Verdant Sweepstakes 6/7/24

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Happy Friday y’all!   We are busy planting thousands of dahlias right now.  We’ll be planting them all through June. We stagger the planting so we can have a succession at harvest.  It’s important for farmers to succession plant a lot of crops so that they don’t get a huge harvest at one time.  That used to be the mistake of a lot of beginning farmers (maybe that’s different now with greater access to information).  You’d see them at market one week with a full booth overflowing with beautiful produce or flowers.  Then the next 3 weeks, they’d have almost nothing.  The result is that customers think you’re unreliable and start shopping elsewhere, and on the week you had a large...

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Good People 5/31/24

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Sad news in our sweet little community this week.    In the 70’s a group of do-gooders splintered off from Habitat For Humanity to continue humanitarian work and planted themselves right here in Comer GA.  They started Jubilee Partners and dedicated their lives and resources to helping the most marginalized peoples in the world.  They save the lives of refugees in the most war torn parts of the world and give them shelter, support, kindness, and a chance at a new life.    The stories I’ve heard are both brutally devastating and heroically uplifting.  The tragedies these refugees have suffered are unspeakable and the dangerous and selfless lengths these service workers have gone to to help others in desperate need...

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Flaming Seedlings 5/24/24

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Happy Friday y’all!    I’m just getting out of a meeting with the crew on how to improve everything behind the scenes for next year.  Our path forward is always dictated by our relatively small space, which can be a challenge, but has a silver lining of always pushing us towards greater efficiency and a lot of great plans came out of the spontaneous morning collaboration.  We’re looking forward to reshuffling everything and bringing more flowers and plants to y’all going forward in a way that supports our crew’s workflow.    Prior to that, we planted all the dahlia seedlings in the upper most field adjacent to the farm store.  It’s our favorite plot every fall, because we don’t harvest...

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A Tired Friday 5/17/24

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Happy Friday y’all,    My parents are in town for a visit and in a stroke of unfortunate timing, Mandy and I’ve been sick all week (long Spring finally caught up with us), so I’m not gonna write much today.  Fortunately there’s not much to say that hasn’t been said.  Our spring is officially over.  We have no flowers in the tunnels or the fields.  All has been picked clean.    The crew worked incredibly hard and efficiently in the cooler weather of this week to pull out tens of thousands of plants from the tunnels and make way for either cover crop or mum plantings.    Mum babies are still being sent out to all you growers and we’ve...

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An Eventful Spring 5/10/24

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Happy Friday y’all.    It’s been a full and interesting week out here.  Mother’s day bouquet harvest, making, packing, and shipping is always enough to fill our plates, but this year we had 200 mum plant orders to add to it and a couple of crazy storms come through and throw a few wrenches in the gears.   There was talk of a hail storm on Monday, but we have a tiny microclimate where hailstorms historically never affect us.  Neighboring farms have reported hail multiple times over the years, but we’re always spared despite being 10 minutes away from those farms. We decided not to worry about it and after the crew left, Mandy hopped in the van to go...

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Life Underground 5/3/24

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 They have emerged.  The ground is littered with holes carved up through the hard clay, spotted like Swiss cheese.  The leaves and branches of every bush and tree are covered in vacuous chitinous shadows of earlier incarnations.  A never-ending crescendo of humming is the soundtrack to our lives.  Gently turning the volume ever upward.  When I reach into a bush to cut a peony, or stick my torso into a small pump house to fix a well, I’m greeted by orange eyes starting at me and orange wings humming past my face, occasionally landing on my clothes.  Bent over the carcass of an old greenhouse table this afternoon, I felt an unfamiliar and slightly prickly presence on the back of...

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Kinder Temps and Fragrant Invasives 4/26/24

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Happy Friday!    The lovely purple Lunaria that carpeted our world has all gone to seed but for a few stubborn petals holding out til the last minute. The snowball viburnum dropped all their bruised and faded flowers in the last rain.  The buckeyes’ new leaves look like a droopy, wet hat. The bamboo is ferociously aggressive and the new shoots are already 15 feet tall.  The Smokebush is beginning to flower while the nearby Pecans’ pollen is making us choke a bit and get red in the eyes.  The poppies are just about done for the year and the deer flies seem to love when I harvest the peonies. The love is not reciprocal. The honeysuckle is absolutely lovely...

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Olfactory Delights 4/19/24

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Happy Friday y’all!    It’s been a sweaty week down here.  The seasonal cramping has begun as the days have been in the mid to upper 80’s, construction work needed doing, and the air smells like chicken farts.     We’re surrounded by 100 acres of hay fields and after mowing and baling, comes fertilizing.  They’ve got chicken houses, so it’s an in-house sorta deal.  They load a dump truck with the doo doo, then drive it out to the fields and spread it out. Feeds the grass, but it’s a little gamey in the nostrils for a minute.  Fortunately the nearest fields haven’t been graced yet, so once the dust settles, the fragrance passes and the sweet scent of roses...

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Smokebush and Paper Petals 4/12/24

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   Happy Friday yet again.  They just keep coming.  Spring is zipping by.    Smoke bushes are leafing out, the lunaria has formed its silver dollars, the chlorophyll has filled in the leaves of the Japanese maple and obscured the anthocyanins, the bamboo shoots are 5 feet tall, the mower’s broke and the grass is tall, two and a half greenhouses are already finished and empty, and the peonies are starting to bloom.  And if you’re following along from last week….the plums survived!!  So excited about that last one.    The farm store is open and is actually going to have veggie plants for sale out front this weekend.  Normally you have to buy them in advance, but we’re switching...

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Whiskey and Plums 4/5/24

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Happy Friday y'all!  It's a beautiful day out here at the absolute peak of Spring.  A nip to the air this morning and a potential frost this evening though, so we may lose some foliar friends to frost.  Hoping it doesn't damage the peonies too much or take out my favorite plum tree.  I really want those plums.  We all do.  Communally gathering around a bountiful tree, silently stuffing our smiling faces with juicy sweet plums is a highlight in my memory banks.  It happened one summer out of 13.  One summer the fruit escaped the frost and every friend we had over got to share our delight in the magic of this unbelievable plum tree.  Unparalleled in flavor.  The...

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