The daffodils arrived! The hyacinths are here! The sun is out and...so is the snow again. I love Spring in Michigan. Always so shocked in the moment, but when the weather takes Very Odd turns this time of year it feels a little comforting, you know? Keeps you on your toes! We don’t have to remind you all of the glorious near-summer week in the 80s and the plummet back into cold and gray, nor the momentary high spikes and falls these last few weeks. Did we get maybe a little ambitious and begin our direct seeding? Yep! Did we then have to get row cover (aka frostcloth) and baby the seedlings? Also yep, haha. Did we learn our lesson? We’ll see next Spring, I suppose. But our linaria, feverfew, bachelor’s button, dianthus, and nigella seem to be alive and happy!
Along with the weird weather, we had such a mild winter that something happened for the first time for us- our snapdragons overwintered, entirely unprotected. They really loved that warm spell and, we think, must have such developed roots that they are holding up just fine through this return to cold. We’re excited to see how they produce compared to last year! Interplanted with the snapdragons are our pre-soaked ranunculus, and they’ve sprouted! Nice leaves have appeared and we can’t wait to see them flower.
This is garden prep month for us. Last year we fertilized the new front garden space, and i was such a success that we knew we needed to do our main garden in back this year! Our friend at Feather Ridge Farm loaded a truckload of well-composted miniature donkey manure, and our friend Dr. Kevin kindly transported it to our garden and helped us unload. There are so many beautiful little red wiggler worms and so much life in this compost! We’ve spread it throughout the garden and are already seeing the results and healthier looking soil.
Luke guided us through amending our garden soil. First we sprinkled some kelp meal, which is a great addition during bed prep and bloom time. Ours happens to have been free, rescued from an overturned truck a while back. Next, a touch of greensand to build up the soil structure, break up the clay and act as a slow-release fertilizer. No need to go wild, this is a long-term feeder! Finally, we added some oyster shells. Ours are a farm feed product often given to chickens for calcium, but it’s great for low-calcium fields. This is another long-term additive, just a little goes a long way! Calcium creates stronger root structures for bigger and better plants, leading to bigger and better blooms.
We did also get our little unheated greenhouse up and filled this month! Shelves full of seeding trays have been sprouting this week and Summer flowers are officially on their way! Salpiglossis, marigolds, eucalyptus, marigolds, statice, and zinnias are just starting the transformation from seed to sprout. I love the hope of seeding and the unbearable tension for a few weeks before sprouts and the relief and joy of the little seed leaves poking through the fine soil. Friend of the farm (and my brother) Justin came by to assist with our seeding and making our beds and rows in the garden. He’s been such a great assistant with our farm chores!
A small shoutout here goes to Signature Signs of Fowlerville for doing such a beautiful job embroidering our amazing logo onto some workwear and hats for us to wear during wedding setups and such-we love how everything turned out and can’t wait to offer high-quality, locally made merch in the future!
Many of our flowers seeded this early will be used for summer weddings! One of our directly seeded crops is the beautiful bachelor’s button, Centurea cyanus, which will be used as pops of bright blue or even pink, purple, and white in several of our weddings this June and July. It’s a quick crop at just 65 days to flower, and so it’s perfectly timed for wedding season. Which is practically here! It’s such a busy and exciting time, and we are hyped for this one! We do still have some dates available for 2023 and 2024, please reach out if you or someone you know is looking for local, personal wedding flowers.
Happy Spring, friends!