Lersch bouquet
An 100-percent organic, hand-tied bouquet, by Gregor Lersch

Here’s more about Gregor Lersch:
Gregor Lersch portrait Gregor Lersch is based in Germany and is a renowned international floral designer and educator. Recipient of many national and international awards and prizes for is floral art, Gregor believes that floristry must be suitable for forming part of our lives, and should be in line with the diversity of environment.

Author of many inspirational books on floral design, Gregor travels the world promoting European design, demonstrating and inspiring florist and floral artists. His concept of combining all styles, architecture, social components, design trends and personality of the artist in floristic work is successful throughout the world. This is his first appearance on the Slow Flowers Podcast.


Here’s more about Hitomi Gilliam:
Hitomi Gilliam Hitomi Gilliam AIFD is a Japanese-Canadian floral artist, keynote lecturer, demonstrator, educator and a consultant in all aspects of the Art and Business of Floral Design. She is the Creative Director for DESIGN358. She has guest-designed extensively throughout North America, England, Japan, Mexico, Taiwan, Bermuda, Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Colombia, Belgium, Korea and India.

She owned and operated Satsuki’s Florist in Mission, British Columbia for 28 years. She currently works with her son, Colin Gilliam in an Event & Education business, DESIGN358 which was established 10 years ago. Hitomi has lectured at major art museums and floral shows around North America and beyond, and she is the founding organizer of the Annual ‘Survival of the Creative Minds’ Conference in Taos, New Mexico.

Listen to Hitomi’s past appearances on the Slow Flowers Podcast:

Episode 437: What makes a Trend? Join me in a creative conversation with Hitomi Gilliam, Francoise Weeks, Rebecca Raymond and Colin Gilliam as we plan the upcoming Trend Summit 2020

Episode 339: Designer & Educator Hitomi Gilliam and her generous floral universe

An 100-percent organic, hand-tied bouquet, by Hitomi Gilliam

As Gregor and Hitomi discussed, to support the FREESIA Challenge and keep it free of outside and commercial interests, they are presenting a series of live lectures coinciding with each of the four challenge themes, which is available for $150. Each lecture is live-streamed and registrants will have access to the full replay videos. Click here for more details.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 our lead sponsor, returning for 2022, 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:
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.

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 johnnysseeds.com.

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

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 835,000 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 Slow Flowers Society.com and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button at slowflowerspodcast.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. 

Music credits:
Nuthatch; 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

Related posts

Episode 551: Riz Reyes shares his first book: GROW, A Family Guide to Plants and How to Grow Them

Wednesday, March 30th, 2022

It’s Spring, so it’s garden book season, of course. Last week, you met Teresa J. Speight, author of Black Flora. Today, it’s my pleasure to introduce you to Riz Reyes of RHR Horticulture, a longtime Slow Flowers member and friend who has authored his first book for young readers and their families.

GROW: A Family Guide to Plants and How to Grow Them, encourages children to discover 15 plants and fungi with life-changing powers and learn how to grow them at home.

Riz profiles 15 plants, beautifully illustrated by Sara Boccaccini Meadows, and in each section, readers will meet the often surprising plant relatives (for example, the tasty tomato is a cousin of deadly nightshade!). Interesting plant stories are accompanied with step-by-step instructions to grow and care for each one, whether you have a big backyard garden or a sunny windowsill.

Here’s a little bit more about Riz:

Rizaniño “Riz” Reyes Rizaniño Reyes is a horticulturalist, speaker, and educator. Growing up in the Philippines, Riz spent his childhood on a fruit plantation managed by his father before moving to the Pacific Northwest at age seven. Upon arrival in the United States, he learned the names of the new and strange flowers and continued to nurture his love of horticulture—“the art and science of plants”—at the University of Washington. Of his work, he says he hopes to inspire more young people, “especially people of color, to be involved with interacting with nature and learning about the environment . . . If everyone did this, can you imagine what a beautiful world this could be?” 

Grow Pineapple spread
The story of the Pineapple in GROW, by Riz Reyes
Orchids in GROW
The story of Orchids in GROW

I hope you enjoy our conversation, recorded a few weeks ago inside my cozy greenhouse. I’ve edited some of the whimsical, info-packed illustrations by Sara Boccaccini Meadows throughout this video.

