Ok, I’m going to be honest with you all. Here at Bochner Farms, we are fairly new to this flower farming gig. We are learning a lot while we grow these beautiful flowers. There is so much we still don’t know. I suppose it might always be a continuous learning thing. But right now? We definitely “don’t know” much more than we “do know”.
Our motto at Bochner Farms is to just jump right in and try. You don’t know if something will work unless you try. My dad always said you learn more from your mistakes than you ever will from your successes. So we try new things, experiment and learn.
To give you a quick glimpse behind the scenes at Bochner Farms, here are a few things we’re experimenting with:
Shade cloth. We’ve never used it before. But we know it’s important for newly planted babies to protect them from strong sun and heat while they are acclimating. We purchased some hybrid lily bulbs that we planted and (hopefully) they will be blooming like crazy this fall and we’ll tuck them into Bochner Farms market bouquets. They will need shade cloth until they are about a foot tall.
So, we ordered shade cloth. It arrived this week. But the thing is, we didn’t know how to hang it up. So we brainstormed and tried an experiment. Here is our current set up. Using posts and bungee cords. Jim and I were laughing a lot as we tried to rig it up. Hope it works!
Summer season snapdragons. Usually we plant our snapdragons only in the springtime as a late spring/early summer crop. This year, however, I wanted to experiment and grow snapdragons as a mid/late summer crop. Because snapdragons. So, I did my research and bought seed that I think is heat tolerant. We’ll see if it stays happy and healthy now that the heat is cranking up. (Maybe we should put some shade cloth on them? Hmmmm….) So far the snaps are looking good, and they are definitely shining bright in Bochner Farms market bouquets right now!
High tunnel growing. We finally finished our high tunnel and we were able to plant flowers inside the tunnel late this spring. I knew the tunnel was going to be a hot environment throughout the summer, so I chose heat loving varieties for our first cut flower crop.
We have amaranth, ageratum, basil, gomphrena, celosia, eucalyptus, and cosmos planted right now. And we planted a small row of dahlias in the tunnel too. They all seem to be doing pretty well. Some of this stuff is taller than I am! Wowza!
Last but not least, we are taking extra care of our dahlias this year. We planted about twice as many as we had last year, and we’re working hard to keep them weeded and supported (by pounding posts and corralling them with twine). We’re doing all we can to ensure we have a bumper crop of dahlias to provide to our customers, and to share the bounty at our Bochner Farms Dahlia Workshop right here on the farm in September. Sign up for the workshop by visiting http://www.bochnerfarms.com and go to our online shop. Yay!
Hopefully, you found the Bochner Farms “behind the scenes” update interesting, and we’ll keep you posted on how things are going. Crossing fingers that shade cloth doesn’t come down in a windy Iowa thunderstorm!
Finally, I would love it if you would take a moment to sign up for our email list. Sign up at www.bochnerfarms.com so you can be the first to learn about Bochner Farms news, upcoming events and advanced notice of new daylily varieties and availability.
That’s a wrap folks. I hope you will go out and try something new. Even if you fail, have fun trying! Then dust off, learn your lessons, and try again. Continuous learning is good for the mind and the soul. Enjoy!