Today, I’m so thrilled to be featuring an interview with flower grower Erin Benzakein, founder of Floret.
I absolutely adore her blog! And if you pop over to it, you’ll see why…it features stunning photos of her flower farm in America.
Over to Erin…
When did you start Floret and where are you based?
I’m walking into my fifth season as a real, true grower.
Our little farm is located about an hour north of Seattle Washington, in a beautiful valley on the west coast of the United States.
What types of flowers do you grow on your farm?
We grow a little bit of everything!
Antique narcissi, anemones, ranunculus, sweet peas, pinks, icelandic poppies, peonies, a few garden roses, cockscomb, berries, shrubs with interesting foliage, dahlias, zinnias, sunflowers, grasses, pods, herbs, veggies… the list goes on forever!
Last season alone I started 260 different varieties from seed. And that’s on top of everything already growing in our perennial patch and the shrub borders.
Where do you sell your flowers?
The majority of our flowers go to floral designers via a fantastic local wholesaler and high-end natural grocery stores…though weddings work is fast becoming a big part of the business as well.
Could you tell us about your wedding flower packages?
I’m currently in the process of pinning down just exactly how I want the wedding side of our business to be organized.
In the past we had a number of options available to brides from bulk buckets of blooms, to me creating the wedding party bouquets and buttonholes while leaving the table decor to them, all the way up to full service events.
Having such a range of choices made things on our end a bit tricky!
This spring, I’m flying to California to train with some of the most talented floral designers in the country.
I’m hoping that the experience will help me hone my craft and solidify my vision for the future of our wedding business.
What are your plans for 2013?
2013 is fast becoming one for the records!
In the past month I’ve already relaunched the farm’s website, transferred over my blog to its new home, had two great magazine features and settled on a handful of really exciting collaborative projects for the coming season!
My family and I have spent the whole winter hunting up and down the coast for a new farm.
While still in the earliest stages of negotiation, I think we may have found our dream place!
So, the plan is to finish out the year here, take as many flower classes as I can, write a whole slew of articles, visit some really successful growers and learn their secrets, make flowers for a ton of gorgeous weddings, take massive amounts of photos and then transition to the new property over the winter.
Ha,ha…as I type this I can hear what a lunatic I must sound like. Strangely though, it somehow all seems doable!
What is your favourite flower?
Oh, what a cruel, cruel question! That’s like asking a mother to choose her favorite child!
Well, icelandic poppies, ranunculus, Cafe au Lait dahlias and garden roses all have a really tight grip on my heart, but sweet peas…..sweet peas do me in every time.
A huge thanks to Erin for all her help in compiling today’s blog post.
P.S. UK readers…isn’t it just so lovely to see some photos showing the summer sunshine? It’s the perfect antidote to the cold and snowy weather here at the moment!
(Images : Floret)