Listen to my 2015 interview with Riz in Episode 215: Riz Reyes on Floriculture as the Gateway to Horticulture (Episode 214)

Find and follow Riz Reyes at these social places:
RHR Horticulture on Facebook
RHR Horticulture on Instagram
RHR Horticulture on YouTube


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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, returning for 2022, 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 to Store It Cold, creators of the revolutionary CoolBot, which you just heard Carlee mention as a new addition to her studio.  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 Flowerfarm.com. FlowerFarm is a leading wholesale flower distributor that sources from carefully-selected flower farms to offer high-performing fresh flowers sent directly from the farm straight to you. You can shop by flower and by country of origin at flowerfarm.com. Find flowers and foliage from California, Florida, Oregon and Washington by using the “Origin” selection tool in your search. It’s smarter sourcing. Learn more at flowerfarm.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 830,000 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 Slow Flowers Society.com and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.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. 


Music credits:
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; Solo Acoustic 5
audionautix.com


Related posts

Episode 548: Flowers – Self Care Made Easy, and more about the new flower promotion campaign with Steve Dionne of CalFlowers

Wednesday, March 9th, 2022
THAT FLOWER FEELING is a cooperative effort to get more Americans enjoying more flowers, more often. From upscale florists, farmers markets or grocery stores — as long as people are bringing home flowers regularly, that’s good enough for us. We want everyone to experience the impact of flowers on a daily basis. They’re a beautiful, natural dose of feel-good, so why should they be reserved for special occasions? Even the most modest bouquet of flowers can have all sorts of positive short and long term effects on how we feel — in other words, it’s that flower feeling.

In mid-January, I was invited to a virtual launch of an ambitious, new, consumer-focused flower promotional brand called That Flower Feeling.

The invitation came from CalFlowers, the floral trade association most widely known for providing its members with the lowest FedEx shipping discounts and negotiated discounts through other ground and air channels across the U.S.

One of the association’s top goals is to promote the benefits of flowers to new generations of American consumers. Slow Flowers Society is a member of Cal Flowers and we’re grateful for CalFlowers sponsorship of the upcoming Slow Flowers Summit.

I was so impressed about the brand, That Flower Feeling, and the new campaign, Flowers: Self-Care Made Easy, that I wanted to share it with our Slow Flowers Community. The campaign is a cooperative effort to get more Americans enjoying more flowers, more often. My guest, Steve Dionne, executive director of Cal Flowers, believes that whether it’s from upscale florists, farmers markets or grocery stores — as long as people regularly bring home flowers, it’s a good thing. 

Let’s jump right in and meet Steve, hear about CalFlowers and how That Floral Feeling was created, and view some of the fun assets and content they’ve created — all available to you for your own marketing efforts.

Self care has become a lot of work. You gotta pamper, practice mindfulness, balance life and work, and be awesome at all of them. Flowers on the other hand are self care made easy. They won’t replace working out or eating well. But they’re a spiritual tune-up. So treat yourself to a little off-the-shelf self care.

That Flower Feeling
three pinterest tiles Self Care Made Easy
Three of the social media assets created to promote Flowers – Self-Care Made Easy

Learn more about CalFlowers Here

Follow That Flower Feeling at these social places
YouTube
Facebook
Instagram

Pinterest

Request access to the campaign assets by emailing: info@thatflowerfeeling.org


Join the March Slow Flowers Member Meet-Up!

March 2022 MeetUp

March 2022 MeetUp graphic2

Coming up this Friday, March 11th at 9 am Pacific/Noon Eastern, you’re invited to join our March Slow Flowers Meet-Up. Our special guest is author Teresa J. Speight and many of the Creatives featured in the beautiful and significant new title, BLACK FLORA.

This event is open to guests, so share the link with anyone in flower farming and floral design who should know about Black Flora! We’ll discuss the book, meet several of the flower farmers and floral designers who participated, and preview the stunning cover floral art and some of the interior spreads.

We’re opening up this month’s Meet-Up to guests, but everyone needs to pre-register. I hope to see you there in the zoom room!


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 our lead sponsor, returning for 2022, 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 Flowerfarm.com, a leading wholesale flower distributor that sources from carefully-selected flower farms to offer high-performing fresh flowers sent directly from the farm straight to you. You can shop by flower and by country of origin at flowerfarm.com. Find flowers and foliage from California, Florida, Oregon and Washington by using the “Origin” selection tool in your search. It’s smarter sourcing. Learn more at flowerfarm.com.

