Branchton, Ontario -Onside Media had a conversation with Janice Donkers, the owner of Village Flower Farm, just outside of Cambridge, Ontario. In addition to their flower arrangements, this tiny boutique flower farm, and design studio now provides classes and a flower subscription service. It first debuted in 2021. Janice talks about how she started growing flowers and how it fits in with her second profession as a grain farmer.
Janice grew up on a dairy and grain farm in Branchton, ON. Janice lived in Southern Alberta for 10 years where she worked a desk job for the Government. After some time, she began to dislike her job. When speaking with her dad about this, he began to ask what she was looking for in a career. Traits such as being outside and being physically active were included, which led her to come back and work on the grain farm with him. Moving back in 2019 with her husband, Janice found it difficult to connect with others in her community as there are not many other female farmers. Also, due to the nature of farming, there were gaps in time between planting and harvesting.
When scrolling online, Janice saw a flower farm operating in Oregon that inspired her. She decided to purchase some seeds the same year and attempt to grow them. When this was successful, she applied for some flower design courses and officially launched a small boutique store in 2021.
Janice is in charge of thousands of flower seeds in addition to working alongside her father on 400 acres of grain. Janice had to face a learning curve when working in grain farming because it gave her easier access to knowledge and supplies. Janice and her father honed their skills in three areas of grain farming: maize, soybeans, and wheat. Knowledge such as when to plant and fertilize has become a science as a result of experience. Janice works with a range of flowers and must discover what works well for each species. Understanding how to germinate various flowers, such as those that require darkness, cold temperatures, or warm temperatures to flourish, is all part of the learning process. Other new problems for the flower farm include managing social media and maintaining a website.
Janice intends to keep the flower farm modest because she appreciates being a part of the growth process for each flower planted, from seed to store. Instead, Janice has designed a course this year in which a small intimate group can stroll through the fields. And learned about the growing process before completing their own flower arrangement and learning about floral design. Janice will also be giving a year of flowers, in which buyers will receive a bouquet from May to September.
Janice begins planting seeds in her home as early as January to create stunning hand-crafted bouquets. She was juggling her time with her other farm obligations. Janice wants to keep educating and connecting people to the lovely process of flower cultivation.
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Author: Kathryn Intini, Content Writer, St.Catharines, Canada. Kathryn is a fourth-year Business Communications student at Brock University. With an interest in big data analytics and a commitment to lifelong learning, she hopes to work in technical sales. She has been recognized for selling over $1 million in products at her summer sales job and her commitment to Autism Speaks Canada. If you have any stories or comments, kindly email: – kathrynintini.theonside@gmail.