Below you’ll find frequently asked questions about Twig End Farm and our flowers; please scroll down for answers. You’ll also find information on the Slow Flower movement and local flowers in general.
- How are locally-sourced flowers different than those purchased at the grocery store?
- I don’t live in the Flint area. How can I find flower farmers where I live?
- How long will Twig End Farm flowers last in a vase?
- Why is there a penny in the water every time I buy an arrangement from Twig End Farm?
- Do you deliver?
- Do you do weddings?
- I’d love to come see your urban farm; where is it located?
- Where does the name ‘Twig End Farm’ come from?
1. How are locally-sourced flowers different than those purchased at the grocery store?
Here in the United States, well over 70% of flowers used in the floral industry are imported from places like Central and South America. Flowers are picked up to three weeks before they arrive at the florist or grocery store. Because most flowers are shipped dry, they’re bred specifically for durability; not delicacy, beauty or fragrance. However, when you buy flowers locally, you can be sure that flowers were harvested as recently as the morning of your purchase. Local flowers last longer in the vase than imported flowers because they are fresh and have not endured the stress of travel.
Have you ever wondered why you don’t see zinnias, dahlias, sweet peas or cosmos for sale at your grocery store? Local flower farmers can grow and sell a wide range of flowers, many that are quite delicate, because they are not subjected to long-distance shipping. Purchasing local flowers allows you to enjoy more out-of-the-ordinary blooms. Not only that, but flowers purchased locally reflect the time of year in which they’re grown. Enjoying local flowers is enjoying nature’s subtly changing seasons. You’ll celebrate the arrival of tulips in spring, hydrangeas in summer and heirloom chrysanthemums in fall. If you’re crazy about a certain flower (for me, it’s peonies), you’ll anticipate it’s season of bloom all the more sweetly.
So many of us want to make the world more beautiful. When you purchase local flowers, you are actively reducing the burden of burned fossil fuels on our planet; local flowers are not shipped thousands of miles. Additionally, many flower farms (including Twig End Farm) practice sustainable and organic farming methods. Pesticides and harsh chemical sprays never touch the flowers, leaves or soil. The number of small scale flowers farmers in the United States and around the world is rapidly increasing; the majority use sustainable growing methods. All of this attention to and care for the earth and its inhabitants adds up to make a huge difference.
You can make a difference, too, by being aware of the impact of your purchasing choices. More and more consumers are choosing to purchase regional, seasonal flowers not only for their beauty, but also for the immediate benefit to the environment and local economies. This new awareness has sparked the Slow Flower movement and it’s spreading around the globe. Almost anywhere you look, you can find gorgeous fresh flowers passing from the hands of local flower farmers straight into those of flower-lovers in their own community. What can be more beautiful than that?
Read more about the Slow Flower movement here.
2. I don’t live in the Flint area. How can I find flower farmers where I live?
There are easy ways to find and support local flower farmers. When placing an order from your florist, request that he or she use local flowers. Additionally, you can shop for flowers at your farmers market. Many flower farmers sell directly to customers at market; they’ll be happy to answer any questions you have. A quick search on the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers and the Floret Farmer-Florist Collective directories will give you names, websites and contact information of flower farmers in your area. Lastly, Instagram is used by a huge number of farmer-florists. It’s a great place to find flower growers in your corner of the world, follow their story, and see examples of what they’re cultivating and selling.
3. How long will Twig End Farm flowers last in a vase?
Twig End Farm flowers should stay looking fresh and beautiful for at least a week, if not longer, if you follow the steps below:
- Display your flowers in a cool place away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Your sunny kitchen window is not a great place for flowers but your shady dining room table may be perfect.
- Keep your flowers away from ripening fruit. Some ripening fruit releases ethylene gas which will wilt your flowers prematurely.
- Change the vase water every other day. When you change the water, trim stems 1/2 to 1 inch at a 45 degree angle. This will allow the stems to take in water more easily. Be sure no leaves are submerged, as soggy leaves encourage bacterial growth. Keep the penny in the water!
- Snip off any sad-looking blooms. Sometimes one type of flower fades faster than another. If you see a sad flower, you can remove the entire stem or snip off the wilted flower head.
- If you can’t do any of the above, at the very least, REFILL THE VASE WATER! Fresh garden flowers are heavy drinkers. They are super thirsty and when the water is gone, they simply dry out and die. Check vase water daily; don’t let water levels drop below three-quarters full.
Also please remember although Twig End Farm arrangements may contain herbs, they are not intended for consumption. Keep away from pets, children and hungry teenagers.
4. Why is there a penny in the water every time I buy an arrangement from Twig End Farm?
Yes, there is a penny in every bucket and arrangement that leaves Twig End Farm! Copper is a natural fungicide and will keep bacteria and other yucky things from growing in vase water. Only pennies minted before 1982 contain enough copper to have an impact, so each penny accompanying flowers that leave our farm is at least 38 years old. Instead of using chemical preservatives, we try to keep things a little more simple and a little more fun.
5. Do you deliver?
Yes, we deliver our arrangements and buckets of blooms within Genesee County. The cost for delivery is $5 to zip codes 48502, 48503, 48504 and 48505. For all other zip codes within Genesee County, the cost for delivery is $15. Delivery is also available for flower subscriptions. Please inquire via the contact page for pricing.
6. Do you do weddings?
Thank you for asking! No, we do not do weddings at this time. We do, however, sell buckets of blooms to DIY brides. You can read about buckets of blooms on our flowers page. If you would like our lovely local flowers on your big day without making your own bouquets or arrangements, the Flint area has a number of incredible freelance florists and floral designers. These florists can purchase blooms from Twig End Farm to incorporate into your wedding flowers; please contact me (Janie) via the contact page for recommendations.
7. I’d love to come see your urban farm; where is it located?
Thank you for your interest in visiting our little flower farm. Because Twig End Farm is our primary residence, we don’t openly share our address. If I’m doing my job well, however, there won’t be too much to see. A good flower farmer harvests two or three times a week, taking blooms before they open in all their glory. A well-run flower farm has surprisingly few flowers left in the field to enjoy! If you’re a friend or neighbor picking up an order and would like a quick tour, I’d be happy to show you around. If we’re not yet acquainted and you’re picking up a flower order, I’ll likely meet you at Einstein Bagel’s parking lot, across from Kettering University (1700 University Ave, 48504). Thank you for understanding and for helping to protect our privacy.
8. Where does the name ‘Twig End Farm’ come from?
When my husband, baby and I first moved into our little city cottage, we’d go for long walks in the neighborhood and along the Flint River. On almost every walk, I’d find a pretty branch or twig to incorporate into our indoor decor. I had to bring the outside inside; I just loved the magic of twisty twigs and branches. One day my husband said, “This place is ‘Twig End.’ Because every twig in the neighborhood ends up here.” When we started our small urban flower farm, it seemed fitting to give it the name we’d already been using for our twig-filled home.