Thanks to Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers. Formed in 1988, ASCFG was created to educate, unite, and support commercial cut flower growers. It mission is to help growers produce high-quality floral material, and to foster and promote the local availability of that product. Learn more at ascfg.org.

Thanks 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

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor, downloaded more than 822,000 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 Slow Flowers Society.com and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.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. 

Music Credits:

A Palace of Cedar; Net and the Cradle; 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

Related posts

Episode 532 Managing growth as a sole-proprietor with farmer-florist Sarah Wagstaff of SUOT Farm and Flowers

Wednesday, November 17th, 2021

Why is it that we’re supposedly moving into our quieter, perhaps dormant season, but we are doing everything but resting?!

I don’t think I’m alone in this feeling, and I wanted to discuss it with you, and bring today’s guest into the conversation.

Please meet Sarah Wagstaff, of SUOT Farm and Flowers, based in Burlington, which is located in Washington State’s Skagit County about halfway between Seattle and the US-Canadian border.

SUOT Farm and Flowers is home to freshly hand-picked flowers and foliage. It’s a no-till urban farm in the hub of Skagit Valley WA, and includes a hugelkultur demonstration garden, education workspace, and floral studio. 

SUOT stands for “Small Units Of Time,” because, as Sarah says, we know that we aren’t able to accomplish everything we want to in one day, but little by little, we will get there together! 

SUOT studio and shop
SUOT Farm and Flowers studio and shop in Burlington, Washington (c) Sara Welch Photo Co.

Since 2015, SUOT Farm and Flowers has been committed to providing our customers with the freshest flowers, local bouquets, and unique arrangements with 100% locally grown, Washington botanicals.

 As an urban micro flower farmer, and farmer-florist, Sarah goes above and beyond for her customers to ensure they know their purchases supports a sustainable, local, woman-owned business.

SUOT website workshops
Workshops at SUOT Farm and Flowers

Sarah’s website for SUOT Farm and Flowers features harvest and holiday workshops coming up in her Burlington Studio, including: in-person garland and wreath-making sessions later this month and in early December.

You can also order her signature 12-ounce white ceramic mug with the black “midday murder logo.” Of course a little tongue in cheek, Sarah encourages friends and customers to join the midday murder club — “make yourself a cuppa tea, then take the rest of the boiling water outside, pour it in some weeds, & channel your murderous death, kill, die thoughts to the weeds (and not your kids/spouse/coworkers)!”

Find and follow SUOT Farm and Flowers
SUOT on Facebook
SUOT on Instagram


Notes and News

I have a couple of program notes to mention before we close. On last Friday, November 12th, we hosted the monthly Slow Flowers member virtual meet-up — and the topic was All About Flower Co-ops & Wholesale Hubs, featuring several members, including our two featured presenters: Connie Homerick of Ohio Cut Flower Collective and Patti Doell of Garden State Flower Cooperative. If you missed the Meet-Up, watch replay video above. It’s filled with lots of education and inspiration!


2022 Member Survey Graphic

Our show notes also includes the link to our just-released Slow Flowers annual member survey, which we’re running through December 3rd. Please take the time to share your feedback and insights, which will be valuable as we plan for 2022 programs, content and resources for you.


Thank you to our Sponsors!

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 our lead sponsor for 2021, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting more than 20 U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $9 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

2nd sponsor bar
sponsor logo bar

More thanks goes 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.

Thanks 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.

Our final sponsor thanks goes 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

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast has been downloaded more than 785,000 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.

The Slow Flowers Podcast is a member-supported endeavor and I value our loyal members and supporters! If you’re new to our weekly Show and our long-running Podcast, check out all of our resources at Slow Flowers Society.com and consider making a donation to sustain Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.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. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem, one vase at a time. 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.

