When you put an intention out to the Universe, it may not be exactly like waving a magic wand. It usually takes a little time to see it manifest. Case in point: two years ago a large area of prime space in our fenced-in garden in lay fallow. We envisioned a luxuriant flower garden but there were other projects that needed our attention. In the interim we seeded the area with clover as a crop cover and kept it on the back burner. The following year Nicole Spadafora of SpadaFlora Botanical Artistry approached us asking if we would consider growing flowers in that space. It felt like a magic wand had been waved over the arc of those years.
I know full well that it takes a lot of work to grow flowers, to grow lavender, to grow anything. We pitched in with Nicole and her assistants to lay in the rows of organic compost and irrigation lines that would establish her first five rows of flowers. Because farmers are in direct partnership with the sun, rain and soil, the results always feel like so much more than the sum of all our labor. Because it is. When we partner with Nature the results are magnificence beyond human capacity. That empty area in our garden is now transformed into a riot of color and a mad flutter of butterflies. Nicole hosts Pick Your Own Flowers, Open Flower Bars (look for dates this summer) and workshops in botanical design and wreath making throughout the season on our farm. She has massive energy and a deep passion for what she does – this is a woman in love with life who wants only to share her gifts with you.
I have more stories to tell you about the wonderful people we partner with on Mad Lavender Farm. Don and I came to farming late in our careers. I am an artist and have spent many hours working alone in my studio and on job sites. Don is a musician with a background in media arts and woodworking and he also works in a very focused way. We knew coming into farming our land that the challenges would be many and unpredictable. One thing we were very clear about, however, is that we both craved more companionship with others and that, along with growing lavender, we wanted to grow community on our farm.
We did as much planning as we could in preparation for our new venture. Aware that we lacked experience, we joined the US Lavender Growers Association to connect with other lavender growers throughout the US. We signed on as a host farm on WWOOF USA: WideWorld Opportunities on Organic Farms to enlist volunteers in exchange for room, board and farm experience. What has also developed over the past seven years is a connection with the organic farm community in our area and partnership with local artisans that is mutually supportive and so gratifying. These relationships are what the good life is truly made of.
I want to introduce you to the wonderful folks that we have formed partnerships with whose skills and passion help to evolve Mad Lavender Farm into what it is today. Each one has a story of how they came to be here and how we have grown together. Stay tuned and over the next few weeks we will be telling you more about the talented women and men that we have the pleasure of knowing and working with.