Freezing, Failing, and Figuring It Out (hopefully)

I’ve been feeling imposter syndrome as a flower farmer.

Maybe you feel it as a gardener or a composter. Or even as just a person trying to do something right for the Earth or for your very self. 

We cannot be magically perfect when we try things for the first time. Mistakes must happen because that is how learning happens. Yet, yikes, on a day when things don’t go as planned, it’s easy to think: 

I don’t know what I am doing. Why am I doing this?? Failure feels so darn poopy! 

When you have a blog like this, you can take the route that social media often dictate to “show only your best” and ignore the mishaps. Or, you can take the honest and very human route and share your poopiness with the Internet. Boldly present those shuddaknownbetters for people curious to learn from them and maybe feel less like an imposter themselves. 

My recent growing pains. A photo journal.

I made my first low tunnel to start the season earlier.

I started 49 ranunculus indoors and 47 of them did great.

Three bloom colors are held in these babies

When the ground in the low tunnel had warmed up and dried out from snow melt, I lovingly planted them, tucked into pet cages to keep them safe from busy squirrels and curious rabbits.

I had been watching the weather forecasts intently. Then overnight temperatures dipped lower than predicted. Some baby plants were hurt in the cold.

Leaves with frost damage. Maybe the roots below are still happy to regrow??

Grawlix! I knew I should have waited to plant them out. I knew I started them too early. I knew those starter pots were too small. I am failing as a flower farmer and the real season has not even begun!” 

I also lost ¾ of my sweetpeas. (I refuse to believe I am the only person who does not have the sweetpeas are sooo easy to germinate and grow! touch, but dang, FAILS are hard to come by online.) 

Tulips peeking through snow

And here we are. Still in Winter-Spring. It feels like 105 times a day I am running out to the low tunnel to check the thermometer in there and adjust the greenhouse plastic for more air flow, less air flow, gauging the angle of the sun or predicted gray skies. I might lose much of my ranunculus harvest this year, but I am learning a ton.

I am also thinking: And this is why people have greenhouses.

Artificial clouds (puffy row cover) I now use to tuck-in the ranuncs overnight

Let’s keep growing. Before we know it, we’ll be peeking into our Super Sow Sunday bottles. All failures and learnings welcome here. ?  


  1. So nice to see shoots coming up. Thanks for sharing your ups and downs and learning process. Good growing weather is ahead! Let’s go spring!

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