The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. You can learn more about Andrew’s work at soundbodymovement.com

Music Credits:

Bridgewalker; 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

Related posts

Episode 519: A Bloom-Filled visit to floral icon Françoise Weeks’ studio and to Sid Anna Sherwood’s flower farm

Wednesday, August 18th, 2021

Today, I’m thrilled to introduce Françoise Weeks and Sid Anna Sherwood. In celebration of our Slow Flowers Podcasts 8th anniversary, we launched our new, live-stream video format — calling it the Slow Flowers Show — with the goal of sharing the faces and voices of our members, as well as tours of their farms, their shops and their studios — and most of all, their flowers. In addition to finding the show notes for this episode at debraprinzing.com, you can watch the replay of our video interview, including some special floral design ideas and a show-and-tell of just-harvested blooms from our guests’ studio and farm.

Listen or Watch the conversation

Françoise Weeks is a past guest of the Slow Flowers Podcast on a few occasions. She is known for teaching botanical couture around the world.  Today, we’ll discuss one of her dreams — to teach a workshop combined with students picking their own design ingredients at a flower farm and collecting woodland materials in a forest.

Sid Anna Sherwood of Annie's Flower Farm in Sequim, Washington
Sid Anna Sherwood of Annie’s Flower Farm in Sequim, Washington

And thanks to the imagination of farmer-florist Sid Anna Sherwood, owner of Annie’s Flower Farm in Sequim, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula, that dream will be a reality later this month.

Long-time Slow Flowers member Sid Anna is a nature-inspired flower farmer and florist who creates beautiful and lush arrangements with the flowers she grows.

Through Sweet Annie’s Floral Design, she offers wedding florals, sells DIY wedding flowers and supplies hand-tied market bouquets to CSA customers and to local neighborhood grocery outlets.

Sid Anna grows more than 300 varieties of cut flowers using organic and sustainable methods.

Inspiring florist and floral educator Francoise Weeks (c) Jamie Bosworth photograph

Françoise Weeks, a floral design icon, 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.

Francoise in Earth in Her Hands
Françoise Weeks, featured in Jennifer Jewell’s beautiful book: The Earth in Her Hands

Françoise’s studio is located in Portland, Oregon. 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.

In 2019 she was invited to participate at two international flower events in Belgium: Flower Time at city hall in Brussels and Fleuramour at the medieval castle in Alden Biesen.

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

Françoise teaches and offers online courses, including Zoom workshops. And she is the author of “The Herbal Recipe Keeper” published by Timber Press in 2018.

Francoise Weeks workshop details

The two women have teamed up to offer a Françoise Weeks Botanical Couture and Woodland Workshop, a four-day floral retreat taking place August 22-26 in the historic town of Port Townsend, Washington. Students will stay at the 416-acre Fort Worden in an restored residence, with meals and lodging, as well as all materials and instruction included in the workshop price. The beach of the Salish Sea is steps away and hiking trails are nearby.

Françoise will cover botanical headpieces, purses and jewelry, as well as woodland design centerpieces. A model and a photographer will capture each student’s work for use in their portfolio. 

Last week, we scheduled and recorded a 3-way call to visit and talk with both Francoise and Sid Anna. Both have some lovely show-and-tell to share, as they discuss their creative practices and inspire us with botanical couture and woodland designs, as well as just-picked seasonal flowers.

Thank you so much for joining our conversation. As Sid Anna mentioned there are a few more spaces for students needing lodging and day students who might want to attend from close by. And I’m excited to see what happens when a flower farmer and floral designer collaborate. This approach is truly the heart of the Slow Flowers Movement and Sid Anna and Françoise are modeling a creative partnership that each of us should emulate.


Bonus Content for You

If you’re looking for some inspiring summer reading material, I have a few things to share — free to you — and you can find the links below.

floral details at slow flowers summit
Floral details at the Slow Flowers Summit (c) Jenny M. Diaz

First up, you’ll want to read “Flowering Filoli,” just published in the Slow Flowers Journal online — a room-by-room tour of the Slow Flowers Summit floral takeover at Filoli’s historic house.

With detailed photography by Missy Palacol and Jenny M. Diaz, you’ll read about the immersive floral takeover that occurred on day one of the Summit. See the flowers contributed by generous member flower farms and farmer-florists in attendance; and appreciate the floral artistry of our member designers who created installations worthy of the mansion’s grand scale.


Watch my conversation with Garden Design Magazine about our new book Where We Bloom

And if you’re more in the mood to watch something fun, I’ll share the replay video of my Garden Design Magazine Q&A with publisher Jim Peterson, as he hosted me for a conversation about our new book, “Where We Bloom” and tips to design your perfect outdoor getaway space. We featured five of the book’s inventive floral-filled environments as I shared the stories of the designers and their floral pursuits. I’ll share that link in today’s show notes, too — so everything will be easy to find.


