Visitors in the gardens

July 14, 2009

Yesterday I hosted a bouquet day for the largest group of ladies to come so far.  Thirty two women from a church group wandered the gardens and made bouquets.  The ladies and their bouquets were delightful, and I hope they enjoyed themselves as much as we enjoyed having them.  Don’t they look like a great group of ladies?

group tour Howard Lake ladies

tour day gardens

On Friday, September 12th we were part of a tour scheduled for the Minnesota State Master Gardeners Conference.  At 10:30 Friday morning a large coach motor bus arrived with 48 gardeners aboard, most of them Master Gardeners.  We had been tuning up the yard and gardens for weeks, and converted our garden shed into a temporary ‘Soap Store’ for the day.

During the tour, Mike was busy fielding questions about organic farming while I focused on the cut flower growing inquiries.  Our daughters Shari and Julie took care of selling our Good Thymes Bath & Body products, and sharing with folks how we make all our own product right here on our family farm.  And my mother was there, too, helping to watch the little ones during the tour.

We had invited our farming neighbors, Daniel and Janel Lemke, over to promote their natural ice cream.  They scooped and sold ‘Sunny Road’ ice cream that they make in a cheese and ice cream plant right on their farm, with milk from their herd of pasture fed brown swiss cows.  We treated the tourists to organic coffee to compliment the wonderful ice cream and Italian ice made by Lemke’s.

I think it went quite well, though I was very, very nervous.  In fact, I was so nervous that I needed to hold my 7 month old grandson, Gregory, the entire tour, just to have something to hang on to.  A 7 month old in charge of supporting a grandma?  What’s this farm coming to anyway?

Selling soap in the garden shed

Selling soap in the garden shed

Lemke's natural ice cream stand

Lemke's natural ice cream stand

red hat ladies garden tour

On July 18th we hosted a Red Hat ladies group for a tour of our gardens and soap business. After touring the cut flower gardens, Loy Ann, Jenny, Penny, Marilyn and Char each made a bouquet to take home, and enjoyed ice tea and each others company while relaxing at the edge of the gardens. They also toured our soap business to see how a small company like ours makes everything fresh in small batches. The weather was lovely and so were the ladies!