Georgie's Blog

  • November News

    November News

    Well hello friends.  Anyone else staggered that it’s November?  I’m forcing myself to keep moving as fast as I can, because if the year has spun by this quickly, then I only have about five minutes before I need a hundred beautiful willow wreaths made and I’m worrying that I haven’t done any Christmas shopping for my own family.

    But let’s get through the news quickly.  Great fun was had by all when we got to watch daytime tv last Monday and there we were on Escape to the Country - you can catch up with the episode we were on via i-player

  • October News

    October News

    Woah!  Look at that.  The season almost over here at Common Farm and what a rip-rollocking ride it’s been. 
     
    In the end good amounts of rain meant we didn’t have to water too much, and the autumn flowers have been fantastic due to timely downpours in August.  So the September flowers were amazing, and we have a few little patches of last minute July sowings still coming into flower now, so we’ll have very fresh people to add to our dahlias for our October flower deliveries.  For more on our sowing schedules the flower farmers amongst you might like our Flower Farming Intensive workshop on the 14th, 15th and 16th October, where filled in year planners are handed out, along with how to cashflow forecasts and a whole day doing eco ...

  • September News

    September News
    Not quite season of mists, but there is definitely a feeling of mellow fruitfulness about. I will admit that heavy rain in mid August was timely for us, greening up the fields and just giving our late summer and autumn crops the boost they needed to take us through till the end of October. August has been unusually flat out for us, with back to back weddings, when usually we wonder if we’ve fallen off a cliff, so I’m looking forward to taking a few days off during the first week of September before coming back refreshed and all flowery guns blazing to work hard through to the end of the season. Next year’s weddings are booking in too, so I do hope we have another year as good as this for the dahlias, which are exceptional this year - I’ve never seen anything like them. So what do we have for you? Well lots of lovely workshops to keep you smiling and the endorphin levels high. I’m told by very reliable sources that spending time in gardens, and with cut flowers is very good for your mental health, so take a break and come and spend a day with us. We have fun da...
  • August News

    August News

    Forgive the lateness of this missive. We held a wonderful Flower Farming Intensive Workshop last week after a steady stream of weddings and events, and I simply couldn’t force myself to sit down and put pen to paper for a day or two there. Now, however, I have a new printer (as of today,) so I’m feeling very nine to fiveish, and am giving the whole office, as well as my to do list, a big sort out. So here I am.

    We survived the storm last weekend - for those of you who grow flowers and want to know how we avoided having the whole plot smashed flat by those astonishing winds, do come on a workshop in the autumn, and I’ll tell you all my strategic planning on the plot layout score. Equally, the dahlias survived the lashing winds well and are looking better than they ever have, so a morning learning a...

  • July News

    July News

    It is bizarre that we’re already in July. June never seemed to happen with all that cold weather. But at last the roses are getting into their stride, and even the relatively reluctant sweet peas are finally getting their mojo. I’m not complaining. If we plan the garden carefully enough we should never have a gap whatever the weather throws at us. Usually the tunnel flowers are very much going over by now, but this year they are very happily flowering and showing no sign of fatigue - which is a relief because the outdoor crops have been sloooow to start. I am reminded, as I fill buckets to haul around the garden in my trolley (I feel as though I could quite easily train to be one of those people who walk to the north pole pulling a sled,) early in the morning, that this really is a ‘lifestyle’ business. On paper I’m not sure any wise person would take it up, but as I turn corners and a cloud of butterflies dances into the air before me, or gangs of goldfinches (a gang of goldfinches is officially called a charm, but they seem much more gangish to me,) scatter into the lo...

  • June news

    June news

    So how are we doing?  Well the season is about to go into turbo charged mode! I am breathing slowly, sitting as much as I can, preparing for the marathon we start to run shortly.  Here come seventy hour weeks, thousands and thousands of stems weeks, wonderful wedding schemes, carefully planned logistics, and under, what will hopefully look like a serene sail by by a swan trailing flaars (moi!?!?!?!?!) the paddling won’t be frantic but will be constant, fast, efficiently planned, strategically scheduled and a 7am alarm will constitute a lie-in.  