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 Banner

Thank you to our lead sponsor for 2021, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting more than 20 U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $9 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

sponsor logo bar
2nd sponsor bar

Our next sponsor thank you goes 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.

Our next thanks goes 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.

Our final thank you goes 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 johnnysseeds.com.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast has been downloaded more than 755,000 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.

I value your support and invite you to show your thanks to support Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.com.


Debra Prinzing
(c) Mary Grace Long Photography

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem at a time. 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.

The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. Thank you so much to Andrew for helping me set up our new Video Podcast platform and teaching me the technology! I’ll be relying more on his talents in the coming days. You can learn more about Andrew’s work at soundbodymovement.com

Music Credits:

Mind Body Mind; Shift of Currents; 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

Related posts

Episode 518 Kiara Hancock of K. Hancock Events and HBO’s Full Bloom Season 2

Wednesday, August 11th, 2021
K. Hancock Events
Today’s guest: Kiara Hancock of K. Hancock Events

In celebration of our Slow Flowers Podcast’s 8th anniversary, we launched our new, live-stream video format — calling it the Slow Flowers Show — with the goal of sharing the faces and voices of our members, as well as tours of their farms, their shops and their studios — and most of all, their flowers

Today, you’re in for a real treat as we will meet Kiara Hancock of K. Hancock Events, who joined me last week to record this conversation. Kiara is based in Tacoma’s University Place and she is a floral educator and wedding and event florist.

Kiara Hancock on HBO’s Full Bloom Season 2

If, like me, you have just binged on the floral series of the summer, HBO’s Full Bloom, you already know Kiara, who was one of 10 budding floral artists who are put to the test each episode in both individual and team challenges. Floral experts Simon Lycett, Elizabeth Cronin and Maurice Harris serve as hosts and judges determining who gets cut and who remains in the running for the $100,000 grand prize. HBO Max released the series on June 10th.

Kiara Hancock winning design
Kiara’s Episode One winning floral arrangement
Kiara Hancock (second from right) in Full Bloom – Season 2

I reached out to Kiara and asked her to share her story, her experience as a reality TV competitor, and to design for us on camera. She writes this on her website: “I’m a wife, mother to two awesome girls, a wedding designer, floral designer, and day-of coordinator. I believe that modern and romantic designs can coexist in harmony and I aim to bring weddings to life in a way that resonates JOY.”

Kiara’ forte is incorporating passionate and confident designs that seamlessly integrate each couple’s personalities, both as individuals and jointly. Kiara is a pro at the logistics portion of planning, thanks to her background as an administrative professional at some of the Northwest’s most successful companies. Her passion for events stems from not only wanting to make sure that each of her clients’ wedding day runs smoothly and that she deliver something beautiful to the eye, while ensuring the couple feels heard, understood, and seen.

Kiara is a huge advocate of authenticity and she encourages, supports and guides her clients to be true to who they are, fight for the things they want, dream big, and to trust their gut. She adds: “I will never get tired of seeing my designs become part of the tapestry of your wedding day…it does my heart serious good.”

If you haven’t fallen in love with Kiara’s favorite color palette — yellow in all shades, I’d be surprised! We also welcome Kiara Hancock as a new member of the slow flowers society. She’s one to follow, and we admire all that she’s doing to nurture inclusion and representation through her Decency is not Difficult campaign to support ourcommoncause.com.


More news . . .

I know it’s August and that our celebration of 2021 American Flowers Week has passed for this year (the dates were June 28-July 4th), but you’ll want to check out the our new article that appears in Growing For Market’s August issue. Thanks to editor and publisher Andrew Mefferd, who asked me to recap some of the amazing activities that our members produced for American Flowers Week.

Last month, we also jumped in and celebrated the 2021 Canadian Flowers Week (July 15-22), thanks to the support of creator Natasa Kajganic of the Toronto Flower Market who invited Becky Feasby of Prairie Girl Flowers and me to do an IG takeover. During the entire week, we virtually traveled across Canada, meeting florists and flower farmers in seven provinces for IG Live conversations about their floral enterprises. Click here to watch those interviews

And thank you to each of our guests:


Thank you to our Sponsors

This show is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 Banner

Special thanks to our lead sponsor for 2021, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting more than 20 U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $9 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

sponsor logo bar
2nd sponsor bar

More thanks 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.

Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers. Formed in 1988, ASCFG was created to educate, unite, and support commercial cut flower growers. It mission is to help growers produce high-quality floral material, and to foster and promote the local availability of that product. Learn more at ascfg.org.

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

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast has been downloaded more than 753,000 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.

I value your support and invite you to show your thanks to support Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.com

Debra Prinzing
(c) Mary Grace Long

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Show. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one stem at a time. 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.

The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. Thank you so much to Andrew for helping me set up our new Video Podcast platform and teaching me the technology! I’ll be relying more on his talents in the coming days. You can learn more about Andrew’s work at soundbodymovement.com

Music Credits:

Open Flames; 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

Related posts

Episode 508: Horticulture, pop culture and Black American floral legends with Abra Lee of Conquer the Soil

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2021

Today, we continue our series to highlight the talented speaker lineup for the upcoming Slow Flowers Summit, taking place June 28th-30th at Filoli Historic House & Garden in Woodside, California, with an extended conversation I’m excited to share with you.

Abra, pruning roses as a volunteer at the Georgia Governor’s Mansion

Please meet Abra Lee, horticulturist, author, speaker and founder of the media platform called Conquer the Soil. Based in Atlanta, Abra says she is a self-proclaimed horticulturist extraordinaire that is half country bumpkin, half bougie, occasionally extra, and inherently Southern. She writes: “The opportunities I’ve been fortunate to experience during my career in the garden industry have far surpassed my ancestors’ wildest dreams!”

Abra, leading the horticulture program at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport

Educated at Auburn University College of Agriculture in Auburn, Alabama  with a B.S. in Horticulture and a distinguished Leadership in Public Horticulture Fellow from  Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, Abra takes notes on plants + pop culture and shares her observations across her blog and social media. Count on Abra to bring her distinct perspective to horticulture, popular culture, fashion, celebrity, and the history of Black gardeners.

Her impressive professional path began as a city arborist, which led to landscape management roles at two major international airports (in Atlanta, followed by Houston), and as a University of Georgia Extension Agent.

Meet the women of the Negro Garden Clubs of Virginia, circa 1932, featured in Conquer the Soil’s IG Feed

Years of research into the history of Black American gardeners propelled Abra to collect her research into a new book, scheduled for publication in the fall of 2022.

The forthcoming book is called Conquer the Soil – Black America and the Untold Stories of Our Country’s Gardeners, Farmers, and Growers

Conquer the Soil profiles 45 hidden figures of horticulture—the Black men and women whose accomplished careers in the plant world are little known or untold. Among them are Wormley Hughes, an enslaved African-American who was head gardener at Monticello and dug Jefferson’s grave; Annie Vann Reid, an ex-teacher turned entrepreneur in South Carolina who owned a five-acre greenhouse and nursery in the 1940s that sold millions of plants and seeds; and David August Williston, a graduate of Cornell University and the first African-American landscape architect, a student of Liberty Hyde Bailey, and the designer of the Tuskegee University campus. Abra’s lively text will be enriched by illustrations of each individual, making this forthcoming book as beautiful as it is critically important.
In Conquer the Soil, Abra Lee–a rising star in the plant world–gives these women and men the spotlight they deserve and enriches our collective understanding of the history of horticulture. 

A Conquer the Soil IG post — picking up on news about “The Gardener,” a forthcoming Batman villain

As we discuss in today’s epsiode, Abra has an infectous passion about the people she’s discovered through her research. She has lectured extensively on African-Americans and Ornamental Horticulture, gathering her research of 600 years of history from pre-colonial Africa to today and the artistic contributions of Black gardeners, horticulturists, educators and landscape architects to the green profession. While continuing her research for her upcoming book on the subject, Abra has unearthed an incredible narrative of Black Americans in floristry. She will share these stories of people, their flowers and their entrepreneurism in a new talk for the Slow Flowers Summit audience.

Sneak peek of Mrs. Blanche Hurston, one of the women you’ll meet in Abra Lee’s presentation at the Slow Flowers Summit (from Conquer the Soil’s IG feed)

Her presentation, The History of the Black American Florist, will inspire our attendees with her storytelling gifts as she brings their untold stories to life, giving voice to the important history about Black pioneers in horticulture, floriculture, landscape architecture and botany.

