|For the past 13 years we have grown over 100 different varieties of specialty cut flowers, with a few rows dedicated to medicinal herbs. While we have LOVED growing flowers, we have struggled to feel at home in the industry that we’ve had to cater to in order to get the highest price for our crop; the wedding industry. Like one of my flower farming mentors has said, ‘there’s no stress like wedding stress!’
When I first started the farm I really, really tried to avoid weddings and doing floral design. Even though I loved the artful craft, the fact that everything needed to be absolutely perfect absolutely terrified me. But, I forged on. I went to therapy for the first time. I conquered an insane amount of fears and I connected with some really wonderful people that I have been so happy to work for. I love everyone who has been attracted to our flower farm and my design. I really do. And I’m so proud of myself for doing it! I’ve invested so much time and energy into this craft and it’s been an incredibly expansive experience.
And to be clear- we still love weddings! They are such a beautiful way to celebrate love and we will continue to host them (more on that later.) There are some really special event planners and wedding vendors in our region who are fighting really hard, every day, to show up for underrepresented minority + queer couples wanting to get married. And we have loved being part of that community and to be a safe haven for couples.
But I can’t keep up with the demands of a business that is totally devoted to weddings and floristry. I don’t know if this next venture will be THE path, or if it will even work out, but I know I have to make some major changes and I know the herbs are calling! I’ve known this for a while now, but I not only needed the consent and blessing from Mike, I needed this to be his dream too. I’m so grateful that that time has come.
We LOVE growing medicinal herbs and have had success growing some of our favorite herbs for local businesses and herbalists. I fell in love with medicinal herbs in 2008 while attending the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine. My teacher Juliet continues to be a mentor and guide. As an Asheville native and regular visitor to these mountains, I found an endlessly new + inspiring wilderness that has rooted me here, even at times when I’ve wanted to leave so badly…
So here is what is happening: We will slowly be transitioning our main cash crop from flowers to medicinal herbs. We will still celebrate flowers on this land and will continue to grow flower crops, those being our tried and true beauties that grow really well here. We’re thinking now the top three annual crops will be dahlias, zinnias and sunflowers. We’ll also have our peonies, roses, lilies, hydrangeas, willows, and all our other perennial crops creating a beautiful display for events. We will always have flowers out here!
And on to events! We began hosting weddings on the farm three years ago and it has been a wild success. We’ve tripled our bookings every year and have loved meeting the sweeties who want to tie the knot out here! So why not just focus on the perennial garden and events? Because we love to farm and this land loves to grow beautiful and medicinal plants!
In order to align more with our calling we are looking to host more health and wellness retreats + educational events, like workshops and seminars. We will still book weddings out here, they just won’t be the main focus. We also want to keep hosting farm dinners! And we want to teach our own workshops again!
We’ve decided to go ahead and make all this known now because we’re receiving about 12 emails a week for people wanting to book their wedding here for 2021! And also because we need to make room for dreaming, visioning, and getting to work on this new chapter of the farm.
13 years in flowers, weddings and silk ribbon is a good run!!
Here is what you can expect for this season; if you are booked with us for your wedding, for floral design, have a pick your own appointment or are getting bulk blooms buckets from us, then please rest easy knowing that you are locked in and we are really looking forward to serving you! We will change nothing about the amount or variety of flowers we will grow and the fields will be blasting off with blooms… of course that’s always mother nature’s call, but we will do our best as usual!
And as promised here are the dates for our Community U-Pick Days!
- JUNE 27
- JULY 18
- AUGUST 29
We have some dates for potential farm dinners but still need to talk to some chefs. Any type of food you all would like to enjoy out here?
Oh! and I almost forgot to mention that we will be renaming the herb part of our farm business to Kestrel Herb Farm, in honor of the beautiful, most tiniest of falcons that grace our fields and valley here. We won’t formally launch KHF until later this year, but we will keep you all posted on all that!
And here is where we ask for your help! For our event space: Do you happen to know of any businesses that could use a peaceful and beautiful space for a team building weekend? Do you have friends in the theater, art or dance world who would love to perform their piece outdoors? Have you been searching all over the US for a place to host your yoga, meditation and didgeridoo making workshop? Let’s collaborate!
And for the herbs, we have some exciting leads, but could use your help too; do you know anyone who may be in need of large quantities of freshly dried, organic herbs? We’re talking acres of nettles, skullcap, valerian, echinacea, yarrow, calendula, anise hyssop, lemon balm and motherwort. If so, please send me an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Will we change our name?? Still not sure. We have changed our instagram name to @ladyluckgatherings to reflect our new venture and added an account for @kestrelherbfarm. We’d love your follow on our swan song year of flower farming this season and also your blessing as we spread our tiny wings and throw caution to the wind!
Thank you all for your support and love and we look forward to seeing you this season!
In community, love, health + beauty,