    We’ve had almost no rain though - an occasional heavy downpour helps, but I noticed even well established shrubs just stalled when usually at this time of year they’re bursting out all over.  So I’ve given them all a good water, and noted, for future reference, a mid may water for 2020, 2021, 2022…  When we moved to Somerset fifteen years ago we planted a twenty foot wide band of willow around the edge of our field to help with the drainage, and would only half jokingly refer to our patch as ‘the swamp.’  We now...

  • May News

    May News

    Well the season is upon us truly now, isn’t it?  I’ve been taking my crop in my hands and planting out like crazy (crazy being the operative word - we’ve had frosts here as late as 28th May before!) But I have my horticultural fleece to hand in case of emergency, and I’m not taking any serious risks (no cosmos planted out yet!) 

    It’s an exciting time of year for gardeners - especially those coming to our annual village plant sale!  People have been dropping off plants (whole footfalls from Elaine Miller Design!) and we must thank Jane and Sue who’ve been splitting and potting on to make a fantastic array of plants for sale. 

    After the plant sale we certainly do not collapse in a heap - instead we plant out the rest of this summer’s crop (possibly including a few plant sale specials - I’ve got my eye on some of that pheasant grass you donated Elaine!) and rev up for a few more early summer workshops

    We’re c...

  • April news

    April news

    Well March is almost over, and it’s felt sort of topsy turvy to me because Mothering Sunday is so late and the Country Living Fair is so early, so I’m having to get April jobs done in advance, which will make me happy in the long run, but, to this creature of strict habit, throws me slightly.  

    For example, there will be no sowing of seeds outside direct into the ground as there usually is at the end of March this year, because we’ll be doing Mothering Sunday flowers and then rushing up to Alexandra Palace to do the Country Living Fair on 30th and 31st March.  On the other hand, we’re potting up the dahlias today (20th March!) because there won’t be time what with the school holidays approaching and so on.  Seed sowing direct in the soil will happen on 1st and 3rd A...

  • March News

    March News

    Will March be upon us like a lamb or a lion?

    Though it feels as though it’s April already out there now with the sun we’ve had beaming down on us, and the seeds germinating a gogo in the tunnels and the greenhouses. I love the way the larkspur sulks in the ground all winter and then suddenly, ping! they’re popping up all over the place, lovely strong seedlings, crying ‘Only joking!’ to their apparent non-germination.

    We’ve had the busiest February ever thanks very much to On Your Farm on Radio 4 (listen here) which featured us just before Valentine’s Day. Who knew that so many people were awake at 6.35 on a Sunday morning, let alone ordering flowers at that time of the day! Thank you for ALL your Valentine’s orders, and remember, Mothering Sunday is coming up soon so do get your orders in quickly for that weekend because we do sell out….

    We send all our flowers on the Thursday before

  • Social media workshop

    Social media workshop

    Here at Common Farm Flowers we rely for our every day business on social media.  For us, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are three slightly different shops, visited by an ever-growing group of friends.

    It was not long after we started farming flowers on our seven acre plot in Somerset (nine years in April!) that somebody said, 'You should start telling people what you're doing on social media.'

    And so we did.  At first I was a bit scattergun with my tweeting - but that was only because it was so much fun!  As a person starting a small business on my own in rural Somerset, I sometimes felt quite isolated - but Twitter provided me with an instant cohort of fun friends who cheered on my efforts, advised, supported, and, most important of all, soon began to order our flowers.  I'm now much more strategic with my social media posting - well, the business grew, and there's a limit to how much time one can spend on line when one has a business to run!

    When I teach people how to use social media I tell them that I still love Twitter best.  So long as you ignor...

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