10 December 2020 Ravenstone, Coalville LE67, UK

Beginnings



So here it is, my first blog post. As my daughter would say - yikes. I have procrastinated. I have dallied over where to begin. What to say. How to find the time to even do it! The answer of course is, that you just need to start writing. That’s the hardest bit. 


So welcome to From the patch, a family-run, micro flower farm, growing flowers organically to sell locally. So let me tell you a little bit about our beginnings. Our venture all began in 2019, after years of enjoying growing a range of flowers and vegetables, we decided we wanted to grow a dedicated cut flower patch and having only our small new-build garden to play with, it really was a patch - hence the name. We made the best use of our available space by squeezing in three raised beds around the front of our house and putting two more on our lawn in the back garden. Inevitably, we ended up with more plants than we could fit in these spaces so also had to cram the overspill into our already full borders.


Our first patch was a few raised beds along the drive.


We grew a range of flowers - some of which we’d never grown before. Most we grew from seed, such as Ammi Majus, Sweet Peas, Cerinthe Major, Orlaya Grandiflora, Cosmos and Scabious. Others we grew from bulbs, Corms and tubers, such as Ranunculus, Tulips and Dahlias. It was an exciting experiment! One that didn’t always end in success but we learned lots along the way. 



When summer arrived, all the hard work had been worth it. We were awash with towering clouds of Ammi Majus, a jewel box of Dahlias and I had nearly forgotten to mention the roses. We couldn’t believe how many flowers we’d managed to grow in such a tiny space. I spent the summer picking bunch after bunch for the house and for friends and family and I knew this was what I wanted to do. But how to go bigger next year?





    


Then we had a stroke of luck. A local from the village saw our efforts and very kindly told us of an allotment spot that was up for grabs. We couldn’t believe our luck! So close to our house it was the perfect spot, though it was in desperate need of some attention - I’m talking shoulder high brambles, couch grass and bindweed. But it did come with the bones of a greenhouse and on first inspection, the soil was amazing, dark crumbly stuff! Needless to say, we got straight in there and over the summer managed to clear a little corner in which we grew some vegetables.



Spot the Oliver!

We have since carried on clearing the plot and making beds, taking our two little ones along with us, who love digging for worms and getting up close and personal with the soil. It's now December and things are really shaping up. We have a polytunnel ready to put in, especially for growing our Ranunculus. We have compost bays up and running. We do still have some weeds to tend to but we are determined that they will be gone by the New Year to make way for our hardy annuals. The greenhouse and cold frame back at home are bursting with plants which we have grown from seed and we have already filled a bed at our patch with an array of Tulip and Daffodil bulbs.


So 2021 will be our first year of selling our flowers. They will all have been grown by us, from seed or bulb, without the use of any chemicals, in peat-free soil. Our hope is that, as well as providing us with gorgeous flowers, our patch will be a home for wildlife and insects and hopefully, you’ll like them too! 


Lucy and Oliver x

From the patch 


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