Posts Tagged “carnations”
Oh good, you’re back! If you’re reading this, it must mean my attempt at recapping our visit to Liberty Blooms didn’t scare you off. But don’t worry too much, this summary is more pictures than anything so things should run smoothly. Pictures I can do.
Over the course of our trip, primarily in the Medellín area, we visited a number of other farms to learn how they operate, and see some of the flowers we get from them in their early stages, from the ground, to harvest, to the grading and then finally packing.
Stop One: Altagracía
Altagracía is one of the largest Calla growers in Colombia, covering almost 24 acres of production. They grow over fourteen varieties of callas in nine different colors, as well as some colored hydrangea and dusty miller. Not only did we have a great tour of their farm (other than what they swear was their first farm tour in the pouring rain – I must have brought it with me from Seattle, oops!) the girls we work with are so friendly, and we ended up having a fabulous dinner with them and the owner’s family when we made it to Bogotá, filled with delicious food, even better wine, and more than enough laughter. Check out some photos from their farm below!
Stop Two: Valley Springs
Valley Spring’s farm is nestled in hills of Antioquia, in a town called La Ceja. They grow beautiful white hydrangea, and I have to be honest, I had no clue they could position these fields on such a steep grade! It was, once again, raining, so we weren’t able to walk the entire farm due the mud and steepness, but it was such an unique and picturesque setting that I really enjoyed getting to see a farm set up like that. At Valley Springs we also spent time inside checking out the different processes they take the hydrangea through, like the grading system. Pat even took a shot at grading – how do you think he did?
Stop Three: Gutimilko
Before our flight out to Bogotà, Andres and Pablo picked us up for our final farm visit in Medellín. La Guadalupana Farm, the main supplier for Gutimilko, is located in La Unión, on a sprawling property. They grow hydrangea, callas and a small selection of other varieties, and also have a cattle business producing milk. Shockingly, we don’t get much milk from them, but we do buy lots of hydrangea! Andres and Pablo are brothers who have grown this farm into what it is today, and we had the privilege of visiting their country home at the start of the visit, which is located on the farm. I was promised a horse back ride next time I visit… Andres, if you’re reading this, I hope you know I was serious about that!
Stop Four: Aposentos
I unfortunately did not make it out to the Aposentos farm, but Pam braved the Bogotá traffic to visit one of our carnation farms. She had a great time and snapped some shots to share with you guys!
One of the coolest things about going to these farms before attending Proflora in Bogotá was that we were able to catch up with many of them at the show, as well as dance the night away at the big fiesta at the very end. Not only did I get to see the beautiful Colombian countryside and learn so much about the farm processes on these visits, but I also feel like we formed some great relationships that will continue to grow, and I’ll always have my Colombian family to visit when I inevitably return to their beautiful country.
Stay tuned for a couple more posts wrapping up the rest of our trip!
Guest Blogger: David Dahlson
All of a sudden the supply of some flowers, especially roses and hydrangeas, has become dramatically curtailed. That is of course unless you want red roses for any number of reasons; then you are in luck, because red roses abound. We are now entering the period when the rose plants that had been harvested for Valentine’s Day are producing new blooms, most of which are red. For Mother’s Day, it seems that mostly colors are in demand; probably because it is mostly women making the purchasing decisions, whether for their own mothers or for their mothers-in-law.
And if you are looking for some of the most sought after varieties such as Quicksand, High & Arena, Canela, Giotto, Combo or even old-school Sahara it really will be a struggle to get any reasonable quantities.
A simple solution is the dianthus caryophyllus “Creola”. These wonderful flowers are probably not on most people’s radars as they are from the family of oft dismissed carnations. Their casual, loose habit recalls damask rose blooms but it is their color, neutral like Quicksand, with hints of pink, yellow ochre and antique green that make them very much à la mode. They complement a wide range of flowers including antique green hydrangeas. Combine that with their low cost and incredible vase life, and you have a product that can be purchased by the box and kept handy as a stand-by for all kinds of last minute situations.
And they are certainly not your Mother’s carnations!
All types of dianthus – including carnations and green ball – have become a staple among floral designers. We just created a new product guide covering all of the details on these versatile wholesale flowers including some of the newer dianthus varieties that are now available.
If you missed last month’s video on carnations, be sure to check it out here.
What is your favorite dianthus?