Mother's Day, Cover Crops, and the sweet gifts of May
It’s nearly Mother’s Day, which, for us flower farmers, this is one of our biggest weeks of the year. We’ve spent most of the week preparing, and today we’re sending out 50 bouquets to businesses that pre-ordered our blooms. Arranging flowers for Mother’s Day is quite lovely— it’s so nice to know that each of these bouquets is going to someone special who will really love them and appreciate them, and we get to share our work with so many families! We’re endlessly grateful for the parents and caregivers in our lives who share their love and work hard to make the world a better place.
We’re moving into peak spring flower time, so long as we get some sun soon! Right now we’re still pulling abundant ranunculus from the high tunnels, with peonies, poppies, bachelors buttons, agrostemma, and snapdragons all beginning to show their faces. Soon we’ll have more flowers than we know what to do with! Our spring vegetable crops are really shining right now— especially lettuce! Make sure to pick some up from the market this weekend. As boring as lettuce may seem, it’s not easy to grow in a climate where we have such extended periods of hot weather, and the temperature and moisture levels lately have made for some fantastic greens.
In the moments that we’re not fretting over flowers, we’ve been thinking a lot about cover crops! It’s time to mow down some of our overwintered cover crops, and we’re preparimg to seed some buckwheat in other places. Right now, our crimson clover cover crop is in bloom, and above ground, the beautiful sea of red flowers is attracting pollinators, while below ground, it’s working as a nitrogen fixer, which means that it is converting nitrogen in the atmosphere to nitrogen that is available for plants to use. When we mow the clover and other cover crops in the field, we’re provided with a good source of of organic matter that will break down in the fields.
We generally seed a mix of things when we seed our cover crops, as different cover crops have different benefits. These benefits include enhancing soil health by reducing compaction, adding organic matter to soil, which in turn feeds soil microbes, improving water infiltration, preventing soil erosion, and scavenging nitrogen. Cover crops aren’t generally harvested for food or floral use, but cover cropping is profitable on a small farm because of the cumulative benefits it provides to the soil and our cash crops.
This week at the JFX market we will have arugula, French Breakfast and cherriette radishes, hakurei turnips, head lettuce, spring mix, and mixed bouquets. We’ll also be bringing flower, veggie, and herb seedlings!
Save the Date
Saturday, May 11th - on farm plant sale and a free gardening 101 class
Saturday, June 29th - Two Boots Farm Open House and Potluck - We’ll show you around the farm, share a meal, have activities for kids, and an opportunity to build your own bouquet to take home.
Saturday, July 27th - Centerpiece Workshop at the Farm - Participants will learn to design their own centerpieces with flowers from our farm, sip wine from our neighbor’s vineyard, and tour the farm in this late afternoon summer workshop. Sign up early!
Saturday, August 10th- Flower Farm Dinner- Join us for an intimate seasonal dining experience on the farm prepared by Wilde Thyme. We will roam the farm, share a meal made with produce from Two Boots and other local farms, and enjoy an evening on the farm at the height of the season.