Oh Happy Day

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flowers, gardening

Erin Benzakein’s book, Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden has just been released and it is glorious in every way. Happy day indeed. 

If you are a flower farmer, or an enthusiastic amateur that wants to squeeze as many flowers as possible into your garden (that’s me) or you’d just like to have a few flowers for your kitchen table, this book is for you. If you are a photographer, or are interested in marketing and branding, this book and its presentation is for you. If you are interested in “green” living and the slow flower movement (where florists and designers use local flowers as much as possible), this book is for you. You will find inspiration, encouragement and lots of practical advice in this lovely new book. 

The book begins with fundamentals such as seed starting and improving your soil. Next is what’s blooming season by season beginning with spring. Besides describing the best flowers and foliage for cutting, each section includes seasonal flower arranging ideas and tasks. 

Each flower (or foliage plant) gets a chapter to shine. There is practical information such as when to plant or extending vase life as well as gorgeous photos and variety recommendations. I love that Erin has included some “minor” flowers such as nasturtiums and grape hyacinths – I’ve long been an advocate for these smaller flowers that are unlikely to show up at a traditional florist but pack a lot of charm. Also included are more unusual plant materials – herbs, grasses, vines, branches – all are candidates for bouquets. 

And the bouquets! Lush, romantic, overflowing, dramatic. There are step-by-step instructions on creating these beauties at home. I’m not sure I’d ever have enough material on hand at any one time to attempt one of these, but it’s something to work toward!

If I’m sounding a bit like a fan girl, well, it’s because I am. I’ve been following the floret website and blog for a couple of years now and it’s really just awesome. I’ve learned a lot, not just about growing flowers (although there’s a huge amount of valuable information available on the website) but also photography (Erin’s husband takes most of the pictures; they are a lesson is perspective, angle, lighting and cropping), of growing a small business (no, I don’t have a business small or otherwise, but it’s fun to read about), small farm support, best practice for land usage and giant heaps of inspiration. 

Don’t miss out. Read the book. Follow the blog. You’ll be glad you did!

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