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Journey: Launching a Permaculture Flower Business  RSS feed

 
Shelley Bowen
Posts: 2
Location: Western Maine | Z5a
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I am launching a permaculture flower business at the end of the month. I'm going to start small with a focus on dahlias for wholesale, cut flower CSAs, and tuber distribution. We already transformed our front yard into a 1-acre permaculture orchard and we're about to purchase a 100-year-old conventional orchard in town that we plan on transitioning, thus the reason to keep it simple. For now.

How this came about:
For my wedding, I decided to grow my own flowers. Being in Western Maine, we ended up pushing back our wedding date six weeks just to accommodate for a better bloom potential. My vision was to have as many flowers as possible in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Without much of a plan, I picked up a few packets of sunflower, zinnia, and cosmo seeds at FEDCO's tree and seed sale, along with 50+ dahlia tubers with labeled pink, white, orange, red, respectfully.

To backup a little, our annual garden is 40x80' and 80% hugelkultur beds. I took over three 40' rows just for our flowers. With minimal effort, the flowers exploded; every color, every variety, every bloom. Other than staking, the flowers did not receive additives (like bone meal as many suggest for dahlias) and when our family members visited our home during the our wedding weekend, they were just as impressed as we were.

That's when it clicked for me.

Cut flowers are constantly removing organic matter and nutrients from the soil. There is so much take and not a whole lot of giving back. By applying permaculture strategies, I fully believe there could be a shift in flower farming in general, especially the traditional practices in growing flowers.

I am starting this thread to keep you all updated on my journey. I've been lurking in here for years and I'm excited to finally share my story.

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They weren't very bright, but they were very, very big. Ad contrast:
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