Market Blooms FarmDuring the local growing season, we bring our own "Market Blooms Brand" of freshly cut, organically grown flowers to market from our southern New Jersey farm. The 2010 summer season will be our second year growing our own cut flowers. In spite of the rainy summer of 2009, we were pleased with our results. We grew beautiful Corona and Full Sun sunflowers, State Fair and Benary Giant zinnias, yarrow, cosmos, marigolds, salvia, amaranthus, plume type and cockscomb celosia, and of course our colored callas. This year, we expect to double our production!
New for 2010!
We began planting more than a month earlier this year so we'll be bringing flowers to market by early June. We've added almost ten new sunflower varieties, new zinnias, additional cockscomb and lots more callas. In addition, we'll be trying our hand at several new flower types. We have blue and red cornflower, bupluerum, craspedia, euphorbia marginata, and fireworks gomphrena already in the fields. We're planting solidago, asclepias, castor beans, millet and broom corn. And, we'll soon have our first giant "dinnerplate dahlias" ready for sale.
Buying local and organic matters. Many people who are just beginning to buy organic foods wonder why they should care about organically grown flowers if they aren't going to eat them. The answer is simple. The health values of eating organic foods are only one small part of why you choose them. Hopefully you're shopping local in an effort to reduce your "carbon footprint" and choosing products which do as little harm to our environment as possible. Unfortunately, the cut flower industry like many others, is not very "green" on the whole. Flowers produced with chemical fertilizers, and treated with harsh fungicides are shipped all over the world by jet in order to maintain their quality. Many chemicals are routinely overused in an effort to avoid customs seizures for insects. Often times, the workers in cut flower producing countries are exposed to dangerous chemicals not legal for use in the United States. Many South American flower farms are changing, but only as pressure mounts for fair worker treatment, childcare, and better "green" management.
We think the flowers you buy should be as healthy for the environment as they are beautiful. By purchasing locally grown, sustainably produced flowers, you're supporting a healthy new way of respecting our earth. On our farm, we use only compost and other all natural and organic fertilizers. Our flowers are never sprayed with chemicals to protect them from insect damage or disease. By maintaining a healthy ecosystem on our farm, the problems that plague other growers are not big problems for us. Beneficial insects are added and encouraged, fish and seaweed fertilizers strengthen the soil, and compost teas protect from foliar diseases. Of course we still have some bad bugs and you're sure to see a little damage on some leaves at times. That's how you'll know we missed hand picking and squishing a pesky Japanese beetle!