Some of the fun Conquer the Soil merchandise that Abra will bring to our Book & Art Table at the Slow Flowers Summit; from left: Famed florist Lucille Caine orchid hat pop-art poster, Conquer the Soil tote, Music x Flowers tote (a historic florist said these words, but you’ll have to hear about that from Abra!)

Find and follow Abra Lee and Conquer the Soil at these social places:

Conquer the Soil on Instagram

Conquer the Soil on Facebook


Slow Flowers Summit 2021

2021 speakers Slow Flowers Summit
Our fabulous speaker lineup includes (top row), Susan McLeary, Emily Saeger, Molly Culver; (middle row), Kellee Matsushita-Tseng, Lorene Edwards Forkner, Max Gill; (bottom row), Abra Lee, Pilar Zuniga, Jennifer Jewell + our host, Slow Flowers Society’s Debra Prinzing

Thank you so much for joining our conversation today! There are still a few spaces left to attend the Slow Flowers Summit and you can find all those details at slowflowerssummit.com. We are so excited to welcome our attendees to a safe, in-person, COVID-compliant and mostly outdoor setting at Filoli Historic House and Garden. The countdown begins!


American Flowers Week 2021

Our 2021 Botanical Couture Collection!

You’re hearing this Podcast on June 2nd and this week we’re kicking off the anticipation of American Flowers Week! American Flowers Week takes place June 28-July 4 each year, we’re heading into our 7th annual campaign!

Create your own American Flowers Week activities and events — use our branding, logos, free downloads and all the content available at Americanflowersweek.com to promote your floral enterprise. See the home page for our “Media Resources” and “Free Downloads” menus.

Read about the designers, growers and creatives behind one-dozen Botanical Couture looks for American Flowers Week 2021!

This year, Slow Flowers Society has partnered with our publishing arm, BLOOM Imprint, to produce a special Botanical Couture edition of Slow Flowers Journal. The 72-page digital magazine is available FREE to you – you’ll be inspired and amazed at the collective talent of the Slow Flowers community of creatives — flower growers, floral designers, and their teams who produced one dozen distinctly different botanical fashions. You can find the link to our special edition in today’s show notes at debraprinzing.com — and download social media graphics of each floral ensemble for your own use.

I want to share an invitation specifically for flower farmers who may be planning a special promotion, pop-up sale, workshop or other way to celebrate American Flowers Week. I’ll be writing a story about what flower farmers are doing during the campaign for an upcoming issue of Growing For Market — and I’m looking for ways to feature you and your plans. Please get in touch if you have something in the works! You can shoot me a note at debra@slowflowers.com.

Thank you to our Sponsors

This podcast is brought to you by Slowflowers.com, the free, online directory to more than 880 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 our lead sponsor for 2021, Farmgirl Flowers. Farmgirl Flowers delivers iconic burlap-wrapped bouquets and lush, abundant arrangements to customers across the U.S., supporting more than 20 U.S. flower farms by purchasing more than $9 million dollars of U.S.-grown fresh and seasonal flowers and foliage annually, and providing competitive salaries and benefits to team members based in Watsonville, California and Miami, Florida. Discover more at farmgirlflowers.com.

sponsor logo bar
5-channel-sponsor-block

For each Podcast episode this year, we thank three of our Major Sponsors:

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.

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.

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.


Slow Flowers Podcast Logo with flowers, recorder and mic

Thanks so much for joining us today! The Slow Flowers Podcast has been downloaded more than 732,000 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.

I value your support and invite you to show your thanks to support Slow Flowers’ ongoing advocacy, education and outreach activities. You can find the donate button in the column to the right at debraprinzing.com

Debra Prinzing
(c) Mary Grace Long photograph

I’m Debra Prinzing, host and producer of the Slow Flowers Podcast. Next week, you’re invited to join me in putting more Slow Flowers on the table, one vase at a time. And If you like what you hear, please consider logging onto iTunes and posting a listener review.

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.

The Slow Flowers Podcast is engineered and edited by Andrew Brenlan. Learn more about his work at soundbodymovement.com

Music Credits:

Lumber Down; Heartland Flyer; 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

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