The Backgrounder

I don’t see myself as a blogger but I love reading and writing good stories and I follow many bloggers online. I have been told that is enough to be a blogger. So here I go with my first story, umh…….sorry blog.

Flowers have always been a part of my life. My father was a landscape gardener and I started helping him with his gardens when I was eight. At fourteen, my family moved to our present day farm and Mr. White, who owned the greenhouses next door, almost immediately came to recruit my sisters and I to work in the greenhouses transplanting bedding plants and growing poinsettias and Easter lilies. It was a great way to learn all about flowers and get a suntan in March.

After getting an agricultural degree from the University of Guelph, I worked for Dominion Seedhouse. They encouraged employees to plant seeds in their gardens to become more familiar with what they had to offer. I tended to plant flower seeds because there was so many to choose from and I was excited to see what each one would look like.

From day one of growing these flowers, I wanted to share the beauty of cutflowers and everlastings with others. Hence, Perennial Petals was born on a very part time basis as a weekend business on the farm in Stouffville. The business model was to offer a PYO everlasting flower farm where people could come and pick their own flowers. Specifically, ones that were easy to dry at home.

To get the word out about this little flower business, we started attending farmers’ markets. The Newmarket Main Street Farmers’ Market seemed to be a good fit for us and we have grown with the market for the last 18 years. The flower varieties have expanded to include all kinds of unique and unusual cutflowers, starting with tulips in the spring, followed by peonies and many, many annuals.

My flower journey has come full circle this year. My husband and I have just completed an addition to my mother’s farmhouse and we are in the process of moving back to the farm where we grow the majority of our flowers and garlic. It will be amazing to be able to stand at my kitchen window and look out over my flower field.

The farm is a working farm and is generally not open to the public. This year, however, I have decided to host a few workshops on the farm and let people see where we grow all the beauty that we share with them weekly at the Newmarket Farmers’ Market and Willowtree Farm Market in Port Perry.

This ends the background story of Perennial Petals and but is the official beginning of blogs on our website. Hope you enjoyed it.

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