Bouncing Back from the Cold 3/24/23

Bouncing Back from the Cold 3/24/23

Posted by Mandy + Steve O'Shea on

Well, the plant sale is off to a great start!  Everything is robust and healthy and ready for transplanting.  Minus a couple of frost bit tips on a few of the perennials, the plants look the healthiest of any year we’ve done the plant sale, so we are quite pleased! 
  There is still time to place an order and we have tons of healthy plants available, so if you already placed an order, but wanted to add something else, go ahead and place another order and just send us an email alerting us to that fact and we’ll gladly combine your orders or help you reschedule your pickup if need be.  

  If you do get an astilbe, spirea, or other perennial that has a little frost damage on a few of the leaves don’t worry, it will grow out quickly and have no detrimental effect on plant growth. 

  If you follow us on Instagram you may have seen the billowing white sheets of insulation fabric Mandy and I used to cover thousands of plants every night amidst strong winds (so fun!).  We ran heaters and heat lamps and put out temp alarms to wake us in the night and guess what??!!  They did! :)  We’d get up at 3 in the morning and run out with headlamps to add more tarps and insulation.  I spent a solid 4 hours every day outside of normal work hours covering and uncovering all of the peonies in the fields while Mandy fancied up the Farm Store in preparation for your visit. It was an exciting week.

  We started to get a little delirious for a minute there, but have finally gotten a couple full nights of sleep and are feeling human again. There’s nothing worse than falling through on a promise, especially one made to hundreds of people. The stress of a freeze coming and killing all your plants has now past and we are quite relieved at its passing. 

  For those looking for heirloom mum cuttings, we’ll be announcing the first sale soon to those on our wait list.  If you want to join that list, you can do so here!

  In one of life’s little ironies, we received great accolades and amazing PR for our poppies by Floret and then our poppies just stopped flowering!  One of those laugh/cry moments.  We are grateful for any nod from Floret, who is absolutely the pinnacle of the flower farming world.  If you aren’t familiar, you should definitely pay her a visit online.  Anything you want to know about growing flowers, she’s your source for answers and inspiration as well as providing the absolute best in selection and quality of seeds.

  The good news is that our poppy plants have put up a new generation of stems and it's looking like we’ll be back on track shortly.  We are getting some harvests from them again and are listing a modest amount of mixed bundles for sale right now…so skip this and go directly to the store if you are interested.  They’ll likely sell out quickly.

  We are prioritizing our flower subscribers and everyone in our March subscription already received poppies and we’ll make sure all of our April subscribers get some nice poppies as well.  We greatly appreciate your continued support and will do everything we can to make your subscription process beautiful.

  Campanula are going to be blooming soon and so are some of our very favorite Potomac Snapdragons!  You may remember that we lost all 23,180 of last years snapdragon plants written about in one of our blogs from last year.  So we are super excited to be getting a crop of them this year!  They are such a beautiful snapdragon variety that we only found the year before last and were devastated to lose every one of them last year.  But, it makes it even more rewarding to have them this year!

  We grow them for Mother’s Day, but nature is doing all sorts of fun stuff these days and it appears we’ll be cutting them in early April.  Easter and Passover bouquets will likely benefit from their presence.  

  Ranunculus are thriving right now and are absolutely beautiful in the tunnels and being harvested by the armload by our amazing field crew.  The buckets of them are undeniably stunning.

 Speaking of our amazing field crew.  Mandy featured some of their handwoven baskets and hand made shirts on IG and they got snatched up quickly.  One shirt takes one month to make.  Handstitched and beautifully designed with colorful thread and flower seeds as decorations, my mind can't even get around the skills involved to create any of it.  The detail work on the baskets is mind blowing as well.  We have talented people in our midst with skills that have been passed from one generation to the next for hundreds of years.

  If my frost work was adequate, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few bundles of peonies start to trickle in a couple of weeks from now.  If it was inadequate, I’ll pretend this paragraph never happened and will delete it from the website.
  In other news, Athens' only community-owned grocery store, The Daily Coop, is doing a fundraiser to help them move to a more viable location.  The Coop is a longstanding hub of the community and is part of what has made Athens such a homey town.  If you’ve got a few bucks to contribute, you can do so here:

  That’s all for now.  It’s going to be 85 degrees here today.  We are seesawing like crazy with the weather out here.  

  Here’s hoping we all have a great weekend with good rest, a little music, some tasty food, a bit of time chatting with family or friends.  

Be well,