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The Beginning



Hi there! I'm starting something new. I joined a blogging group as a way of staying on task to bring new, valuable, enjoyable content to you on a more consistent basis. Each month I'll be sharing about a specific topic and will also include links to a few other blog posts by fellow farmers, though of various backgrounds, to share what they're writing about as well. I hope this is a fun way for you to learn new things about myself, flower farming, and a whole bunch of other interesting topics!


So let's get this kicked off. This month's topic is Beginnings. I thought about several different ways to take this, but I figured I might as well start off with my "Origin Story" for this flower farm.


My love of the outdoors goes way back to my childhood. I grew up on a 40 acre parcel of land near the confluence of the Osage and Missouri Rivers, about 10 minutes east of Jefferson City, Missouri. About half of that was rented to a farmer who grew soybeans, corn, and wheat. One quarter was woods which we spent our days exploring, playing army, and looking for morel mushrooms. The other quarter was our house and horse pasture. My earliest flower memory was getting the green light to cut as many daffodils as we wanted to put in a vase in the house. Is there any greater joy as a kid than picking flowers?


I kept that love of the outdoors through my life and majored in Natural Resources Management in college. That's where I met my husband, Layne. I joke that we've always had "Chemistry"... but it's true, I met him in Chem 102: Living with Chemistry, my sophomore year at Lincoln University. Eventually, we graduated and that summer were lucky enough to get the opportunity to buy the farm adjacent to his Grandpa's. Don't get me wrong, taking on such a huge financial burden about made me want to puke, but I knew it would work out and we would love raising our family there.


Our farm was already being rented by Layne and his dad, so when we bought it, not much changed as far as the livestock operation goes. That said, I always wanted to add another branch to the farm, something that would be more under my control, but would contribute to the overall operation. So I researched it ALL.


Sheep and goats seemed logical, but with the coyotes around here, I was afraid the livestock guardian dog situation wouldn't work out. Then I thought about pastured chickens - I could raise them for eggs or meat and they, in turn, would fertilize the pastures as they rotated around the fields. But again, the predator issues were a roadblock. I even read books about growing mushrooms, but honestly I was afraid I would end up just going mold and making people sick! lol - not ideal.


It wasn't until the winter of 2018 that I was scrolling on Instagram and saw a truckbed FULL of flowers. It was a scroll-stopper and I started reading about them. Turns out that it was Floret Farm in the Pacific Northwest. In my mind, I always assumed that ALL flowers in the US were imported. From either the California/Florida areas, or primarily from Holland and South America. And while that is true for the majority of flowers used here, I was really intrigued by this resurgence of American and more importantly, locally grown flowers.


I spent the spring of 2019 reading every book, listening to every podcast, and searching every social media handle I could about starting a business and determining what flowers to grow. By May I decided I was going to just grow peonies. I would be a peony farm. I ordered my 265 peony roots and prepped the field that summer. In the Fall of 2019 I planted the peonies and so began the wait. You see, peonies take 2-3 years to produce flowers, so I knew it would be 2021 at the very earliest before I would have blooms. So that got me thinking...


What could I plant to cash flow for some more peonies? I decided to do some dahlias... well, 175 to be exact. I planted them in the spring of 2020 and began harvesting in August. I sold them at the farmstand and everyone was loving them! Especially while we were all locked down due to covid. I dug the dahlia tubers in the fall and planted the next round of peonies in their place.


It worked great... except something unexpected happened... I became addicted to dahlias. I really don't know why I am surprised... they are stunning! Since the beginning, I've gone from 175 to 400 to 700+ in just 3 years. This year we have over 30 varieties and they are SO CLOSE to blooming as I write this on July 1, 2022. Not only that, but we've also added dozens of annuals to round out our offerings of mixed bouquet subscriptions and farmstand flowers.


So there you have it. No lifelong goal of being a flower farmer. Just a seed planted in my mind that I would have my own farm enterprise one day. (Pun intended). And deciding to go for it. It's amazing when you finally find your calling and all the pieces just click.


I hope this story gives you some insight into the Rudy Lane Flower Farm and how it came to be. I'm so happy to have you following along with us and love when I get to share our flowers with you.


Sincerely,

Megan

Rudy Lane Flower Farm


P.S. This blog post was written in participation of a Blogging Bee-an online gathering reminiscent of the quilting bees and sewing bees of days past when women would bring their work together to create art. If you enjoyed this post about “Beginnings,” take a look at these posts from other farmers, small business owners, homesteaders, and creatives.


Don't Compare Your Beginning to Someone Else's Middle


The Wonder of Hatching Chicks


To Run Through a Meadow

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3 bình luận


Megan Temte
Megan Temte
08 thg 7, 2022

I love a good origin story! Thanks for sharing yours! Now I really want to plant some flowers.... :)

Thích

bolin.jess
06 thg 7, 2022

I loved reading how you got started Megan! Your flowers are gorgeous and I love seeing your pictures on IG

Thích

carrieroer
06 thg 7, 2022

I love love love origin stories! I didn't realize you've only just begun this in the last few years, how fun. I'm trying little by little to expand the perennial flowerbeds by our front porch.

Thích
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